Pipephil reports Mauro Cateni is probably a fictional person name for a second brand of an unknown manufacturer. Known line names: Brulio, Classica, Gialla, Nuova Rossa .
If you can shed any light on the origins of this pipe maker or brand, please add it here, or send it firstname.lastname@example.org and we can add it for you.
The origins and relative merits of Mauro Cateni pipes are difficult to nail down. This is not unusual in the pipe world, of course, but this brand having been named after a person, one would assume that person was either a pipe maker, or somehow affiliated with the company making the pipes. That does not appear to be the case with Mauro Cateni.
The following is hearsay and conjecture--please take it with a grain of salt:
According to some unconfirmed reports, "eyewitnesses" describe a shy person standing around European pipe shows and fairs at the end of the 1980's / early 1990's humbly offering his pipes. This person, so they claim, was a new Italian pipemaker named Mauro Cateni. However, no one involved in the Italian pipe scene has ever seen a Mauro Cateni pipe in Italy, let alone personally known or reports knowing of Mauro Cateni. This seems especially unusual if one considers the scene at the time: no internet, no pipe forums or newsgroup, and no eBbay... One would expect a new and aspiring Italian pipemaker would first try to sell his pipes locally. There are many pipe makers whose production is mainly limited to serving their own communities in Italy. It's possible this is the brand of of one of those pipe makers, but that seems a stretch. And so there are doubts about the actual existence of a pipemaker named Mauro Cateni.
Perhaps a major pipe manufacturer adopted the name Mauro Cateni for a second brand, and then made an effort to market the pipes as the production of an "emerging Italian pipe maker"... The bulk of the these pipes were predominantly classical shapes that could have been easily produced with fraized stummels. In addition, many pieces were sandblasted. Very few Italian pipemakers working independently had blasting equipment at that time.
The following are two critiques on the relative merits of these pipes. As you will see, these pipes are enjoyed by one, and avoided by other.
"Many Mauro Cateni pipes display quite shameless putty fillings. So it is hard to believe that someone might have thought he might carve himself a good reputation with such pipes. Even harder to believe that an acknowledged pipemaker would have taken the risk to ruin his reputation offering such putty monsters! (Even though these pipes received many friendly critics on their overall workmanship and smoking abilities.)
Generally speaking, the Italian pipe making scene offers such a wealth of good to very good to excellent pipes that there is really no need to spend money on a more or less obscure "Mauro Cateni"."
"I am not of the opinion of these comments. over a long period as a pipe collector at least 50 pipes of this brand went through my hands. Not a single one was "shameless putty filled". Most of these pipes with a good grain, sometimes very fine straight grain, stem mostly hand-cut. No exceptional pipes but worth to look for. Mostly not expensive. I can´t understand the comments written above."
SYSOP's Note: Hopefully we can evoke some actual facts on this brand at some point, meanwhile I've tried to reconcile an early opinionated article (by TseHa), with a broader view. Many thanks to (UMVOKO) for sharing his positive experience with the brand. We would certainly not want to discourage anyone from taking a chance on buying a pipe they find attractive at an affordable price. Many a treasure has earned its place in rotation in spite of its origins, and these sorts of pipes can offer all the more enjoyment knowing you have beat the odds. --sethile (talk) 08:37, 14 August 2019 (CDT)