06-01-2017, 11:45 AM
#1
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
Gents, I seek your combined wisdom, please. I'm growing frustrated with my GEM razors.

Lately, one section on the side of my neck about an inch and a half below my earlobe becomes quite irritated when I shave with a GEM razor three days in a row. Clearly it's my technique.

I've mapped my beard. Only do two SE passes. I use negative pressure, and have tried keeping the cap flat against my skin, changing the angle by making it shallower and/or deeper. By the third shave that one spot actually hurts when the blade makes its pass. It doesn't seem to matter if it's the third, fifth or eighth shave with the blade. By the third consecutive daily shave, it hurts.

This never happens with injectors or DE shaves. I'd hate to give up on my GEMS - they're so good looking!

What are your thoughts?

7 2,121
Reply
 06-01-2017, 11:56 AM
#2
User Info
It's very simplistic...but if the problem comes from consecutive days, and you still love injectors and DEs, go to a rotation!

8 915
Reply
 06-01-2017, 11:57 AM
#3
User Info
What blade do you use? I'm enjoying all my Gem razors and if there was another Gem razor more aggressive than the MMOC I would of already bought it. Would really like to know what blade do you use and if its the Personna SS is it the PTFE coated version?

[Image: IMG_1091_zpsrxyiiekk.jpg]

0 197
Reply
 06-01-2017, 01:02 PM
#4
  • Entasis
  • Atop the Razor's Edge
  • Southern California
User Info
Do a Google (Bing, etc.) search for the "Billyfergie Shim". For me, the GEM blades a bit harsh, so I cork them first.

13 611
Reply
 06-01-2017, 04:11 PM
#5
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-01-2017, 11:56 AM)Rory1262 Wrote: It's very simplistic...but if the problem comes from consecutive days, and you still love injectors and DEs, go to a rotation!

Yep, that's what I've done. Once in a while though I try to push the envelope and go for that third consecutive SE day because the two preceding shaves were so fine. I guess I'll just have to limit GEM shaves to only two days in a row.

(06-01-2017, 11:57 AM)bazemk Wrote: What blade do you use? I'm enjoying all my Gem razors and if there was another Gem razor more aggressive than the MMOC I would of already bought it. Would really like to know what blade do you use and if its the Personna SS is it the PTFE coated version?

[Image: IMG_1091_zpsrxyiiekk.jpg]

Same as you, GEM PTFE.

(06-01-2017, 01:02 PM)Entasis Wrote: Do a Google (Bing, etc.) search for the "Billyfergie Shim". For me, the GEM blades a bit harsh, so I cork them first.

I hand strop each blade prior to the first use. Will look into corking the blades. Thanks for the tip.

7 2,121
Reply
 06-01-2017, 05:39 PM
#6
User Info
(06-01-2017, 01:02 PM)Entasis Wrote: Do a Google (Bing, etc.) search for the "Billyfergie Shim". For me, the GEM blades a bit harsh, so I cork them first.

First time hearing about this shim but it sounds simple enough, worth a try!

1 115
Reply
 06-01-2017, 05:53 PM
#7
User Info
Since you say you are using the Personna PTFE blades and also strop them before their first use then I'm clueless, considering the PTFE SS blades are in my opinion the sharpest and smoothest of all GEM brands on the market

0 197
Reply
 06-01-2017, 07:52 PM
#8
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-01-2017, 05:39 PM)TripleG Wrote:
(06-01-2017, 01:02 PM)Entasis Wrote: Do a Google (Bing, etc.) search for the "Billyfergie Shim". For me, the GEM blades a bit harsh, so I cork them first.

First time hearing about this shim but it sounds simple enough, worth a try!

I checked it out and I'm thinking, "sheesh, that seems like an awful lot of work!" Biggrin

7 2,121
Reply
 06-01-2017, 07:59 PM
#9
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-01-2017, 05:53 PM)bazemk Wrote: Since you say you are using the Personna PTFE blades and also strop them before their first use then I'm clueless, considering the PTFE SS blades are in my opinion the sharpest and smoothest of all GEM brands on the market

I think that's part of my problem. In addition to the sharp factor the blades are more rigid than DEs. My neck skin has always been uber sensitive. That was one of the reasons I started wet shaving. I think the DE blades may simply be too intense for me.

7 2,121
Reply
 06-03-2017, 01:48 AM
#10
User Info
Did you mention which of the GEM razors you use?  I find the MMOC to be a bit harsh for my face.  For me an aggressive razor requires a safety bar or my face rebels.  The Clog Pruf works very well for me and I use the Bullet when traveling because it is mild enough for a quick and easy shave on the road.  So, I would recommend purchasing a Bullet on Ebay (nice ones can be had for around $20) and using that for a period of time.  It is a sweet razor.

Charlie, you also mentioned that you believe that the rigid GEM blade is part of the problem.  One of the reasons I prefer SE shaving is that the rigid blades are easier on my skin than traditional DE blades.  I may be wrong but I suspect that there is a certain amount of "chatter" in the thinner DE blades that is not good for me.

Good luck

2 63
Reply
 06-03-2017, 03:20 AM
#11
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-03-2017, 01:48 AM)rodmonster Wrote: Did you mention which of the GEM razors you use?  I find the MMOC to be a bit harsh for my face.  For me an aggressive razor requires a safety bar or my face rebels.  The Clog Pruf works very well for me and I use the Bullet when traveling because it is mild enough for a quick and easy shave on the road.  So, I would recommend purchasing a Bullet on Ebay (nice ones can be had for around $20) and using that for a period of time.  It is a sweet razor.

Charlie, you also mentioned that you believe that the rigid GEM blade is part of the problem.  One of the reasons I prefer SE shaving is that the rigid blades are easier on my skin than traditional DE blades.  I may be wrong but I suspect that there is a certain amount of "chatter" in the thinner DE blades that is not good for me.

Good luck

Thanks, Rodmonster. You raise good points. I have near mint examples of G Bar and MMOC but rarely use them - maybe once each in the last year. The razors which I've been rotating through are 2 different Featherweights, Clog Pruf, Bullet Tip and an ER 1912. The Featherweights used to be my preferred SE shavers. The last time the pain phenomenon occurred was with a Featherweight. The Clog Pruf was the razor that started this whole SE annoyance on my neck. The two razors that seem to provide my smoothest (but still sometimes uncomfortable) shaves lately are the Bullet Tip and the ER.

I've read so many times about DE blade "chatter." Sometimes when reading folks' comments it seems like there's a chatter epidemic raging through the community! Honestly, it's happened to me only once- and it was my fault for not tightening the handle securely. Otherwise I'm chatter-free. Not an issue with me and DE. For whatever reason DE blades seem more forgiving than do SE blades.

7 2,121
Reply
 06-03-2017, 07:43 AM
#12
  • Entasis
  • Atop the Razor's Edge
  • Southern California
User Info
Although I enjoy my vintage razors I prefer modern versions far better given their better blade geometry and razor materials. That's why I'm excited about the GEM razors about to hit the marketplace. It seems blades are the only thing stuck in the past these days (excluding cartridge blades). Too bad blade manufacturers are not improving blades given the resurgence of modern wet shaving.

13 611
Reply
 06-03-2017, 08:57 AM
#13
User Info
(06-03-2017, 07:43 AM)Entasis Wrote: Although I enjoy my vintage razors I prefer modern versions far better given their better blade geometry and razor materials. That's why I'm excited about the GEM razors about to hit the marketplace. It seems blades are the only thing stuck in the past these days (excluding cartridge blades). Too bad blade manufacturers are not improving blades given the resurgence of modern wet shaving.
That's a great leap of faith about "far superior angles and materials". The inherently stable GEM blade doesn't need mass or fancy materials, and I haven't noticed 1912s or Micromatics breaking on anyone. I'll happily participate in a pass around but don't see laying out $200 or so for something that looks cool in a SOTD photo but shaves no better than my 1924 or Clog Pruf.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

1 210
Reply
 06-03-2017, 09:11 AM
#14
  • Entasis
  • Atop the Razor's Edge
  • Southern California
User Info
(06-03-2017, 08:57 AM)jmudrick Wrote:
(06-03-2017, 07:43 AM)Entasis Wrote: Although I enjoy my vintage razors I prefer modern versions far better given their better blade geometry and razor materials. That's why I'm excited about the GEM razors about to hit the marketplace. It seems blades are the only thing stuck in the past these days (excluding cartridge blades). Too bad blade manufacturers are not improving blades given the resurgence of modern wet shaving.
That's a great leap of faith about "far superior angles and materials". The inherently stable GEM blade doesn't need mass or fancy materials, and I haven't noticed 1912s or Micromatics breaking on anyone. I'll happily participate in a pass around but don't see laying out $200 or so for something that looks cool in a SOTD photo but shaves no better than my 1924 or Clog Pruf.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

Nothing mentioned about being "superior". GEM blades (and for that matter current Schick injector blades) for me, simply are not as refined an edge as Feather Artist blades—not even close. However, the vintage versus modern arguments are always on the forums...that never really changes. Don't get me wrong, I own and admire the vintage razors I own, especially some of the ingenuity for those eras.

13 611
Reply
 06-03-2017, 09:23 AM
#15
User Info
(06-03-2017, 09:11 AM)Entasis Wrote:
(06-03-2017, 08:57 AM)jmudrick Wrote:
(06-03-2017, 07:43 AM)Entasis Wrote: Although I enjoy my vintage razors I prefer modern versions far better given their better blade geometry and razor materials. That's why I'm excited about the GEM razors about to hit the marketplace. It seems blades are the only thing stuck in the past these days (excluding cartridge blades). Too bad blade manufacturers are not improving blades given the resurgence of modern wet shaving.
That's a great leap of faith about "far superior angles and materials". The inherently stable GEM blade doesn't need mass or fancy materials, and I haven't noticed 1912s or Micromatics breaking on anyone. I'll happily participate in a pass around but don't see laying out $200 or so for something that looks cool in a SOTD photo but shaves no better than my 1924 or Clog Pruf.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

Nothing mentioned about being "superior". GEM blades (and for that matter current Schick injector blades) for me, simply are not as refined an edge as Feather Artist blades—not even close. However, the vintage versus modern arguments are always on the forums...that never really changes. Don't get me wrong, I own and admire the vintage razors I own, especially some of the ingenuity for those eras.
Focusing on just the blades component I tend to agree. I'm not at all impressed with the longevity of modern Personna or Feather SE blades. I use both vintage injector and modern AC blades, both serve me equally well.

Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk

1 210
Reply
 06-03-2017, 04:55 PM
#16
User Info
Maybe you haven't found a blade that suits you. That's kind of the problem though - there aren't that many choices when it comes to GEM-style SEs that I'm aware of.

0 1,070
Reply
 06-03-2017, 08:24 PM
#17
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-03-2017, 07:43 AM)Entasis Wrote: Although I enjoy my vintage razors I prefer modern versions far better given their better blade geometry and razor materials. That's why I'm excited about the GEM razors about to hit the marketplace. It seems blades are the only thing stuck in the past these days (excluding cartridge blades). Too bad blade manufacturers are not improving blades given the resurgence of modern wet shaving.

As OP I reserve the right to hijack the thread and ramble. Biggrin

I don't disagree with your point about blades. Maybe they can be improved upon. But I have zero experience with vintage blades, and so, not a realistic frame of reference to add there. It's always said that blades are the biggest YMMV in wet shaving. I've developed preferences for a handful of DE blades and am quite content with them. Interesting [or not] that they all happen to be Personna branded. When it comes to GEM style blades there's a dearth of variety from which to choose. Which segues nicely to your other point. We like-minded wet shaving enthusiasts collectively consider ourselves a community. Indeed, it (the "community" - this place in particular imo) is a place to go to share a common interest. I quite enjoy checking in to TSN daily. For most of us I'd venture to say it's a lifestyle choice (i. e. trad wet shaving/gear, not online fora, per SE) to some varying degree. And it's all good, whatever one's level of interest/involvement. But in the big picture, I imagine we don't impact Personna's, Gillette's or Schick's corporate owners' bottom line very much. They're not motivated to change because it would cost too much for too little return on the investment. Others have suggested, well why aren't there any artisan blade makers? Probably for the same reason, I suppose. It would be interesting to see what would come out of a razor blade factory owned by an enthusiast-artisan-entrepreneur. And, wouldn't such blades likely be on the pricey side? Until then we will all chase the elusive "one" blade at one time or another.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled thread...

7 2,121
Reply
 06-03-2017, 08:27 PM
#18
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Bayside, NY
User Info
(06-03-2017, 04:55 PM)Shannons Soaps Wrote: Maybe you haven't found a blade that suits you. That's kind of the problem though - there aren't that many choices when it comes to GEM-style SEs that I'm aware of.

What else is there for me to try, Brian? I'm aware of some carbon steel blades, but I don't want to make the effort to dry them after every shave.

7 2,121
Reply
 06-03-2017, 10:35 PM
#19
User Info
(06-03-2017, 08:27 PM)chazt Wrote:
(06-03-2017, 04:55 PM)Shannon Wrote: Maybe you haven't found a blade that suits you. That's kind of the problem though - there aren't that many choices when it comes to GEM-style SEs that I'm aware of.

What else is there for me to try, Brian? I'm aware of some carbon steel blades, but I don't want to make the effort to dry them after every shave.

Even if you dry them off they rust no matter what. They are 3 brands that are having good carbon blades of which in my opinion the Blue Star was just tad bit better than the rest, but all these good carbon Gem blades were good for 5-6 comfy shaves tops, while the Personna PTFE can go from 8-15 shaves per blade depending on the blade, its quality varies from blade to blade. The problem I had personally with the carbon blades even though they are awesome shavers was the rust, the would catch tiny bit of rust even if you dry them off.... Turns out that rust sort of infect my skin and I get zits that needs popping later on lol So no carbon blades for me

0 197
Reply
Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)