1984 was the year Per and Ulf took over the S. Bang marque, shifting emphasis from producing pipes in numbers, to producing far fewer, but higher quality, artisanal briars. Even though it's easy to determine whether a pipe was made pre- or post-transition (pre-transition pipes use the English spelling, "Copenhagen", post-transition pipes the native "Kobenhavn"), dating doesn't necessarily make for a mutually exclusive divide between what kind of briars were coming out of the S. Bang workshop. It would seem that even when Sven Bang was still running things, Per and Ulf still got their way from time to time, resulting in pieces like this very generously proportioned, yet elegantly smooth "Giant" bent Brandy, bearing loads of flame grain on either flank. (I should also note that this is, evidently, the only S. Bang Giant we've ever received.) While it may take a little more searching to turn up these higher-quality pre-'84 estates, one upside is that they are still available at relatively lower prices than a similar design made after Per and Ulf fully shifted S. Bang over to an artisanal marque, eventually establishing it as one of the most renowned names of the Danish school.
- Eric N. Squires