Materials 

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Normally, I used briar root for my pipes, even though I cannot exclude to use other woods or fascinating materials such as olive wood, bog oak or meerschaum.

The briar root is obtained from Erica arborea bushes, typical of the Mediterranean flora. As the harvest and the preparation are procedures which have to be left to the experts – guardians of secrets incomprehensible to neophytes – I prefer to supply myself with already made and well dried plateaux and ébouchons.

Once my land, Sicily, was a good briar supplier. Today, unfortunately, nobody harvests it any longer and it is then necessary to turn elsewhere, without having however to complain. I always try to work with briar root of excellent quality, if and when Mother Nature allows.

I like to add inserts in the stems, extracted from ebonite or cumberland bars of German production. For this purpose, I use various types of horn, camel bone, elforyn synthetic ivory, synthetic mother-of-pearl  and woods such as zebra wood, boxwood, palm wood and bocote wood.

Sometimes I create extensions to the stummel with some of the hardest materials also used for the inserts to the stem or with the more versatile and exotic bamboo.

I believe there is no limit in the choice of materials. In my opinion, it is important that  the finished product does not have more than three colours  and in any case has chromatically compatible tonalities.

The quality of the materials used in the process is as much important. I learned from my mistakes that everything has to be chosen taking into account the quality of the materials and the purpose they have, from the drill bits to the abrasive sandpapers, the aim being to get a production as perfect and fast  as possible.

 

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