06-26-2021, 07:18 PM
#1
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Is there a way to make a Gillette Slim more aggressive (other than with shims, of course)?

Here;s the TMI back-story:  I picked up a Gillette Slim; it arrived today.  I took it for a spin, and decided to set it on"1" for starters.  With the Slim set on "1" it shaved about like my Rockwell -- with Plate #4!  Holy Cow!  This  Slim must be like a guillotine on higher settings!   Researching online, most folks seem to use their Slim set between 4 and 7.  Since "1" was so incredibly aggressive, I can't even imagine going up to 7!   I've got a Super-Speed, tech, and a Heritage (Muhle head) to compare it to... and this Slim (set on "1") is noticeably more aggressive than *any* of them!  I KNOW that's not right... so what the heck is going on?  Is it possible for a Slim to get out-of-tune somehow or could someone have tinkered with it to make it more aggressive than it was originally meant to be? 

Thx,
- Bax

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 06-27-2021, 04:44 AM
#2
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Being a used Slim it could be the previous owner has dropped it (possibly multiple times) bending the safety bar.  This can also cause some door issues.  I would use the chart in the link below to determine if this may be the problem.  It explains what blade gap is, how to measure it, and what it should be for a Gillette razor.

https://gilletteadjustable.com/misc-2/ad...lade-gaps/

To adjust the blade gap you can use the instructions found in the link below.  Be careful and go slow!!  It describes using a butter knife but I used a small screwdriver.  I thought I found this in this forum but discovered I was mistaken.  If posting this link is a no-no then I must apologize now as I haven't found anything similar on this forum.

Moderator Note: Link to website not affiliated with TSN removed.

On the Fatboy I recently acquired I decided to just send it in for complete servicing but no plating as this one is still in good shape and for my personal use as I'm not a collector.  There are several services out there if you decide to do this.

BTW, I'm not an expert but have been down this road.   Angel

Good luck!

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 06-27-2021, 10:17 AM
#3
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Great INTEL! That Gillette blade gap measurement link is awesome!

"That's gold, Jerry... GOLD!"
(For you Seinfeld fans)

Thanks!
- Bax

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 06-27-2021, 12:24 PM
#4
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Using the link above I figured out the issue. One end of the blade had a blade gap of 007. The other end of the blade had a gap of 030. That's what gave me such an awful shave. Lucky I didn't cut my face to pieces! A little bit of time using the Famous Chappy Butter Knife Trick -- problem solved! The gap should range from 015 to 039. My gap now ranges from 013 to 032. I'm happy with that!
Thanks again, Chappy!
- Bax

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 06-27-2021, 11:03 PM
#5
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(06-27-2021, 12:24 PM)Bax Wrote: One end of the blade had a blade gap of 007. The other end of the blade had a gap of 030.

Ouch. Slims should not have a progressive gap... happy you found a fix Smile

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 06-28-2021, 04:27 AM
#6
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Thanks Bax glad it worked for you!  I'm working on the info for the 2nd link so I can post it again in the future legally.  Again I apologize for posting a link I should not have.

I'm also working on a chart I found listing most modern safety razors from mildest to most aggressive for comparison.  Case in point is you can see how a Merkur 34c rates against other razors available on the market.  I like my Merkur 34c but surprisingly it is not as mild as I had been told which is why I had some trouble with it when I started out but can use it now more easily with shims.

Have we considered some kind of "repair as your own risk" category for this forum.  I have a devil of a time finding information on how to fix what appears to be common problems, disassemble and then reassemble some razors, what blade gaps should be, and how to "adjust" for some common issues, etc.?

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 06-28-2021, 04:46 AM
#7
  • chazt
  • Shimmer of Techs
  • Queens, NY
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(06-28-2021, 04:27 AM)Chappy Wrote: Thanks Bax glad it worked for you!  I'm working on the info for the 2nd link so I can post it again in the future legally.  Again I apologize for posting a link I should not have.

I'm also working on a chart I found listing most modern safety razors from mildest to most aggressive for comparison.  Case in point is you can see how a Merkur 34c rates against other razors available on the market.  I like my Merkur 34c but surprisingly it is not as mild as I had been told which is why I had some trouble with it when I started out but can use it now more easily with shims.

Have we considered some kind of "repair as your own risk" category for this forum.  I have a devil of a time finding information on how to fix what appears to be common problems, disassemble and then reassemble some razors, what blade gaps should be, and how to "adjust" for some common issues, etc.?

This is an interesting idea. If / when you find the info scattered about, send me a PM and I can move those threads to Shavenook University.

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 06-28-2021, 12:34 PM
#8
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Will do!

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 06-30-2021, 08:38 AM
#9
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The 1965 Gillette Slim Adjustable Razor saga continues...
My next shave was unremarkable (set on 5).  I had to clean it up with my Gillette "heritage" razor.  The Heritage (Muhle 89 head) razor is LIGHT YEARS superior to the Slim!  I got no cuts or nicks, but the Slim Adjustable never felt right on my face.  And the amount of exposed blade just LOOKED wrong.  I just couldn't figure out how to get the darned Slim adjustable to perform well.  Why in heck does anybody LIKE this old razor?  It's not AWFUL, but it's far from "good," too!  I was on the brink of pushing it to the back of the shelf and forgetting about it, but then I ran across a tip on a forum somewhere -- after closing the missile silo doors on the Slim, I need to give it an extra 1/4 turn before shaving with it!  Who knew?!?!   This morning I set it on "7" and after closing the missile doors gave it an extra 1/4 turn, although it FELT more like 1/2 turn.  My #7 setting gives me an .028 blade gap, which is between a 5 and 6 on a normal Slim (that wasn't bent and readjusted, like mine).  Then I started to shave with the same blade I used yesterday.  Only today, I got the best shave YET with it after 2 passes (1 WTG and 1 ATG).  It was almost a BBS!  I think I finally cracked the code on this razor!  Too bad I didn't surf online and find some instructions *before* trying to use the Slim... it would have saved me a few aggravating shaves.  Now that I have discovered the Top Secret Quarter Turn Trick and am diligent with my blade angle, I'm getting great results!  I'll do a few more shaves with it before making my Final Determination on this razor... but I'm much happier with it today than I was yesterday!   ;-)
- Bax

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 06-30-2021, 08:45 AM
#10
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Sorry Bax as I never even thought about it.  I usually watch some YouTube videos about my new razors for any tips like that.  I believe all Gillette adjustables are like that and some other razors have an even bigger locking turn of the handle.  Am glad you figured it out and am enjoying the razor now!   Biggrin

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 06-30-2021, 09:44 AM
#11
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Now that I've discovered the secret, I just have to REMEMBER to give it that extra locking twist before using it.
Hmm... I knew a skinny guy once whose nickname was "Fatty."
And I knew a fat guy once whose nickname was "Toothpick."

Maybe I'll name that Slim razor "Chubby Checker" as a reminder to do the Twist.  
  ;-)

- Bax

Update:  Tried the razor with Wilkinson Sword blades (India); these are my standard blade.  Wasn't particularly happy with the shave.  Tried Shark stainless blades, and got a shave that was about the same, although the Shark seemed less sharp.  Tried Personna Lab Blue and got a GREAT shave!  The Personna FELT more aggressive, so I was pretty careful with it.  I got a CCS out of it, almost a BBS!  Incidentally, I kept the razor on 7 (an 0.028 gap on my razor) for all three blades, so I could get a fair comparison.  While I have more experimenting to do, I may have found the best blade for the my venerable Gillette Slim.  Once I settle on a "best blade" for that razor, I intend to fine tune it with the razor adjustments.  Fun!

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