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gloucesterman

Preferred Member
Jan 4, 2015
1,859
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Massachusetts
Well the display box arrived and the set is in its new home. Since these pipes were produced over more than a thirty year span, GBD probably didn’t have a set like this and I wouldn’t either but for Ebay. These Pre-Codogan, St. Claude turned, London Made, 9438 Bent Rhodesians haven’t been made since 1981 (10 of 12, The Meerschaums were made for GBD by the Tanganyika Meerschaum Corporation of African Meerschaum, long ago mined out). Finding a dozen different versions suitable for restoration took time, tenacity and more than a few anxious moments in the last seconds of some auctions but the reward was worth it. The box is just the frosting on the cake but really adds focus to the set. These pipes are not rare but not common either. What makes this set somewhat unique is that each pipe is a distinctly different expression of the same style number and all were made during a period when GBD was considered a “Premium” pipe maker. I started acquiring them because I liked how they smoked. Over time that morphed into a quest for all the examples of the type I could find. You have love it when a plan comes together even better than originally intended.

Now I need to find a box for my French Made versions. And yes, my wife calls it compulsive but I prefer to think of it as “goals oriented”. Same affliction but sounds better!



 

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snagstangl

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Jul 1, 2013
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So when you say all examples, do you mean all examples that are marked GDB and 9438? Or all pipes that have the 9438 shape code? I have about half dozen 9438's but none are GBD marked.

 

gloucesterman

Preferred Member
Jan 4, 2015
1,859
1
Massachusetts
GBD through Codogan did a lot of private label pipes and the 9438 was a popular shape. All of the pipes in this set are actually GBD brand. The Sauvage (top Center) is actually a re-stem that someone along the way had fitted with the English style bit. Only one I've ever seen like it but it is a GBD brand pipe so I included it. The meerschaums were marketed as Genuine Block Meerschaum but have the GBD stem stamp and 9438 stamping. I used examples to denote different finishes or enhancements. You'll notice there are two Fantasy pipes. One is banded and the other rondeled. The same is true for the Prehistorics, each has a different stem type. The set is made up of:

Century, New Era, Virgin, New standard, Sauvage, Rockroot, Meerschaum Smooth & Rusticated, Fantasy Banded & Rondeled, PreHistoric and Prehistoric (Perspex - Clear stem). There may be some other finishes out there but I've never seen them.

 

tslex

Preferred Member
Jun 23, 2011
1,482
2
That is really something, Gloucester. (I'm put in mind of my white whale thread.)
The box absolutely MAKES it.
And what a nifty testament to the notion that there is endless creativity in the pipemaker's art, even within a seemingly limited aesthetic: "Go make me a chunky, saddle bit Rhodesian." We see this sort of thing when there's a carving challenge for a pipe show, and the artisans all play their own riff on the melody. But the scope and scale of this is something altogether more.
Well done.
ETA: I promise that set would be a welcome display at any pipe show -- and might get you in for free.

 
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