07-26-2012, 10:34 AM
#1
  • gijames
  • Mile High Soldier
  • TN, USA
User Info
So my curiosity for the Weber ARC caught up to me Blush

Immediately I noticed the finish of the head to be like a magnessium alloy with this ARC head. The Weber Bulldog handle has a nice, comfortable deep-knurling, and is a bit longer than the handle on a Merkur 34cHD
   

The head of the Weber is very close in shape to the Merkur 34
   

I took off the caps and inter-mixed them to see how it looked
(holding the 34HD cap on the Weber ARC baseplate)
   
   

(holding the Weber ARC cap over the 34HD baseplate)
   

The baseplates next to each other... notice the more *angular* cut of the Weber (on the right)closed bar that touches the face vs a more rounded shape of the same are on the 34HD
   

The cap-arches are very close to the same arc of a circle
   

...now to load the blade, using a supplied Astra SP
   

First in the 34HD
   
   

next, loaded in the Weber ARC
   
   

Initial Shave (3 pass w/touchup) -
Pre: Showered, hot towel, RB#1 scuttle, Dreadnought pre-shave oil, soak brush

Shave: Weber ARC loaded with Astra SP blade, RS PB2 brush, Proraso green tube(old school!)

1st pass (WTG), notice that the Weber razor is heavier than the 34HD, but not uncomfortable. Deep knurled handle fits well into the hand, seems balanced perfectly- not as much head-tilt as a shorter handled 34HD. Razor cap of the Weber ARC glides smoothly through the lather and stubble. I was able to take an aggressive, long stroke action on this pass, and it did not cause irritation. It doesn't have a *suction* feel that can cause drag- very nice!

2nd pass (XTG), face feels great Smile the razor's weight definitely helps with removing stubble

3rd pass (Diagnal), Weber is does very well with neck (it is now 22hrs since I shaved and my neck stubble is barely noticeable), *minor* irritation but only because I wanted to test the limits of comfort from this razor- it holds up well!

Post: warm water rinse, Naturally Fresh rock-stick deodorant(ammonium alum), cold water rinse, Krampert's Finest Bay Rum AS

...and it is mostly a BBS Cool

first impression of the Weber ARC after my shave -
This razor has solid build quality, and performs very well (close shave, comfortable shave). I did notice that the ARC coating is not as smooth looking as a chrome finish, and the ARC seems to have a very slight texture, but it does glide smoothly on the face. The coating seems to resist, teflon-like, the soap/cream residue and this helped with wiping down the razor.

I don't care for the small bored holes in the blade and cap posts. It seems like a water-trap, and something to consider when letting the razor dry out, be sure to let these holes drain/dry!
( the following photos are courtesy of greyhawk's post and clearly show the cap posts with the holes)
http://shavenook.com/thread-weber-arc-ra...8#pid62228

The Weber ARC seems to be closely machined to the Merkur 34HD standard head shape. I would suspect that a Merkur 33 (3pc razor) would perform to near the same as the Weber, if the same bulldog handle were used with the 33.

This was a fine razor purchase and I am happy to have this in my rotation Biggrin

*EDIT: follow-up Shaves 2&3*
Shave 2 (3 pass, Thursday)
Pre: very warm water wash, hot towel, Dreadnought pre-shave oil, soak brush

Shave: razor and blade(2) were the same, Dreadnought Avenger boar brush, LEA shave stick(new formula)

I did my normal-pressure (light, but steady 1-WTG 2-XTG 3-OXTG) and the shave came out to be a Very DFS Cool

Post: warm water rinse, Naturally Fresh rock-stick deodorant(ammonium alum) hardly any sting today, cold water rinse, Nivea AS balm (sensitive skin formula)
A very satisfying shave

Shave 3 (aggressive 4 pass, Friday)
Pre: very warm water wash, hot towel, RB#1 scuttle, Shave Secret oil, soak brush

Shave: same razor and blade(3), Vulfix 660S medium brush, TOBS sandalwood cream(tub)
I chose the TOBS for an aggressive shave due to its ability to provide a superior lather that doesn't dry my skin
Pass 1(WTG), Pass 2(XTG), Pass 3(Diagnal), Pass 4(ATG)

First pass was very easy going, got lulled by the razor (still no tugging!!!) ... So when I hit second pass, I got my first weeper(tiny) with the razor/blade on my neck (too fast!!!)
Third pass, I was now alert again to realize *I have a very sharp object going across my face*, and did not get any further weepers.
Fourth pass (totally to see how well my face could take another) produced some light-burn irritation in my troublesome spots (lower neck around Adam's apple on both sides and just aboth the top ridge of it, and my under-jawline area). I was expecting to get some irritation as I normally will not go with much touch-up after a 3-pass shave let alone doing a full 4-pass.

Post: warm water rinse, Naturally Fresh rock-stick deodorant(ammonium alum) MUCH tingling today but expected, cold water rinse, Krampert's Finest Bay Rum AS with a *little* more in my hand to ensure I cover all those tingle spots(about 1.5 tsp today, I usually use between 1/2 to full tsp)

the irritation today was me testing the limits of what I could get from this razor setup, and it delivered a BBS Smile , but I much rather stay with a satisfying 3-pass shave and get a Very DFS Biggrin

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 07-26-2012, 11:01 AM
#2
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
User Info
All right,now I want a Weber razor.Sad that they are out of stock now.
Seems to be a very fine shaving razor,and for 70 bucks,its a bargain,compare it with some other options out there.
Thanks for your inputs about this razor,it was the push I need it to get one.

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 07-26-2012, 11:53 AM
#3
  • mikeperry
  • Senior Member
  • St Louis via the UK
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(07-26-2012, 10:34 AM)gijames Wrote: I don't care for the small bored holes in the blade and cap posts. It seems like a water-trap, and something to consider when letting the razor dry out, be sure to let these holes drain/dry!

Hi James

Nice review Thumbsup

I went to buy the ARC head a couple of days ago and was surprised to see it already sold out...

I like the DLC head and believe it offers a very! good shave (for a closed comb bar razor) .

Could you please post a photo that shows the "small bored holes", I would take a look at my DLC head to see if it has the same "small bored holes", but at this time I'm unable to do so -- I'm using my DLC in the Blind DE Blade Test.

Take care, Mike

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 07-26-2012, 12:16 PM
#4
  • gijames
  • Mile High Soldier
  • TN, USA
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Hey Mike!

Here is a shot of the ARC head from the Shopping Deals thread

http://shavenook.com/thread-weber-arc-ra...8#pid62228

notice the pic where the posts on the cap. My ARC cap is the same.

Smile

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 07-26-2012, 12:37 PM
#5
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James, thanks for the great review. As Teiste mentioned, now, i want one! Too bad they are out of stock.

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 07-26-2012, 01:24 PM
#6
  • VTMAX
  • Banned
  • Woodstock, Vermont
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James, great stuff. I was able to order the ARC head just before they ran out and had a shave with it. I'm in heaven. Smoother than the EJ 89 if that's possible, thinner head so getting the tight spots are easy. Fairly aggressive but very smooth. I already had an IKON Bulldog handle and this smoother barrel paired with the ARC beautifully. Hopefully Ed will restock ASAP so our Shavenook gents can partake. RAD killer for sure.

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 07-26-2012, 01:34 PM
#7
  • mikeperry
  • Senior Member
  • St Louis via the UK
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(07-26-2012, 12:16 PM)gijames Wrote: Here is a shot of the ARC head from the Shopping Deals thread

http://shavenook.com/thread-weber-arc-ra...8#pid62228

notice the pic where the posts on the cap. My ARC cap is the same.

Hi James

Thanks Thumbsup

Now I see that photo I fully understand what you're talking about, (from memory) the DLC head has the same "small bored holes", tell the truth I'd never given them a thought...

Take care, Mike

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 07-26-2012, 01:40 PM
#8
  • freddy
  • Senior Member
  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Great comparison photos, James. Thanks. I wonder why they put in the bored holes? Huh They don't seem to serve any useful purpose.

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 07-26-2012, 02:54 PM
#9
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Great review gijames !
Thank you.

I would expect Weber to be similar in action with Merkur, due to similar head geometry and blade exposure. Can you confirm? If anything, maybe a tad milder than Merkur.
Seeing a razor with the blade in gives us a lot of clues. The blade seats nicely and aligned. Can you tell us if there is any play between the blade and the head (within reason of course)?
The finish is not bad and maybe you get some time soon and take some close-up pictures of the head from different angles.
Is there any unreasonable (wobbly) play when you install the handle?

Thanks again. I might buy one, just to heal the wounds from the painful iKon experience.

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 07-26-2012, 02:59 PM
#10
  • greyhawk
  • Senior Member
  • Southern California
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Very nice review, James! Thanks.
I haven't had a chance to shave with mine yet, but am looking forward to it. Cosmetically, the head is not perfect--there is a little dimpling/scratching that is visible upon careful inspection in the right light, plus a small indentation at one end. It won't affect the shave at all, so I'm going to chalk it up to manufacturing issues. Overall, the razor looks great. Here are a couple pics:
   
   
   

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 07-26-2012, 03:00 PM
#11
  • gijames
  • Mile High Soldier
  • TN, USA
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(07-26-2012, 01:40 PM)freddy Wrote: Great comparison photos, James. Thanks. I wonder why they put in the bored holes? Huh They don't seem to serve any useful purpose.

Hey Freddy, the only tangible thought...

perhaps Ed(Weber Razors)needed a way to hold the cap while the ARC is applied.. that could explain the reason why those holes exist, so that some machine has them set stable while this coating is applied. Less parts that touch the functional areas of the cap, and yet apply a smooth coating operation... Idea

(07-26-2012, 02:54 PM)VerbaVolant Wrote: Great review gijames !
Thank you.

I would expect Weber to be similar in action with Merkur, due to similar head geometry and blade exposure. Can you confirm? If anything, maybe a tad milder than Merkur.
Seeing a razor with the blade in gives us a lot of clues. The blade seats nicely and aligned. Can you tell us if there is any play between the blade and the head (within reason of course)?
The finish is not bad and maybe you get some time soon and take some close-up pictures of the head from different angles.
Is there any unreasonable (wobbly) play when you install the handle?

hehe, thanks greyhawk, for those close up cap shots Wink

Verba, I say it is more comfortable to shave with than the 34HD. This may be because I notice that the blade is firmly loaded with no play, and I did not have to fidget with it at all! This was a surprise to me, my other 3-piece razors require that I *eye-ball* the blade before tightening down(FaTip OC is a bit loose when loading a blade on their cap)- very secure loading the blade on the Weber ARC. The handle does not seem wobbly, and feels good when tightening down.

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 07-26-2012, 04:31 PM
#12
  • ben74
  • Administrator
  • Perth, Australia
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Thanks for the review James. I own the DLC and it's one of the few safety bar razors I enjoy using.

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 07-26-2012, 04:43 PM
#13
  • biggiej42
  • Looney for Rooney
  • Stony Point, NY
User Info
Thanks for the review James!

I just received my ARC head today. My initial impressions were very poor. The coating is slightly wavy, there is a dimple in the head almost exactly where greyhawk's is as well. I began putting the head onto my Ikon bulldog handle, and ran into an issue. The coating was applied so thick to the threads, that it felt as if it was cross threading it's way in.

I chalk that up to poor manufacturing. A simple thread chase would have solved one issue, and better QC would have solved the dimple/head coating issue.

I went into the shave not very happy at all, with both the appearance, and the initial handle mating. However, the shave was quite pleasant. The shave felt very similar to the DE89, but not quite as aggressive, and much smoother.

I am impressed with the shave.

Ratings out of 10. 1 being the worst, 10 the best.
  • First Impression: 3
  • Build Quality: 5
  • Shave: A Strong 9

It may not be the most expensive razor, but I would still consider it to be a premium razor at a premium price point. I'm not happy at all with the quality, however, the shave was excellent.

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 07-26-2012, 05:43 PM
#14
  • Shanman
  • Reserve Collection Squirrel Hair
  • NE Florida
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(07-26-2012, 02:59 PM)greyhawk Wrote: Very nice review, James! Thanks.
I haven't had a chance to shave with mine yet, but am looking forward to it. Cosmetically, the head is not perfect--there is a little dimpling/scratching that is visible upon careful inspection in the right light, plus a small indentation at one end. It won't affect the shave at all, so I'm going to chalk it up to manufacturing issues. Overall, the razor looks great. Here are a couple pics:

Mine has the same wormtracks in the cap, not the best job in coating, my DLC cap I used to have was perfect. I didn't notice these coating issues with the first batch of ARC heads based on forum shots back then.

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 07-26-2012, 08:26 PM
#15
  • greyhawk
  • Senior Member
  • Southern California
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Jeff (Shanman) hit it on the head when he said we're spoiled by the QC of Mühle/Jagger. It's hard to accept less than perfection when we get it elsewhere. That said, the head on my ARC doesn't look that bad, really--you can see flaws when scrutinizing it in the light, but it's really a pretty beautiful razor.

$70 for a razor is not cheap, but I guess when you factor in that it's a small company, I can let it go as long as the product performs well. It's just cosmetic, and it does look like the coating will last a long time.

I will definitely be buying a DLC head when they become available.

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 07-26-2012, 09:06 PM
#16
  • iKon
  • Vendor/Mfg.
  • NYC
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(07-26-2012, 02:54 PM)VerbaVolant Wrote: Thanks again. I might buy one, just to heal the wounds from the painful iKon experience.

Care to explain ?

I don't recall you contacting me or having purchased anything from me ?

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 07-27-2012, 01:26 AM
#17
  • biggiej42
  • Looney for Rooney
  • Stony Point, NY
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(07-26-2012, 08:26 PM)greyhawk Wrote: Jeff (Shanman) hit it on the head when he said we're spoiled by the QC of Mühle/Jagger. It's hard to accept less than perfection when we get it elsewhere. That said, the head on my ARC doesn't look that bad, really--you can see flaws when scrutinizing it in the light, but it's really a pretty beautiful razor.

$70 for a razor is not cheap, but I guess when you factor in that it's a small company, I can let it go as long as the product performs well. It's just cosmetic, and it does look like the coating will last a long time.

I will definitely be buying a DLC head when they become available.

My Tradere is nothing short of perfect, all of my Ikons have been flawless (even the ones sold at discount for minor flaws), and my feather asd1 was immaculate.

If I can spend $30/40 on a new EJ, then I'd better be able to get perfection for twice that amount.

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 07-27-2012, 05:18 AM
#18
  • slantman
  • Expert Shaver
  • Leesburg, Florida
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It looks like Weber got their inspiration from Merkur regarding the head. It looks so similar. Thank you for the great photos.

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 07-27-2012, 05:27 AM
#19
  • EHV
  • Senior Member
  • Milford,PA
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Fantastic review and great pics James!!!

I got both my DLC and my ARC from the first batch and I don't have any QC issues at all. Great shaves as well.

Both of the Weber's have coating similar to what I have on some dive watches, used similarly to enhance their durability and their looks. In Weber's case, it enhances the shave as well.

And to add, my Ikon and Feather are perfect as well. Biggrin

I find the Weber to be slightly more aggressive than the DE89 as well as smoother and I love it with the original Weber handles. I will pick up a Bulldog handle to see if there is any difference in the shave at some point.

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 07-27-2012, 07:16 AM
#20
  • gijames
  • Mile High Soldier
  • TN, USA
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I would be curious to know from a member here at TSN...


Satisfy my curiousity by putting the Weber Bulldog handle on a Merkur 33 and let me know if it shaves about the same as a Weber ARC with the same handle Biggrin

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