10-21-2014, 12:07 PM
#1
  • Mouser
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......all vintage stainless razor blades were excellent to great? Seriously, I've never found a dog of a model yet. Individuals maybe but never a compete line. Why? When there are SO many pooches nowadays.....

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 10-21-2014, 12:19 PM
#2
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It would be my guess that the competition was too in your face and back then LOTS of folks shaved with a blade. A crappy blade wouldn't have stood a snow balls chance in hell.

Today, OK, we know about the crappy blades, but that means nothing to the 3rd world where these blades are mostly sold. I bet sales to Europe and NA don't amount to much in the blade manufacturers scheme of things.

Again, I'm just guessing.

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 10-21-2014, 03:58 PM
#3
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(10-21-2014, 12:19 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: It would be my guess that the competition was too in your face and back then LOTS of folks shaved with a blade. A crappy blade wouldn't have stood a snow balls chance in hell.

Today, OK, we know about the crappy blades, but that means nothing to the 3rd world where these blades are mostly sold. I bet sales to Europe and NA don't amount to much in the blade manufacturers scheme of things.

Again, I'm just guessing.
but a good guess.

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 10-22-2014, 12:37 AM
#4
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I think you're also forgetting the importance of quality control and the relative cost of those blades. Stainless steel blades from the 1960s and 1970s were costly as a fraction of people's incomes. $10,000 a year was a great salary in the early 1960s. They were also introduced by Wilkinson and Gillette as state of the art products so both companies would have worked hard to maintain standards.

Today blades are targeted to populations that are considered too poor to afford cartridges. I believe that the 7 O'Clock Black in India was designed to be a premium blade to keep some of the customers switching away from DE to the cheapest disposables. Yet it still must sell in its home market for pennies per blade. Lesser, cheaper blades are sold to people who feel that one dollar disposables are a luxury good. I'm amazed that the quality control is as good as it is given where these new blades are made and how low the profit margins are.

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 10-22-2014, 05:34 AM
#5
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(10-22-2014, 12:37 AM)cournot Wrote: I think you're also forgetting the importance of quality control and the relative cost of those blades. Stainless steel blades from the 1960s and 1970s were costly as a fraction of people's incomes. $10,000 a year was a great salary in the early 1960s. They were also introduced by Wilkinson and Gillette as state of the art products so both companies would have worked hard to maintain standards.

Today blades are targeted to populations that are considered too poor to afford cartridges. I believe that the 7 O'Clock Black in India was designed to be a premium blade to keep some of the customers switching away from DE to the cheapest disposables. Yet it still must sell in its home market for pennies per blade. Lesser, cheaper blades are sold to people who feel that one dollar disposables are a luxury good. I'm amazed that the quality control is as good as it is given where these new blades are made and how low the profit margins are.
and another insightful observation. I think you're correct as well. Lot's of reasons factor in. As I ponder the question further I realize that there's a heck of a lot more different blades made nowadays too. Think about it. Another thing I've noticed is I get more shaves from the vintage blades than I do from even the best modern options. The best ones today give almost as good a shave as the old ones but not as many. But there's been a spike in cost recently of the vintage blades you can get on Ebay and elsewhere as people discover them I believe so the cost/benefit ratio has evaporated.

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 10-22-2014, 12:56 PM
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Mouser, I don't find that (post #5). My best blades of today go toe to toe with the blades of yesteryear that I've used. I'm not arguing with you only saying that my experience has been different. YMMV as always.

I do find as your OP suggested that ALL of the blades from yesteryear are great and just a handful of todays blades are worth the steel they consumed.

What are the top blades of today for you? Maybe I can suggest more, maybe you've already used them.

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 10-22-2014, 03:13 PM
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I think if all blades today were made in state of the Art Western or Japanese facilities, and companies could be guaranteed that 100 million men would pay a dollar a blade for the privilege, and would also be demanding enough to have trouble free shaves many days in a row, quality would improve across the board. But when your biggest markets are the poorest 200 million in India and China followed by the lower classes of the Arab world, South America, and Russia, there's going to be a mix of some very good quality and new technology but also a lot of corner cutting given the pricing constraints.

You also have to figure that most of the blades are being used in cheap Tech knockoffs, Chinese and Indian TTOs, and plastic razors that sell for a couple of dollars. The Parkers are a small niche for the upper end of that market. The Jaggers and Merkurs and steel Feathers have such tiny market share at the luxury high end, they are virtually invisible.

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 10-23-2014, 04:27 PM
#8
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(10-22-2014, 12:56 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Mouser, I don't find that (post #5). My best blades of today go toe to toe with the blades of yesteryear that I've used. I'm not arguing with you only saying that my experience has been different. YMMV as always.

I do find as your OP suggested that ALL of the blades from yesteryear are great and just a handful of todays blades are worth the steel they consumed.

What are the top blades of today for you? Maybe I can suggest more, maybe you've already used them.
Dad, my top current blades are PSI's, Iridium Supers, 7 O'Clock yellows and green and Rapira Swedish Super Steel. There are a couple more but I don't recall at the moment. Cournot makes an excellent point though about the main market today being poor, third world countries I believe.

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 10-23-2014, 05:37 PM
#9
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i think that poor people around the world using de blades try to extend the life of each blade to the max - and then some more - and they never hoard blades but only purchase what is absolutely needed.

we - the whet shaving enthusiasts - we acquire piles of blades - and some twisted lunatics (like myself) even by the pallet: a lifetime's worth in one go. some enthusiasts even ditch a blade after one shave.

from these speculations i am inclined to believe that you and me each use perhaps 10 times as many blades as the average poor de shaver - and we probably pay more for each blade - and in addition comes our already-payed-for blade storage - so the amount of cash we use on blades is perhaps not so insignificant after all - even if we are small as a group. therefor we must demand better blades now Biggrin

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 10-23-2014, 10:10 PM
#10
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We're liking the same blades Mouser. SuperMax Platinums are good too as well as the Personna Hospital use blades (Med Prep).

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 10-24-2014, 02:40 PM
#11
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(10-23-2014, 10:10 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: We're liking the same blades Mouser. SuperMax Platinums are good too as well as the Personna Hospital use blades (Med Prep).
Agree about the Supermax Platinums. I got a couple from tryablade, which I think is a great great idea. Love that site. I found the Swedish Super Steels there too. And since we're so in line on all the others I'm gonna order some Personna Hospitals soon.

Oh, Gillette Silver Blues too.

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 10-26-2014, 11:22 AM
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(10-23-2014, 05:37 PM)tonsorius Wrote: from these speculations i am inclined to believe that you and me each use perhaps 10 times as many blades as the average poor de shaver - and we probably pay more for each blade - and in addition comes our already-payed-for blade storage - so the amount of cash we use on blades is perhaps not so insignificant after all - even if we are small as a group. therefor we must demand better blades now Biggrin

tonsorius, I agree that it would be nice to get better blades. Sadly, even spending 100x as much as the average poor person won't do much good. Very few Westerners use DEs (probably under 50k who DE shave weekly even in the US) and as I noted there are several hundred million shavers in India alone.

Consider Mostochlegmash, who make highly regarded blades such as the Voskhod, Ladas, or Rapiras. Their website shows they don't have a single primary representative in Western Europe, North America, or East Asia. It's all the Middle East and the former Soviet regions. Tells you where their market is.
http://www.mtlm.net/eng/agents.html

Gillette likes to sell Mach 3 holders in the Art of Shaving Stores but would never ramp up R and D to create a new high end DE blade for our market. Not even if every single reader of B&B, ShaveNook and Shave Den were to commit to purchasing a 100 blades a year at $1 a blade.

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 10-26-2014, 12:41 PM
#13
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but M. cournot - i am personally in no need for better or more razor blades - as in ever - since i already have my lifetime supply of such goods in non plus ultra quality - in my opinion Euro

problem solved - for me Biggrin

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 10-27-2014, 01:07 PM
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Dear tonsorius,

Please share the names of these fabulous blades with us so that I can stock up as well.

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 10-27-2014, 04:46 PM
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as you wish Euro

[Image: iD2MXSN.jpg]

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 10-27-2014, 09:05 PM
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Marius, just curious... I've used those blades and love all 3. In fact I detect no differences between them. How is your experience with them?

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 10-27-2014, 10:16 PM
#17
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(10-27-2014, 09:05 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Marius, just curious... I've used those blades and love all 3. In fact I detect no differences between them. How is your experience with them?
Same here with those three and throw in the Polsilver Super Iridium.
In fact I believe the PSI and the Iridium Supers to be the exact same blade just different packaging. The markings on said blades are identical.

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 10-28-2014, 03:45 AM
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of these i prefer the st petersburg 10 pk iridium super above all else. then the polish wizamet 5 pk iridium super and lastly the iridium polsilver. i should in fact make a more thorough test between the blades and be more specific and clear about my thoughts because i have several different vintages of the wizamet blades. that said - the vintage wizamet is not particularly easy to come by - although i have them in the hundreds - so it is perhaps not relevant to make a review on them. what you say?

i don't range the polsilver si in this league at all and find them harsh. maybe they have changed for the better now?

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 10-28-2014, 08:40 PM
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(10-28-2014, 03:45 AM)tonsorius Wrote: of these i prefer the st petersburg 10 pk iridium super above all else.

i don't range the polsilver si in this league at all and find them harsh. maybe they have changed for the better now?

+1 My observations as well. I guess we think very much alike, Marius. I guess we should have some tea, one day. Biggrin

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 10-29-2014, 02:45 AM
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I've been happy with Astras or Sharks for daily drivers and Gillette Silver Blues are the best that I've tried for myself. Those I use on weekends or to treat myself. With regards to blades, I believe that ignorance is bliss, so I don't try blades that cost more than my GSB's or are not available anymore. I can't imagine anything better and I'm probably wrong, but so long as I don't know better, why risk having to spend more? Wink

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