Restoring Shine to the briar

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jpmcwjr

Moderator
Staff member
May 12, 2015
22,468
21,815
Carmel Valley, CA
Thanks. I go for the "decent" look, rather than the superlative one. Took about 20 minutes to fix up those babies, so about 3 minutes per pipe.
 

Briar Lee

Lifer
Sep 4, 2021
1,682
3,578
Humansville Missouri
And grapeseed is vegetable based. Far better is mineral oil. And I have no need for beeswax except for the occasional bolshy tenon. (It helps with loose tenons, and some that are too tight.
Mineral oil no doubt works, but I’m happy with grapeseed and have a lifetime supply for $8.

There are two commercial neatsfoot oil preparations for the best top grain saddles.

I have a gallon of each, both about twenty years old.

The cheaper gallon has mineral oil mixed with neatsfoot and the good gallon I’ve maybe used a pint from is pure neatsfoot.

Pure neatsfoot oil makes a saddle glow like a burnished copper penny.

Then I apply modern potions on it to try and waterproof it, some.:)

The United States Army reissued pure neatsfoot oil to our mountain soldiers in Afghanistan.

I hope the Taliban enjoy all those fine Heerman oak cavalry saddles.:)
 
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Hillcrest

Lifer
Dec 3, 2021
1,259
5,995
Bagshot Row, Hobbiton
After reading this thread I looked about my house and found a container of Idaho Woodworks wax for a cutting board I have. The container says it contains pure food grade mineral oil and pure parafin wax for all your woodworking needs and won't turn rancid. Instructions say to wipe on wait a few minutes and wipe off with a clean lint free cloth. I tried it on my corn cob pipe then five briar pipes. Just a light wipe down. I found a clean piece of t-shirt and wiped them down and WoW ! ? Do they glow ! They look almost brand new. It only took a few minutes (Actually about 3-4). One of the pipes had a little oxidation on the stem and it removed that as well. It also hid most of the scratches and nicks that used to be noticeable.

So ... thank you to everyone who posted to this thread for helping me re-finish my pipes in a simple and easy way. It works and I plan on doing it periodically to keep them up !! All the best ! ?
@didimauw @jpmcwjr
URGENT: Please disrergard the above advice ... after 24 hours I realize parafin wax is NOT heat resistant ! While the pipe heats up the little parafin wax residue liquifies and melts off the pipe.... while not necessarily a problem ... its slightly messy. I leave it up to the administrators as to whether to delete the above or not or just to leave this disclaimer. I apologize for the unintentional misleading of fellow members. (Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa, Mea Maxima Culpa !!! ? ) Hillcrest.
 
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didimauw

Moderator
Staff member
Jul 28, 2013
7,051
16,437
33
Burlington WI
@didimauw @jpmcwjr
URGENT: Please disrergard the above advice ... after 24 hours I realize parafin wax is NOT heat resistant ! While the pipe heats up the little parafin wax residue liquifies and melts off the pipe.... while not necessarily a problem ... its slightly messy. I leave it up to the administrators as to whether to delete the above or not or just to leave this disclaimer. I apologize for the unintentional misleading of fellow members. (Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa, Mea Maxima Culpa !!! ? ) Hillcrest.
It's good information either way. Let's leave it up. Thank you.
 

sablebrush52

The Bard Of Barlings
Jun 15, 2013
16,765
32,004
SoCal
jrs457.wixsite.com
I don't own a buffer. They're not really necessary to produce a high gloss. In the wrong hands they are a Weapon Of Pipe Destruction, and they are mostly in the wrong hands.

I don''t have anything against buffers. I used them professionally every day for a decade doing fine jewelry fabrication and restoration. When you're handling a 17 carat gem grade diamond while brightening its platinum setting after reinforcement, or restoring the interwoven gold links on an 18th century purse, you know to be careful with a buffer.

But polishing up a pipe? Not really needed. Here's a before and after of a clean up I did on a vintage Barling Motor domed pipe:

Before:
qu0JQs1.jpg


After:
W9I9CK1.jpg


No buffer involved in any of it.
 

avail

Starting to Get Obsessed
Oct 13, 2015
198
1,448
Michigan
I don't own a buffer. They're not really necessary to produce a high gloss. In the wrong hands they are a Weapon Of Pipe Destruction, and they are mostly in the wrong hands.

I don''t have anything against buffers. I used them professionally every day for a decade doing fine jewelry fabrication and restoration. When you're handling a 17 carat gem grade diamond while brightening its platinum setting after reinforcement, or restoring the interwoven gold links on an 18th century purse, you know to be careful with a buffer.

But polishing up a pipe? Not really needed. Here's a before and after of a clean up I did on a vintage Barling Motor domed pipe:

Before:
qu0JQs1.jpg


After:
W9I9CK1.jpg


No buffer involved in any of it.
Marvelous!
 

edger

Lifer
Dec 9, 2016
2,766
20,157
73
Mayer AZ
Howard Wax-It-All paste after almost every smoke. This product is food grade and is composed of beeswax, carnauba wax, and mineral oil. I use it on the stummel and on vulcanite stems. It won’t produce a glossy shine, more of a soft semi-matte finish, and keeps the oxidation of the stems at bay. Fantastic stuff!
 
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avail

Starting to Get Obsessed
Oct 13, 2015
198
1,448
Michigan
Howard Wax-It-All paste after almost every smoke. This product is food grade and is composed of beeswax, carnauba wax, and mineral oil. I use it on the stummel and on vulcanite stems. It won’t produce a glossy shine, more of a soft semi-matte finish, and keeps the oxidation of the stems at bay. Fantastic stuff!
I'm sure that is the case, worth checking out. But, I do like gloss.
 
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Hillcrest

Lifer
Dec 3, 2021
1,259
5,995
Bagshot Row, Hobbiton
@didimauw @jpmcwjr
URGENT: Please disrergard the above advice ... after 24 hours I realize parafin wax is NOT heat resistant ! While the pipe heats up the little parafin wax residue liquifies and melts off the pipe.... while not necessarily a problem ... its slightly messy. I leave it up to the administrators as to whether to delete the above or not or just to leave this disclaimer. I apologize for the unintentional misleading of fellow members. (Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa, Mea Maxima Culpa !!! ? ) Hillcrest.
Update: The natural wax finish briars cleaned up nicely as did the cob. The pipes with a varnish finish took a little longer with a cloth. I won't be using that product again. I ended up doing a hot water rinse on all the pipes which needed to be cleaned anyway as I have been hitting them pretty regularly. No damage to finish though. Live and learn and remember.
 
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woodrow

Might Stick Around
Oct 28, 2018
63
72
Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I have a few smooth briar pipes that used to have a clean shiny surface, and now are quite dull looking. I know some people would probably refer to that as "character", but I like looking at vivid grain and surface finish . Does anyone have a reliable method for bringing back the luster?

Any insight appreciated, thanks. If there is a prior thread link, that would be good, too.
@avail I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes new pipes have a matt finish, and some do not. After a good wash with a cloth to enhance the shine use a 12,000 grid polishing pad. You’d be amused what these very, very fine pads can do. You may want to out a little mineral oil on the finish as well to bring up the grain. Mineral oil is great stuff to have around.
I’ve found that a good once over with the polishing pad, then a coating of Carnuba will bring the shine back that you wish for.
 
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avail

Starting to Get Obsessed
Oct 13, 2015
198
1,448
Michigan
@avail I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes new pipes have a matt finish, and some do not. After a good wash with a cloth to enhance the shine use a 12,000 grid polishing pad. You’d be amused what these very, very fine pads can do. You may want to out a little mineral oil on the finish as well to bring up the grain. Mineral oil is great stuff to have around.
I’ve found that a good once over with the polishing pad, then a coating of Carnuba will bring the shine back that you wish for.
Thank you for that information, definitely something to consider!