Danish Estates: Former Smooth Oval Shank Billiard (Unsmoked) Tobacco Pipe

Product Number: 004-001-34349

Hans "Former" Nielsen has supervised the W.Ø. Larsen workshop, worked with Emil and Jess Chonowitsch, helped develop the marque Bentley, and refined his renowned pipe making skills over the past 60 years, cementing Former as a living legend. Many of Former's shapes are traditionally-inclined and turned on lathes, but he does make a number of imaginative Freehands as well. Furthermore, every Former pipe features impeccable engineering to ensure a superb smoke.

This Billiard by Former features a gorgeous contrast stain, pairing inky black and vibrant bronze hues that bring out exquisite detail in the grain. Thick strands of vertical surround the bowl in a stripe-like pattern, alternating between long black strokes and bronze undertones. Elsewhere, birdseye shines, particularly on the underside, where wispy bronze swirls congregate around black cores. The dynamic between the defined thick veins of vertical grain on the bowl and birdseye on the shank and underside creates an alluring pattern that will draw attention from across the room and fascinate upon closer inspection.

Although the Billiard shape is as iconic as the come, Former has made this rendition of the shape his own. The bowl features a pronounced forward cant, which is enhanced by the soft contours of the slightly-inflated rim. Out back, an oval shank creates a trim profile, but provides a hearty counterpart to the supple bowl, neatly balancing the weight while retaining a traditional look. Few craft traditional shapes as well as Former, and this supple and clever interpretation of the Billiard is a great illustration of his talents.

--Zach Podl
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Measurements & Other Details


  • Length: 5.32 in./135.13 mm.
  • Weight: 1.50 oz./42.64 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.82 in./46.23 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.54 in./39.12 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.70 in./17.78 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.51 in./38.35 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Billiard
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Denmark
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