First attempt at pipe carving - Page 2 - Puff Cigar Discussion Forums
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post #11 of 16 Old 07-02-2014, 11:04 PM
Puffer Fish with some spikes
 
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

man that came out beautifully, nice work man.
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post #12 of 16 Old 07-02-2014, 11:09 PM
My pipes won't survive-EZ
 
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

Hi Brian,

Well done! Patience and perseverance paid off. Great job on the bowl walls, very symmetrical.

Please report back on how it smokes!?
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post #13 of 16 Old 07-03-2014, 04:19 AM
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

Beautiful work! Absolutely beautiful!
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post #14 of 16 Old 07-03-2014, 09:16 AM
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

Brian,
Fantastic looking pipe. I have been looking at those DIY butt have been hesitant about it. Care too share more on how the process went? How diid you get sides so matched? Design style?

I appreciate any inf.
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post #15 of 16 Old 07-03-2014, 03:29 PM
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

Great job man! Now if only I could get off my butt and make myself one.....
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post #16 of 16 Old 07-03-2014, 03:38 PM Thread Starter
Dosidicus Pipa
 
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Re: First attempt at pipe carving

Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverBend View Post
Hi Brian,

Well done! Patience and perseverance paid off. Great job on the bowl walls, very symmetrical.

Please report back on how it smokes!?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyinglow View Post
Brian,
Fantastic looking pipe. I have been looking at those DIY butt have been hesitant about it. Care too share more on how the process went? How diid you get sides so matched? Design style?

I appreciate any inf.
Thanks for all of the positive comments - I am NOT an artist, so this was all about the math. Here's how it went down:

I purchased the pre-drilled block on ebay from Vermont Freehand at http://stores.ebay.com/Vermont-Freeh...p2047675.l2563 , which came with a cheap black stem. I picked up two block - one straight (this one) and one bent that I will begin work on soon. All I have for tools is a dremel and some files and sandpaper. I figured that a poker/sitter/cherrywood shape would be basically the easiest to try for my first outing, so off I went. I got an initial shape with the dremel - slow and steady being the watchword here, lest you char the pipe. Also be very careful that you don't mess up the end of the shank, or you will have a lot of work to do matching the stem to it.

For the walls, I started with calipers and a t-square. I used calipers to ensure that the thickness of the walls was uniform across the top of the pipe, and then I worked my way down with wood files, using the t-square to slowly bring the stummel in line with a 90 degree angle all around the pipe. The hardest part of this was the "back" of the pipe if you will, leading down to where it meets the shank. Once I had the top of the pipe uniform all around, I double checked everything with calipers to fine tune the wall thickness at the top. I took material away all the way down to the base of the pipe across about a 60 degree arc on the bottom. Then I made a template with paper from the top of the pipe by tracing the circle - again checking to ensure that it was uniform. I used the template to match the arc at the bottom of the pipe to that of the top by lining it up with the finished arc, traced it so that I had a circle on the bottom, then went back to work with t-square and files to get everything round. The closer that I got to the shank, the harder this became. Roughing it out with files and then switching to 40-grit sandpaper helped, along with staying away from the dremel at that point.

Once I got things good and round, I researched pipes of this shape on smokingpipes.com to find a representative bowl height, and then used a hacksaw to take it down to that height. The trick is to ensure the walls are square before doing any of this so that the t-square is at a true 90 degree angle for the walls. I used 40-grit to sand down the top a bit more, putting the angle to the top of the bowl, and then did the same for the bottom. I canted the bowl slightly forward - like a sitter - just because it looked cool. This pipe will not sit as such because the stem is a bit too heavy, at least for the angle that I wanted. There is a slight angle dropping the top off to the left on the top of the bowl because I am left handed and it keeps things from blowing into my face when using the pipe in the wind.

I finished out the back wall of the pipe and the bottom where it meets the shank using round files and a lot of quality time with some 120 grit paper, then smoothed it out the rest of the way. I traced a round stem (not the one I ended out with, obviously) to get the shank nice and round, then put a slight divot into it where my thumb sits for comfort. I then sanded the pipe down using up to 1400 grit paper. This last step really brought out the grain, and took the most time.

Once I had things sanded down well to my liking, I wet the stummel with a soaked washcloth and then went at it with a soft charcoal pencil. I let the stummel dry with the charcoal, which pulled it into the lighter/darker grain of the pipe. After that I went back to 800 grain and then 1400 grain to take the excess charcoal off of the lighter/harder grain, leaving the charcoal in the softer grain of the pipe. That left polishing (again - there is no stain on this), which was done with a dremel and polishing wheel and a cake of carnauba wax. The key here is to put LIGHT coats of wax on the stummel, leaving it for a while between coats to let them set. This would have been a lot easier on a grinder with a polishing wheel since it would be slower, but careful work with the dremel on its lowest setting did the trick. I put about four coats of wax on the pipe.

The last part was the part I was looking forward to the least - fitting the stem to the shank. I just kept reminding myself that it was only $4.

The stem was machined by the folks (or folk - don't know how many people there are in this operation) to fit the basic dimensions of the shank, but it was way too tight. I was worried about taking too much material off of the stem and having to toss it. Anyway, I used 800 grit on the end of the stem, then 1400 grit (again) to put a polish on the machined bit and make it easy to fit the stummel. I had to take a bit off the end of the stem so that it fully seated into the shank then - got this done with 140 grit and a lot of patience.

The pipe smokes like a champ - dry and cool - and passes a pipe cleaner with ease. It had its inaugural run this morning with an Edgeworth clone from Lil Brown, which I quite like.

Now for some lunch, a run, and then work on my thesis. Have a great day, gents!

Pro Patria Vigilans................... My tobacco cellar
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