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B&B LE Group buy Badger and Blade 2021 LE Pipe : Alden Pipes

Sorry for the delay in updates last week ! It wound up taking me two weeks to get to the point I wanted to be last weekend. At least I can post pictures now ! I don't think all of my original pictures were saved, but here's a few steps along the way.
After the bowls were drilled, and turning rod stocks into stems


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Now the next step is to take the sides off of the shank and roughly square it up. Then the stem is rough shaped, and the lines of the shank and bowl are cleaned up and straightened.

The middle pipe is just like stummels in the last post. On the pipe to the right, the edges of the shank have been removed, and the back corners of the bowl. To the left is the pipe after doing all of that, plus rough shaping the stem and cleaning up all of the lines on the shank and bowl, including squaring up the side and front panels and tweaking the corners a bit.
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Forgot a step; Between fitting stems and rough shaping the pipes, there was a fine bit of detail work, opening up and filing all of the slots in the mouthpieces for a nice open draw.
First pic, rough shaped airway with a side cutting drill bit.
Second pic, after getting to work with 2 seperate saw blades and 4 tiny little files to make everything smooth and even.


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Now that the pipes are at this point, it's time to break them up into 3 separate groups. I'll take each group through finish shaping and fine sanding; filing, shaping and sanding the stems, shaping the buttons of the stems and finally sandblasting.
After all 3 groups have reached this point, I'll go back to working on them as one group for the staining, buffing, final cleanup and stamping.

So that's the good news. Things are moving along and the pipes are looking really nice.
The bad news is I'm estimating something like 3 days each to take each group through these last steps, and probably 3 or 4 days to do all of the final finish work. So I've missed the boat on a September finish like I originally anticipated, but I should hopefully be wrapping up and ready to ship in something like 2 weeks from now.
Alright Gentlemen, here is a look at the Stem making process, beginning with round rodstock that's fitted to each pipe. From there, the stem is rough shaped and fit to the dimensions of the shank. Next it is filed to it's final shape and finish sanded. I like to leave the Button work for last so I can buff the stem itself pretty aggressively without worrying about rounding off the button. Here are the several groups from last week, each in different stages. Filing and sanding stems is hard on the wrist, elbow and shoulder, so I needed to space it out just a bit and do only a certain number each day.


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And this week, we're having a Blast ! Again, standing at a blast cabinet for long periods is a bit hard on the arm, but it's especially hard on the equipment. Too much run time, and the motor on my air compressor gets too hot to touch. My air compressor is 40 yrs old and I've burned out a couple motors over the years pushing them too hard, so I try not to these days.
So I'm blasting pipes at a rate of 5 a day, which is a good couple hours work, and the rest of the day I'm prepping and finishing up steps on the remaining pipes.

My plan, if all goes well, is to have them all Blasted this week, and Stain and finish them by Friday.
I *should* have pics by this weekend, remaining Invoices sent out, and ready to ship next week !


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I really like the little "behind the curtain" looks at the whole process. Makes one appreciate all the little details that make an artisan's handmade pipe so special.

Thanks Ryan!
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