This 1970’s era Peterson System Standard 301 was purchased by a regular DadsPipes reader on eBay. Knowing it would need some attention before it could be used, he had it sent directly to me by the seller for a little TLC.
In due course the pipe arrived and I snapped this series of pics.
As you can see in the above pics, the pipe was in quite good estate condition except for a heavily oxidized stem and some dirt and grease wedged into the rather craggy rustication.
The pipe is stamped “Peterson’s” in an arch over “System” over “Standard” followed by “Made in the” over “Republic” over “of Ireland” over “301”. The nickel shank cap is marked “K&P” over “Petersons”.
I removed the stem from the shank and dropped it into a bath of Oxyclean and warm water to start the process of softening and lifting the oxidation from the Vulcanite. A quick shine with some 0000 steel wool restored the shine to the grimy shank cap and made the stamps much easier to read.
The pipe’s internals were reasonably clean – it only took a few pipe cleaners and cotton swabs dipped in alcohol to clear the remains of old tars and gunk from the airway and sump.
As this was an eBay find, I set up the pipe with an alcohol treatment to remove any lingering traces of old tobacco flavours or odours. I packed bowl with cotton wool and slipped a pipe cleaner through the airway before also packing the shank and sump with more cotton wool. This would ensure that the alcohol added to the bowl was drawn through the entire Peterson System.
I filled the bowl with 99% isopropyl alcohol, let it soak into the cotton and then topped it off again until I could see liquid creeping up the exposed end of the pipe cleaner. then I set the stummel aside for the night to let the alcohol do its thing.
When I came back to the pipe the next day, the treatment had done its job, pulling he deep-seated tars and grime from the pipe and depositing them in the cotton wool, which I removed and discarded.
Setting the stummel aside to rest, I pulled the stem from the Oxyclean soak and scrubbed away the now soft oxidation layer with 0000 steel wool and Magic Eraser. Surprisingly, the stem was in great shape underneath, with no tooth chatter or other damage.
To remove the last stubborn remnants of oxidation and smooth out the Vulcanite, I wet-sanded the stem, working through 400, 600, 800 and 1000-grit papers.
Happy with the exterior so far, I moved on to the stem’s internals. A few pipe cleaners dipped in alcohol took care of things there. I finished this stage of stem work with a wipe on mineral oil to refresh the stem and add some gloss.
I moved back to the stummel and finished off the work there, first by cleaning the exterior of the briar with alcohol on a cotton pad followed by a light coat of Fiebing’s Black leather dye to refresh the finish. Finally a wipe of mineral oil helped to set the stain and inject a bit of moisture into the briar.
I let the oil sit briefly on the stummel before hand buffing the excess away with a scrap of towel. The stummel was then left to sit for a few hours to find its equilibrium.
I finished off this refurbishment by buffing the stem with both Red Tripoli and White Diamond compounds to bring up the shine. The stummel received a light buffing on the White Diamond wheel, then both halves of the pipe were treated to a run of Carnauba wax, lightly on the briar and more heavily on the stem.
This Peterson System Standard 301 has come a long way in a short time, testament to the power of a good cleaning and a little attention to detail. It looks practically new after its short time on the bench. I’m sure its new steward will enjoy it!
Thanks for joining me for thie estate pipe restoration. Until next time, Happy Piping!
Here’s the finished pipe.