Rökringar (Smoke Rings)

rr_logoRökringar was founded in 1992 and is a magazine for members of the Pipe Club of Sweden. It is published four times a year, in February, May, September and November. It contains articles about pipes, how to take care of your pipes, presentations of pipemakers, reviews of litterature about pipes and tobacco, tests of tobacco blends, letters from our readers and much more. It is richly illustrated all in color. You will also be informed about what is happening in pipe-clubs in other countries. Foreign members get an English summary with every issue.


An English summary from the magazine “RÖKRINGAR” (Smoke Rings) published by The Pipe Club of Sweden

No. 112 February 2019

The young boy on the cover is from an article by Johan Hedborg. He has titled his article “How small can a pipe be?” As you can see on the foot of the statue, the boy has borrowed his father’s pipe, probably without permission.

We have two articles from Asia, one about the pipe-show in Chengde, China, last October and one from Japan. In connection to the World Championship in Tokyo, Pelle Blomster visited the pipemaker Smio Satou, a visit he found extremely interesting. Last December we also had a much-appreciated visit in Stockholm. It was Mr. Hiro, vice VD of the Tsuge company, who visited our capital. The host during the visit was the pipemaker Andreas Bennwik, and Mr. Hiro visited his workshop and also attended a meeting in the local pipe-club of Stockholm.

The pipemaker, who told us about the pipe-show in Chengde, was Lars Jönsson (Lomma Pipes). He has taken part in that show six times and has a lot of memories from these visits. When we visited him to hear about his experiences, we, of course, also had to look at the pipes he had made lately. Pictures of them are found in this issue.

We also have a report from one of our local clubs. They tell us about the activities they have arranged during the last year. One of them is a swim competition – you must swim as long as you can with a pipe lit in your mouth. All members have also tried to make a pipe themselves.

In the last issue we had a competition “Who made that pipe?” The right answers are published in this issue.

My Lady Nicotine is a classic when it comes to causerie books, perhaps the best ever written, and the first edition was published in 1890. We tell our readers about its author, Sir James Matthew Barrie, the background to this book and, not least, the magic tobacco Arcadia Mixture. We have also translated one chapter from the book into Swedish.

As usual we also have reviews of some tobaccos.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.





An English summary from the magazine “RÖKRINGAR” (Smoke Rings) published by The Pipe Club of Sweden

No. 111 November 2018

The pipe on the cover of this issue was made by the Czech pipemaker Karel Krska.

We have the pleasure to present two young Danish pipemakers, Mike Sebastian Bay and Johannes Gaarn Rasmussen. They are both working as apprentices in Tom Eltang’s workshop, but they are also making pipes of their own. We can show some pipes they have made and there is no doubt that they are extremely talented.

Making 7-days sets, with one pipe for each day of the week, is something many English manufacturers have devoted themselves to. Especially in the first part of the last century, all types of such sets were extremely popular, and they could hold anything from two to seven pipes. These sets were often used as gifts for birthdays or other special occasions and not seldom they had a sign in silver or gold with the name of the recipient engraved.

But it took a long time until an individual pipemaker made such a set. The first to do so was Tom Eltang and his first set was made in the beginning of this century. After that he has made another two sets.

But last spring, Tom took it a step further and presented The Collection. This set contains 17 pipes, one of which is a miniature pipe, placed in the center of the cabinet. All pipes are of the highest grading and it has taken Tom several years to make them. All the pipes are in briar and the ornaments are made from mammoth, horn, gold (22 carat), bamboo and box-wood. The cabinet is a masterpiece and was made from walnut. It was made by Ask Emil Skovgaard. The leather work was performed by John Nissen and the gold work by Vagn Drachman.

We have the pleasure to show pictures of the cabinet and all the pipes in it. The pictures were taken by the master photographer Lars Kiel.

At this time of the year, Stanwell always releases its Pipe of The Year 2019.  This year, the pipe was designed by Johannes Gaarn Rasmussen and is available in five finishes. We show the pipe in all finishes in this issue.

More news from Stanwell: Revival are old shapes that Stanwell is making in limited editions. This time they have released shape no. 162 (a Calebash) and shape no. 131 (an Apple with a long shank). We show pictures of these shapes.

We also have a quiz: Who made that pipe? We show seven factory-made pipes and you have to guess who made them. A pipe is the reward for the winner.

We also have an article about some pipe-magazines, which no longer exist, some tobacco reviews and much more.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 110 (Sep. 2018)

An English summary from the magazine “RÖKRINGAR” (Smoke Rings) published by The Pipe Club of Sweden


The picture on the cover was made by the Austrian artist Franz von Defregger (1835 – 1921). This painting, showing a scene from a rural pub, is one of the best known. In the 1980s the Austrian firm Lilien Porzelain made a series of plates with motifs from Defregger’s paintings. This is the second plate in that series.

We are proud to present a new club-pipe and this time it is a pipe inspired by Popeye. It is made by Tom Eltang and in the bottom of the pipe our logo, the Viking, is engraved.

In the beginning of this year I asked Tom Eltang if I could spend a day in his workshop and follow the entire process, when he was making one of his high-grade pipes. “Of course,” Tom said, courteous as always. It became a long, but extremely interesting day and more than 250 pictures were taken. We have a full report in this issue.

Our annual meeting took place last June in the smokers’ lounge of Mellgrens Fine Tobacco in Gothenburg. We are glad to announce that the board of our club got a new member, Martin Jönsson. The meeting also had the pleasure to welcome the cartoonist Joakim Lindengren, who is a long-time member of our club. Joakim told us about his work in general and especially about his most famous figure, Kapten Stofil. His talk was very much appreciated by the audience and as a thank you he got a pipe from our president. Of course, it was a straight pipe as Kapten Stofil always claims: “Straight pipes smoke best!”

Every year one of our local pipe-clubs arranges a swim competition – you must swim as long as possible with a pipe lit in your mouth. We have some pictures from that event.

A new book about Danish pipemakers was released earlier this month. The title is THE PIPE – A FUNCTIONAL WORK OF ART and it is a coffee-table book of 312 pages with a lot of beautiful pictures. We show a few of the pages in this book.

Skagerack is a special pipe, designed by Victor Söderberg and made by the Swedish pipemaker Henrik Rydberg. It was only made in eight numbered copies and we can show you this exclusive pipe.

One of our board members, Torbjörn Lindén, has been in Chicago and of course he took the opportunity to visit Iwan Ries’s Pipe Shop there. In a richly illustrated article he tells us about this visit.

We also have reviews of some tobaccos and some letters from our readers.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 109 (May 2018)

The pipe on the cover was made by Anne Julie and was put there as an honor to her, as she was elected as Pipeman of the year, or in this case Pipewoman of the year. Since 1984, this title has been awarded annually to someone by the Nordic Smokers` Guild and Anne Julie was the first woman ever to get the title. As “the Grand old Lady of Danish pipemaking”, she is certainly worth it. We tell you more about her in this issue.
A hotel in Stockholm, Victory Hotel, has an important collection of antique pipes and Johan Hedborg has visited the hotel and catalogued the collection for them. He shows us some of the most interesting pieces found there.

Mikael Johansson is a very skilled tobacco blender and he has found the original recipe for Three Nuns tobacco. In the article he tells us how he is making his own version of this famous mixture. We can assure that it tastes deliciously.

To make a pipe by yourself is a dream to many pipesmokers. Patrik Eng has tried to do so and tells us about his experiences in a richly illustrated article.

Unfortunately, two old friends have passed away in the beginning of this year, the pipemaker Lars Ivarsson and the former president of the Nordic Smokers’ Guild Leif Slot. Both will be missed a lot, not only by friends in Scandinavia, but by pipe enthusiast all over the world.

As usual the Danish Championship took place last March. We are happy to tell that a member of our club, Greger Risberg, came in 5thplace, the next best result ever. And we are also proud that one of our two teams came on the 3rdplace, which has never happened before. More about this event inside this magazine.

A new tobacconists’ store has opened in Gothenburg and we show you some pictures of the shop and the smokers’ lounge found there.

Jørgen Berg Christiansen is a pipemaker in Jyllinge, Denmark, who has been making pipes for about five years. We have visited him and show you some pictures from his workshop and, of course, some of his pipes.

As usual we have an extract from an old detective store, that was written already in 1918, reviews of some tobaccos and much more.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 108 (Feb. 2018)

The pipe-smoking gentleman on the cover is not the head of a pipe, but an ink-pot. It was made from porcelain and the reason for putting it here is an article about porcelain-pipes in this issue.

We have a very talented tobacco-blender in our club and he tells us about how you, without a lot of equipment, can make your own Cavendish.

Torsten Erasmie is an artist, who is best known for his paintings from the eastern coast of the south Sweden, a region with a fascinating nature called Österlen. But he has also been working a lot in other places in Europe, like Bretagne in France, his favorite place. His paintings are found in galleries all over the world. But he has also made some still life paintings and in many of them his beloved pipes are a part of the motif and we are happy to be able to show some of them.

Stanwell has for a long time had too many shapes and series, and it has been a great problem to store them all. So, for a long time they have tried to reduce the number of shapes as well as series. In this issue we present the shapes and series that are now in production.

We always get a lot of questions about how to restore an old, well-used pipe. Because of that we have an extensive article that tells you every step in the process.

As usual we have an excerpt from an old detective story (published 1899-1900) and we also have reviews of some tobaccos.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 106 (Sept. 2017)


106The gentleman in the photograph on the cover is the sculpture Jean-Pierre Dantan (1800-1869), who designed a lot of clay pipes for the French company Gambier. The pipe is a self-portrait (not very like the photograph, I must say) and this rare pipe is a treasure for all collectors of clay pipes. Johan Hedborg tells us more about him and shows another pipe designed by him, picturing the author and politician Victor Hugo (1800-1885).

Erik Nørding is a grand old man of Danish pipe-making. He is now 78 years old, but still as active as ever. He has been making pipes for his entire adult life, not only in Denmark but also in England, where he for some years was making meerschaum-pipes on the Isle of Man. We tell you more about him and his family business, in which his son Knud now will be involved.

We are proud to tell that Erik has taken the assignment to make the Pipe of the Year 2017 for our club. It is presented in this issue and can be ordered by all members of our club.

Unfortunately, we have to bring the news that the pipemaker Poul Ilsted died on the 21s of May. Poul was extremely talented and was known as the Facet Master, as most of his pipes were just facetted. He was also a dear friend and we really miss him a lot.

The Pipe Club of Stockholm was founded in 2012 and has regular meetings in the smoking lounge of Cigarrummet, a pipe-shop in the very center of our capital. More information about the activities in this club are found in this issue.

A new member of our club tells us about his first year as a pipe-smoker and shows some pipes he has made from different kinds of wood.

Henrik Boustedt is the latest new pipemaker here in Sweden. We bring you an extensive presentation of him and his work.

We also have an extract from an old detective story, published in 1968, and reviews of some tobaccos.

An English summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.

Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 105 (May 2017)

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The pipe on the cover was made by Vollmer & Nilsson in Malmö. More beautiful pipes from these skillful pipemakers are shown in this issue.

We also have the honor to present a new Swedish pipemaker. His name is Lars Svahn and he is living on the island of Gotland. Lars has two times won our competition for amateur pipemakers, but now he has taken the step to sell his pipes on the Internet (www.svahnpipes.com). We tell you about him and show some of his pipes.

One of our local pipe-clubs has built a new, comfortable smokers’ lounge. We show pictures from it and from the grand inauguration.

We also show pictures and tell you about an old clay pipe, a caricature of the French king Louis Philippe, who reigned from 1830 until 1848.

The Danish Championship takes place in March every year and a review and some pictures are found in this issue.

We are sorry to tell you that the pipemaker Bjørn Thurmann passed away at the end of last year. He has been active in the pipe business all his life and, besides making pipes, he in his youth worked abroad for several years. Among others he worked for Dunhills in London and Iwan Ries in Chicago. In 2005 he moved from Copenhagen, where he had lived all his life, to a little village called Svaneke on the island of Bornholm. There he established a shop and a workshop in an 100 years old house. He himself called it a paradise and when we visited him, we found that it was no exaggeration. It is sad that Bjørn was not allowed to enjoy his paradise for much longer.

We also have an extract from an old Swedish detective story written in1924, some tobacco reviews, letters from our readers and a lot of other things.

An English Summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 104 (Feb. 2017)


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In the last issue we told you about a visit to the MacBaren Tobacco Factory, situated in Svendborg, a town in the island of Funen. This factory was founded in 1826 by Svend Bønnelycke, but in 1876 it was sold to Harald Halberg and has been in the Halberg family ever since. This time we will concentrate on the long and interesting history of that factory, a history that also has been very dramatic.

While visiting the island of Funen and the MacBaren factory we also took the opportunity to visit a long-time friend and a prominent collector of pipes, Jonas Forss. Jonas is Swedish but has lived in Denmark for more than 35 years. We show you some pictures from his big collection of pipes.

Every year our club has a pipe auction, held in the workshop of Vollmer & Nilsson in Malmö. We tell you all about it and show some pictures from the event.

We also have the honor to show all contributions to our competition for amateur pipemakers.

The European Championship last year took place in Nitra in Slovakia. Two of our members took part in the competition and tell us all about it.

Another of our members, Johan Hedborg, has been to Liège in Belgium and joined a meeting in the local pipe-club there. We get a full report from that meeting.

We also have an extract from a pipe-smoking related book and some reviews about tobaccos.

An English Summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.


Rökringar (Smoke Rings) no. 103 (Nov. 2016)

rr-103This is the last issue of Rökringar in 2016, the year when our club celebrated its 25-years-anniversary. In the earlier issues this year, we have told about what has happened during all those years and the final part is found here. We have had the privilege to have some very colorful personalities in our club and this time we tell you about a few of them, members who unfortunately now have passed away. One of them is of course the pipemaker Bo Nordh.

Today the majority of all pipe tobacco is produced in Denmark, in fact as much as 80% globally. The center for this production is the island of Funen, where two big factories are situated. Earlier we have told about Orlik Tobacco Company (owned by Scandinavian Tobacco Group) and this time we have visited the MacBaren factory. MacBaren is a family owned company and the fifth generation of the Halberg family is now leading the company.

For a new pipemaker it is always hard to decide how much to take for his or her pipes. One of our young pipemakers, Mathias Lundell, is speculation about. If you sell your pipes too cheap in the beginning it is hard later to raise the prices, and if you take too much you will not sell any pipes. A hard decision to take. We also show some of Mathias’ pipes.

As you probably know, the Stanwell pipes nowadays are made in Italy. But they have a headquarter in Assens in the island of Funen and we have visited that. The final inspection of the pipes, polishing and distribution are made from there. This was our first meeting with Hans Greibe Hansen, the new managing director of Stanwell, who got the job about a year ago. We show you pictures of the Pipe of the Year 2017, designed by Poul Winsløw and some other beautiful pipes.

Growing and blending tobacco is not very common in our country, but a man called Mikael Johansson has been very successful about that. We tell you about that and show some pictures from his growing.

The Danish Pipeshop has moved into new, much larger premises. The new shop is situated just a few hundred meters away from Rådhusplatsen, the very center of Copenhagen. The inauguration took place on the 1st of October and a lot of people from all over the world took part in it. What the visitors saw was a fantastic shop, a real dream for a pipesmoker. And it was long ago that we saw so many pipemakers gathered in the same place. We have a lot of pictures from that event.

Our pipe making contest for amateurs is now over and the winner has been elected. His name is Lars Svahn and the winning pipe is shown on the cover. We will bring more pictures of the winning pipes and of the other contributions to the competition in the next issue.

We also have extracts from some old detective stories in which pipesmoking plays a significant part, pictures of a very special pipe made in 1914, reviews of tobaccos and much more.

An English Summary of the content is sent to all foreign members.