12-05-2013, 04:58 PM
#1
  • Barrylu
  • Senior Member
  • Portland OR
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My Quest for the Perfect Razor

I have a very light beard and sensitive skin. As a matter of fact I didn’t even start shaving until I was 22 years old. I probably still wouldn’t be shaving if it weren’t for Sgt. Brown. He stood over me every morning and watched me shave. He certainly could never tell if I shaved or not just by feeling my face. Eventually, he caught on that I didn’t have a blade in the razor and after a few more weeks my first facial hairs emerged. Had he not discovered my blade ruse I probably would still be a non-shaver.

I started with a Gem single edge razor, cheap boar brush and an English soap in a wooden bowl. Eventually, I caved into advertising and peer pressure moved to multiple blade cartridges and canned foam. After years of lousy shaves and not realizing why they had become lousy I grew a beard.

A few years ago I decided to get back into wet shaving. My first razor was a Merkur 34C HD. I liked the razor and shave immediately. After a while I began to think perhaps what I love is getting back into wet shaving and there might be better razors out there. Hear the RAD starting? Perhaps a more aggressive razor would give me a faster cleaner shave with no burn. Enter a Merkur 37C slant. Wrong, wrong, wrong. My face looked and felt like hamburger. The slant found a new home in my son-in-law’s bathroom. Next razor was The Cobra. I thought I had finally found my true love. I even had the razor gilded. Darn thing looks like a wedding ring. My difficulty with the Cobra however was my light beard. The Feather blades were just too aggressive for my face. Finally, I discovered if I used the least aggressive Feather blade (Feather Pro-Guard) and shaved very carefully with it for the first 3 shaves. The blade would dull down enough for me to get 10 to 15 wonderful shaves out of it. I thought my quest was finally over. Not to be.

Next I reasoned I am getting such great shaves from a single edge blade that is used in the Cobra. Why not try a straight razor? So I bought a Dovo straight and all the stuff that goes with it. Now realize I am the kind of guy who can’t be trusted with a zipper fly. The result was a disaster for my face. The rest of me was spared as I knew enough to stick with my button fly. A few plastic surgeries later and I was a new man. Even my dog did not recognize me.

I began to reason if the Cobra was a bit too aggressive with a new blade in it perhaps a razor where I could adjust the aggressiveness of the razor would be the answer. Enter a Merkur Futur in gold to match the gold Cobra. The Futur with a Feather blade in it and set at 2 gave me an excellent shave. The only problem the head was a little too large to fit under my nose and the razor was not aggressive enough in my problem areas under my chin. Finally, the handle was too smooth and always felt as though it would slip out of my hands. Soon I found a solution to all my problems except for the slipperiness issue (I did consider sandpapering my finger tips). I shaved most of my face with the Futur set on 2. My upper lip and problem area I shaved with The Cobra. By the time the blade in the Futur needed changing the blade in the Cobra was perfect for shaving. I shaved the next 10 to 15 shaves with The Cobra and all was right with the world. I thought my quest was finally over. But nooooo!
I started reading about SS razors. I was intrigued. I could buy a Shavecraft 101 cheaply. Use an open comb razor which I had yet to try and if I didn’t like the head I still have a SS handle and could get an iKon slant head for the stainless steel handle. Simple cheap plan right? I received the 101 shaved a few times with it and found the SB side way too mild. I had to go over my problem areas more than a few times to get the area smooth. Unfortunately, this procedure left the area too sensitive. The open comb was OK but not the holy grail of shaving I sought. Besides the head of the 101 was not SS and I had a SS handle.

Perusing the Sale Forum one day I noticed someone had an iKon slant head for sale. Completely forgetting my previous experience with the Merkur Slant I immediately purchased the head. Two shaves later I found myself back in my Plastic Surgeons office. I noticed the name on my chart now reads Mr. Potato Head. Not to be deterred I have a Feather AS-D2 on order. Report to follow. Stay tuned film at 11.

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 12-05-2013, 06:43 PM
#2
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What a story! Still have that 34C? Might be worth another go. Best wishes with your shaves.

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 12-05-2013, 06:55 PM
#3
  • Triad
  • Triad Razor Handles
  • Texas
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Nice write up but oh no i find the feather as d2 milder than the 101!!

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 12-05-2013, 07:14 PM
#4
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Sounds to me like a vintage Schick injector with some Chinese Schick blades is worth a try. The more standard injector blades are not as sharp and harsh as a Fearher AC type blade can be. The G-type Schick especially the HydroMagic is super smooth. Many injectors don't feel like they are even shaving but somehow magically remove the stubble. Godspeed on your journey.

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 12-05-2013, 07:15 PM
#5
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Wow, what a journey and best of luck! Biggrin

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 12-05-2013, 08:18 PM
#6
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Barry, perhaps a burr grinder might be just what you need. Based on what you told me, it really helped. Oh, wait; that was in the coffee thread, wasn't it? Winky

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 12-05-2013, 08:41 PM
#7
  • beartrap
  • Resident Цирюльник
  • Southern California
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Great read, I enjoyed it. Try and try again... Biggrin

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 12-06-2013, 02:45 AM
#8
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hahaha Biggrin what a ride! i for one is trying out all the different uk NEW i can come by. can't wait to find out how asd2 matches your face. bring it on!

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 12-06-2013, 02:57 AM
#9
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Awesome story! Hope you find your solution Smile

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 12-06-2013, 11:28 AM
#10
  • Deuce
  • Just a guy
  • Cave Creek
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Great quest! We're all along for the ride

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 12-06-2013, 06:29 PM
#11
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Interesting read. Good luck with the Feather, I sure hope you find that ''magical" razor that works just perfectly for you.

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 12-06-2013, 06:54 PM
#12
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That was a good read! Good luck

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 12-07-2013, 05:10 AM
#13
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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A good read. Try a Kai Mild blade in your Cobra. Phil (Bullgoose) sells them...

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 12-07-2013, 06:10 AM
#14
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The Tradere SB is the answer.

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 12-07-2013, 06:37 AM
#15
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Great post Barry. I've read a lot of positive reviews of the Feather. But I'm concerned that you say the 101 was mild, and the Feather's great attraction for those who enjoy it is that it is mild. So I'm not sure what's going on there, but I wish you all the best with this struggle.

OK, having said all that, I see you're limiting yourself to newly made razors only. Maybe you should check out some of the Gillette Techs and the Schick injectors. They've been popular for a really long time, and for good reason. They work! They're plentiful, and not hard to find. Same for the Gillette Super Speeds. What do you think?

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 12-07-2013, 11:58 AM
#16
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Great story.

Perhaps let your face heal up then try Mikes Natural or Napa Soap Ocean Blend soap with an R41 2011 using Dorco blades, steep angle two passes with a little touch up. This is the combo for my closest and longest lasting BBSes with absolutely no irritation.

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 12-08-2013, 04:25 AM
#17
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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I have a very light beard and sensitive skin
May I suggest a vintage Gillette Blue Tip? It was made especially for men such as yourself. You can find one on Ebay usually.

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 12-08-2013, 10:31 AM
#18
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Been there, done that!! LOL!
I've tried dozens of razors over the years and always go back to my Futur. I simply slipped enough o-rings into the grip depression and eliminated the slip problem.
My blade bank is about full. If I send it to you, you could crack it open, sanitize the blades and never worry about a too aggressive razor again.
Good luck with your quest.

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 12-08-2013, 12:01 PM
#19
  • Barrylu
  • Senior Member
  • Portland OR
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I never thought of o rings. Always thought to change something about my own technique. I wonder if shrink tubing would result in a better more pleasing surface as well.The Futur is definately one of my best razors. Thanks for the idea.

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 12-08-2013, 02:12 PM
#20
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(12-08-2013, 12:01 PM)Barrylu Wrote: I never thought of o rings. Always thought to change something about my own technique. I wonder if shrink tubing would result in a better more pleasing surface as well.The Futur is definately one of my best razors. Thanks for the idea.

Shrink tubing won't give you the grip when wet. I've also used part of a thick ball point pen I disassembled and stretched it on my other Futur. It split a bit so I'm watching for a larger pen. Will probably use o-rings on this one too for the time being. I saw a picture of the pen idea on another forum and it gave the razor a nice custom look.

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