interesting turn out for an alco bowl.

craig

Well-known member
#1
hi gentlemen.

I've ordered some new alco bowls and they turned up today.

funny thing is they fit both my alco and falcon stems.
I always thought one wouldn't fit the other.

anyone any ideas, especially our resident falcon expert @snake.
 

Coastal Bend

Get off my lawn.
Patron
#4
It's been a while since I read the history of the Falcon, but I seem to recall there was a conflict -- like a copyright -- and as a work around the "F" and the "N" were ground off of already prepared pipes so they could be brought to market, thus creating the "Alco." (I'll see if I can find the book and the reference if I have time later -- but no promises.)
 

WalkinStick

Not a daisy at all
Sales
Old Ted Award Winner
#5
It's been a while since I read the history of the Falcon, but I seem to recall there was a conflict -- like a copyright -- and as a work around the "F" and the "N" were ground off of already prepared pipes so they could be brought to market, thus creating the "Alco." (I'll see if I can find the book and the reference if I have time later -- but no promises.)
Yep. That’s always been my understanding of it as well.
 

Coastal Bend

Get off my lawn.
Patron
#6
OK. OK. I couldn't put off looking. Here is the information from "Back from The Ashes" by K.A. Worth, granddaughter of G.L. Hunt:

"The unique markings came about because David Morris initially expressed concern over use of the name ‘Falcon’ in England:

'From enquiries I made I found that Comoy’s, who use the name here, use it rather extensively in their export business…the name is not actually registered here but our trademark agents inform me that Comoy’s would have a valid claim to it and could stop us using it…I think it would be best to ship the 1,000 with the name deleted…'[41]

Certainly wanting to address Mr. Morris’ worry surrounding famed smoking pipe maker Comoy’s, Grandpa took the following interim steps to deal with the problem:
…'we will not be able to remove the entire name “Falcon”. In our experiments we have found that we can remove the letters ‘F’ and ‘N’ leaving the word ‘ALCO’. This can be done and still leave a well finished product. As you probably know, the metal between the smoking tube and the frame at the point where the word appears is very thin; however, at the point where the ‘F’ and the ‘N’ appear the metal is sufficiently heavy so that we can remove the letters without weakening the pipe…we propose to ship the 333 easels to you without the pipes mounted on them since it is our belief that you will have to doctor up the easels to show the new word ‘ALCO’ which is the name on this particular lot…'

A second lot of nine hundred ninety-nine Falcons arrived in London on February 6, 1956,[43] likewise stamped with the modified ‘ALCO’."

Worth, K. A.. Back From The Ashes: Uncovering the Lost History of G. L. Hunt and the Falcon Pipe (Kindle Locations 874-884). Kindle Edition.
 

craig

Well-known member
#7
OK. OK. I couldn't put off looking. Here is the information from "Back from The Ashes" by K.A. Worth, granddaughter of G.L. Hunt:

"The unique markings came about because David Morris initially expressed concern over use of the name ‘Falcon’ in England:

'From enquiries I made I found that Comoy’s, who use the name here, use it rather extensively in their export business…the name is not actually registered here but our trademark agents inform me that Comoy’s would have a valid claim to it and could stop us using it…I think it would be best to ship the 1,000 with the name deleted…'[41]

Certainly wanting to address Mr. Morris’ worry surrounding famed smoking pipe maker Comoy’s, Grandpa took the following interim steps to deal with the problem:
…'we will not be able to remove the entire name “Falcon”. In our experiments we have found that we can remove the letters ‘F’ and ‘N’ leaving the word ‘ALCO’. This can be done and still leave a well finished product. As you probably know, the metal between the smoking tube and the frame at the point where the word appears is very thin; however, at the point where the ‘F’ and the ‘N’ appear the metal is sufficiently heavy so that we can remove the letters without weakening the pipe…we propose to ship the 333 easels to you without the pipes mounted on them since it is our belief that you will have to doctor up the easels to show the new word ‘ALCO’ which is the name on this particular lot…'

A second lot of nine hundred ninety-nine Falcons arrived in London on February 6, 1956,[43] likewise stamped with the modified ‘ALCO’."

Worth, K. A.. Back From The Ashes: Uncovering the Lost History of G. L. Hunt and the Falcon Pipe (Kindle Locations 874-884). Kindle Edition.
you are correct, I know the original ones are actual falcon pipes with the f and n removed.
the alco turned out to be a completely line, still made by falcon but the bowls aren't interchangeable between falcon and alco.
the alco bowls in my opinion are a step above the bantam bowls.
 

craig

Well-known member
#13
I see what you're talking about now. I think. Don't recall this being covering in the history of the Falcon, may have to do some re-reading.
I know they weren't available when falcon was very first invented, they were introduced in the 1960s/1970s, now they discontinued, you can still get the bowls from James barber but as for the stems, long gone although they do pop up on eBay.
however new unused ones are as rare as rocking horse proverbial, the ones that pop up have had hard lives and never really seen a good deep clean although with the stems being aluminium they do clean up very nicely and respond well to a good polish.
the last alco I got off eBay I went through a 50 pack of pipe cleaners, a full aerosol of falcon pipe spray and a miniature jack daniels just on the stem, the bowl however a quick ream, cotton wool and alcohol treatment and a bit of elbow grease and it turned out nice.
 

Coastal Bend

Get off my lawn.
Patron
#15
Ahhh, here is a footnote that kind of speaks to the question:

"*We will soon see that Falcon later launched a separate line of ALCO pipes. However, the later ALCO’s carry a dissimilar one-piece metal-stem design without Falcon’s signature spiral center tube. Also, the later
ALCO line’s bowls bear smaller threads than the standard Falcon. Still, the above story reveals the origin of the name ‘ALCO.’"

Worth, K. A.. Back From The Ashes: Uncovering the Lost History of G. L. Hunt and the Falcon Pipe (Kindle Locations 906-907). Kindle Edition.
 

craig

Well-known member
#16
Ahhh, here is a footnote that kind of speaks to the question:

"*We will soon see that Falcon later launched a separate line of ALCO pipes. However, the later ALCO’s carry a dissimilar one-piece metal-stem design without Falcon’s signature spiral center tube. Also, the later
ALCO line’s bowls bear smaller threads than the standard Falcon. Still, the above story reveals the origin of the name ‘ALCO.’"

Worth, K. A.. Back From The Ashes: Uncovering the Lost History of G. L. Hunt and the Falcon Pipe (Kindle Locations 906-907). Kindle Edition.
they are quite different in looks from a falcon but they work just the same, if you can get a hold of one then I highly recommend them, they are good for a quick ish smoke and the Dublin and bulldog bowls are especially good flake bowls.