Pipe Maker Richard Mason: A Man With a Vision

As many of you know, I have been selling Richard Mason pipes on my website for the past couple of years. They are always best sellers and go fast. And the reason is simple; they are beautifully crafted and sell at a price point that just about anyone can afford. And best of all, those who purchase his pipes come back for more! Although Mason has been making pipes for a decade, I never tried one of his creations until a couple of years ago and I sure am glad that I did! I’m holding up one of my own Mason pipes in this photo. They are beautifully made, very comfortable in feel, and have perfect drilling and draw. It is no wonder that this Hampton, Virginia pipe maker’s pieces are among my favorite smokers, and the price point makes them terrific bargains! I have many pipes that cost much more than my Masons but don’t smoke nearly as well. I recently asked Richard to share with my website followers a little bit about himself. So, below is a photo of Richard Mason and his story in his own words:

“Like many others, I started with a pipe kit bought at a local smoke shop. It took awhile to finish it, but it led to a few more kits before the first drill press showed up. That’s when the bug hit. At first, it was just to see if I could make a smokable pipe, then it was making pipes for myself. Once I thought I had enough pipes to smoke (ha-ha!), it morphed into offering inexpensive pipes to new smokers to help promote pipe smoking. After some polite feedback and participating in a couple of pipe shows, I realized I still had some work to do in shaping and finishing along with fine tuning my process. The learning curve has flattened out a bit since then, but it’s still there.  Shaping nuances, contrast staining and stem finishing still demand attention and patience. So does coming up with something distinctive, although not sure my pipes have a recognizable look or style yet. But after all, it’s still a hobby. It’s one I enjoy that has allowed me to meet some really talented people and help fund my apparent tobacco fetish, since I now have enough for any two lifetimes!

I try to keep things simple in my designs partly due to my limited capabilities, but that’s fine with me. Function first over form. I know of no other endeavors that could offer me such satisfaction as making and smoking pipes, generally at the same time. Put me at my bench with a file, a piece of briar and a bowl of Navy Flake trying to make someone’s favorite pipe. That’s it. Maybe a cup of coffee, too.

P.S. I must mention that  long time and highly respected American pipe maker Tim West has been extremely helpful to me; I’ve been on the phone to him countless times over the past 10 years with many a question. He always has an answer.”


And if you are looking for a great smoking pipe at a great price, you may want to take a closer look at these Mason pipes that became available for sale on Saturday, September 25th right here on pipestud.com!

Happy puffing,