Many experts claim French pipes are substantially underestimated and shadowed off by English and Italian products. At the same time a number of the greatest brands, such as Charatan’s, Comoy’s, GBD, were founded in France and only later moved to the UK. And of course we shouldn’t forget bright Sant-Claude phenomenon, a kind of a “briar valley” of the XX century.
The company of Jean-Baptiste Choquin was founded in 1858 in Metz and reallocated to St Claude only in 1951, but today the name Butz-Choquin is a symbol of St Claude and one of the most recognized and respected French names in the briar world. Our todays pipe belongs to St Claude period as well but the “Modele Depos” stamping (French analog of the “Registered design”, i.e. patent number) hints the pipe hardly can be made later than in the 1950-60s. A good pipe for the price!
The pipe markings are “Butz Choquin \ GALION”, “ST. CLAUDE \ FRANCE”, “MODELE DEPOS \ N142511”, “1662”. The length is 15.4 cm (6.06″), bowl’s height is 5.8 cm (2.28″). External diameter of the bowl is 3.7 cm (1.46″), internal diameter is 2.1 cm (0.83″). The depth is 4.9 cm (1.93″) and this pipe weights 55 gr. Briar, vulcanite stem, no filter. The stem looks a bit overbuffed (that’s noticeable where the stem joins the shank), but it’s definitely an original one and sits snug and reliable.