While the shaping is smoothly, powerfully artful, and the ring grain exceptional, what really keeps my attention on this particular Gracik design is the detailed and attentive construction. From the brass ring serving as both subtle, tasteful accent and reinforcement of the push-stem's receiving socket, to the treatment of the cap, Jeff clearly put a lot of extra time into creating this piece. The aforementioned cap is, of course, separable in the traditional style, with a capacious cooling chamber laying underneath. Jeff went to the trouble of sanding said cooling chamber to a sublime smoothness, which should make keeping it clean easier, and both polished and contrrast-stained its rim, making for a nice presentation of a part of the pipe that's not even typically visible. Even the gasket is of a much higher quality of cork than you usually see - i.e. a solid, smooth piece, and not the common "agglomerated" type made from bonded shavings. The cap itself is a subtly-contrasted composite piece, the chamber being of briar, and the broad rim of Australian Brown Mallee burl.
- Eric N. Squires