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Behind the Scenes at Castle Briars



Anthony Hopkins

I started smoking a pipe my senior year in high school, thanks to my English and music teachers. But it was in shop class where my pipe journey really began: I made my first two pipes after hours with the tools in the wood shop. One smoked terribly and I threw it out. But the other, from soapstone, was a great smoker. 


I never forgot those two pipes as I went onto college then built a career as a mechanical engineer. There is a great deal of engineering that goes into the making of a pipe. I always apply those engineering and woodworking principles in the construction of my pipes. 


In 2019 I started researching pipemaking, then the next year I ordered briar, a lathe, and a few tools to get me started. I’ve been fortunate that talented pipe makers have offered up their time, wisdom, experience and critiques to help me to further my craft. Pipe smokers and makers are a deep community — and they inspire me every day in my own path as a maker. 


Lathe and Blast'n





Sanding & Shape'n

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