05-29-2013, 04:40 PM
#1
  • Fab
  • Active Member
  • New York, NY
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Hello,

I'm new to the SE world, and would much appreciate the help of you masters of the SE, with choosing a decent blade.
Currently I have a GEM G bar and a Micromatic. I also have a 1912 on the way Biggrin
I have found some GEM personna blades at a local drugstore, and some store branded blades at CVS and the likes. Are those my only options, or can some other better blades be found elsewhere or on the internet?
What would you recommend to a newbie?
Thanks a lot

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 05-29-2013, 06:39 PM
#2
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You want the GEM Stainless Coated (aka Ted Pella's), best price I know of here.

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 05-29-2013, 07:14 PM
#3
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Tom has given great info. Not much for me to add.

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 05-29-2013, 08:55 PM
#4
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The blades you bought, are they SS or carbon steel? If stainless it'll say so on the spine. If carbon steel I think the spine has "009" imprinted on it, but it'll be magnetic no matter what's imprinted.

I like Toms info, but some folks like the carbon steel version best despite the added care required to keep the blade from rusting. The blade either gets removed and dried off. When I used them I'd put a few drops of mineral oil top and bottom of the blade, install it, and replenish the oil out of a dropper bottle and call it good. I used one blade for over 4 weeks with no rust just by oiling it exactly as I wrote. I used it every Saturday. Then I got disgusted thinking I had a SS blade installed, but no, it actually was a carbon steel blade. If you have chlorinated water your results may be different.

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 05-29-2013, 09:10 PM
#5
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Treet Supers are amazing. They are in yellow and green packaging, possibly at one of your local pharmacies.

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 05-30-2013, 02:27 AM
#6
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In my opinion Pella's really are the only way to go.

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 05-30-2013, 04:14 AM
#7
  • Fab
  • Active Member
  • New York, NY
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(05-29-2013, 08:55 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: The blades you bought, are they SS or carbon steel? If stainless it'll say so on the spine. If carbon steel I think the spine has "009" imprinted on it, but it'll be magnetic no matter what's imprinted.
The ones I bought say "stainless" on one side and GEM on the other. Comes in a gray plastic dispenser. Are those different than the famous ones sold by Ted Pella?

Quote:I like Toms info, but some folks like the carbon steel version best despite the added care required to keep the blade from rusting. The blade either gets removed and dried off. When I used them I'd put a few drops of mineral oil top and bottom of the blade, install it, and replenish the oil out of a dropper bottle and call it good. I used one blade for over 4 weeks with no rust just by oiling it exactly as I wrote. I used it every Saturday. Then I got disgusted thinking I had a SS blade installed, but no, it actually was a carbon steel blade. If you have chlorinated water your results may be different.
Interesting. I should try these carbon steel ones as well. More maintenance, but if the shave is better ...
What brands are recommend for carbon steel? The treet?
Thanks again

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 05-30-2013, 06:42 AM
#8
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(05-30-2013, 04:14 AM)Fab Wrote: The ones I bought say "stainless" on one side and GEM on the other. Comes in a gray plastic dispenser. Are those different than the famous ones sold by Ted Pella?

They should be the same as Ted Pella blades. The only unknown unless the packaging says so is whether or not they are PTFE coated.

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 05-30-2013, 08:44 AM
#9
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(05-30-2013, 02:27 AM)regularfella Wrote: In my opinion Pella's really are the only way to go.

I agree Lance.

Carbon steel better? Well, maybe. Not everyone agrees with that assessment. I don't think the increased maintenance is worth the hassle. I didn't see much if anything better during the shave, so I went for easy with the TP SS blades.

About PTFE coating... does it last more than a few shaves? I don't know but as thin as it is I really doubt it. Lots of folks think the TP coated blades are better after a few shaves. Maybe it's the worn off ptfe that does that? I don't know and it's not even a theory. There simply is no data. It's pure speculation based on absolutely nothing. Butthe blade does get better after a few shaves in mine and other folks opinions. It certainly isn't getting sharper with use, but something happens.

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 05-30-2013, 01:01 PM
#10
  • Fab
  • Active Member
  • New York, NY
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Quote: I agree Lance.

Carbon steel better? Well, maybe. Not everyone agrees with that assessment. I don't think the increased maintenance is worth the hassle. I didn't see much if anything better during the shave, so I went for easy with the TP SS blades.

I will give the CS a try if I can find them at a local pharmacy.

Quote:About PTFE coating... does it last more than a few shaves? I don't know but as thin as it is I really doubt it. Lots of folks think the TP coated blades are better after a few shaves. Maybe it's the worn off ptfe that does that? I don't know and it's not even a theory. There simply is no data. It's pure speculation based on absolutely nothing. Butthe blade does get better after a few shaves in mine and other folks opinions. It certainly isn't getting sharper with use, but something happens.
Interesting theory. Since stainless steal is unlikely to be changing its composition, and the other only component is the PTFE, it does sound a feasible theory. Unless less sharp blades are better, and I don't think most will agree with that Smile

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 06-02-2013, 01:54 PM
#11
  • CMur12
  • Semogueiro de Coração
  • Moses Lake, Washington State, USA
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Most prefer the GEM stainless steel blades with PTFE coating, such as ones can get from Ted Pella, as they are smoother and they last longer.

My favorites are the Treets (made by ASR, as are the GEMs), which are carbon steel. Most good DE blades work fine for me, but I find the GEM stainless SE blades to feel dull. The Treet carbon steel blades are very noticeably sharper and they will mow through my coarse-but-not-very-dense beard with the lightest touch, though I can only squeeze 3 shaves out of one. (After each use, I rinse off the blade, air-dry it, and hand-strop it. I also live in a very dry climate.)

When I use a GEM stainless blade (PTFE-coated or not), I have to apply a little bit of pressure to get the same cut I do with the Treets, and this results in more irritation for me.

- Murray

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 06-03-2013, 03:26 PM
#12
  • Fab
  • Active Member
  • New York, NY
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Thanks all for your invaluable help. I bought some Treets this weekend and will try those as well. The PTFE coating will have to wait a little longer.
I clean and dry all my gear after the shave, so even if I chose to use the CS blades I should be fine.

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 06-04-2013, 01:53 AM
#13
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I'll throw in another wrinkle to the SE blade question.

Feather SE blades!

[Image: attachment.php?attachmentid=148428&d=1298785168]

They're the best SE blades I've tried. You 'spine' them with a spine from a regular SE blade, as shown in that pic.

I've tried the Treet carbon steel blades, and I think they start smoother than the GEM Ted Pellas, but they're not in the same class as the Feathers.

The Feathers are expensive, though.

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 06-04-2013, 08:31 AM
#14
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Of course the Feathers are the only option for the Valet razors with a punched blade holder too.

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 06-05-2013, 04:18 AM
#15
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Yep, they are. Luckily, my Valet takes de-spined regular SE blades. I'd use the Feathers all the time, but I have so many of the regular SE blades that it doesn't make sense to shell out for a bulk purchase of yet another blade.

I do use the Feathers on occasion, and I really like them. When I'm 85 and I've run out of Ted Pellas, I'll buy some of the Feathers for regular use. Biggrin

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 06-05-2013, 06:36 AM
#16
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I think that when my current SE blade trove starts to dwindle in another 16-18 months that I'll order a good bit of the Feather SEs to try. I really like the Feather Pro blades in the Cobra so I think their version of a traditional SE may be a perfect fit for me.

Yohann, how many shaves do you get out of the Feather SEs?

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 06-10-2013, 09:50 AM
#17
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Brian -

I find it hard to keep track of the number of uses I put each safety blade to, as I mostly use straights (so safety razor uses are few and far between), however - I almost always try use SE blades no more than 5 times (Feathers included).

Having used the Feather Pros, I don't think the SE blades are quite as good, but they're better than other non-pro SE blades.

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 06-10-2013, 10:22 AM
#18
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Going off Krampert's speculation above: has anyone actually compared the in coated GEM to the coated?

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 07-08-2013, 06:51 PM
#19
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I was getting ready to post the same question as the OP, but all my questions have been answered.

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