05-12-2012, 05:21 AM
#1
User Info
I get significantly better shaves with an open comb vs a solid guard bar & even closed combs. I've read that King Gillette preferred open combs & this is obvious from the first DEs he made as they're all open comb. I think it's been postulated that the closed comb & solid guard bar were made to save money & make the razor more durable since you wouldn't have to be worried about a bent tooth. If all this is true then I think it's pretty certain that the open comb is the best design for shaving. Obviously YMMV is in play here. For me though I have 2 razors that are practically the same except one is open comb & the other is a solid guard bar; Gem OCMM vs Gem Clog Pruf. The OCMM is my favorite razor while the CP sits in a drawer. The shave difference is like night & day for me.

So what say the members in the Nook? Open comb to rule them all? Do you have more information about the switch to more closed combs & solid bars? What do you prefer & why?

31 7,912
Reply
 05-12-2012, 06:02 AM
#2
  • Dave
  • Moderator Emeritus
User Info
I used to think Open Comb gave me the best shaves, but now I'm almost sure that was technique. I think the aggression of an open comb will make up for a beginner technique. I often wondered how people got great shaves with the DE89, etc because I couldn't get a good shave with them. I find that now that my technique is improved, I can get just as good a shave with a Tech as an open comb. I used to be a huge fan of the R41, but just cannot use one any longer. It's just too aggressive for me now. I will say that I think open combs are far more efficient for the most part than closed combs. Most open combs will take out far more on the first pass than a closed comb.

116 3,804
Reply
 05-12-2012, 06:35 AM
#3
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
User Info
Open comb is my preferred razor. I switched to DE/traditional shaving to combat ingrown hairs. The safety bar got me part way there, the open comb was the icing on the cake as far I'm concerned. Obviously the safety bar saw me through my early learning phase, but my experience has suggested that each and every razor requires some degree of learning in terms of getting the best out of it. My technique could always be improved, but the argument that a more aggressive razor enhances poor technique does not make sense to me (no offence intended Dave). Surely a mild razor is more forgiving than an aggressive one? Further without feeling confident and somewhat learned about my technique I wouldn't have even contemplated picking up my R41 (2011). I find my open comb razors such as my FaTip and Joris far more effective than any of my safety bar razors. My Merkur OC's and Goodfella OC are perhaps not as effective as SOME of my safety bar razors, so perhaps comparisons should be made on a razor by razor rather than OC vs CC. In terms of multiple passes I don't see how an OC would take out more growth than a CC and then not on subsequent passes. Perhaps the argument is that after the first pass the pressure of the safety bar helps further lift hairs, which is plausible I guess, but isn't apply pressure associated with poor technique?

Anyway the CC vs OC debate is always going to be a case of YMMV.

For me, given sensitive skin, stubborn hair, omni direction growth, prone to in-grown hairs and razor burn, I found OC to be my better option.

More importantly what this thread is missing is pictures!

Let's see your Open Comb razors!

91 17,846
Reply
 05-12-2012, 08:12 AM
#4
User Info
(05-12-2012, 05:21 AM)SharpSpine Wrote: So what say the members in the Nook? Open comb to rule them all? Do you have more information about the switch to more closed combs & solid bars? What do you prefer & why?

My only experience with an OC is the Kiwi-made Good Fella. Haven't found it as close & comfortable as my selection of CC, especially my Merkur Slant Bar.

How would members compare an OC with a slant bar razor?

0 7
Reply
 05-12-2012, 08:38 AM
#5
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
User Info
(05-12-2012, 08:12 AM)Nassrasur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 05:21 AM)SharpSpine Wrote: So what say the members in the Nook? Open comb to rule them all? Do you have more information about the switch to more closed combs & solid bars? What do you prefer & why?

My only experience with an OC is the Kiwi-made Good Fella. Haven't found it as close & comfortable as my selection of CC, especially my Merkur Slant Bar.

How would members compare an OC with a slant bar razor?

I like my Goodfella.

I've got the satin black head. I agree it's not the most effective (compared to my Joris or FaTip), but I still enjoy using it every now and then.

[attachment=1935]

91 17,846
Reply
 05-12-2012, 08:47 AM
#6
User Info
I am inclined to agree, but I still get DFS's from my GEM's, Ever-Ready and Star razors, and I can get a BBS with just a little more effort.

IMHO open comb slants are even better than an OCMM.

6 230
Reply
 05-12-2012, 08:53 AM
#7
User Info
I have a Mühle R101 (2009 model, among other OC's) and it is slowly becoming my favourite razor.

2 5,531
Reply
 05-12-2012, 08:57 AM
#8
  • Tonality
  • Attempted Soap Sabbatical
  • Boston
User Info
I'm still torn between them. I think if I had more of a variety of OCs I could give a better opinion. However, I can get a perfect shave with a guard bar, so it's hard to see how there could be much of an improvement.

35 1,732
Reply
 05-12-2012, 09:20 AM
#9
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
User Info
(05-12-2012, 08:53 AM)oversaturn Wrote: I have a Mühle R101 (2009 model, among other OC's) and it is slowly becoming my favourite razor.

The Muhle R101 (2010) is also a favourite of mine and is my current "go to" razor...

[attachment=1942]

91 17,846
Reply
 05-12-2012, 10:12 AM
#10
User Info
I asked myself the question about the diference in shaving between open and closed combs many times.

Somehow it is asumed that open combs are more of a shaver than closed combs, but I still don't understand why. And naturally, we cannot compare different razors to arrive to a valid conclusion.

To me there is no real difference between them. What dictates how a razor shaves is the geometry of the head ... result of the interplay between blade exposure, gap, and cutting angle, and not the comb type.

Trying to come up with an answer, I compared very closely two heads which I believe are identical in geometry, except for their comb ... the UK Gillette New long teeth and the Gillette Tech UK flat base plate (not all techs have the same head).

[Image: no88-5-1.jpg]

[Image: DSCF7522.jpg]

To me both shaved just the same.

I thought I might be mistaken here ... may be the heads are not exactly the same and I'm just judging on a feeling, so on a weekend I devised the ultimate test. Took the New open comb head and covered one side with hard wax, filling all the spaces between the teeth, and converting one side of the head in a closed comb while the other remained an open comb. This would eliminate all variables.

Went on to shaving, alternating passes in the same shave with the OC and the CC sides. The result ... both sides shaved me the same.

There was a more direct feeling to the OC, kind of like better feedback, but performance wise both sides where basically the same. I believe this feedback (which probably facilitates better technique) is what attracts me to open combs, but I sincerely think that when it comes to how a razor shaves, and all other things (geometry) being equal, open or closed comb does not really make a difference.

0 68
Reply
 05-12-2012, 10:17 AM
#11
  • Tonality
  • Attempted Soap Sabbatical
  • Boston
User Info
A very interesting test with an interesting result to boot. Quite fortunate you were able to find a OC and CC of essentially the same head. I would think some of the duel personality iKon razors would have a similar result.

35 1,732
Reply
 05-12-2012, 11:08 AM
#12
User Info
(05-12-2012, 08:12 AM)Nassrasur Wrote:
(05-12-2012, 05:21 AM)SharpSpine Wrote: So what say the members in the Nook? Open comb to rule them all? Do you have more information about the switch to more closed combs & solid bars? What do you prefer & why?

My only experience with an OC is the Kiwi-made Good Fella. Haven't found it as close & comfortable as my selection of CC, especially my Merkur Slant Bar.

How would members compare an OC with a slant bar razor?

A slant bar (Merkur 39C Sledgehammer Slant to be specific) is the only DE I use regularly because it's the only one I've found to offer a similar shaving experience & result to my OCMM.

(05-12-2012, 08:47 AM)Bowlturner Wrote: I am inclined to agree, but I still get DFS's from my GEM's, Ever-Ready and Star razors, and I can get a BBS with just a little more effort.

IMHO open comb slants are even better than an OCMM.

Yes, this is what I'm looking for. I'm praying that Richard makes an open comb slant for his next Tradere razor.

31 7,912
Reply
 05-12-2012, 11:48 AM
#13
User Info
(05-12-2012, 11:08 AM)SharpSpine Wrote: (...) I'm praying that Richard makes an open comb slant for his next Tradere razor.

I join the prayers !! I've dreaming with an OC slant for a long time.

0 68
Reply
 05-12-2012, 01:22 PM
#14
User Info
OK, I'm just asking. Why did they ever stop making slant OCs? It really makes sense to me.

2 546
Reply
 05-12-2012, 02:38 PM
#15
User Info
I believe there can be such a thing as too many razors and too much over thinking a simple process.

If I didn't have a goatee I probably could use use any quality razor open or closed (excluding TTO's) and be ok with the performance......When trimming (edging) around any facial hair like a goatee the accuracy of an open comb is exponentially superior.

Even if I was to make a closed comb my go to razor I'd still reach for an open comb to maintain a lazer-like straight trim line around my goatee.

Being that I refuse to whip out 2 different razors during my morning shave,I generally shave with an open comb.

"J" series US Army Thin Cap OLD Type Gillette / Feather blade - The shave's lively with a lot of feedback,light touch no pressure....as long as I'm wide awake it's fun.
[Image: securedownload-26.jpg]

7 414
Reply
 05-12-2012, 03:45 PM
#16
User Info
Brian I looked in the cabinet to make sure.

In DE the majority of my favorite razors sport OCs. The one oddball is the Slim. The other DE razors in the cabinet don't see much use unless I'm testing blades and they have bar combs. They are boring razors.

In SE the majority of the rezors in the cabinet have closed combs. And the SE razors I use the most have a mix of CCs and OCs.

With me it's more aggressiveness of the razor and not the comb. But like you my CPMM sees very little use. But so does my CC Damaskeene sit neglected.

I have a NEW with an OC sitting in the cabinet that I'm dying to try.

32 6,309
Reply
 05-12-2012, 04:47 PM
#17
User Info
(05-12-2012, 03:45 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Brian I looked in the cabinet to make sure.

In DE the majority of my favorite razors sport OCs. The one oddball is the Slim. The other DE razors in the cabinet don't see much use unless I'm testing blades and they have bar combs. They are boring razors.

In SE the majority of the rezors in the cabinet have closed combs. And the SE razors I use the most have a mix of CCs and OCs.

With me it's more aggressiveness of the razor and not the comb. But like you my CPMM sees very little use. But so does my CC Damaskeene sit neglected.

I have a NEW with an OC sitting in the cabinet that I'm dying to try.

I've got an OC Old that I need to try. Maybe after SE May!

31 7,912
Reply
 05-12-2012, 05:01 PM
#18
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
User Info
(05-12-2012, 10:12 AM)Tony SC Wrote: I asked myself the question about the diference in shaving between open and closed combs many times.

Somehow it is asumed that open combs are more of a shaver than closed combs, but I still don't understand why. And naturally, we cannot compare different razors to arrive to a valid conclusion.

To me there is no real difference between them. What dictates how a razor shaves is the geometry of the head ... result of the interplay between blade exposure, gap, and cutting angle, and not the comb type.

Trying to come up with an answer, I compared very closely two heads which I believe are identical in geometry, except for their comb ... the UK Gillette New long teeth and the Gillette Tech UK flat base plate (not all techs have the same head).

[Image: no88-5-1.jpg]

[Image: DSCF7522.jpg]

To me both shaved just the same.

I thought I might be mistaken here ... may be the heads are not exactly the same and I'm just judging on a feeling, so on a weekend I devised the ultimate test. Took the New open comb head and covered one side with hard wax, filling all the spaces between the teeth, and converting one side of the head in a closed comb while the other remained an open comb. This would eliminate all variables.

Went on to shaving, alternating passes in the same shave with the OC and the CC sides. The result ... both sides shaved me the same.

There was a more direct feeling to the OC, kind of like better feedback, but performance wise both sides where basically the same. I believe this feedback (which probably facilitates better technique) is what attracts me to open combs, but I sincerely think that when it comes to how a razor shaves, and all other things (geometry) being equal, open or closed comb does not really make a difference.

I find the difference is in how they interact with the hair. I find the safety bar or closed comb has a tendency to push my hair down against the skin, risking ingrown hairs and not providing as an effective shave. In contrast, I found that the open comb scoops the hair up, rather than pressing it down and this provides a closer shave for me with fewer passes, resulting in less irritation. Not all of my OC are more effective, but they certainly work better for me.

Great pics by the way!

91 17,846
Reply
 05-12-2012, 07:05 PM
#19
User Info
(05-12-2012, 04:47 PM)SharpSpine Wrote: I've got an OC Old that I need to try. Maybe after SE May!

That's why I can't use the New. Looks like I'll continue to suffer through fantastic SE shaves.

I'd place the Old as mid aggressive, maybe a 5 or 6 in a Slim adjustable. I like it, but you might not.

If I read the "Wild" thread correctly, you have an open comb VAS to use right?

32 6,309
Reply
 05-12-2012, 07:13 PM
#20
User Info
(05-12-2012, 01:22 PM)PanchoVilla Wrote: OK, I'm just asking. Why did they ever stop making slant OCs? It really makes sense to me.
U da Man!

0 114
Reply
Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)