During the heyday of pipe smoking from the 1920’s until the 1970’s there is no doubting that the hub of quality pipe manufacture was based around London, England.
Marques like Dunhill, Comoy, GBD, Charatan and Loewe pipes offered the top manufactured smoking pipes in the world. Apart from Dunhill, most of the other companies have now merged into larger conglomerates and their quality has diminished dramatically from the period pre-1970.
So how can you acquire some of these supreme smoking machines? The only route to adding quality classic briar like this to your collection is to invest in English estate pipes. This is the one market that always remains strong in the estate pipe market. Whilst the demand for older Italian and Danish pipes ebbs and flows, the interest for English estate pipes seems to be growing again at a steady rate.
There is probably not much surprise there. If they were at the time the finest smoking pipes in the world, they are also likely to be the best estate pipes.
The estate market gives the pipe smoker the opportunity to acquire this quality briar at reasonable prices. In my opinion such purchases are an investment, not only in your pipe smoking hobby, but also a safe monetary investment. These pipes are no longer made and there will always be a demand for them. As the stock diminishes over time, well cared for examples will grow in value as demand will outstrip supply.
Some of the best investments in English estate pipes at the moment are pre-tansition Barlings Make pipes, early pre-1950 Comoy and GBD models, very early 20th century BBB and Loewe pipes and pre-1960 Dunhill pipes (especially those made in the Patent era before 1954). A solid collection across these marques will not only offer you a superb collection of excellent smoking pipes, but also a monetary investment due to dwindling supplies.