Well, not long ago I placed my final order of the year with Phil. (hopefully anyway) I picked up some MWF, alum and was a bit short to qualify for free shipping. So I browsed his shop and found two new Cadet Three Piece razors. I ordered both the closed bar and the open comb versions of the razor as they both looked quite nice. This is a short review of the Closed Bar version.
Monday I decided to take the Cadet TP-26 Closed Bar for a test shave. As with all of my test shaves I used a new Personna Red blade. I didn't want a blade I do not love to influence the razor review.
My first thought with the razor was it's heft. While only 3.1 ounces, that is a decent weight for shaving. Not up there with a Pils or iKon etc, but holding its own against the long handled standard razors from Mühle and Merkur against whom it competes. The styling is quite stunning, especially for this price point ($24.99). Chrome head, chrome top and bottom tip of the handle and a beautiful black well knurled shaft. The Cadet is a joy to hold and there is no way it will ever slip on you when shaving. The handle's knurling reminds me of the knurling on an iKon OSS. Yes, it is that deep.
On to the shave. I used a good brush and soap for the initial shave as just like with the blade I didn't want to use something with which I am unfamiliar or which gives me less than stellar results routinely.
The razor performed very well. I find it mildly aggressive, right in line with a Merkur 34c / 38c or a Mühle R89. No nicks from the shave, somewhere between a DFS and a BBS with a three pass shave. Excellent results for a first use IMO. One can hear the whiskers being cut down. It is a somewhat muted sound compared to say a Futur or Fatip, but right in line with a 34c. My only gripe at all is a small one, it took a bit longer to rinse off the lather with every rinse. Not much longer, but just enough to make me wonder how it would do with a think pre-shave oil. Unless one uses something thick though (i.e. AoS oil) I don't see any issue here at all.
I find this razor to be one heck of a value in the shaving world. It is a great beginners razor and also one for the experienced shaver. The styling is top notch and the price point is great for even the most frugal of shavers. A great addition to someone's collection and one which will not break the bank.