Dunhill 5203

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stanlaurel

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Jan 31, 2015
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I am very interested in obtaining a Dunhill 5203. I have never smoked a Dunhill but I really like this shape. I would like a Cumberland:



or a Shell:



One of these would cost me $650 from a US site and maybe 20% less from a euro site. I really don't see myself forking out that kind of money.
I also really like the Ashton Pebble Grain vesion of the same shape:



These have been showing up for about $280. This is much more reasonable. The Ashton also weighs about 8-10 grams less than the Dunhill in the group 5 range.
Last but certainly not least, I can get the Savinelli 114 for less than $100:



This one has almost the exact same dimensions as the Ashton.
Does anyone own any of these?

I would love to get some feedback on how they smoke and whether the extra $$ spent for the Ashton would be worth it.

 

gphenry

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Jul 5, 2014
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That is a great looking shape. I too would like a Dunhill, but am very happy with my new Savinelli Bruna 127. It is not blasted, but very handsome. Here it is with the Bruna 122, 122 on the stand.

It is light in the hand and clinched, open draw, slightly smaller pipe than the 114ks, but still a full sized pipe. It is not a Dunhill, or Ashton. It is a Savinelli, that is a good thing too.

 

dmcmtk

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Aug 23, 2013
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An interesting set of comparatives. I would not spend the money for the Dunhill at that price. I don't own, nor have a ever smoked an Ashton, but I would find it far preferable to the Dunhill's for a number of reasons, certainly two of which would be Bill Taylor and Jim Craig, more of a hand made pipe in my view, but others will have more insight as owners and smokers of Ashton pipes. Certainly, in my mind it being lighter than the Dunhill is something that I would prefer. Savinelli's, in general, great smoking pipes. Aesthetically, of the pipes shown, I like the Ashton the best!

 

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newbroom

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Jul 11, 2014
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Yes, from those shown in the OP's post, I agree, the Ashton's blast is more attractive, deeper, more grain suggestive and complete all the way to the stem.

 

ssjones

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May 11, 2011
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Here's a 4203 at $340 from Al Pascia. With the current exchange rate, it's unlikely you'll ever find one cheaper.

http://www.alpascia.com/pipes/d/-s4203/Dunhill-B310-i32900.html

 

gphenry

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Jul 5, 2014
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Here's a 4203 at $340 from Al Pascia. With the current exchange rate, it's unlikely you'll ever find one cheaper.

http://www.alpascia.com/pipes/d/-s4203/Dunhill-B310-i32900.html
Immediately after posting in this thread I went looking, was really considering buying this pipe. Please pull the trigger, buy it and end my suffering. ;)

 

elpfeife

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Dec 25, 2013
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That price is 340 euros, so with 10 euro shipping and a customs charge of @$15 the outlay would be closer to $400. Still a very good price. I bought a Dunhill from Al Pascia a month or so ago for $290 (customs fee included) that would have cost $490 or $520 stateside. So Al is right. You likely would find a better time to buy than now.

 

buroak

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Jul 29, 2014
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Keep an eye out for that Ashton on pipes2smoke.com. The retailer is in Canada, but I had a good experience with his shipping and service. If you want the Dunhill, I would watch eBay listings. Al Pascia's prices for new Dunhill's are far lower than any US retailer, but estate Dunhills in great shape can still be had for less.

 

irish

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Aug 12, 2011
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Texas
I picked up this Dunnie a few months ago for 150 shipped to my door. Not exactly what you want but close. Good deals are out there. It is 1964 Shell Briar.


 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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I know it's not the same as the high end pipes, but I think you'd get a world of good smoking out of the Savenelli. You have to decide about extending yourself on price. You'd be in another category with the Dunhill. But the Sav would be good.

 

dulgunz

Senior Member
Feb 11, 2015
313
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Yes the Dunhill and Ashton are good looking pipes but pound for pound, or dollar for dollar, I would pick the Sav.

It will smoke just the same if not better at 1/5 and 1/2 the price.(JMO) I would pick functionality over looks every time. Plus the Sav is no slacker in the looks department either.

 

ssjones

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May 11, 2011
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Worth noting, that a new Savinelli will have an acrylic, filter stem. Dunhill and Ashton make (made) filter pipes as well, but they are less common (for sure on an Ashton).

 

jkrug

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Jan 23, 2015
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Those are all very good looking pipes including the Northern Briar that you bought. I'd love to have a Dunhill someday when the time is right. Enjoy your new pipe. :puffy:

 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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I like the Northern Briars a lot, a sturdy look but still classy. This thread got me looking at Ashtons, which have never attracted my attention before. Excellent English pipe without paying the Dunhill "brand tax."

 

saltedplug

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Aug 20, 2013
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The three most important features of a pipe are, I think, drilling, curing and a comfortable stem. The last might not seem to exist as one of the most important features, but having to fight a clunky stem for the duration of a smoke is a battle that defeats the pipe's enjoyment. Different makers drill through the shank and stem differently, especially the stem, but incorrect drilling impedes the flow of smoke to the mouth, which of course is the pipe's prime directive. Well, there's also the matter of the vessel holding the burning tobacco, but hollowing what will be the pipe's chamber is much less problematic. Finally curing, which is the most mysterious of the three, the removal of the sap by boiling, exposure to air and perhaps other methods of which I am unaware. If not removed the remnant life processes in sap detract from the smoke, I suppose, by influencing flavor, but again in what way I don't know. One would think that fully and partially cured wood would manage the burn just as well, and thus I become just another person repeating an unexperienced fact. I've never smoked a pipe and sensed an odd taste in the tobacco and thought myself, hmm. . .bad wood, and then disparaged the carver for using green wood.
If these three things are present, however, one can have a good enough smoke, but to go beyond this is the smoking technique that capably manages the smoke and one's disposition that allows the the smoke to be savory.
So if we look at the pipes above in this light, we come, I think, to the conclusion that they will all smoke well, and that we buy what we buy within the prevailing boundaries of our budget, those pipes whose shape, style and finishing awaken the flavor of that day's pipe lust. Of these considerations budget prevailed for me over the weekend, and cruising Pulver's Briars, I jumped on a Jost for $35.00. I hadn't intended to buy, but I am often drawn to cheap, serviceable pipes so that I don't have to endure the guilt wrought by the insanity of depleting my savings meant to keep me, at least, with a cupboard full of Alpo in a lingering old age:).

 

mso489

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Feb 21, 2013
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Ah, good to hear 4noggins think about the virtues of pipes with low prices, as still being worthy. I like to take the occasional excursion into indulgence, but I am greatly pleased when I can land a pipe that smokes really well and costs not so much. About a year ago, I located a new Yello-Bole that was actually made of briar, a little Checker panel, that smokes great. It always pleases me when I light it up. I think it was less than $30, and shipping as I recall was $5. I savor luxury items, but I'm pleased, also, by good buys.

 
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