Abe Herbaugh: Smooth Peewit with Horn Tobacco Pipe

Product Number: 002-614-0150

Abe Herbaugh is one of the most accomplished young artisans in America, and is one of my absolute favorites in the pipe making world, not the least because of his start in the craft. For much of his adult life, ten years to be more specific, Herbaugh built electric guitars, though he was inspired to begin carving pipes early in his childhood, thanks to the smoking habits of certain members of his family. Music runs in his family: His first several pipes were carved in his father's fiddle workshop, offering a boon to his progress as an autodidact.

Abe's shaping style is unflinchingly organic, and most definitely Danish-inspired, something that can be easily seen in many of his designs, though there is a specific shape Herbaugh has perhaps rendered more often than others: the Peewit. The progenitor of this profile is none other than Sixten Ivarsson, the father of both the Danish school of pipe design and the modern artisan pipe making movement. Herbaugh has taken this shape and the inspiration from Sixten's works and made the Peewit his own, with an added dash of dynamism and momentum given the profile.

A svelte length of vulcanite mouthpiece ebbs out of a horn mount on the shank end of this pipe, with the mount given strength thanks to a ring of brass inlaid about the mortise, allowing for easy push fit. There's a palpable organicism present in the construction of the combination, as the end of the horn flares out in a budding, blooming fashion before stepping down to the stem which, likewise, blooms into a bulbous, domed base. A trim shank descends into a smooth transition that meets the bowl near the bottom, the bottom line further descending into a softly curved heel.

The Peewit was once described as a "bird's egg mounted with a pipe shank and stem," a description that I find as apt for Sixten's renditions as I do with Herbaugh's, as the bowl itself is strikingly organic in its shape, and this particular iteration exemplifies that leaning with a gently flaring travel to the inflated rim — the right side favored for an intriguing dose of asymmetry. A forward cant possesses the bowl as well, pushing it onward into prominence and placing attention squarely on the right fore portion of the rim, as that side is raised high in opposition to the left aft which dips fairly low. A warm auburn contrast stain dresses the stummel here, showcasing a stunning grain structure beneath it, with straight grain surrounding the bowl and the rim peppered with dense, defined birdseye, the hues contrasted by both the horn at the shank end and the stem, resulting in a striking composition that does justice to Sixten's original shape.

-John McElheny
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 5.63 in./143.00 mm.
  • Weight: 1.40 oz./39.69 g.
  • Bowl Height: 2.00 in./50.80 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.49 in./37.85 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.77 in./19.56 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.59 in./40.39 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Freehand
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: United States
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