Claudio Cavicchi, having spent most of his life farming just outside of Bologna, Italy, first found international acclaim as the long-lived slow-smoking champion of the world as documented by the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1974, after waiting more than a year for a prominent pipe maker to complete a pipe he'd asked to have made to specification, Cavicchi decided to give up waiting and started making perfect pipes himself.
Although he still farms, this Italian pipe maker produces some 700 pipes a year, nearly half of which end up at Smokingpipes.com. His briar is considered by many artisans to have some of the best grain in the world, and even his lower-graded smooth pipes rival top-tier pieces from other companies. Claudio rusticates pipes, but the majority are smooth, though he just recently began sandblasting some of them in 2009 (with fantastic detail and ring grain). Each pipe is cut out on a band saw, shaped on the lathe, and drilled with a unique tool which makes it impossible to not be dead-center at the bottom. Turning all acrylic mouthpieces and tenons, his fit and finish is easily one of the best in the world. Accents are few, but he sometimes uses pink ivory (which is a wood), olive wood, and other exotics. Rarely does he use bamboo, but it's of Danish size and style when he does - Thin, clean, and perfect. Claudio grades all of his pipes from C to CCCCC according to grain and shape, with the Diamante as his pinnacle (very few have been made).
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