09-09-2013, 03:48 PM
#1
  • Obie
  • Senior Member
  • Glendale, Wisconsin
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Gentlemen,

I am traveling this week and, during my shave this morning, realized my shave set up leaves a lot to desire. The razor is the Feather Artist Club DX pearl with ProGuard blades, the brush the 21 mm Muhle silvertip fiber in the aluminum tube and the cream Institute Karite in a tube. An Edwin Jagger DE 89 shave head with the iKon bulldog handle are backup.

Sure, it's not the end of the world, but a whole week of this? Oy!I like the Feather DX, but only once in a while. But a week of it straight? Oy! Oy!

My standard travel razor is the Henckels Friodur 6/8 stainless steel, which is easy to maintain and is a sweet shaver. I love that razor. The Feather Artist Club is the backup. My travel strop is the Illinois 127 fashioned with a leather tether to wrap around door knobs — my Doorknob Special. For soap, I use that delicious Klar Seifan in the travel tin. This is a German vegetable base shave soap with a clean and soapy fragrance that quite pleasant. It lathers well and has good glide and cushion.

For me, this is the perfect travel gear. Has been for years. This trip is an experiment in travel shaving gear and it's a bomb. So much for that.

Through the years for traveling I have tried a variety of straights, big and small, stainless and carbon, but none has been honey sweet like my Henckels Friodur. For soaps, I think I have covered the gamut of tins and sticks, including D.R. Harris and La Toja, and none has pleased me as much as the Klar Seifan.

The travel brush selection also has been extensive and included Simpson, Vulfix, and even a couple boars. I'm on the fence about the Muhle silvertip fiber in the aluminum tube. It's a fine brush, but I'll decide on its final status when I get home. I've had my eye on the shavemac and the Thater travel shave brushes in the tube, but they are a wee bit pricey.

For the strop, I have gone back and forth on what I have and what should try: the SRD paddle strop. That is another decision to be made by the time I head out to the big shave meet, October 19, in Kansas City.

So there you have it, gentlemen, some thoughts on the ideal travel shave set up — for me. Stay tuned.

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 09-09-2013, 04:59 PM
#2
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Obie,

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Being away from home is not the time to test things, IMHO.

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 09-09-2013, 06:27 PM
#3
  • Obie
  • Senior Member
  • Glendale, Wisconsin
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(09-09-2013, 04:59 PM)Johnny Wrote: Obie,

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Being away from home is not the time to test things, IMHO.
Johnny,

Right you are, my friend.

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 09-09-2013, 08:13 PM
#4
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Great words of advice from Johnny!

Best of luck to you, Obie. Smile

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 09-10-2013, 02:19 AM
#5
  • MikekiM
  • Senior Member
  • Long Island, NY
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I agree with Johnny, but variety is good too...

In the grande scheme of things, a week with a new travel kit isn't a total train wreck. Consider it a challenge.

I've tried and don't care for the synths. Conceptually, they work fine, but they flip the wrong mental switch for me the moment I pick one up. The Feather? Love it. ProGuards? Not nearly as much. I could do endless two pass shaves with the Feather Dx and a Kai Mild.

My favorite software for travel is MWF pressed into stick form and lathered up with an Omega 100066, a Mighty Midget or a Rudy Vey travel brush (that gets very little use).

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 09-10-2013, 06:36 AM
#6
  • Obie
  • Senior Member
  • Glendale, Wisconsin
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Mike,

I have the Muhle fiber silvertip with my Muhle rose gold DE set. It's a fine brush, but, yes, it does require some adjustment. Overall, I am undecided about this type of a brush. Nor am I all that fond of the boar brush.

You can use any type of a brush for travel, really, and any size. Life is a cycle of improvisations. Still, I rather fancy a shaving tool designed for a specific purpose. I assume someone has put some thought into designing a brush for the traveler.

I keep going back to the Thater and the shavemac travel brushes in the tube. I am fond of Thater brushes and the shavemac has yet to disappoint me. The Simpson Case would have been ideal had it been bigger. I passed mine on, because handle and brush were just too small. Well, I have a week to spend with the Muhle, so let's wait and see.

As for the razor, yes, the Feather DX is a lovely razor, but for me, ideal for an occasional use. I plan to keep mine for the rare occasion when time is short for a regular straight.

Oh, one more thing: I like the Institute Karite shave cream, which I brought with me. Even though the lather is anemic, cushion and glide are good. Still, when I return home, I'll only use it to spike a soap that needs some help. I use mostly soaps and use creams occasionally. Not that soaps are better than creams. No, of course, not. I just prefer soaps.

Stay well.

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 09-10-2013, 08:08 AM
#7
  • u2u
  • Senior Member
  • GTA
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The Klar Seifen Rasierseife Klassik is a perfect travel soap and the Feather ought to be easy to live a week with. Haven't tried the IK in a tube but have read it is good stuff. The Feather saves carrying a strop and less maintenance time equals more pleasure (or work?) time in your trip. Solid backup DE as well. Your various travel choices are all top notch. If I were staying at a fixed location for the week I would opt to bring a regular favourite brush rather than a travel brush. Why compromise? Hope you survive the week OK and let us know your final thoughts on your return home.

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 09-10-2013, 09:02 AM
#8
  • Obie
  • Senior Member
  • Glendale, Wisconsin
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u2u,

Thank you for your fine thoughts. Yes, the Klar Seifen is a delicious soap. I have used it for years and can't get enough of it. By the way, I also have several bricks of the Klar Kabinett version and can't get enough of that either. It's a perfect soap in every way, especially when considering the price.

What's interesting about brushes, I agree, is that you can't beat a regular brush for travel. My preferred knot size range is 22 to 25 mm. For a while on trips, I took my Simpson Duke or Commodore, or a silvertip Thater, or a super silvertip Rooney — I'm trying to remember which. I had a travel tube big enough that held them individually. I wonder what happened to my tube?

Any way, the Muhle Fiber silvertip in the aluminum tube is proving to be quite pleasant and practical, actually. I like the long handle — because of the arthritis in my hands, I am opting for brushes with long handles. By cupping the brush I eliminate some of the discomfort in my hands, whereas brushes with small handles rely almost exclusively on the thumb and fingers and that creates a major discomfort for me.

Because it's a skinny 21 mm brush and is not all that dense, I find that I have to add a bit of splay to the brush by forcing it a bit more more onto my face. As rule, I use the tips of the brush for loading and lathering, which I feel is the proper way of using a brush. In this case, however, because of the knot's nature, I squish the brush onto my face more than I like. The tips are soft and pleasant.

Oh, I failed to mention how soft the water here is. SOFT. This is the softest water I have ever encountered. That gives you good lather, of course, but it also makes everything slippery. I mean slippery. I never get the scales or the pivot wet on a straight razor, anyway, so that's not much of a problem. When lathering, though, that's when things get slippery. It's a comedy. I was aware of this when I left home. That's why I fitted the Edwin Jagger DE with the iKon bulldog, knowing it would give me a much better grip.

So that is the latest report from my little adventure.

Stay well.

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 09-11-2013, 08:38 AM
#9
  • Obie
  • Senior Member
  • Glendale, Wisconsin
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Gentlemen, here is the latest report on my travel shave adventure:

After today's shave I decided to retire the Feather DX permanently. It's a fine razor, a great shaver, but I miss the ritual that comes with the traditional straight razor: the stropping, the cleaning, and so on. I'll probably put the DX pearl up for sale when I return home next week.

I'll finish the week here with the double edge, an Edwin Jagger DE 89 shave head fitted with the iKon bulldog handle. For blades, I brought Astra and the Gillette yellows. Hereafter I'll go back to my old ways of the traditional straight, travel strop, probably a paddle, with the DE as backup.

The Muhle fiber silvertip in the aluminum tube is still holding its own. It's a good brush, convenient, and it dries quickly. The knot is a wee bit flimsy, even if it maintains the comfortable backbone. I will have to evaluate the brush more before deciding one way or the other. Another trip is in the works next month, so I'll give it another test.

The Istitute Karite shave cream has to go. I have used the soap for years and like it. This was my first attempt using the creams. Cushion and glide are good, but the lather is anemic and dries quickly. For the future I'll use it to spike some soaps that need help.

Stay well.

Institute Karite, in a way, parallels L'Occitane: I find the soap good and the cream not so.

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