11-19-2017, 03:26 PM
#1
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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Yes: it was ME that bought this beauty from that well-known auction site. I was the only bidder. Including (exorbitant) postage, I paid the equivalent of $180US. I saw a used one of these sell for $175 a few years years back, so I think it was a reasonable price to pay. I don't really know. Hope so. Yikes!

This one is in the original box and, according to the seller from Appleby, Cumbria, UK, it had never been used. He tells me it was his father's, and that it dates to about 1967 - the same year as The Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction". And yes, satisfied I am.

I am far from an expert on these particular brushes, and I believe they were part of an original M series (?) I have also read different accounts of the meaning of the lettering, claiming that the "AS" means "Alexander Simpson" (founder of Simpson brushes) or "Abraham & Strauss", the US-based department store for whom the AS series was sometimes manufactured. This one is not marked for Abraham & Strauss, box or handle, so I'm inclined to "Alexander Simpson". 

I know there are AS2 brushes and AS2A, and possibly others with the 'crown' or 'lip' at the top of the handle. I don't understand the difference, and was wondering if anyone could point that out, or show pictures of the two, side-by-side? I think perhaps the AS2A is the taller brush. I think the AS2 has a knot in pure badger, while the AS2A is in best (?) Does anyone know anything about the history and evolution of these?

Pictures (with more to come when I receive it here in Sydney, and smarten it up Smile

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 11-19-2017, 03:35 PM
#2
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Oh man, that is awesome.  Nice pick up.  I don't think I've ever seen one of those.  I think Ken at Paladin has a similar brush but it doesn't have the same ridge configuration in the middle of the handle.  Looking forward to seeing more pics and learning more about this brush.

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 11-19-2017, 07:46 PM
#3
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Queens, NY
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The crown is fitting. You’re still the reigning acquisition king, Shaun.

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 11-20-2017, 03:59 AM
#4
  • jar
  • Active Member
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Great find and looks fantastic.

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 11-20-2017, 04:21 AM
#5
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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(11-19-2017, 07:46 PM)chazt Wrote: The crown is fitting. You’re still the reigning acquisition king, Shaun.

Not so sure about that, ha ha. Dave (Blzrfn) has a tremendous collection of butterscotch brushes. I am good at finding things in the wild, though.

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 11-23-2017, 05:10 AM
#6
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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I have been reading up on these brushes, but it is scattered all over the internet, of course. 

I think I may be right: the AS2 has a knot in 'pure', while the AS2A seems to have a slightly more elongated body and a knot in 'best'. I don't know if the AS2A was touted as a bit of an improvement. Lack of documentation. 

Anyone have a picture of the AS series, including the AS2 and the AS2A side by side? 

Dave? Smile

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 11-23-2017, 05:20 AM
#7
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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Ah, Dave, I knew I could rely on you! Hope you don't mind that I purloined the pictures from an earlier thread of yours, you brush addict, you Smile Look at all that butterscotch!  Heart

AS2: top row, middle. AS2A: bottom row, far right. 

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 11-23-2017, 08:06 PM
#8
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Queens, NY
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That AS3V is a real beauty, it’s droolacious!

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 11-23-2017, 08:25 PM
#9
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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(11-23-2017, 08:06 PM)chazt Wrote: That AS3V is a real beauty, it’s droolacious!

Agreed, yes. Look at the size of that knot! Looks like a Chubby #3!!!

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 11-24-2017, 07:32 PM
#10
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Queens, NY
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(11-23-2017, 08:25 PM)Shaun Wrote:
(11-23-2017, 08:06 PM)chazt Wrote: That AS3V is a real beauty, it’s droolacious!

Agreed, yes. Look at the size of that knot! Looks like a Chubby #3!!!

Yes, the knot looks quite large and luxurious. The carve, shape and color of the handle is superb. Just a beautiful example of brushness.

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 11-24-2017, 08:18 PM
#11
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^^^

...brushness...

I like it.   Thumbup

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 11-24-2017, 08:29 PM
#12
  • chazt
  • Senior Member
  • Queens, NY
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(11-24-2017, 08:18 PM)wreck | fish Wrote: ^^^

...brushness...

I like it.   Thumbup

Biggrin

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 12-04-2017, 12:22 AM
#13
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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I received this brush today, and gave it a shampoo, rinse and set. Smile 

For those interested, the dimensions are:
  • Knot: 22
  • Loft: 46
  • Handle: 56
  • Width at base: 36
As you can see, the knot is 'collared' and lacking the browning tinge that seemed so prevalent at the time. You can see this in the above group Simpson shot (bottom right). Mine has more a 'salt and pepper' look: greys and whites. It is not a particularly dense knot, which some like. It makes and yields lather very well. Tips are very soft, some scritch, and that's completely fine with me. Here it is in 'bloom', next to the beautiful white, old-style box (with instructions leaflet inside). Not bad for 50 Wink. I'll take a better picture tomorrow. Apologies for the fuzziness.

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 12-04-2017, 07:33 AM
#14
  • TN4
  • Member
  • Ohio
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So cool to see these vintage brushes. Nice find!

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 12-04-2017, 08:03 AM
#15
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You have a nice growing collection. Curious about the hairs on the old brushes. Do you use them?

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 12-04-2017, 10:09 AM
#16
  • jar
  • Active Member
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(12-04-2017, 08:03 AM)jazzman Wrote: You have a nice growing collection. Curious about the hairs on the old brushes. Do you use them?

I do in almost all cases.

All but one of the brushes on the bottom two shelves as well as six of the brushes on the top shelf are 50+ year old knots.

[Image: xlarge.jpg]

All are in regular use and get used at least five times a year or more.

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 12-04-2017, 01:18 PM
#17
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The knot looks sparse but it looks useable. I would definitely give it a few uses in a shave. I think I could enjoy a brush like that. Enjoy shaving with it!

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 12-04-2017, 01:18 PM
#18
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
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Sparse, a little, yes, but you're looking at a wet knot. Do I use them? Yep, if they are in good order. Vintage knots are frequently far superior to modern, although not always. Euro-sourced badger can be especially fine and amazingly soft. I have a vintage Plisson that has such fine hair it still surprises me.  I have never re-knotted a brush. if I can, I like to preserve the integrity of the original, whole brush.  I do have a few here and there that are candidates for re-knotting. One day...

Better pictures:

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