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Ligne Bretagne Pipe #1817lb

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A beautiful, seriously craggy sandblast is the main showcase in this rather gnarly horn-stemmed Dublin. I was really pleased with the color tone of the wood and left it unstained, as the natural briar color tone harmonizes nicely with the varying streaks of brown and amber in the stem grain. The whole thing reminds me more than a little of an old Ashton, with that deep crosscut blast showing serious depth between each age ring from side to side, and the whole piece being a beautiful example of a pipe that's going to darken nicely with use.

The most interesting detail about he pipe, aside from that deep sandblast, is the horn stem. It's one of the French-handcut ones we use, and this one is VERY unusual in that parts of the bit and length are actually translucent. I tried to capture it in pics but failed miserably, as the camera just didn't want to focus on small stuff like that. All horn stems are translucent to some extent, though most are thick enough or dark-grained enough to camouflage their translucency so that they look opaque to the eye. Here, however, you can hold the bit up to the light and see through it in places. It's not a flaw of any sort; the stem is as rugged as any other horn stem, it's just an intriguing detail on a pipe with a lot of subtle intriguing details, from the grain to the smooth polished bowl rim.