05-07-2014, 12:28 PM
#1
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I just bought this Gem razor at an antique shop. It was cheap, so I decided to get it and see if I like it.

[Image: 1505E26B-CA2F-4A09-88DA-5B28E696A4DB.jpg]

I've been trying to find videos on how to shave with an SE razor, since I've never used one, but I haven't found one that really explains it well.

Is there anything specific I need to know? Do I place the flat part of the head against my face and shave that way, or do I need to use it at an angle?

Any help would be appreciated!

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 05-07-2014, 12:42 PM
#2
  • Gago
  • Active Member
  • Rio de Janeirto
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The GEM Featherweight is a very nice razor. Those SE SR are great shavers, and mainly cheap, not to mention that the blades tend to last longer than DE blades.

As for the shaving theres no secret. In DE razors, we use a angle of 30-45 degrees mostly. Wth a SE, the head of the razor needs to be almost pararell to the face, and the handle almost (but not in) in the horizontal position.

A few shaves will shape you technic. Smile

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 05-07-2014, 01:14 PM
#3
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IMO, you have one of the very best 1st SE starter razors. Good purchase.

Gago nailed it. It will let you know (listen to it) as it mows down the whiskers. After a few times you won't even need to think about it.

Just don't use hardware store blades in it. Use shaving quality blades. They can be had at CVS and Rite-Aid that I know of. Other online outlets as well. CVS has carbon steel blades that will rust, R-A has SS blades.

Good luck, and please let us know how you make out with it.

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 05-07-2014, 01:19 PM
#4
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Thanks for the replies. I bought some CVS blades and plan to try it out this weekend when I can take my time.

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 05-07-2014, 02:34 PM
#5
  • Deco
  • シングルエッジ
  • Rocky Mountains
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That's a great little razor. I have one in my travel kit.

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 05-12-2014, 10:19 AM
#6
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OK, so I tried the razor out this weekend. 2 days of growth. Went through my usual prep, which I've been doing for several months. I went at it with this razor and a CVS blade. OMG!!!! The amount of pulling and tugging was actually painful.

Not sure if it was my technique, or the blade, but I couldn't get through one pass, I put it down and finished with my DE razor.

I'm going to give it another try. I think it may have been a dud blade because it felt like a really dull blade in my DE felt.

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 05-12-2014, 02:11 PM
#7
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I never heard of anyone inserting the blade incorrectly, but make sure it's against the stops. Other than that it's probably a dud blade. If this continues, well, let us know and we'll take care of you. The shave should be smoother than a DE shave. The Featherweight is a pussycat.

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 05-12-2014, 02:31 PM
#8
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(05-12-2014, 02:11 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: I never heard of anyone inserting the blade incorrectly, but make sure it's against the stops. Other than that it's probably a dud blade. If this continues, well, let us know and we'll take care of you. The shave should be smoother than a DE shave. The Featherweight is a pussycat.

The blade was in correctly, I made sure of that. I'm going to try a new blade later this week, probably Wednesday and go from there. Thanks for the reply!

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 05-12-2014, 02:43 PM
#9
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SE shaving requires a bit more skin stretching/facial manipulation IMO, compared with DE shaving.
Good luck with the future shaves!

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 05-12-2014, 06:49 PM
#10
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I actually slack skin shave regularly with an SE and it's amazing how well it can work.

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 05-12-2014, 09:45 PM
#11
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Yes, I don't tighten the skin at all with SE, But I need to with DE.

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 05-13-2014, 08:12 AM
#12
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Since I started shaving I've always incorporated quite a bit of skin flattening and cheek puffing, and swallowing and holding my breath when shaving my throat etc. with any razor (stretching probably isn't the best word to describe any of it)
My mug has lots of contours I guess lol
I was hoping it might help the OP since he was experiencing lots of tugging. That's exactly what happens if I try to shave "normally" (makes me think of shaving with one hand?)

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 05-13-2014, 08:14 AM
#13
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As I thought about this some more I also want to mention that shorter strokes are a good idea too. Many people coming to SE from DE try to bring the same stroke with them too and this doesn't always translate. Start with shorter strokes and then as you get the feel for everything you may be able to lengthen them.

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 05-13-2014, 08:18 AM
#14
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Eric, I didn't mean to imply what you suggested was wrong in some way. It's good for folks to know what might work for them.

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 05-13-2014, 10:24 AM
#15
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Thanks Brian, I wanted to offer some clarification, because when you do stretch your skin, if you overdue it the slightest bit, it can really cause some irritation. But I do like where I'm shaving to be flat as possible :-)

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 05-14-2014, 03:30 AM
#16
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Thanks for all the input. I tried another shave with it when I had less growth from a previous shave. I use short strokes when DE shaving, so I went with that technique here. I also used a new blade in it. I managed to get through most of the first pass when I had to go back to the DE.

It was still pulling and irritating me. Just for information: I have a very heavy and coarse beard, but very sensitive skin. My daily DE razor is either a Merkur 1904 or a Parker 24C. I also use a Gillette Tech and Old Type, but the Gillette NEW is too aggressive.

Are SE razors considered more aggressive than DE razors? Or, can this be a blade issue? Maybe I need to find blades elsewhere and try those.

Or, more likely, is it a technique issue? I may not be an SE shaver.

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 05-14-2014, 08:23 AM
#17
  • bjorney
  • Senior Member
  • Los Angeles
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(05-14-2014, 03:30 AM)guzziknight Wrote: Thanks for all the input. I tried another shave with it when I had less growth from a previous shave. I use short strokes when DE shaving, so I went with that technique here. I also used a new blade in it. I managed to get through most of the first pass when I had to go back to the DE.

It was still pulling and irritating me. Just for information: I have a very heavy and coarse beard, but very sensitive skin. My daily DE razor is either a Merkur 1904 or a Parker 24C. I also use a Gillette Tech and Old Type, but the Gillette NEW is too aggressive.

Are SE razors considered more aggressive than DE razors? Or, can this be a blade issue? Maybe I need to find blades elsewhere and try those.

Or, more likely, is it a technique issue? I may not be an SE shaver.

One thing about SE blades is that they are often a bit too sharp and rough on the first shave or 2. I like to start them off in a mild SE (like the Featherweight) for a couple of shaves, then put them in my preferred Micromatics, ER 1914s and 1912s. After the first couple of shaves the blades are great and often last well beyond 10 shaves.

Others recommend palm-stropping a new GEM blade before use to smooth them out a bit. There are videos on Youtube showing palm-stropping if you want to know how.

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 05-14-2014, 09:52 AM
#18
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The CVS blades are carbon steel. They will rust just by existing in the air. You won't see the rust. The blades I first tried in my DE razor 40+ years ago were that sort, and it destroyed my desire for shaving with DE razors. Ultimately I went to cartridges.

It could definitely be the blade. But something's for sure... something isn't right. But I bet you already figured that out. At this point my bet is on the blade.

PM me an address and I'll send you a few SS blades. Or if you have a Rite Aid nearby they have SS GEMs in stock.

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 05-14-2014, 11:54 AM
#19
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(05-14-2014, 09:52 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: The CVS blades are carbon steel. They will rust just by existing in the air. You won't see the rust. The blades I first tried in my DE razor 40+ years ago were that sort, and it destroyed my desire for shaving with DE razors. Ultimately I went to cartridges.

It could definitely be the blade. But something's for sure... something isn't right. But I bet you already figured that out. At this point my bet is on the blade.

PM me an address and I'll send you a few SS blades. Or if you have a Rite Aid nearby they have SS GEMs in stock.

Thanks for the offer. I do have Rite Aid in the area, so let me start there. Hopefully it is just the blade. It feels like it felt when I used Derby blades in my DE.

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 05-14-2014, 12:09 PM
#20
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(05-14-2014, 11:54 AM)guzziknight Wrote:
(05-14-2014, 09:52 AM)ShadowsDad Wrote: The CVS blades are carbon steel. They will rust just by existing in the air. You won't see the rust. The blades I first tried in my DE razor 40+ years ago were that sort, and it destroyed my desire for shaving with DE razors. Ultimately I went to cartridges.

It could definitely be the blade. But something's for sure... something isn't right. But I bet you already figured that out. At this point my bet is on the blade.

PM me an address and I'll send you a few SS blades. Or if you have a Rite Aid nearby they have SS GEMs in stock.

Thanks for the offer. I do have Rite Aid in the area, so let me start there. Hopefully it is just the blade. It feels like it felt when I used Derby blades in my DE.

Uggg, that sounds horrible. Definitely look for some SS blades. Do you happen to have hard water? If so, then it very well could be that the blade rusted on you and just completely lost its edge. Godspeed!

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