I just got this from Josh Burgess at K&P, because some folk were afraid the vulcanite P-Lips have been entirely discontinued, which is not the case: “When I said the P-Lip vulcanite stem is no longer being manufactured, I should have been more specific. It’s only the P-Lip Vulcanite stems for the 264, 268, and 53 that aren’t being produced anymore–indeed haven’t been produced for some time (before my time at Peterson anyway). So no need to panic. The P-Lip vulcanite stem in general isn’t going anywhere. This is much to my delight, as it’s my preference too.”Brian 500s and I were discussing the impending debut of the new Deluxe Classics line tomorrow and he said, “I don’t know about those wide sterling bands. Is that Peterson?” And we went on and talked about other related matters and then just an hour ago my brain caught up to Brian and said, “Whoa! Those bands are right there in the 1906 catalog!”
So excuse this short addendum but I thought you’d like to see them for yourself. The 1906 catalog is divided into two parts, the System pipes and the “Patent Lip Pipes” which would evolve into today’s Classic Range. There are several shapes in the contemporary catalog that share the same shape number or are from the same shape number family.
Shape 69, seen above in the marvelous Terracotta, is from the 160 shape family seen in the 1906. The 65 is also from this family, and while the 68 usually has a bit of brandy-heft, I believe derived its number because of its proximity to these shapes. More importantly, though, is the wide band the 160B and the 69 share.
The original 120 dublin was a leener affair, as seen in the visual catalog of K&P’s dublin shapes, but again, just notice the width of the sterling band.
Not all the PPP shapes have this wide band, but so many do that I thought it was great to see them return after so many years.
Those of you who follow Brian Levine’s Pipes Radio Magazine Show know Sykes Wilford, the CEO at SPC and Laudisi Enterprises, is a big fan of the small 102 and 101 shapes. Take a look at what it looks like then and now.
I know the angle of photography above is a bit off, but after noticing the identical sterling band length, there’s something else that’s fun that you may not already know. Fetch your K&P billiards and do this experiment: align the back wall of the billiard vertically. Now notice that the there is slight upward motion in the shank and stem. About 4 degrees, I’d say. It’s true on all the 100 series billiards I have–none of which go back to the Patent era, I should add. The point is that pipe makers didn’t know to do this in 1906. It came later.
Photos courtesy Smokingpipes.com
Thanks, Brian, for the leading question!