"To smoke a pipe is not to be considered as a vice, it is art and a way of life!"

Dunhill, classic quality from London, England (three pipes)

Updated October 22. 1999
white dot
Dunhill's white dot

I managed to get this straight Dunhill "Shell" billiard type sandblasted pipe from the
eBay auction site.

Dunhill Shell, gr. 5
A sandblasted straight billiard/brandyglass.
Typical, classic Dunhill look, a simple looking
pipe decorated by two narrow metal rings

Dunhill is high valued name among pipesters, for some of us perhaps even too high,
and this is seen in their prices. I made the highest bid and payed "only" USD 132,50,
which is not much of almost new, hardly smoken in Group 5 "Shell".
The following stamps are at the bottom of shank:5101 F     DUNHILL SHELL
MADE IN ENGLAND25. "25" is as superscript, which I unluckily am not able
to produce using the "HTML".
The stamps can be interpreted as follows: The first digit "5" means size, which in this
case for a Dunhill is rather big, the second "1" means tapered stem, and the last "01"
classic billiard shape.
The underlined superscript "25" means year 1985. For some reason year 1960 is
coded as "0", 1970 as "10", 1999 "39", and so on.

Dunhill billiard/brandyglass
A view from the right. Note the "white dot"
on the stem

I have filled the non-caked tobacco chamber only a couple of times
and can say that this pipe is not going to ruin the fame of Dunhill!
"Hamborger Veermaster" burned without gurgles easily to white, dry
ashes. This pipe can use the 6 mm balsa sticks, which are not at all
necessary. Especially during the breaking in period I have found the
balsa stick good as it sucks efficiently the condence that inevitably
emerges in a non-caked pipe.
Dunhill is said to oil cure its pipes, which should leave a certain,
characteristic taste, perhaps peanut oil, but I could not identify it.
On the contrary, in L.Woods i might sense this special treatment.

October 15, 1999

Group 5 "shell" has been in the rotation almost a month, i.e. I have
smoked it half filled perhaps four times. I am happy with this pipe.
Especially so because the former owner has not puffed any cherry
aromatics in it. The pipe seems still worth of the bucks. As soon as
some cake emerges this will become an excellent pipe for the VA and
VA - Perique blends like "Escudo".

A new Dunhill, Gr. 3 "root" Canadian", Oct. 15. 1999

Root Canadian
An old "Canadian" Dunhill gr. 3 "Root"

Postman brought today my second Dunhill from eBay. This is an old pipe!
I believe it must be latest from the beginning of the seventies, perhaps
evev earlier. The seller wrote the following lines about the pipe:
"Dunhill Pipe, 5 3/8" long. Bowl is 1 1/8" diameter and 1 1/2" tall (outside).
It has the following markings, Dunhill, Root Briar, 335, 3 inside a circle with
the letter R, Made in England. Some of the marks are alittle faint. Slightly
used with minor bite marks and slight wear on the top of the bowl."

"Root" is above "shell" and "tanshell" in the hierarchy of Dunhill as a smooth
briar. I think it is primarily a matter of taste if one prefers more the smooth
over the sandblasted pipes ot vice versa. Smooth pipes are normally more expensive
than sandblasted because a pipe artisan can hide the possible faults using the
sandblasting process. In any case, I payed for this pipe about the same as for the
shell above.
The Canadian was rather well cleaned from the outside, but a cleaner moistened in
the cleaning liquid from Dan Pipe became completely black out from the long shank
of this Canadian. I had to renew the process twice! Wow, what a filthy pipe! I
simply cannot understand people, who buy a Dunhill and won't take care of it at all!
In any case, the puffs from "Night Train" (C&D) were great, and not even the slightest
gurgling happened! This is promising!

My third Dunhill, Gr.5 "tanshell" billiard, Oct. 22. 1999

I found out a week ago (Oct.15.1999) that I was the highest bidder of a tanshell
saddle stemmed billiard shaped pipe from the seventies.
I payed slightly more for this than for the two pipes above. Well, this morning I found
it carefully packed from my postbox. It is well refurbished, I have seldon met such a
glossy vulcanite stem even in pipes decades younger than this Dunhill.

Dunhill tanshell
Dunhill "tanshell" from the seventies

Tanshell from top
An old pipe, but bowl in a good condition

According to the code on the shank this pipe is made in 1976, because after the word
"ENGLAND" there is stamped number "16", this time not in superscript, but as high as
the preceding word. According to Hacker's "The Ultimate Pipe Book" s well as Loring's
Dunhill monography the first digit (1) means 1970 and "6" makes the year as 1976.
The only faults in this pipe are slight bite marks in the well furbished bit and the
narrow "daylight" in the shank/stem joint, which might have emerged when the stem
was renovated. I do not believe this deficiency could have passed the quality control.

I have filled its tobacco chamber only once and I was happy to notice the pipe is
an excellent puffer, it does not become at least hot and has no residues of some
strong aromatic blend so often found in estate pipes bought from the U.S. of A.

Cavicchi from Italy

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Updated October 22. 1999