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       Dr. Grabow Pipes Forum Index -> History - Sparta, NC Pipe Factory
ted

Grabow assortments

This may be too much reading, but it needs to be "put down" while it is remembered. This applies to 1963 (maybe a bit older) till 1992.

Grabow pipes moved through the factory in "lots". A lot was 1 name as in Grand Duke -- 6100. A lot had 12 boxes of 300 pipes, and these 12 boxes moved through the factory together. When finished, to make an assortment in Packing, the girls just took one pipe from each box and has a perfect assortment for a dozen or 30 dozen..

The #617 assortment had 4 slims (72, 75, etc), 1 bent, 1 pear, 1 1/4 bent (19 or 65) ,3 small mediums (50/31/12 etc) ,1 large medium (36/10 etc), and one senior (70/69/11).

It HAD TO CONTAIN.. 2 apples, 2 billiards, 2 pots, 2 dublins, 1 pear, 1 bent, 1 quarter bent. The 12th was at the discretion of whoever did it (Ed Darr, me, or Paul Wagoner) ans usually was an apple or pot with a quarter bend, but sometimes an 80/82/83/84/85.

This assortment was for Grand and Crown Duke, Savoy and Riviera..

#618 assortment  HAD TO CONTAIN 2 slims, 3 small mediums, 3 large mediums, a bent, 2 seniors, and a "fancy" ( 80 82 83 84 85).  Among these there was also a pear and a quarter bent in slim or a small medium.
The 618 assortment was for Silver and Royal Duke, and Regal.

Golden Duke, Starfire, Viscount, Eldorado, and Commodore had a different assortment. 2 slims, 2 small mediums, 3 large mediums, 3 seniors and 2 "fancy's". Including a bent, pear, and quarter bent... There was much more flexibility in these assortments. Weren't as strict...

One lot was 25 gross... Imagine the puzzel of putting into work every Monday morning 425 gross of new production.... and keeping the Briarshop tuned to what we needed next month...

Quite a puzzle, but went off without a blip... ted
Notedhillbilly

Thanks so much Tom!!!
DRIFTER

Grand Tom, thanks!
ozark southpaw

Great info! Keep it coming!
Wish I coulda been there to put together my own assortments.
Spadefan

Valuable stuff +
Wildcat

ozark southpaw wrote:
Great info! Keep it coming!
Wish I coulda been there...
+1 Very Happy
JoeMan

Thanks for recalling these types of details and sharing them for our greater appreciation.  

I know you worked your tail off at the factory for years...and loved just about every minute of it.

+2 on the 'wish I coulda been there'...
Wildcat

Ted, what was it like, y'know... being there. The people, the sounds and the smells etc. Were most folks pipe smokers? Any lady pipe smokers working there? Everyone get along, have fun, make practical jokes etc? Was it a place people looked forward to going to everyday?
ted

Wildcat wrote:
Ted, what was it like, y'know... being there. The people, the sounds and the smells etc. Were most folks pipe smokers? Any lady pipe smokers working there? Everyone get along, have fun, make practical jokes etc? Was it a place people looked forward to going to everyday?


You musta been there.. About 50 - 70 pipe smokers. No ladies that I recall. The smell of sanded wood mixed with a little lacquer...

Paul Lavietes of D & P pipe works was the President of Sparta Pipes. He retired in December 1965 because of health, and I started in January 1966 and never met him. He was the most beloved President of Sparta Pipes. Paul ran the Sparta factory and his brother Henry ran the HLT operation in Greensboro, NC.
Paul made em' and Henry sold em'.

Many employees said I looked and acted like Paul, a grand compliment for a 19 year old. Tall, skinny, and a "way" with employees.. Grumpy, Yes.   Fair and friendly, Yes. Maybe that gave me an "in". Whatever, it worked.

Paul Fish followed Paul Lavietes and was another of the GREAT ONES at Sparta Pipes. One of my all time favorite people. From 1966 till 1969 (when I was drafted) there was seldom a weekend that Paul and I didn't have a meeting at the old factory, just to talk, and for me to learn.
I got out of the Army in June 1971 and Paul died in August.. What a loss, to me and the entire Grabow family. Paul was Jewish and the service was in Winston-Salem. In those days 1 1/2 hours away. About 300 employees and spouces made the trip.. Well loved...

More will come as my feeble brain remembers stuff... ted
colorduke

Ted,thanks for another great history lesson.
JoeMan

Ted, keep it coming as you will.  We like it.  

The DG/Sparta portion at the front of this video you posted some time ago captures a workplace environment which I'd love to have been part of.  Any thoughts on the footage, folks you recall, and were you there when the Grabow 'theme song' was played?  

I could watch this video a hundred times and not tire of it.   http://archive.org/details/tobacco_azi52b00
ted

JoeMan wrote:
Ted, keep it coming as you will.  We like it.  

The DG/Sparta portion at the front of this video you posted some time ago captures a workplace environment which I'd love to have been part of.  Any thoughts on the footage, folks you recall, and were you there when the Grabow 'theme song' was played?  

I could watch this video a hundred times and not tire of it.   http://archive.org/details/tobacco_azi52b00


Joe, For RJ McKay and DRB I named every person in the video.. Maybe they would share it...  td
Wildcat

colorduke wrote:
Ted,thanks for another great history lesson.
Just love hearing history this way, thx Ted!
Marshal

Ted,

Great story about you, the army and Dr G. Like everyone else said, would've liked to seen the place then. Thanks for your service. Navy myself in 1972. Talk to Debbie the other day and she sent me order forms and all the info on new stuff. What a nice lady. Not sure if your still following this post as the original post date was May 1 I think.
ted

Marshal, Deb is GRAND. I go about every other month and she is always the same. Lets put this mildly, .....and quite attractive..
I'm 66 and the only thing that works good are my eyes.. td
Marshal

You know how you always put a voice to a face? I knew she was pretty too.  I wish my eyes still worked.lol
Eric

Tom, thanks for all the ole Grabow history, I thoroughly enjoy it.

Eric
Gary Balestrieri Jr

Great info Tom!  Thank you for sharing it!  I feel priveleged to get inside information like that from someone that was there.
I hope i can be there in July to hear the sounds, smell the smells, and meet the great folks!
Thanks, Gary
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