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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 5:00 am 
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Location: Kansas City, USA
This project was about as challenging as replacement stems get.

The pipe was both sentimentally and literally valuable (Poul Ilsted's pipes are highly collectable and routinely sell for four figures), but unsmokable because the original stem's airway had been so eroded & trenched by pipe cleaner wire that one would no longer pass, and it couldn't be re-cut by straightening, reaming, and re-bending because there wasn't enough material left after years of buffing and tooth mark removal (the bite zone was only .128" thick).

In short, a new stem was the only way to get the pipe back into service.

Before starting the stem itself, though, the face of the shank had to be made square. The usual method of mounting the stummel on a lathe with a pin gauge and gently shaving the shank face with a cutter wasn't an option this time because of its flattened shape. It had to be done by hand using sandpaper taped to a guaranteed-flat surface like plate glass or a reference block. (Very tricky business. Go slow and check often!)

(Shank faces drifting out of flat & square is common as pipes age, btw. The constant cycling of heat and humidity from smoking is what causes it, and the larger and less regular the shank face's shape, the worse it usually is. This one is was an inch wide and a half inch tall.)

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It was neither flat nor "in plane" in any direction. Both side-to-side and up-and-down show light gaps:

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Such light gaps must be fixed in cases like this even if they don't bother the owner, because the buffing that's required at the end of the process will round any exposed edges. The only way to get a smooth, seamless fit is for the wood and rubber to meet each other squarely.

Once the facing was done, the 28mm "beer can" length of rod was cut down to approximate shape with power tools (I use a knife grinder), and then brought to finished shape by hand with files.

Geometric, faceted stems like this are both demanding and unforgiving. Demanding because there is "only one straight line" (you are either on or you're off, no "fudging" is possible), tool dwell time is a major issue that must be controlled, and "lowering" the surfaces to be level with the shank requires removing material over the entire length of the stem, no matter how small the distance to be lowered. Doing any less will cause the facets to be rounded or have kinks. Flaws that will be immediately visible when the facet is polished.

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After the stem is cut down to the level of the tape-protected shank, the tape is removed, and the exposed step eliminated by further shrinking the entire stem evenly at its face by "planing" the facets over their entire length as previously mentioned. (Think closing a hinge, with the button being the pivot point.)

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After that's done, the stem is given a preliminary polish so that reflections can be chased and any odd imperfections exposed and dealt with.

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After everything's clean, it's time to bend and give a final shine. When bending the stem on a pipe like this it is imperative that the line of the shank be extended in a smooth, unbroken, reciprocal flow.

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Fini!

Ze peep she vorks goot again, ya! :D

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"Not once has a customer looked at one of my pipes and said, 'I like this pipe, but wish you had made the stem an hour faster'... I want every stem to be perfect" --- Adam Davidson


Last edited by LatakiaLover on Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:28 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 8:32 am 
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Very nice work, George.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 9:20 am 
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Oh my goodness, George............all the lent is so distracting!

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http://www.baweaverpipes.com


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 10:48 am 
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IAWB, as meticulous as you are, it's surprising you settle for such shoddy photography.

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Teipen Handmade Briar Pipes
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 12:42 pm 
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Location: Kansas City, USA
Lint and shoddy photography are what inspire me.

And you thought you were encroaching on my safe space with non-trigger-warned microaggressive hate speech dressed up as sarcasm, didn't you? Or respect the divergence of our childhood privilege zones? Well, my equanimity remains unfazed. The spirit that is the calm lake at the center of my being rejects all political non-correctness instantly. I create safe-space magic circles whenever and wherever hostility is encountered.

I'll bet you don't even attempt to use gender neutral, non-binary pronouns, do you?

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"Not once has a customer looked at one of my pipes and said, 'I like this pipe, but wish you had made the stem an hour faster'... I want every stem to be perfect" --- Adam Davidson


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2016 8:45 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 10:35 am
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Location: Chongqing, China
LatakiaLover wrote:
Lint and shoddy photography are what inspire me.

And you thought you were encroaching on my safe space with non-trigger-warned microaggressive hate speech dressed up as sarcasm, didn't you? Or respect the divergence of our childhood privilege zones? Well, my equanimity remains unfazed. The spirit that is the calm lake at the center of my being rejects all political non-correctness instantly. I create safe-space magic circles whenever and wherever hostility is encountered.

I'll bet you don't even attempt to use gender neutral, non-binary pronouns, do you?


This is funny. I just finished watching a newer season of South Park(season 19), and it was all about PC and microaggressions. Even though I live in a heavily censored place, I was happy that I "got" this.

Nice work on that stem replacement as usual! I have a love/hate thing going on with these posts. I love seeing the work, but hate it because you make it look so easy. I think you should start documenting your facial expressions and curse words used during the repair.

Kiel

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:13 am 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
Lint and shoddy photography are what inspire me.

And you thought you were encroaching on my safe space with non-trigger-warned microaggressive hate speech dressed up as sarcasm, didn't you? Or respect the divergence of our childhood privilege zones? Well, my equanimity remains unfazed. The spirit that is the calm lake at the center of my being rejects all political non-correctness instantly. I create safe-space magic circles whenever and wherever hostility is encountered.

I'll bet you don't even attempt to use gender neutral, non-binary pronouns, do you?


You're right up town George, you old lint licker. There was a recent story on the Fox News web site about psycho-babel being trendy right now. This old saying comes to mind: "if you can't dazzle them with brilliance then baffle them with bull shit".
If you keep doing stem projects like this one you might actually get good at it. :lol: See ya next week end.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2016 2:47 pm 
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Location: Kansas City, USA
kamkiel wrote:
I love seeing the work, but hate it because you make it look so easy. I think you should start documenting your facial expressions and curse words used during the repair.


You have it backwards.

The WWE facial expressions and curse words tend to come out when I'm forced to deal with idiot humans. Of which there are depressingly many.

My shop is where fings 'appen as smoov as buttah. Tools that hum, razor edges that cut cleanly, everything immediately at hand, and spectacularly good music in the air. Only there is life truly good.

(Well, not only there, I guess, but the Sonora Desert is 1300 miles away, and my airedale terrier Burt has been gone for 25 years.)

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"Not once has a customer looked at one of my pipes and said, 'I like this pipe, but wish you had made the stem an hour faster'... I want every stem to be perfect" --- Adam Davidson


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2016 5:32 pm 
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You Da Man!!!


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 10:21 pm 
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Location: Murray, KY
Fine work, George! You're the man when it comes to tricky stem replacements like that....

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Scott E. Thile
Collector, smoker, and aspiring pipemaker.
http://sethilepipes.com
Sysop: http://pipedia.org
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 6:58 pm 
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Location: Lafayette Indiana
LatakiaLover wrote:
kamkiel wrote:
I love seeing the work, but hate it because you make it look so easy. I think you should start documenting your facial expressions and curse words used during the repair.


You have it backwards.

The WWE facial expressions and curse words tend to come out when I'm forced to deal with idiot humans. Of which there are depressingly many.



I have been saying that life is way too short, and people are way too stupid to be this sober. I've been saying it a lot lately.

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Joe Hinkle,

http://www.hinklepipes.com


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 7:04 pm 
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Location: Kansas City, USA
Joe Hinkle Pipes wrote:

I have been saying that life is way too short, and people are way too stupid to be this sober. I've been saying it a lot lately.


:lol:

This ought to make you reach for a shot glass, then:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RpfMpVRtNrw

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"Not once has a customer looked at one of my pipes and said, 'I like this pipe, but wish you had made the stem an hour faster'... I want every stem to be perfect" --- Adam Davidson


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:57 pm 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
Joe Hinkle Pipes wrote:

I have been saying that life is way too short, and people are way too stupid to be this sober. I've been saying it a lot lately.


:lol:

This ought to make you reach for a shot glass, then:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RpfMpVRtNrw


The Darwin Awards come to mind. Remember we talked about them Saturday night. This idiot definitely needs a nomination. And people wonder why this country is going down the shit hole.


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