01-21-2016, 09:15 AM
#1
  • chamm
  • Expert on nothing
  • Central Ohio
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I'm asking this question out of curiosity, not that I intend, or even want to actually do it.

Does anyone know with any authority whether boar bristles are trimmed by manufacturers? Obviously, trimming badger hair is sacrilege, because it's the natural taper of the hair that makes it so soft. Trimming it would square off the ends of the hair and make it scratchy. Boar brushes, on the other hand, get their softness from the ends splitting with use. That's why they need to be broken in so thoroughly before they start to feel soft. On the other side, I believe horse hair brushes are always trimmed to length, because otherwise, you'd either have a 2500mm loft, or you would waste most of the hair. Besides, the taper would only really be present the very first time the horse's tail/mane was trimmed.

Which leads back to boar bristles. They are used for all sorts of brushes. Paint brushes, hair brushes, shaving brushes, even toothbrushes. They are harvested from a breed of boar that is specifically raised for its hair. They are sheared like sheep, and the hair is harvested many times throughout their lives. Some paint brushes actually specify that they use bristles from the "first cutting" which makes perfect sense, by my reasoning above.

Do any shaving brushes specify that they are taken from the first cutting of an animal? Maybe there's a high-end boar brush market that we're all missing out on?

My hypothesis is that if shaving brushes aren't from the first cutting of a boar, it shouldn't matter if they are trimmed, and maybe this is done as a standard part of their manufacture.

I know this thread is kind of all over the place, but I'm hoping to spur discussion among people who actually know some of these answers. Maybe we could all learn something. Biggrin

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 01-21-2016, 09:30 AM
#2
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That's a pretty good question. I've never really thought about it but makes perfect sense. Curious what others more in know will have to say.

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 01-21-2016, 09:34 AM
#3
  • Aleksey
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  • Istanbul, Turkiye
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Wow, such a nice question to enlighten us boar lovers!

I guess Semogue specifies the grade of boar.

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 01-21-2016, 09:40 AM
#4
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Well that is a really great question.

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 01-21-2016, 09:47 AM
#5
  • chamm
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  • Central Ohio
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(01-21-2016, 09:34 AM)Aleksey Wrote: Wow, such a nice question to enlighten us boar lovers!

I guess Semogue specifies the grade of boar.

I've looked a little, and I see some sites that specify "Premium" and "Best" grades of boar, but I can't find any of them that actually specify anything about "first cutting" or what exactly makes them premium. I'm not disputing that one is better than the other; I'm sure the premium is better. I'm just wondering if a boar brush exists that specifies that it's from the first cutting. Or, maybe all shaving brushes are from the first cutting.

Again, following this thread with rapt attention. Someone who knows is bound to stumble across it eventually.  Smile

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 01-21-2016, 09:56 AM
#6
  • Aleksey
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  • Istanbul, Turkiye
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[Image: 7ec143850f55dafdb5451b24b28e27e6.jpg]

I found this on the Nook. Tops would refer to first-cut hairs, I guess.

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 01-21-2016, 10:05 AM
#7
  • Wrathen
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  • Gulf Breeze, FL
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(01-21-2016, 09:56 AM)Aleksey Wrote: [Image: 7ec143850f55dafdb5451b24b28e27e6.jpg]

I found this on the Nook. Tops would refer to first-cut hairs, I guess.

There it is I had seen that once


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 01-21-2016, 10:08 AM
#8
  • chamm
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  • Central Ohio
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Very informative - so now I'd like to know the difference between Premium, Best and Special. They all have 90% "tops." Perhaps it's a subjective grading technique?

It also raises the question as to why there isn't a 100% first-cut option... (There's probably a very practical reason, I just want to know what it is.)

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 01-21-2016, 10:11 AM
#9
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Good to see an informative thread on boar.

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 01-21-2016, 10:32 AM
#10
  • Aleksey
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  • Istanbul, Turkiye
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(01-21-2016, 10:08 AM)chamm Wrote: Very informative - so now I'd like to know the difference between Premium, Best and Special. They all have 90% "tops." Perhaps it's a subjective grading technique?

It also raises the question as to why there isn't a 100% first-cut option... (There's probably a very practical reason, I just want to know what it is.)

Maybe first-cuts would be overkill on softness and bring floppiness.

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 01-21-2016, 10:34 AM
#11
  • chamm
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  • Central Ohio
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And as answer to one of my original questions: If you trimmed a "first cut" boar brush, it would absolutely degrade the quality and softness of the bristle. But I'm hoping someone knows how they are graded. Maybe someone might even have some insight to the process by which the knots are stuffed. There are several first-hand accounts throughout the forums discussing the art of tying and stuffing a badger brush, but I would imagine the process for boar hair is significantly different. I don't recall ever having seen a thread that goes into much detail about that.

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 01-21-2016, 10:34 AM
#12
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(01-21-2016, 10:32 AM)Aleksey Wrote:
(01-21-2016, 10:08 AM)chamm Wrote: Very informative - so now I'd like to know the difference between Premium, Best and Special. They all have 90% "tops." Perhaps it's a subjective grading technique?

It also raises the question as to why there isn't a 100% first-cut option... (There's probably a very practical reason, I just want to know what it is.)

Maybe first-cuts would be overkill on softness and bring floppiness.
It's hard to imagine a floppy boar though

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