01-08-2016, 09:02 AM
#1
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I have a beautiful Wolf Whiskers brush with a TGN Finest two band knot. The ergonomics are outstanding. But... the knot is a bit scritchy since it has a good amount of backbone. I don't mind a bit of scritch with more compliant knots, but when there's a lot back bone it's not ideal. I've used the brush a few times and haven't noticed any change. I plan on giving it a few more lathers to see if it does soften up.
I'm just wondering if I could expect this knot to soften up a bit, or perhaps consider swapping the knot for a Shavemac two band, Envy White or something similar?

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 01-08-2016, 09:56 AM
#2
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Tgn knots are not consistant. I have used 4 of the two band finests each different. I have used a few othere super grade a etc. To me tgn is luck of the draw. One knot will be amazing another will be total crap

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 01-08-2016, 10:02 AM
#3
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(01-08-2016, 09:56 AM)SimpsonLover Wrote: Tgn knots are not consistant. I have used 4 of the two band finests each different. I have used a few othere super grade a etc. To me tgn is luck of the draw. One knot will be amazing another will be total crap

+1

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 01-08-2016, 12:00 PM
#4
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I wouldn't say it's crap..,not yet ; )

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 01-08-2016, 01:10 PM
#5
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I had peter make mine with shavemac silvertip 2band because i wanted something i knew i would love. Its one of those cases where is more really better. I think so because you can ask almost anyone on that knot being fantastic

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 01-08-2016, 01:19 PM
#6
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I have never gotten along well with tgn knots, one of the reasons i stay away from most artisan brush makers.

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 01-08-2016, 02:02 PM
#7
  • Wrathen
  • Senior Member
  • Gulf Breeze, FL
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While not in a Wolfwisker brush, I have a TGN 2 band finished not and while I do wish it had a bit more backbone, I must have gotten lucky its a nice knot.

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 01-08-2016, 04:20 PM
#8
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I will definitely give it a few more uses before I decide. Also I'm not sure if putting a new knot in it would break my no buy 16 commitment....

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 01-08-2016, 04:30 PM
#9
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What are the dimensions and shape of the knot?  What is the loft?

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 01-08-2016, 04:40 PM
#10
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I got a finest 2band from him with a loft set slightly lower.  It was a tad scritchy at first, but it's since mellowed out.

Keep at it, it may soften up.

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 01-08-2016, 05:23 PM
#11
  • Crag
  • Senior Member
  • Menifee, Ca 92586
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I don't think TGN has good knots at all. I've tried quite a few and have sold them all.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G870A using Tapatalk

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 01-08-2016, 09:40 PM
#12
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(01-08-2016, 04:30 PM)shaverjoe Wrote: What are the dimensions and shape of the knot?  What is the loft?
I'll have to measure. Here's the profile. [Image: CTlpkIP.jpg]
(01-08-2016, 04:40 PM)GloryUprising Wrote: I got a finest 2band from him with a loft set slightly lower.  It was a tad scritchy at first, but it's since mellowed out.

Keep at it, it may soften up.

I actually gave it another lather with the SV lathering bowl and could swear that there was no scritch only scrub when I palm lathered. I hope I share your experience and that it will mellow out. It's such a beautiful handle, and actually a very nice knot...well shaped, hadn't lost any hairs, has nice backbone.

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 01-08-2016, 11:15 PM
#13
  • SRNewb
  • Senior Member
  • No. Va, USA
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TGN Finest is my go to for brush restores. I have used several of them, and have never had a bad one. Well packed, good backbone, scrub yes, but very little to no scritch. There are very many restorers and brushmakers who use TGN knots, and you will find with a quick search of any of the brush restoration sections on various forums that their Finest is very highly regarded by a great many people, along with their Grade A Silvertip.
There are variances with every manufacturer, sure, but I have found them no more inconsistent than others. If you did a search on any manufacturer, you would find posts that speak to this. In fact, there is a very popular brushmaker who is known for the difficulty it takes to even get in touch with. His brushes are very coveted. But you can find plenty of posts here and on other forums that speak to the inconsistency of the knots in his brushes.
Badger is living hair. Inconsistency is built in. Each batch of hair will be a bit, or a lot, different. There are brushmakers who buy huge lots of badger hair, and pay people to spend lots of time sorting and grading them to their own specs. And you will pay the cost of that service in the price of their brushes. And in general, I think they are worth it.
But at the price point of a TGN knot, you could do a whole lot worse than a TGN Finest.

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 01-08-2016, 11:50 PM
#14
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Thanks!

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 01-09-2016, 05:56 AM
#15
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I've had TGN Finest knots in a number of custom handles, including a WW.  My experience with these knots has been positive.  The variations in TGN  knots are inherent in all badger knots from all manufacturers at any price point.  I've found TGN Finest knots to be dense and have good backbone.   All of mine have been 26mm set at a 50mm loft.   They  all have scrub but no scritch.  I currently have TGN Finest knots in custom handles by Bob Quinn and Doug Korn that, to me, are comparable to the knots on my brushes from expensive makers.

Give yourself time to get used to the brush before finalizing conclusions about it.  It's also possible that with 2-band hair, you may prefer a higher loft so you get less scrub.

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 01-09-2016, 06:13 AM
#16
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I have two 28 mm finest knots that are awesome. Backbone, soft bristles the works. I also have a 30mm Finest that is just not pleasant , scritchy and not softening up, I am going to try my luck with another one soon.

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 01-09-2016, 08:47 AM
#17
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It's good to hear that my patience may be rewarded!

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 01-09-2016, 08:54 AM
#18
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(01-08-2016, 09:40 PM)number six Wrote:
(01-08-2016, 04:30 PM)shaverjoe Wrote: What are the dimensions and shape of the knot?  What is the loft?
I'll have to measure. Here's the profile. [Image: CTlpkIP.jpg]


(01-08-2016, 04:40 PM)GloryUprising Wrote: I got a finest 2band from him with a loft set slightly lower.  It was a tad scritchy at first, but it's since mellowed out.

Keep at it, it may soften up.

I actually gave it another lather with the SV lathering bowl and could swear that there was no scritch only scrub when I palm lathered. I hope I share your experience and that it will mellow out. It's such a beautiful handle, and actually a very nice knot...well shaped, hadn't lost any hairs, has nice backbone.

Number six-

I was an artisan brush maker on another forum for a few years.  Over that period of time I sold a few hundred brushes- a number which pales in comparison to RV or Peter from WW or some of the other fantastic artisans here, but certainly enough to get a good feel for TGN knots.  I used TGN knots for >99% of my work and the most common knot I used was the TGN 2 band Finest. I should take a moment to say I have no affiliation with TGN whatsoever, and like many others, discovered TGN knots through artisan makers when I commissioned RV to make me a brush MANY moons ago Smile.  

Over that period of time, I would estimate less than 1% of the knots were problematic- shedding, etc.  I have 2 TGN knots in my regular rotation, both are 2 band Finest fans and neither have shed a hair.  So as far as construction, I feel the 2 band Finest knots are well made, particularly for the price point.  

In regards to face feel, there was certainly some variation.  I have experienced this myself with brushes I have made for myself with the 2 band Finest knots.  The 2 I currently have are almost as soft as my Thater with excellent backbone and flow.  They are softer than my Shavemac Finest knot for sure and have less scritch or scrub than my Simpson brushes in Best.  I am not trying to say they are better than Shavemac or Simpson, only different.  The dimensions of your brush will also play a role in the face feel, particularly the knot size to loft ratio.  Whenever you have a chance to measure, please share those measurements if you don't mind. 

As someone else posted, I think the variation appreciated by users is likely multifactorial but certainly the fact this is a natural product plays a significant role. I have read the same comments about Simpson's Best grade of hair.  I, too, have experienced this.  My Simpson Berkley in Best is scritch city, where my Duke 3 in Best feels like a cloud.   Part of this is likely a consequence of knot density (Duke >>Berkley), but both are "Best" grade hair offered by Simpson.  If you were to use them simultaneously during a shave, you would swear they were different grades of hair.  

Another inherent problem with grades of badger hair knots is the lack of standardization.  What constitutes Finest, Best, Silvertip, Pure, etc?  This is another source of variation amongst knots offered under a certain grade.  

The good news is, if you feel the knot is unpleasant to the point you don't enjoy using it, Peter should be able to re-knot it for you.  If you choose to have it re-knotted and you really like the handle, I would encourage you to look at the Shavemac knots.  They are more expensive than TGN and they too have some degree of variation amongst the grades offered (just read some of the recent comments about the 2 band silver tip knots), but they are very well made and are fantastic to use.  For my money, the Finest grade offered by Shavemac offers the best bang for the buck.  If you are unsure of the handle (ergonomics, aesthetics, etc), you may not want to invest that type of money in the knot, but that is for you to decide.


If I were you, I would continue to use the brush and see if it improves over time.  I have had an overwhelmingly positive experience with TGN knots in the past and certainly do not subscribe to the idea that TGN knots are "crap," particularly after seeing and handling several 100 firsthand.

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 01-09-2016, 09:08 AM
#19
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Thanks Joe, this is insightful and helpful. I will measure the knot soon.... 

Peter thinks it's not really cost effective to re-knot the brush and I agree. I also agree that the TGN is very well constructed, as I said it is uniform, well shaped with excellent backbone. I don't want my comments to be construed as a complaint against Wolf Whiskers or TGN.  I am willing to give it a few more lathering to see if the scritch becomes mostly scrub. Actually lathering it last night with the SV Grail bowl and subsequently palm lathering gave the impression of scrub only. Maybe my comment was one lather too early!

I have a few Shavemac 2-band knots so am familiar with their excellent qualities. 

This handle is exceptionally beautiful and the ergonomics are very good.

"If I were you, I would continue to use the brush and see if it improves over time.  I have had an overwhelmingly positive experience with TGN knots in the past and certainly do not subscribe to the idea that TGN knots are "crap," particularly after seeing and handling several 100 firsthand."

This is the plan. I certainly wouldn't call it crap either. In my comment above I was merely jesting, hence the wink ;  )
[Image: E2RlGOI.jpg]

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 01-09-2016, 09:09 AM
#20
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Here are the two I currently have-


The one on the left I made, the one on the right is an old Vulfix handle I re-knotted.  Both knots are TGN 2 band Finest fans. 

[Image: xOaOV7H.jpg]

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