Smio Satou: Smooth Volcano

Product Number: 002-142-0326

I have been sitting here for almost a half hour, trying to arrive at a single superlative to describe the briar in front of me (and in front of you). 'Breathtaking'? Yes, and I mean in the literal sense; for the first four-to-five seconds after encountering this volcano, the old, normally semi-voluntary respiration system had the 'volunteer' take a hike. 'Magnificent'? 'Stunning'? Given that I talk about pipes for a living (not to mention that I have [literally] struck up non-related conversations with strangers during a major earthquake), this is pretty embarrassing. Perhaps I should leave it at 'extraordinary' (again, in the most literal sense), tuck my wordsmith's tail between my legs, and (mercifully) move on to the masterpiece itself.

The primary culprit behind my temporary breathing issues is the shape and, given the quality of this grain, that tends to boggle even my mind. This amount of briar, in most any other execution, would communicate a sense of broad muscularity (the base is 2.01" x 2.45") and the shank boasts a sufficient girth to back that sense up. With Satou-san's near-supernatural ability to imbue 'wa' within any form he touches, however, there is zero notion of any proportional manipulation in play. Indeed, I can't look at, much less hold, this Volcano and imagine a more natural, intuitive outcome. The delicate lilt of the slender rim and the corresponding rise on the same side of the heel, an almost architectural mount playfully countering the subtle asymmetry at the fore of the base, the poignant employment of the tiniest bit of plateau on the bottom-rear of the shank; the sum of this Volcano's elements add up to a figure that is far more than just attractive, it's downright compelling. The grain? Humor me for a second, and take a look at the heel. should be the fourth picture from the left. What's your opinion?

--R. 'Bear' Graves
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 5.36 in./136.14 mm.
  • Weight: 2.80 oz./79.38 g.
  • Bowl Height: 2.01 in./51.05 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.61 in./40.89 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.79 in./20.07 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 2.03 in./51.56 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Volcano
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Japan
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