Weekly Razor Review

RustyBlade

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Feb 27, 2017
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Rami

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Don't worry @Rami your new razor matches the quality of a Wolfman and comes with two plates to choose from.

@alfredus sorry mate the WR2 is the BBS-1 killer. More refined and well.... Kinda available :LOL:

As @Errol said, there is not much between them.

To me the best shave I ever had was with a straight. Just not enough time to go for it :(
 

Errol

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Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Occam DE Safety Razor (USA/China)



With so much wrong with DE razors I find it difficult to understand why anyone would ever buy one:

Double Edges Razors:

  • Intimidating un-packaging of razor and no protective dispensing system. Exposure to 2 blade edges when changing blade.
  • Easily clogs, hard to wash out and harder to keep clean without serious maintenance. Lot’s of moving parts to gum-up or fail.
  • Have to twist to open and close or un-assemble razor to change blade.
  • Have to purchase another container to store sharp used blades.
These are not my words; they have been copied directly from the Occam’s own SE description. As soon as I heard about the Occam DE I went straight to the Classic Shaving web site to check the Occam range. Low and behold all Occam SE’s were on sale at less than half the recommended price. Maybe the SE razor that was going to set the world on fire has failed to ignite.

Designed in the USA and manufactured in China is the direction some brands have chosen in an effort to keep the costs of manufacture down. Of late the quality of many razors manufactured in China has been quite good and the Occam DE is no different. For something different Occam have include a smooth regular cap and another which Occam are calling a ridge back cap that is designed to assist beginners keep within the proper angle while learning to wet shave; I’m interested in the performance of this learner cap. Both caps and head are sintered stainless steel while the handle is machined. A satin finish has been applied to the head while the handle is polished. A very nice feeling opposing fine knurl has been machined to the handle but if Occam thought it a good idea to show the world that the handle was an Occam by etching a large ‘O’ to the end of the handle they could have at least centred it. The ridge back is an extended triangular shape along the length of the cap; at this time I’m assuming if you can feel the tip of the ridge while shaving your angle is wrong. I’ll find out.

A Feather blade is not normally the blade I would give to a beginner but it is the recommended blade for this razor so I’ll start with it and the standard cap. That first shave was not the closest shave I’ve ever had but the Occam certainly tamed the Feather blade at a great learner level efficiency of about Karve CB #B plate. Next shave with the ridge back cap fitted and I was half way through the first pass before I realised that it was fitted. I never felt the ridge cap till I was shaving downwards under the nose and the cap rubbed on the bottom of my schnozz. I then checked angels and if the ridge cap was touching the face there was no blade engagement; another invention that does not work. In the Occam’s favour the second shave with the Feather blade was much closer than the first. At this time my thinking was that if the Occam tamed the Feather blade a second tier blade was going to struggle. You probably cannot get much more second tier than a Muhle blade but this razor/ blade combination operated faultlessly. I did leave the ridge cap on for the remainder of the test but never even felt it was fitted. Overall there is nothing to rave about with the Occam DE.

Blades Used – Feather & Muhle

Material – 316 Stainless Steel - Satin

Weight – 104g

Head Width – 42mm

Handle Length – 85mm

Handle Diameter – 12.3mm

Final Word – Just a razor
 

RustyBlade

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2018 Sabbatical
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Feb 27, 2017
Location
Sydney
@Errol I do wonder why they bothered with the ridge. Looked very obvious that it was never going to be an effective guide or aide.
Considering the Walbusch & Sohnes Humpback Slant Razor and the PAA Alpha Ecliptic Slant Razors all have a very considerable bump that actually rests partially against your face.
Another fail and as you summed it up, just a razor.

Appreciate the reviews, keep them coming.
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Occam O.R.E.N (USA)



This Occam OREN is the second generation of the Occam SE razor design with changes made hopefully to improve handling and performance. When I reviewed the original Occam SE I was critical of characteristics that I did not particularly like so time to check out if the product upgrades have improved the breed. If I thought the original Occam was skeletal in design the OREN has been taken to another level; a near full length elongated slot has been cut into the handle and material has been removed from the guard. Occam claim the size of the guard has been reduced by 50% and this is visually noticeable. The width of the razor head remains the same so it will be interest if the other changes made have done enough to cover this deficiency. Similar to the original Occam the AC blade slips into a groove in the head and is retained by two small knobs with no means of clamping.

I had no issues with the floating blade and a smooth, a close shave with efficiency around the Karve CB #C plate using the two dot guard and a nice little bit of blade feel was not enough to get the OREN across the line as far as I was concerned. Reducing the size of the guard has improved to OREN to the point where there are no problems in knowing where the blade is. Modifications to the handle have certainly enhanced holding the razor but it is still not good; that rectangular shape has drawbacks when it comes to holding the razor at certain angles; it is not comfortable but the sticking point that I really do not like with this razor is the width of the head; it is cumbersome in the tight spots. I never felt the need to change the guards on this razor and I have a feeling that the two dot guard on the OREN is marginally more efficient than on the original Occam razor. Again I had trouble loading the blade but for different reasons to the Occam. The blade slipped into position easily without the use of the insertion tool but both times when I pushed on the blade to check it was seated I pushed the blade off the holding knobs and had to load it again. There are better razors around.

Blades Used – Kai Pink Captain Titan Mild & Feather Professional

Material – 316 Stainless Steel

Weight – 48g

Head Width – 59mm

Handle Length – 90mm

Handle Diameter – 13.6 x 6.2mm - rectangular

Final Word – Glad to pack it back in the box
 

SpeedyPC

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Occam O.R.E.N (USA)



This Occam OREN is the second generation of the Occam SE razor design with changes made hopefully to improve handling and performance. When I reviewed the original Occam SE I was critical of characteristics that I did not particularly like so time to check out if the product upgrades have improved the breed. If I thought the original Occam was skeletal in design the OREN has been taken to another level; a near full length elongated slot has been cut into the handle and material has been removed from the guard. Occam claim the size of the guard has been reduced by 50% and this is visually noticeable. The width of the razor head remains the same so it will be interest if the other changes made have done enough to cover this deficiency. Similar to the original Occam the AC blade slips into a groove in the head and is retained by two small knobs with no means of clamping.

I had no issues with the floating blade and a smooth, a close shave with efficiency around the Karve CB #C plate using the two dot guard and a nice little bit of blade feel was not enough to get the OREN across the line as far as I was concerned. Reducing the size of the guard has improved to OREN to the point where there are no problems in knowing where the blade is. Modifications to the handle have certainly enhanced holding the razor but it is still not good; that rectangular shape has drawbacks when it comes to holding the razor at certain angles; it is not comfortable but the sticking point that I really do not like with this razor is the width of the head; it is cumbersome in the tight spots. I never felt the need to change the guards on this razor and I have a feeling that the two dot guard on the OREN is marginally more efficient than on the original Occam razor. Again I had trouble loading the blade but for different reasons to the Occam. The blade slipped into position easily without the use of the insertion tool but both times when I pushed on the blade to check it was seated I pushed the blade off the holding knobs and had to load it again. There are better razors around.

Blades Used – Kai Pink Captain Titan Mild & Feather Professional

Material – 316 Stainless Steel

Weight – 48g

Head Width – 59mm

Handle Length – 90mm

Handle Diameter – 13.6 x 6.2mm - rectangular

Final Word – Glad to pack it back in the box
@Errol that looks like a potato peeler, what's cooking in the kitchen.
 

Errol

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Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Seygus Zeppelin (Spain)





The first thing to strike me when I picked up the razor was that the edges on the cap are not straight but curved. I’m going to call the shape of the cap ‘cupped’ for want of a better word plus that is exactly what it does, cups the blade. This cupped cap matches the tapered edges of the base plate perfectly to put the blade into tension when everything is torqued down. Seygus Razors refer to the cupped torque to as a ‘quasi slant effect’. I understand the ‘quasi slant effect’ to be something like the twisting effect applied to a blade in a slant razor so I’m expecting a good shave. Seygus have fitted different levels of efficiency to each side of the plate with two different profiles; the flat side of the plate is the mild side while the scalloped edge is said to be a little more efficient. It is not written on the plate but I understand that the mild side has a blade gap of 0.5mm and the serrated side is 0.7mm. Manufactured from stainless steel, the razor has been highly polished to a mirror finish and is small and chunky with it short bulldog handle. A spiralling knurl is applied to the centre section of the handle with a cross hatch knurl on the end, looks very good.

I have not used a dual efficient razor before but know that I tend to use one side of the blade more than the other when shaving. I’ve often wondered that after using any blade for two shaves, if in fact I had still used only one edge of the blade. I’ll just have to pay attention that I don’t roll the razor over during the shave to stay on the chosen side of the plate. With the Zeppelin the first shaved was with the flat, mild side of the plate and a Gillette 7 O’Clock Yellow blade. The result was a smooth shave but miles too mild for my liking; way less than a Karve CB #B plate. With the more efficient scalloped plate the second shave was much better and more to my liking but still under Karve CB #B plate efficiency. A Kai blade was chosen for the third and fourth shaves to liven things up but the result remained pretty much the same. Try as I might to use the flat milder side of the plate during the third and fourth shaves I kept migrating to the more efficient side. That flat mild side of the plate is just not for me. After using a dual plate, I cannot say I’m a fan, much preferring the plate to be the same on both sides but the system does work. The razor gets top marks for innovation and quality of manufacture but is let down by being way too mild.

Blades Used – Gillette 7 O’Clock Yellow and Kai

Material – 316L Stainless Steel

Weight – 117g

Head Width – 43.9mm

Handle Length – 79mm

Handle Diameter – 14mm

Final Word – Innovative but needs to be more efficient
 

fruityasu

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Apr 15, 2018
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Melbourne
Great review @Errol....
I have been looking at the Zeppelin and have been tempted to buy but can’t pull the trigger because of the different gaps either side....
Agree it’s an Interesting concept but I’ll definitely pass on this one....
 

Errol

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Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Above The Tie Windsor Stainless Steel Satin SSM1 (USA)



A change of ownership at Above The Tie and the new management have resurrected the M1/ M2, R1/ R2, H1/ H2 range of razors (now referred to as the Classic range). Last November it was announced that the Classic range would cease to exist, and that Classic line would be integrated into the Windsor line as the Stainless Steel Satin range. Now the whole range of Classic machine finished razors is available as their lower cost option.

I have now purchased the first razor to be released in the ATT Windsor line up as the Stainless Steel Satin with the safety bar head. The machine finish on the Classic has disappeared to be replaced by a bead blasted finish that will satisfy those who did not approve of the machine finish and the width of the head has been extended to cover the blade tabs. Having no particular preference when it comes to the tab of the blade being covered, this is not a selling point for me. I have purchased a five Piece set so over the coming weeks will give each of the three plates a try.

The ATT Satin M1 (mild) is nicely weighted and very comfortable to use; I liked the length of the handle and the spiraling grip was never a problem, I’m now getting used to this style of grip. There is a reason I purchased a five-piece set and that is because I expected the M1 to be very mild and it never let me down in that respect, less than a Karve CB #B plate. The M1 is too mild for my liking but I can say that the razor did provide a very smooth and close shave. If you do not mind a milder razor the ATT Stainless Steel Satin M1 is a very nice razor.

Blades Used – Astra Superior and Gillette Silver Blue
Material – 303 Stainless Steel – bead blasted

Weight – 115g

Head Width – 43.92mm

Handle Length – 89mm

Handle Diameter – 12.66mm

Final Word – Very mild but looking forward to the R1 plate.
 

Errol

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Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
West Coast Shaving CNC Holywood Palm (USA)



Said to be inspired by Brien Twilley from Charcoal Goods Razors and machined from stainless steel this razor is worthy of further investigation. I can see a Charcoal Goods influence in the handle but the head; well???? To me it does not look anything like a Charcoal Goods head but maybe it has the same geometry. In fact, the head is quite intricate and detailed in design and would have been expensive to manufacture. Because the whole razor has been bead blasted to a nice satin finish all machining marks, if there were any, have been wiped out. This razor was introduced a couple of years ago and was the first in the line of West Coast Shaving CNC fully stainless steel razors.

This is a mild razor, around Karve CB #B plate efficiency but does it deliver. Smooth and confidence inspiring, I found myself liking this razor and would have given it my seal of approval if only it had been made just that little bit more efficient. Maybe there is some Charcoal Goods influence there after all.

Blades Used – Gillette Platinum and Feather

Material – Stainless steel

Weight – 86g

Head Width – 42.42mm

Handle Length – 89mm

Handle Diameter – 12.35mm

Final Word – A nice mild razor
 

Errol

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Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
@Errol

Would love an idea on where to buy razors from and whether you think they are worth it.
I can certainly let you know where they were available when I purchased them new. The big problem is that the availability is in and out depending on the supplier and stock holdings. The WSC Holywood Palm above was available from West Coast Shaving about two years ago and was available for about one month. Even their later release from earlier this year is currently not available but there may be supplementary releases. Other razors are available only in single figure numbers so keeping up with them is a full time job. By the time I review them the stock has been sold. The prominent manufacturers like ATT, Blackland, Timeless carry good stock quantities and are always generally available. Very difficult task but I’ll give it a go.

As for whether I think any razor is worth it or not; too subjective to even try. I always try to convey my thoughts for my personal likes and dislikes but everyone’s requirement is different. If I was perfectly honest, not one of the razors I’ve reviewed is worth anywhere near the money I’ve spent on it but I enjoy checking them out.
 

Mark1966

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@Errol

Would love an idea on where to buy razors from and whether you think they are worth it.
I can certainly let you know where they were available when I purchased them new. The big problem is that the availability is in and out depending on the supplier and stock holdings. The WSC Holywood Palm above was available from West Coast Shaving about two years ago and was available for about one month. Even their later release from earlier this year is currently not available but there may be supplementary releases. Other razors are available only in single figure numbers so keeping up with them is a full time job. By the time I review them the stock has been sold. The prominent manufacturers like ATT, Blackland, Timeless carry good stock quantities and are always generally available. Very difficult task but I’ll give it a go.

As for whether I think any razor is worth it or not; too subjective to even try. I always try to convey my thoughts for my personal likes and dislikes but everyone’s requirement is different. If I was perfectly honest, not one of the razors I’ve reviewed is worth anywhere near the money I’ve spent on it but I enjoy checking them out.
Just buy vintage ;)
 

Errol

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Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Timeless Bronze Solid Bar (USA)



I know better than to take any notice of numbers when it comes to efficiency with razors but a 0.38mm blade gap sounds mild so let’s give it a run and see what it can do. This razor is CNC machined out of bronze and has a buffed finish. It looks very solid and actually feels quite hefty. It was not till I had used the Timeless Bronze and it was sitting up in the stand that I started to appreciate just how nice this razor looks. While the manufacturer calls the finish buffed, in the right light it positively dazzles so I can only imagine what it would look like if it were polished. I’m not going to polish this one so I’ll never know. When I bought the stainless steel and titanium versions of the Timeless razors I made sure I only put a scalloped cap on the scalloped plate; for all the others it was the plain flat cap. After admiring the scalloped cap on the bronze, I’m not sure I went the right way. Also absent from the Bronze plate is the lather channel that is one of the distinguishing features of the Timeless stainless steel & titanium range.

In use the Bronze Solid Bar is very pleasant with the efficiency of a Karve CB fitted with a #B plate. Mild, smooth and comfortable is how I would describe the Bronze SB. It may be very mellow but gets the job done easily. While shaving I did not notice the weight of the razor; light weight or a great lump of stainless steel, in this case bronze, it matters not to me so the heft of this razor was not an issue. Others though, may find it heavy. This razor would be a great contender if you were an everyday shaver.

Blades Used – Gillette Rubie & Sputnik

Material – C954 Bronze – lightly buffed

Weight – 126g

Head Width – 41.3mm

Handle Length – 85mm

Handle Diameter – 14mm

Availability - Timeless

Final Word – A nice mild razor
 
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