We include a condition statement for each estate pipe. Though a somewhat subjective judgment by nature, we do our best to briefly describe any physical and/or cosmetic changes a previously owned pipe may have undergone since it originally left the factory or workshop. Based on the pipe’s condition, we then assign the individual pieces a number with a maximum rating of 5/5 for a pipe which is, essentially, in mint condition. Unlike some other works of art, pipes are handled, set aflame, held between the teeth, scraped out, cleaned and re-cleaned inside and out (sometimes for decades) and, thus, will usually show very minor blemishes that are considered normal and expected, which may include very minor scratches on the bowl or stem which are a direct result of the quality of workmanship and finishing details from a given pipe maker or factory. We do our best to pass on details that have changed since the pipe left the factory or workshop so the new owner has a better idea of what they are purchasing. Listed below are some examples of our rating system, which could be combined, altered, or otherwise scored, with certain details of the particular pipe. In general, some cosmetic or physical issues could be restored skillfully (raising a tooth mark, minor scratch or ding, or some rim darkening), while other issues are beyond repairable to original condition. As with any pipe listed on our website, you may feel free to call or email with any additional questions regarding specific details that might not be noted or observed in the photograph[s].
...You get the idea. Depending on severity, best judgment is used to subtract points and parts of points. There are countless factors and combinations that could apply. The list above contains some examples and should not be considered an exhaustive set of rules.