12-29-2012, 12:19 PM
#1
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I've been wetshaving for a few years, and I've accumulated a lot of razors. Solid bar, open comb, DE, SE, adjustable, TTO, you name it. Some of them are uncommon (the British Aristocrats), some less so (EJ DE89, Superspeeds.) I've used all these razors too, sometimes just a few times but I have given them all a solid try.

I think I may have found the perfect razor, at least for me.

The humble Aristocrat Junior.

[Image: 1949%20%28U2%29%20Aristocrat%20jr.JPG]

This is a British made solid bar TOO razor. It doesn't have the heft of the other British Aristocrats, nor does it have the prestige and frankly the cost.

What it does do is shave well. I've put a number of different blades in this - from the cheap (Shark) to the expensive (Gillette 7 O'clock Black) to the dearly departed (Gillette Bleue Extra.) They all perform well in this razor; it isn't picky. It just performs well.

And I think that is what I like most about this razor. It always works, and works well. I never have a day when the razor is too aggressive or too mild. It is efficient and effective without being too much so.

I've been using this razor exclusively for a few months now. This isn't the first time I've done that - I've used razors for weeks at a time, then I get the urge to try something different.

What makes the Aristocrat Junior unique is that... I don't really want to try something different this time. I'm happy with this razor. If this was the only razor I had, I'd be perfectly content.

Maybe I'll feel differently in a month or two, but right now I think I've found my razor.

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 12-29-2012, 12:30 PM
#2
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A beautiful TTO Gillette. Thanks for sharing!

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 12-29-2012, 12:43 PM
#3
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Do you feel it shaves differently to the other British Aristocrats with the same flat baseplate? I've a few Aristos with that head design and an AJ with the pressed diamond plate, but not one with the heavier baseplate.

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 12-29-2012, 12:48 PM
#4
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(12-29-2012, 12:43 PM)Yellow Jim Wrote: Do you feel it shaves differently to the other British Aristocrats with the same flat baseplate? I've a few Aristos with that head design and an AJ with the pressed diamond plate, but not one with the heavier baseplate.

Absolutely. I have the #15 and #21, both have the same flat baseplate. I think the Jr is milder but a lot less picky and more forgiving. IMHO this is a good thing.

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 12-29-2012, 12:54 PM
#5
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Congratulations and enjoy the ONE!

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 12-29-2012, 02:23 PM
#6
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Good for you. That's what it's all about, finding what completes your shave nirvana. A fantastic shave doesn't need to cost a lot. And expensive gear doesn't guarantee a great shave.

I was going to use the word "content" in my reply but you beat me to it.

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 12-29-2012, 07:19 PM
#7
  • Shanman
  • Reserve Collection Squirrel Hair
  • NE Florida
User Info
Love this little Underdog of a razor, just a solid no fuss tool.

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 12-29-2012, 09:17 PM
#8
  • Andrew
  • Senior Member
  • Austin, TX
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I, too, love the shave from my Aristocrat Jr, although mine is the no. 48, with a head that more resembles the no. 21 Aristocrat.

   

I have been watching for the right cased Aristocrat Jr. like the one you show, as I'd like to compare the shave (and add it to the den). I wonder how it compares to the no. 16, which it most closely resembles?

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 12-30-2012, 12:33 AM
#9
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
User Info
How do you find the Aristocrat J compares to the Gillette HD 500 Super Speed?

(12-29-2012, 02:23 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Good for you. That's what it's all about, finding what completes your shave nirvana. A fantastic shave doesn't need to cost a lot. And expensive gear doesn't guarantee a great shave.

I was going to use the word "content" in my reply but you beat me to it.

Agreed. I find my favourites razors are old Gillettes that have cost very little. Maybe that's just a run of luck? Not sure.

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 12-30-2012, 02:05 AM
#10
  • mark1966
  • Member
  • Canberra [the capital city of] Australia
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The AJ is a great shaver but I confess to be a sucker for the thicker handle on the #16. Of course YMMV Smile

Glad you have found your 'perfect' razor!

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 12-30-2012, 02:26 PM
#11
  • marcel
  • Member
  • The Netherlands
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The #48 is one of my favorites as well, moderately aggressive yet easy going. I prefer it over my #16.

(12-29-2012, 09:17 PM)Andrew Wrote: I, too, love the shave from my Aristocrat Jr, although mine is the no. 48, with a head that more resembles the no. 21 Aristocrat.



I have been watching for the right cased Aristocrat Jr. like the one you show, as I'd like to compare the shave (and add it to the den). I wonder how it compares to the no. 16, which it most closely resembles?

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 12-30-2012, 02:40 PM
#12
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I'll jump on this bandwagon. After trying many Gillettes, including the Rocket HD, New, Red Tip, Diplomat, Ranger Tech etc, I sold all of them except the AJ (and a collectable mint Slim I don't use).

The AJ was my favourite razor until this week. It's been replaced by the iKon OC but is a very close second. I've recently bought two British Aristocrats - a 22 and a 19 and love them too, so far about as much as the AJ, but they are 3 times the price.

IMHO the Aristocrat Junior is the best value going in razors now.

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 12-31-2012, 06:45 AM
#13
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(12-30-2012, 02:05 AM)mark1966 Wrote: The AJ is a great shaver but I confess to be a sucker for the thicker handle on the #16. Of course YMMV Smile

Glad you have found your 'perfect' razor!

And maybe the knurling pattern and the Rhodium sparkle of the 16. Thanks to you Mark, I get to enjoy the 16.

Does anyone know or can point to a thread that discusses the direction English production of Gillette's took versus the US produced models. The English seemed to take the super speeds to a new level with the Rocket type opening mechanism and the overall weight of the razors. Head geometry seems to be close. Any English Rocket type razor, HD, Red Tip, Flair Tip, 16, 66, Aristocrat Jr. and others just seem better made and solid in comparison to the American production. Assuming the same senior executives were involved with both engineering and production facilities, why the differences? I agree the Aristocrat Jr. is an outstanding razor and today a bargain. Why was it not produced both in the US and England. Engineers and testers back when surely knew it was better, if for weight alone.

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 12-31-2012, 07:12 AM
#14
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(12-31-2012, 06:45 AM)zeppelinkarte Wrote:
(12-30-2012, 02:05 AM)mark1966 Wrote: The AJ is a great shaver but I confess to be a sucker for the thicker handle on the #16. Of course YMMV Smile

Glad you have found your 'perfect' razor!

And maybe the knurling pattern and the Rhodium sparkle of the 16. Thanks to you Mark, I get to enjoy the 16.

Does anyone know or can point to a thread that discusses the direction English production of Gillette's took versus the US produced models. The English seemed to take the super speeds to a new level with the Rocket type opening mechanism and the overall weight of the razors. Head geometry seems to be close. Any English Rocket type razor, HD, Red Tip, Flair Tip, 16, 66, Aristocrat Jr. and others just seem better made and solid in comparison to the American production. Assuming the same senior executives were involved with both engineering and production facilities, why the differences? I agree the Aristocrat Jr. is an outstanding razor and today a bargain. Why was it not produced both in the US and England. Engineers and testers back when surely knew it was better, if for weight alone.

Different markets - different/adapted products - happens a lot. Even if they had the same management involved, which is not necessarily the case, they may have had a myriad of reasons for the differences. Maybe they improved the design by the time they started producing in the UK and didn't feel it was worth the investment to retool back in America . Maybe the US looked at the extra quality as a frivolous expense? The markets were much more separate back then than they would be today.

Or maybe the added weight was considered a negative at the time?

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 12-31-2012, 10:54 PM
#15
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All good reasons why it may not have been more uniform. Don't know what happened with the adjustable markets. Get the sense maybe the US focused on slims and fatboys and all their variants while the British continued to produce Rocket type super speeds. The markets clearly were different at that time and much less integrated as would be the case today.

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 01-01-2013, 02:05 AM
#16
  • mark1966
  • Member
  • Canberra [the capital city of] Australia
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(12-31-2012, 06:45 AM)zeppelinkarte Wrote:
(12-30-2012, 02:05 AM)mark1966 Wrote: The AJ is a great shaver but I confess to be a sucker for the thicker handle on the #16. Of course YMMV Smile

Glad you have found your 'perfect' razor!

And maybe the knurling pattern and the Rhodium sparkle of the 16. Thanks to you Mark, I get to enjoy the 16.

Does anyone know or can point to a thread that discusses the direction English production of Gillette's took versus the US produced models. The English seemed to take the super speeds to a new level with the Rocket type opening mechanism and the overall weight of the razors. Head geometry seems to be close. Any English Rocket type razor, HD, Red Tip, Flair Tip, 16, 66, Aristocrat Jr. and others just seem better made and solid in comparison to the American production. Assuming the same senior executives were involved with both engineering and production facilities, why the differences? I agree the Aristocrat Jr. is an outstanding razor and today a bargain. Why was it not produced both in the US and England. Engineers and testers back when surely knew it was better, if for weight alone.

Glad you liked the #16!

Apart from the aforementioned good points there is also a strong sense of national pride amongst some of these things. At that time the British Empire as it was still played an important international role and British made stood for high quality in manufacturing. I can imagine the British production team working hard to best the Yankees and improve on their designs ... Biggrin

Pure speculation of course.

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 01-01-2013, 03:42 PM
#17
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Well, in the case of the above, they did.

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 01-03-2013, 10:08 AM
#18
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(12-29-2012, 09:17 PM)Andrew Wrote: I, too, love the shave from my Aristocrat Jr, although mine is the no. 48, with a head that more resembles the no. 21 Aristocrat.

Actually that is what I have. The case is the one in the photo in my original post, so it's either a mismatch or the #48 was shipped in multiple cases.

I'm actually not a huge fan of the #21, which I find too aggressive.

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 01-03-2013, 11:10 AM
#19
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I snagged a 53 on the bay on Christmas eve (i believe), waiting on it to show up at my door step. I can't wait! Coming from the great white north to me in the US. Every day I come home hoping it's waiting for me!

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 01-03-2013, 11:06 PM
#20
  • Shaun
  • Senior Member
  • St Peters, NSW, Australia
User Info
There is one today on the e thingo site entitled

Antique Gillette One Piece Razor In Original Packaging

Not sure if I can post that here Smile but also, not sure if this one is alum model or not. the packaging is very different too.

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