Pipes Magazine » Pipe Repair and Maintenance

Search Forums  
   
Tags:  No tags yet. 

My new/old Grabow Restoration Candidate

(39 posts)
  • Started 2 weeks ago by mikethompson
  • Latest reply from mso489
  1. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    After the technical mishap of it being sent back to the sender, my Dr. Grabow Golden Duke has arrived. I picked this up to practice restoring pipes, as the bowl has some burn marks. The stem looks perfect aside from usual discolouration.

    The pipe is very small as well, I thought something called a Golden Duke would be bigger, but smaller means less work right?

    Posted 2 weeks ago #
  2. scloyd

    scloyd

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2018
    Posts: 1,731

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice pipe Mike. Glad it finally arrived. Looking forward to the after pics. Good luck.

    Posted 2 weeks ago #
  3. didimauw

    didimauw

    Mod
    Joined: Jul 2013
    Posts: 3,038

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Awesome pipe. I recently restored a crown Duke bully similar to that one. Mine has the blue spade. Made back when stems were real vulcanite.

    Can't wait to see how it turns out for you!

    "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like, and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve."
    Posted 2 weeks ago #
  4. mso489

    mso489

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2013
    Posts: 26,274

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Looks like a great little smoker. Once you get it cleaned up, I bet you'll reach for that one often.

    Posted 2 weeks ago #
  5. acidpox

    acidpox

    Member
    Joined: Nov 2018
    Posts: 267

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Cant wait to see it all cleaned up. The grabow I just recently redid gets smoked often.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  6. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2018
    Posts: 2,624

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Even I could deal with a shape like that. A bulldublin, how much better could it get?! (Hush, Duane, I know what you're going to say. -laugh-)

    You *are* planning on stell-wooling that daggone spade off the stem, right?

    B

    Head Black Frigate keelhauler, boss powder monkey, & troublemaker 1st class.
    Posted 1 week ago #
  7. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Thanks guys, it is coming along. Hopefully I'm picking up some tricks and skills along the way.

    I'm not sure if the calibre will be up to some of the restorations I see around here, but its all about growth right?

    No comment on the upside down pictures Bill? You must be slipping.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  8. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    The progress so far:

    Rim has been cleaned with 1800 grit micromesh. I've still got a little on there to get off but most of it is gone. I cleaned the whole bowl with Murphy's oil soap and a toothbrush, plugging the bowl with two cotton balls. An incredible amount of grime came off.



    Posted 1 week ago #
  9. donjgiles

    donjgiles

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Apr 2018
    Posts: 846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice work Mike!

    Don

    Posted 1 week ago #
  10. scloyd

    scloyd

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2018
    Posts: 1,731

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Lookin' good.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  11. lawdawg

    lawdawg

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Aug 2016
    Posts: 536

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Already cleaning up nicely! The first set of pics gave me the impression that the rim was severely charred, but it looks comparatively minor in the "after" pics. Looking forward to seeing the finished pipes. Even though I don't old any Grabows or Kaywoodies etc., I like seeing these classic America everyman's pipes cleaned up and put back into use.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  12. redglow

    redglow

    Senior Member
    Joined: Jan 2019
    Posts: 1,274

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    That's a great looking pipe!

    Posted 1 week ago #
  13. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Thanks guys! A few coats of mineral oil have really helped with that rough rim. Truthfully to be perfect the bowl would have to be topped slightly, but that's a little much for me right now. I'm happy with how the bowl went. Now to focus on the stem.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  14. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2018
    Posts: 2,624

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Remember, Mike, 60 grit coarse will take that shovel off just like [snap] that.

    Yeah, I agree that just a *little* topping could help, though not too much. Full faith & confidence, though, that you ain't so toopid as to not know when enough is too much.

    On the pictures, so many of mine come out cockeyed, I figured it was normal!

    B

    Posted 1 week ago #
  15. mso489

    mso489

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2013
    Posts: 26,274

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    It's getting pretty.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  16. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Bill, now that I know you dislike Grabows so much, I have to ask why, and then maybe send you one!

    Tom, thanks kindly. It will win no contests, but its turning out pretty good for my first time I think.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  17. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Mineral oil, then a good hand polish with some briar wax

    Posted 1 week ago #
  18. donjgiles

    donjgiles

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Apr 2018
    Posts: 846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Look At That!!!

    Sweet!

    Don

    Posted 1 week ago #
  19. scloyd

    scloyd

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2018
    Posts: 1,731

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Very nice. Well done Mike.

    Posted 1 week ago #
  20. mso489

    mso489

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2013
    Posts: 26,274

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I'd vote against topping the bowl. A little wear on a pipe is a good thing, and you are bringing it along nicely otherwise. You could sand it down and re-stain it, but I wouldn't. These grand old U.S. factory pipes are classic.

    Posted 6 days ago #
  21. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Looks like a fun project! I just got started on a Grabow restoration myself. I was showing my dad an old 1940s Peterson 208 I was polishing the silver band on, and he surprised me by pulling a couple pipes out of his desk he used to smoke when he worked in Prudhoe Bay in the 70s that he apparently inherited from a deceased family member. Never even knew he ever smoked a pipe.

    One of them was a Grabow Ajustomatic Eldorado! It has the most oxidized stem I've ever seen (after sitting in his desk for 30+ years) and easily a quarter cm of cake on the rim and in the bowl. The pipe was also clearly set down on the same side for years and years, as one side is all full of scuffs and scratches. After taking care of the oxidation and caking yesterday, as well as cleaning up the bowl a bit, it actually looks like it will have some awesome grain and will end up being in pretty good shape when I'm done. Now to investigating sanding out dings/scratches and re-staining......youtube here I come...

    "We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that death will tremble to take us." ---Hank

    "Yeah, well, you know that's just like, uh, your opinion, man..." --- The Dude
    Posted 6 days ago #
  22. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Tom I decided not to top the bowl because a) I don't know how to do that just yet, and b) it is so minor I'm not sure its worth the work, and c) I like a little patina on my pipes.

    Alaska, nice grab! I wish I could have a 'family' pipe. One word of warning though, restoring pipes is very addictive so be careful! There are plenty of folks that I've PM'd for help and they have been very helpful.

    Posted 6 days ago #
  23. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Alaska, nice grab! I wish I could have a 'family' pipe. One word of warning though, restoring pipes is very addictive so be careful! There are plenty of folks that I've PM'd for help and they have been very helpful.

    Hahaha, yeah I'm already lost. I got the stem restoration and sanding down. But on youtube, every single video I watch on staining and waxing uses a different method. Just trying to sort it all out. And apparently find out where to buy leather dye and a reasonably cheap buffing wheel

    Posted 6 days ago #
  24. acidpox

    acidpox

    Member
    Joined: Nov 2018
    Posts: 267

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    I get my leather dye from amazon. It's about 6-8 dollars per color.

    Posted 6 days ago #
  25. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    found some for 3.99 at a local leather shop. thanks tho!

    Posted 6 days ago #
  26. theloniousmonkfish

    theloniousmonkfish

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jan 2017
    Posts: 768

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice pick up/clean up. Golden Duke did not designate size, the Duke lines were all filtered, Golden is the highest grade of them.

    Hey, Alaska, congrats on the familial find, does that Eldorado have a shape number stamped on it?

    Posted 6 days ago #
  27. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Yes, shape 11

    Posted 6 days ago #
  28. theloniousmonkfish

    theloniousmonkfish

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jan 2017
    Posts: 768

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Extra large Apple, nice acquisition. The shape stamps ended about thirty years ago and were only used on some lines, they were reserved for the nicer pieces in those lines. Is it "banded"(aluminum shank extension)?

    Posted 6 days ago #
  29. trubka2

    trubka2

    Member
    Joined: Feb 2019
    Posts: 222

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice, Mike! Mineral oil is amazing stuff, isn't it? Sometimes it seems like old briar is just kind of "thirsty" or something. It soaks that stuff right up and just comes back to life.

    You and alaska will enjoy those pipes a lot, I bet. I've got a couple younger Grabows (from maybe 1980s/1990? - they have aluminum push tenons and soft-ish stems) that I bought as beater pipes for the car, camping, etc. Abuse them as I might, I can't get anything but great smokes out of them. I now have a lot of respect for the good Doctor.

    Posted 6 days ago #
  30. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Thanks! Yeah the pipe dates no later than when my dad received it, which he says was the early 70s “or so.” But he got it “well smoked” from a deceased relative. No band.

    Posted 6 days ago #
  31. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice pick up/clean up. Golden Duke did not designate size, the Duke lines were all filtered, Golden is the highest grade of them.

    Good to know, thanks! Actually there was a grimy old filter in it when I bought it.

    Mineral oil is amazing stuff, isn't it?

    I'll say! I'm starting to believe that it can do anything. I have some sanding to do on the stem, but then a mineral oil polish will bring the shine right back up I'm sure.

    Posted 5 days ago #
  32. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    the stem didn't turn out too bad I think!

    Posted 4 days ago #
  33. scloyd

    scloyd

    Preferred Member
    Joined: May 2018
    Posts: 1,731

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Wow! Good job Mike.

    Posted 4 days ago #
  34. acidpox

    acidpox

    Member
    Joined: Nov 2018
    Posts: 267

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Nice job on the stem, looks like I need to invest in some mineral oil for my restoration kit.

    Posted 4 days ago #
  35. bnichols23

    Bill Nichols

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Mar 2018
    Posts: 2,624

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Tom, I'm with you. Topping would clean it up, but it's way too easy to ruin proportions by doing so unless you're reeeeeallly careful.

    , now that I know you dislike Grabows so much, I have to ask why, and then maybe send you one!

    Hey, I gots nothing against Grabows.

    I wouldn't get that close to them. [evyl larf] Actually, they're not too bad as a basis for a good boat anchor, after all. Seriously, very nice job, Mike, especially on the stem.

    Bill

    Posted 4 days ago #
  36. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Yup this project is in the books, and I'm really happy with how it turned out. I learned some tricks for the next one too.

    As for using it as a boat anchor Bill, it would have to be a teeny weeny boat!

    Posted 4 days ago #
  37. mikethompson

    mikethompson

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Jun 2016
    Posts: 3,846

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Posted 4 days ago #
  38. alaskanpiper

    alaskanpiper

    Member
    Joined: May 2019
    Posts: 1,012

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    Looks Excellent! Nice work! You'll have to get back to us when you light it up......

    Posted 4 days ago #
  39. mso489

    mso489

    Preferred Member
    Joined: Feb 2013
    Posts: 26,274

    offline

    Login to Send PM

    What a fine job. I really like my own Dr. Grabows, both of them. But this one has snappy grain and both the briar and the stem came back to life. Better than new.

    Posted 4 days ago #

Reply

You must log in to post.

 

 

    Back To Top  | Back to Forum Home Page

   Members Online Now
   jttnk