Patent-era Sasieni "Viscount Lascelles" To Die For

Log in

SmokingPipes.com Updates

Watch for Updates Twice a Week

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

PipesMagazine Approved Sponsor

georged

Lifer
Mar 7, 2013
5,534
14,204
In the collecting world, from cars to watches to pipes, there are ultra-rare, never used, never sold "time capsule" specimens, and there are desirable specimens, but they hardly ever overlap.

Meaning, not many people care about a zero-miles Yugo with the option sticker still in the window, but a semi-restored semi-original AC Cobra roadster in meh condition will create significant interest.

When a lightly driven, never restored, 100% original AC Cobra roadster turns up, though---when rarity and desirability overlap---it makes the news.

So, condition:

Though this Sasieni was owned and lightly smoked, it was never reamed much, or more importantly BUFFED much. Maybe not at all. (early Sasieni nomenclature is notoriously shallow and delicate) Except for some light "pocket knock" compression dings and the chamber wall being black, the pipe is essentially new.

Desirability:

The early Viscount Lascelles was Sasieni's entry in the "swan neck" sweepstakes. A period when the top British makers wanted their flagship shapes to look streamlined and have flow, regardless of the manufacturing difficulties involved. (The period didn't last long because of tho$e difficultie$, but boy howdy are today's collectors glad it happened at all.)

Net Result:

Screen Shot 2023-12-28 at 5.01.32 PM.png




PS --- Any of you nomenclature decoder guys who can pin down the manufacturing year(s), please fire away.


P1060856.jpg
P1060858.jpg
P1060862.jpg
P1060864.jpg
 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
19,747
45,290
Southern Oregon
jrs457.wixsite.com
Age range is 1946 thru 1950.

It's beautiful example. About 8 years ago + or -, one of these went for almost $2K. Two bidders, waiting to snipe at the last second, collided with sky high bids that ended up in that range, about 2 1/2 times the previous high for this model.

God bless the last second snipers. They think they're brilliant. I know they're idiots.
 
Last edited:

jguss

Lifer
Jul 7, 2013
2,474
6,446
I think the pipe is earlier. The UK patent number on this pipe was applied for on January 13, 1920. At that time under the Patent and Designs Act of 1907 the duration of a patent was 14 years; a provision was made, under certain conditions, for one 7 year extension. These terms were keyed to the Application Date, so this patent would have expired either on January 13, 1934 or January 13, 1941. I believe that as a rule companies ceased asserting patent protection after the right to do so expired. If that's correct in this case the pipe is almost certainly pre-war, since production dwindled after the fall of France.

I know this goes against Smith’s statements about the timing of changes in nomenclature; that’s a subject for argument on another occasion.

As for valuation, would you accept $2000.01?
 
Last edited:

huntertrw

Lifer
Jul 23, 2014
5,267
5,504
The Lower Forty of Hill Country
georged:

I wouldn't die for this pipe (if I did, then I wouldn't be able to enjoy it and that would be a crying shame), but I would be highly pleased to have it join the other Sasienis in my collection. You are a lucky man. Do homeless French Bulldog puppies also find their way to your front door? :)

I have a Four Dot Natural Regent whose bowl-profile is nearly identical, but whose stem does not have as pronounced a bend as yours.

In your image above, the stem dots appear almost white rather than blue; are they?
 
Last edited:
  • Haha
Reactions: AroEnglish

georged

Lifer
Mar 7, 2013
5,534
14,204
In your image above, the stem dots appear almost white rather than blue; are they?

The dots look even more unusual in hand. They're "translucently bluish-tinged white", with the color intensifying slightly at the edges, and there's an ever-so-faint tan line at the margin (I'm guessing glue). And they are considerably tighter together---a smaller group---than I've seen before.

That, plus the push-the-aesthetic-limit stem bend angle, argue for earlier production rather than later. The streamliner swan-neck fashion happened before WWII, and atypical details (like dot spacing, in this case) usually occur before a business develops standard methods for everything.



Screen Shot 2023-12-28 at 9.47.23 PM.png
 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
19,747
45,290
Southern Oregon
jrs457.wixsite.com
I think the pipe is earlier. The UK patent number on this pipe was applied for on January 13, 1920. At that time under the Patent and Designs Act of 1907 the duration of a patent was 14 years; a provision was made, under certain conditions, for one 7 year extension. These terms were keyed to the Application Date, so this patent would have expired either on January 13, 1934 or January 13, 1941. I believe that as a rule companies ceased asserting patent protection after the right to do so expired. If that's correct in this case the pipe is almost certainly pre-war, since production dwindled after the fall of France.

I know this goes against Smith’s statements about the timing of changes in nomenclature; that’s a subject for argument on another occasion.

As for valuation, would you accept $2000.01?
An interesting possibility, though I own a 1941 hallmarked patent 8 dot with the swash logo, and though I'm of the opinion that the bowl dates to the early '20's due to its having a model number rather than a town name, and was probably pulled into service after a bit of tweaking because they couldn't afford to let "rejects" just sit in a box when briar was so hard to find during wartime, tis a muddy flow of waters indeed.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Toast

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
19,747
45,290
Southern Oregon
jrs457.wixsite.com
The dots look even more unusual in hand. They're "translucently bluish-tinged white", with the color intensifying slightly at the edges, and there's an ever-so-faint tan line at the margin (I'm guessing glue). And they are considerably tighter together---a smaller group---than I've seen before.
The tighter grouping, more a quadrilateral than a grouping with three close and one distant, is in keeping with the later arrangement of the dots. They were pretty much a diamond shape by the mid '50s, and the dots got larger as well.
Much as I distrust Hacker, he did actually interview Alfred Sasieni, so I pulled out my copies of The Ultimate Pipe Book and Rare Smoke to see what he says regarding Sasieni, and he's pretty useless with regard to nomenclature, but he does add an interesting comment regarding the patent:

"Most collectors are aware of the fact that the pre-World War II Sasieni's were stamped with patent numbers and when found on the walnut or smooth finished pipes, are a guarantee that they are early products of the company. However, the patent numbers were retained on the plum finished pipes up until 1970, so extra caution should be exercised when considering these pipes for purchase..."

However, I have no idea why that would be the case. Would love to know the source for that.
 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
18,410
11,302
Maryland
postimg.cc
I did not know the nomenclature oddity on Plum finish pipes (one was on ebay just recently).

I picked up this VL at a NYC show a number of years ago, for a song. I think someone here now owns it. The nomenclature was extremely buffed and I could only read the Viscount Lascelles using a loupe. This one had no Patent Number. The stem dots were a beautiful shade of blue.

SasieniVSL_FS (1).JPG


I do prefer the smaller, but less graceful Four Dot Regent shape.


Sasieni_Four_Dot_Regent_PAT_Gallery.JPGSasieni_Four_Dot_Regent_Ruff_Root_Gallery.JPG
 

georged

Lifer
Mar 7, 2013
5,534
14,204
I just noticed something that I don't recall ever seeing on any pipe before.

Meaning, it might have been there and I just didn't notice it, OR it might be unique.

A playing card type "club" stamped directly on the bottom of the shank near the stem. It's so small it looks like a blemish until you get out some glass and zoom in.

Definitely a deliberately placed, carefully crafted little club symbol.

Sasieni peepul... is this something special?


P1060880.jpg
P1060879.jpg