07-01-2015, 06:02 AM
#1
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I'm fairly new to straight razor shaving with just shy of 10 full shaves under my belt (I use a DE razor everyday for quotes some time now) and am looking at buying a bew razor. I'm looking at a Puma #90 and a Filarmonica DT 14. As a beginner which would be a better razor. What are the pros and cons of both? Which would be easier to strop and keep a sharp edge? Any and all advice is much appreciated.

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 07-01-2015, 06:14 AM
#2
  • geezer
  • Senior Member
  • Menomonie, Western WI
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As to brand, any good quality 5/8ths to 6/8ths would be a a good choice. No Chinese or Pakistani blades, though. Get your razor, whatever you decide, professionally honed. Stropping is important and can keep a blade going for a long time. The are a lot of videos on line look for those with a known person doing the demo, Lynn or Glen or some others that are not new to the sport!
Take the shaving one shave at a time and learn your face and how the blade and angle affects it.
Beard prep is 90% of a good close shave!
~Richard

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 07-01-2015, 06:38 AM
#3
  • Johnny
  • MODERATOR EMERITUS
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Well, I am going to make a sales pitch here.  If I were just starting out I would choose one of the razors I have for sale right now.  Both round point, both shave ready.  One 5/8 and one 11/16.  Heck, I can probably sell you both of mine for what you would pay for either one of the above.

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 07-01-2015, 06:42 AM
#4
  • geezer
  • Senior Member
  • Menomonie, Western WI
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Good on you Johnny! You have some nice ones!
~Richard

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 07-01-2015, 06:59 AM
#5
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I've leaned my face pretty well through de shaving and have about 10 straight razor shaves under my belt that I took slow as to get used to the feel and not make any mistakes of the bat to make me fear the straight razor. I have a dock forrestal I bought new. But I want to start growing my collection. I also want to get a razor 100% shave ready so I can shave with it right out the box so I can know how the razor should feel after I strop it the next time I use it. I've watched a lot of videos on YouTube by great people like Lynn and also bought his dvd. Wish you still had the J. Rodgers blade Johny!

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 07-01-2015, 07:03 AM
#6
  • RobinK
  • I like things that work.
  • Munich, Germany
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An interesting question nevertheless. Some thoughts:
  1. Both will be vastly overpriced. 
  2. Both are bog standard razors despite all the hype on the internet. Puma, DublDuck, Ern - all mass produced, and not well liked by the old craftsmen who still live. Filarmonica? The blanks were Solingen made. Some were definitely also ground and etched in Solingen. The scales ooze all the dignity and style of a 1960s Italian romantic comedy movie.
  3. "Summary: We recommend a restored vintage 5/8 or 6/8 razor, preferably with a round point, for €30-50." And that piece of advice is absolutely spot on. If you want a new razor instead, get an Aust.

I would definitely take Johnny up on his generous offer.

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 07-01-2015, 07:04 AM
#7
  • Johnny
  • MODERATOR EMERITUS
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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The J. Rodgers was a dandy for sure.  Both of mine are shave ready out of the box.  Lynn honed the Ralf Aust himself.

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 07-01-2015, 07:56 AM
#8
  • BobH
  • Senior Member
  • Thunder Bay Canada
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I would think that if you are looking at a second razor in the vintage class any one from a reputable maker in good condition that is shave ready will do a fine job. Other than that I would simply buy one based one what I like the looks of in my price range. I have a decent mix of different vintage makes in my rotation, a Puma, a Filly and a no name Solingen among them, all shave well if I can put a good edge on them and none are difficult to maintain. 

Bob

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 07-02-2015, 05:30 AM
#9
  • HarryO
  • Active Member
  • FLA, USA.
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(07-01-2015, 07:56 AM)BobH Wrote: I would think that if you are looking at a second razor in the vintage class any one from a reputable maker in good condition that is shave ready will do a fine job. Other than that I would simply buy one based one what I like the looks of in my price range. I have a decent mix of different vintage makes in my rotation, a Puma, a Filly and a no name Solingen among them, all shave well if I can put a good edge on them and none are difficult to maintain. 

Bob

Before Johnny had his straights for sale, he recommended to me the Ralf Aust 5/8. I bought it. A great razor for my first! You will not be disapointed it provides a very nice shave and is very forgiving.

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 07-02-2015, 05:42 AM
#10
  • Doc226
  • edge snob (and proud of it)
  • Smallest State
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(07-01-2015, 06:02 AM)Deuce428 Wrote: I'm fairly new to straight razor shaving with just shy of 10 full shaves under my belt (I use a DE razor everyday for quotes some time now) and am looking at buying a bew razor. I'm looking at a Puma #90 and a Filarmonica DT 14. As a beginner which would be a better razor. What are the pros and cons of both?  Which would be easier to strop and keep a sharp edge?  Any and all advice is much appreciated.

I am a HUGE fan of the Filarmonica DT, they hone as easy as anything out there and maintain an edge for a long time.  The Puma brand is also a very good razor, you really can't go wrong with either one.

I have several Fialrmonica razors in my rotation and not a single Puma.

Without a doubt if I have to keep just one razor it would be my mint DT or my namesake razor

[Image: 24D48BEC-CD94-4410-8D66-6D39789CB89C_zpszgnie74w.jpg]

[/url][url=http://s908.photobucket.com/user/doc226/media/SOD/3FABD4B5-B957-4146-9A76-E3665CC8FDBC-733-00000038600D88DD_zps6a148d45.jpg.html][Image: 3FABD4B5-B957-4146-9A76-E3665CC8FDBC-733...148d45.jpg]

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 07-02-2015, 08:44 PM
#11
  • Johnny
  • MODERATOR EMERITUS
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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Doc, those a just plain lovely razors.

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 07-02-2015, 08:47 PM
#12
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Hey OP based on your PIF and collection shots here's my suggestion. All of them. That's right all of them, and then post pics of everything you buy with all your other stuff so I can show my wife and make her feel better about my stuff overtaking hers. Thumbup

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 07-02-2015, 10:04 PM
#13
  • Hanzo
  • Senior Member
  • Oakland, California
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(07-01-2015, 07:03 AM)RobinK Wrote: An interesting question nevertheless. Some thoughts:

  1. Both will be vastly overpriced. 
  2. Both are bog standard razors despite all the hype on the internet. Puma, DublDuck, Ern - all mass produced, and not well liked by the old craftsmen who still live. Filarmonica? The blanks were Solingen made. Some were definitely also ground and etched in Solingen. The scales ooze all the dignity and style of a 1960s Italian romantic comedy movie.
  3. "Summary: We recommend a restored vintage 5/8 or 6/8 razor, preferably with a round point, for €30-50." And that piece of advice is absolutely spot on. If you want a new razor instead, get an Aust.

I would definitely take Johnny up on his generous offer.

Don't pull any punches Robin. Smile

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 07-02-2015, 10:34 PM
#14
  • Hanzo
  • Senior Member
  • Oakland, California
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(07-01-2015, 06:02 AM)Deuce428 Wrote: I'm fairly new to straight razor shaving with just shy of 10 full shaves under my belt (I use a DE razor everyday for quotes some time now) and am looking at buying a bew razor. I'm looking at a Puma #90 and a Filarmonica DT 14. As a beginner which would be a better razor. What are the pros and cons of both?  Which would be easier to strop and keep a sharp edge?  Any and all advice is much appreciated.

Although I would not presume to tell you what to buy I can tell you who to buy from. One seller on ebay , zigzagpapa of Japan is stellar. 98% of his razors are new old stock and he has an excellent reputation among straight razor buyers. Normally those who are new to straights should stay away from ebay but NOS razors might be the exception here and safe buys .

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 07-03-2015, 02:53 AM
#15
  • Thug
  • Active Member
  • South Africa
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As a novice straight razor user myself, my comments (for what they are worth) are:

- The razors Johnny has for sale are perfect for a novice user and from my limited interaction with Johnny on this forum, will I'm sure, be in perfect order for the purchaser.
- RobinK makes a lot of sense.

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