254. SPECIAL BULLETIN: The Ragaire Drops Tomorrow, 11/19

254. SPECIAL BULLETIN: The Ragaire Drops Tomorrow, 11/19

This fall has been wonderfully intense for collectors of new-release Petersons, which began with the Halloween System and was followed in quick succession by the Rua Spigot, the Trinity Fox, the Special House Pipe Spigot billiard and now the Ragaire–and with two more releases on the way before the end of the year or shortly thereafter. 1

According to the Focloir Poca English – Irish / Irish – English Dictionary, “ragaire” can mean either “late-night rambler” or “strolling night-reveler,” which covers quite a bit of ground but seems appropriate in either situation. “Ragaireacht is the Irish word for late-night wandering, or for sitting up talking long into the early hours. A ragaire is a person who enjoys exactly that. Inspired by this tradition, Peterson’s new Ragaire series is a tribute to those who enjoy late-night wandering, rambling, and engaging in thoughtful conversation into the wee hours of the morning.”

This new limited Classics Range line debuts tomorrow, Friday, November 19th at Smokingpipes.com, in an issue of around 300 pipes. 2 It’s a black sandblast as you can see, with a thin acrylic fishtail cumberland mouthpiece. It’s being offered in in the XL02, 338, X220, 230, 221, 01, 150, 80s and 03.

The idea for the Ragaire as an unmounted pipe army-style pipe was conceived by Josh Burgess, managing director, in collaboration with Sykes Wilford, Glen Whelan, Jonathan Fields and Giacomo Penzo. Josh also pre-carbed a big chunk of bowls, as it happened to be a bank holiday and many of the craftsmen and women were out.

The connection to earlier Peterson history (and an inspiration in Josh’s design) is found in the early 1970s, when K&P released the Dunmore, an unmounted System and Classic range.  The era “was an important time in the life of the company. It was the first time the factory came under corporate ownership and the same era when Peterson moved from the city center to Sallynoggin. At that time, a full Peterson catalog hadn’t been produced since 1906, and there was a sense that Peterson pipes had grown stale and weren’t keeping up with the times. The unmounted Dunmore System was an effort to produce a more ‘modern’ pipe that was still within the Peterson aesthetic. ”

In reality, the Dunmore was a traditional “navy-mount” tenon-mortise pipe and not technically an army mount. The Ragaire, as I said earlier, is a first for K&P: an unmounted army-mount pipe, offering the pipeman the ability to assemble and disassemble the pipe when hot. It can do this because “the stems are pressure fitted just as they are on traditional army mounts. Both the stem and mortise are tapered, ensuring a snug fit. While there’s no reinforcing metal band, the shapes all feature thick shanks and smaller stems to eliminate the need for a reinforced shank.” For both the Dunmore and the Ragaire, the idea is to create “a minimalist, all-briar aesthetic,” which they most assuredly do.

Both pipes I looked at show some great craftsmanship, which seems to be the hallmark of the Laudisi-era pipes, with centered drilling and no stain on the mortise walls. The airway of one had a bit of tearaway, the other was clean. The stamps on both were precisely aligned, as you can see in the 150 above. Even better than many pipes by a certain English pipe-maker, whose name I can’t at the moment recall, but begins with a “D” or something like that. . . .

 

Thanks to Josh Burgess & Andy Wike for their help.
Quotations are from copy provided by Andy at Laudisi.
Photos of Special House Pipe Spigot and some of the Ragaire pipes
courtesy Smokingpipes.com.

 

 

1 The House Pipe billiard spigots were out and gone before I could post about them, but were amazing.  According to Josh, there were 115 of these made. The SPECIAL stamp, which I haven’t seen on a new Pete since the 1980s, as you doubtless saw in the SPC email, “historically designated small batches of Peterson pipes marked by unique features.” In this case, the first-ever House Pipe / HANDMADE spigot. The rusticated, natural finish is spectacular.

2 For the purposes of this blog and the Peterson book(s), line refers to any pipes which share a name stamp and comprise a group of shapes; series refers to an annual release (e.g., the Christmas pipes) or a succession of shapes in the same group (e.g., the Sherlock Holmes pipes); shape refers to a specific bowl and stem combination that receive a shape stamp; collection refers to two or more pipes issued simultaneously as part of a whole (e.g., Great Explorers Collection); limited issue refers to a line that is small in number and may not be repeated; small batch refers to a small number of pipes, often in one shape but sometimes more (e.g., the Trinity Fox [one shape] or the PSOI.

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Scott Forrest
Scott Forrest
9 days ago

Now I’ll be scouring ebay for a House Pipe / HANDMADE spigot. I think I like that one even more than the Trinity Fox. All these great releases, but the ‘big’ one is still MIA!

William Auld
William Auld
4 days ago
Reply to  Scott Forrest

Check SP now – looks like a few House spigots just showed up, Good luck!

Martin
Martin
9 days ago

Wow stunning, I am way over budget this Month.

Al Jones
Al Jones
9 days ago

Come on Peterson, how about a P-lip, vulcanite stem option?? Add that, and I’m a buyer. I’m not a fan of those weird looking buttons…..

Chris Streeper
Chris Streeper
9 days ago

I love these too!
Darnit Peterson…. quit stepping up the game so much so quickly! I’m running out of pipe money.

Linwood
Linwood
9 days ago

I shall not buy another pipe, I shall not buy another pipe, I shall…
Oh, I can say that NEXT year….

William Auld
William Auld
7 days ago
Reply to  Mark Irwin

Thank you for the justification for the Ragaire X220 I purchased today … I knew I could I could count on you, Mark! :))

John Charles Gifford
John Charles Gifford
9 days ago

I’m a big fan of Peterson’s classical range of shapes, so I’m always happy to see many new lines appear on my computer screen. This one is a winner that I believe will sell well. I’ve narrowed my next purchase down to the bulldog. Straight or bent? – To be determined by tomorrow.

Thanks, Mark, for the heads-up and your continued tenacity to keep us informed and educated via Pipe Notes.

Paul Schmolke
Paul Schmolke
4 days ago

Ordered an X220 the first day they were available and I’m smoking it right now. It must’ve been the only 220 they had in this batch as I haven’t seen another. Nice crisp sandblast with no metal or visible makers mark except the wood stamp on the shank. Subtle brown acrylic stem is comfortable and the pipe is light enough to comfortably clench. The price was quite reasonable given the great Peterson quality. Nothing flashy or distracting with this pipe. I wouldn’t call it stealthy as much as reserved. The shaping is top notch and the shank terminus is a… Read more »

William Auld
William Auld
4 days ago
Reply to  Paul Schmolke

Actually, there were at least 4 or 5, but they were all gone the first day. I purchased one and it arrived this morning. Everything you say about your X220 is dead on for mine as well. The blast is excellent and fit/finish is among the best I’ve purchased as of late. Feels great in the hand too. Definitely money well spent. Job very well done, Peterson!

William Auld
William Auld
4 days ago
Reply to  Paul Schmolke

Oh, and happy birthday, Paul!

David F M
David F M
4 days ago

Yet another fine offering from Peterson! I hope that the “limited” aspect of this line is eliminated. I can see this line of pipes standing the test of time, especially if they expand it with more shapes. Somehow, these pipes just look “right.” A nice balance of both elegant and simple. The color scheme is an excellent choice. It reminds me of the annual Summertime pipes (apparently discontinued) but without the flashy colors (which I like in-and-of themselves). It’s a nice alternative. My 230 is on the way, and I can’t wait to smoke it!

David F M
David F M
2 days ago
Reply to  Mark Irwin

Well, if they make an 05, count me in. I’m smoking my new 230 at the moment (Savinelli Juno) Light as a feather, and looks beautiful.