Mike Sebastian Bay: Smooth Bent Brandy with Camel (A) Tobacco Pipe

Product Number: 002-820-0121

Mike Sebastian Bay's journey into the world of pipe making began by chance when, in an effort to find someone who could restore his father's pipes, he came across legendary artisan Tom Eltang. The pair began to talk and, as they did, they bonded, and Eltang took Bay in as an apprentice. There are precious few in the pipe making world who can lay claim to a start as fortunate as this, and Bay is one of them, with Tom teaching him fundamentals and techniques of artisan pipe making. This act of providence gave Bay an incredible amount of practiced skill, and this bent Brandy is a good example of his shaping style, being a piece that is quintessentially Danish, refined, and deceptively straightforward.

This is quite a compact piece, measuring less than five inches in length, though it retains some mass, giving the squat bowl a substantial feel in hand while remaining fairly light. As I look at this pipe, the first thing that strikes me is the stem, not simply because it is hand cut from fine cumberland, but because it is married to the shank at a base that's here accented with a trim ring of pale Camel bone, offering a lively bit of contrast. The shank itself is thick and very slightly curved upward, allowing the demure stem to strike a poised, graceful stance, flowing out from the cheeked transition like the ebbing of a gentle stream. Said transition's wide angle and serene arc toward the rim imbue the bowl with a subdued, yet palpable forward momentum, the cant pushing up the aft of the rim just a touch more than the fore. This push is further magnified by the lifted heel, raising not only that portion of the rim into prominence, but the entirety of the bowl itself. A low-set waistline visually halts the upward trajectory of the heel and creates a supple, plump base for the bowl's easy taper, all while fostering a wonderful surface for the hand to grasp. A warm, vibrant contrast stain dresses the briar, harmonizing with the stem, and highlights a beautiful array of flame grain that runs from one flank of the shank to the other, wrapping around the fore and sides of the bowl as it does, and framing some truly lovely birdseye on the rim and top of the shank, with a bounteous sea of the speckled grain on the underside.

-John McElheny
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 4.65 in./118.11 mm.
  • Weight: 1.97 oz./55.79 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.68 in./42.67 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.20 in./30.48 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.72 in./18.29 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.85 in./46.99 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Brandy
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Denmark
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