02-05-2019, 12:10 PM
#1
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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These are some photos that were taken years ago by me.

[Image: hIbWyTl.jpg]

[Image: I4TDaTt.jpg]
[Image: Ip4xgzB.jpg]
[Image: n4BOST7.jpg]
[Image: zVwsOXu.jpg]
[Image: MszNTt4.jpg]


How does a blade look like from the spoiler.


These are a couple of photos I took today from my forgotten stock of these. I had totally forgot I had them.


[Image: 1pOyGRD.jpg]

[Image: jxajELz.jpg]



This is not rust, but oil that got solidified after all these decades.


If this looks fine to you, you can buy these legendary blades at the asking price. You see 8, but I "broke" 3 packages of them, meaning I threw away 7 due to the solidified oil, their cutting edges were not perfectly clean.

Also, it's almost impossible to get them out of the spoiler, without breaking it.

Is the very possible wastage worth taking the risk and paying the asking price?


It's really up to you. 

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 02-05-2019, 01:31 PM
#2
  • garyg
  • Senior Member
  • Great Lakes
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So $.89 for 15 blades?  A very good deal, just invest in some cleaning with rubbing alcohol.  I received some 74's gunked up with the same problem, yes you have to destroy the pack but the blades are the same ..

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 02-07-2019, 08:25 PM
#3
  • TomG
  • Member
  • Perth, Western Australia
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Interesting.

I have a decent stash of these blades, and they have always emerged in good condition from the dispenser, and provided me with wonderful shaves.

Thanks for the heads-up; I'll certainly keep an eye out.

The vintage blades that I have the most problems with (sticking together) are the 15 blade Gillette Platinum Plus; I suspect that this is due to cramming so many blades together.  However, I've never seen discoloration on the blades after getting them apart.

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 02-09-2019, 09:51 AM
#4
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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(02-05-2019, 01:31 PM)garyg Wrote: So $.89 for 15 blades?  A very good deal, just invest in some cleaning with rubbing alcohol.  I received some 74's gunked up with the same problem, yes you have to destroy the pack but the blades are the same ..


You mean $.89 for each pack of 5 back in the day. I found about 14 packs and didn't pay a single euro. 

Cleaning with rubbing alcohol won't clean them up nicely. I've done that. There were oil spots all over the blade surface. I believe it's impossible to make them look like new.

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 02-17-2019, 06:52 PM
#5
  • garyg
  • Senior Member
  • Great Lakes
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(02-09-2019, 09:51 AM)nikos.a Wrote:
(02-05-2019, 01:31 PM)garyg Wrote: So $.89 for 15 blades?  A very good deal, just invest in some cleaning with rubbing alcohol.  I received some 74's gunked up with the same problem, yes you have to destroy the pack but the blades are the same ..


You mean $.89 for each pack of 5 back in the day. I found about 14 packs and didn't pay a single euro. 

Cleaning with rubbing alcohol won't clean them up nicely. I've done that. There were oil spots all over the blade surface. I believe it's impossible to make them look like new.

Mine must have had a different problem, though looked similar.  Risks of the old blade scrounges like me I guess

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 02-24-2019, 02:44 PM
#6
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Actually ,this kind of staining in steel grades that  do contain Cobalt ( Co )
is something to be expected ,as a totally normal thing .

At the time ,those blades where introduced ,most common Tungsten steel alloys were either Tungsten-Nickel carbide
or Tungsten -Cobalt carbide .

The special steel alloy ,those blades are made from ,does contain cobalt carbide ,along with tungsten carbide.
Those two are used  together in the alloying of Tungsten steel .
Cobalt carbide containing steel alloys will change their surface appearance ,
in the form of a golden -brown tarnish or  brown stains,over time .
Elevated temperatures ,will accelerate this phenomenon .

You can check the unused cobalt -steel drills bits ,which contain 5% or 8% cobalt carbide.
They already have a brownish-gold hue.
When their temperature rises under use ,they get a really dark brown hue.

[Image: 61aOSbThZmL._SX425_.jpg]

[Image: M35-cobalt-drill-bit.jpg]

                   
Furthermore ,Tungsten steel alloys are sintered composite materials.
Being so hard and sintered , means that these alloys are extremely  prone to breakage .

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 02-24-2019, 04:13 PM
#7
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Sorry !
Double post .
Pressed the "Reply " button ,instead of the "Edit " button .

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 02-24-2019, 04:57 PM
#8
  • garyg
  • Senior Member
  • Great Lakes
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Guess I've learned a bit of metallurgy .. perhaps that was the reason they were/are the best blades ever

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 04-06-2019, 03:06 PM
#9
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Regardless of the color and rust issues, I have quite a few of the Personna 74 tungsten blades (35). Nought them marked as samples and They are indeed extremely sharp and long lasting. I am lucky to get more than 2 shaves from any blade made today, but for the Personna Tungsten blades I've tried (3) it takes 3 shaves for the blade to even calm down sharpness wise, and they are so sharp it's tough not to cause weepers By shave 5 it is about the sharpest smoothest blade I have used so far in over 50 years at this shaving thing. Next use, shave 6 for me will be interesting? I bought the blades when the vintage price was under $1.00 per blade. And, each was individually wrapped in white and then red paper. Very Clean and new looking but These blades are not the same as any blades made today. Tungsten aside, I can only imagine and wonder the manufacturing process? I guess Personna would have to provide that answer? I doubt they will or would?

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 04-11-2019, 01:42 PM
#10
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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Moderator Note:  Link to website not  affiliated with TSN removed.

I've  posted this before  but its easier than my hunt and peck method of writing a reply. Because I'm retired and have the time it takes to find them, bid low and lose 9 times out of 10 I've acquired more than enough of these to last my lifetime  at a cost per shave equal to or less than modern ones.  But it took a long time. It was my hobby.

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 04-11-2019, 09:18 PM
#11
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I would not shave with any blade that looked like the OPs. Even if I had tried to clean them.
Blades are just too cheap to take a risk with.

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 04-12-2019, 01:41 AM
#12
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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(04-11-2019, 09:18 PM)Tester28 Wrote: I would not shave with any blade that looked like the OPs. Even if I had tried to clean them.
Blades are just too cheap to take a risk with.

Neither would I.  All the ones I use look new, although it I had to learn at first what to look for and what to avoid.

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 04-14-2019, 01:14 AM
#13
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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It seems the rules have changed a little here as the link that I posted and that was deleted I've posted before, but rules are rules, so I hope this is ok....
[color=rgba(204, 74, 0, 0.75)][Image: Rocket-Engine.jpg][/color]

In the[color=rgba(204, 74, 0, 0.75)] razor blade industry you would think that all the management would know their business model. They are making a blade that lasts for a few shaves and is then thrown away. The longer it lasts the less they sell. So it is in the razor manufacturer’s interests to make a blade with the shortest life that they can get away with. But the technology is out there to make a blade that lasts for a lot longer.[/color]
Personna has been making all sorts of  blades for 130 years, currently they are part of American Safety Razor. In the 1960s and 1970s it was owned by Philip Morris, the tobacco company. The management decided that they wanted to take on Gillette and in doing so they decided to throw the industry business model out of the window. They decided to make a long lasting blade.

The Personna 74 was introduced in 1970. Everything about it is special. The steel is a a tungsten (atomic number 74) alloy, which makes it extremely hard and wear resistant. This is the sort of steel that they make rocket engine nozzles out of. It is also used for making the cutting tools that are used when machining other steels. This alone would make a blade that lasted a long time. But Personna went further, they coated it with a microscopic layer of titanium, which protected the steel underneath.
[color=rgba(204, 74, 0, 0.75)][Image: Personna-74-advertisement.jpg][/color]
Unsurprisingly they ended up with what is definitely the longest lasting safety razor blade ever made and also probably the sharpest. There are reports of customers using the same blade for months. Which obviously was very bad for Personna’s business. So after only a few years in production they dropped it.
They didn’t make that many of these blades and obviously they are a consumable item and as this happened 40 years ago finding unused Personna 74s is very rare. And of course when they are found they get used, making them even rarer, and even more valuable. [color=rgba(204, 74, 0, 0.75)]Currently they sell for about a pound for each blade. As traditional shaving increases in popularity these blades are going to become yet more expensive, a lot of people are going to want to try the best. But once they have been used they are gone forever.[/color]

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 04-14-2019, 03:25 AM
#14
  • nikos.a
  • Senior Member
  • Athens, Greece
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And I still prefer the following blades to the 74s:
  • Gillette Silver Blue
  • Gillette "Swede"
  • Astra Superior Platinum
If the 74s work for you, that's fine. I just don't believe they are worth the price they're going for and the such high praise. Such posts and articles only help the hype grow ever further, in my honest opinion.

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 04-14-2019, 02:19 PM
#15
  • Mouser
  • Senior Member
  • Forest City, Florida U.S.A.
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(04-14-2019, 03:25 AM)nikos.a Wrote: And I still prefer the following blades to the 74s:

  • Gillette Silver Blue
  • Gillette "Swede"
  • Astra Superior Platinum
If the 74s work for you, that's fine. I just don't believe they are worth the price they're going for and the such high praise. Such posts and articles only help the hype grow ever further, in my honest opinion.

Nikos, I  don't  think they're worth the prices being asked either, not if you're going to use them. I believe that pricing is based on it being a collectible. I have enough to last me a lifetime  but I didn't pay those prices.  I'm in an unusual situation,  I'm retired and since I have plenty of time on my hands I kind of made it my job to track every offering down, bid low and lose 9 out of 10 times but I did it often enough to where once in a great while some would slip by everyone else and I'd  get them. For instance once someone  had two lots of 20 on that auction site. One was a bid situation  and the other was a buy now for $99. I bid $27 and was the only bidder and got that lot, the other sold for 99 dollars  a few days later. When you factor in I get 30 or so shaves per blade the couple hundred I have come in at a cost per shave less then you can get 100 Polsilver Super Iridiums at. Not worth the effort if I was still  working  but a fun and worthwhile project for me.

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