As wet shavers we seem to all be looking for that one perfect razor. Maybe its your birth year Gillette in MINT condition. Maybe its a Toggle or a bottom dial Fatboy? Perhaps its a 7/8″ full wedge Wade and Butcher….the point is we all have those ‘GRAIL RAZORS’ that we want for our collection. Some guys will obtain them and put them away for safe keeping. Other guys/girls will get that Grail razor so they can use it. I am in the latter group. I am a user and not someone who wants to have everything for the sake of having everything.
Funny thing about these Grail razors is that mine change from day to day, and week to week. from straights to DE’s and back to straights again. Of course I want an A1 Gillette Super Adjustable, but I don’t think I will go out of my way to search for one as I have a super adjustable from an earlier date that is actually a better razor without the plastic parts of the newer version.
Funny thing happened while browsing the forums. I saw a Gold open comb Gillette Sheraton! Wow, this is one BAD@SS looking razor. Somewhat rare apparently I figured Id put that on my list of razors to look for. Not but a few weeks later a stumbled into an antique shop and saw one sitting in a glass case. I asked the lady if I could see it and she told me that the saftey razors don’t last long in the shop….I guess I was pretty lucky. At least I thought so until she showed me the price. $25….that’s right $25!! Now I knew I was beyond lucky. I didn’t bother trying to haggle and just paid the lady the money and walked out the door thinking about the IKEA commercial where the lady runs out yelling “START THE CAR”! The razor itself was fairly dirty but the case was in unreal condition so I hoped that all it needed was a little cleaning.
Needless to say this razor cleaned up nice. Oh, and can it ever shave. I find it to be a fairly aggressive OC. It is more finicky with blade angle and has nicked my more than any of my other razors, but I still love her. And I would never even think to sell her.
As for my second prize possession, it has a different story. I have a couple friends who run an antique shop in British Columbia and I emailed them to see if they had any razors….well they did. They had 4 safety razors that from the pics were in fairly rough shape, but it was hard to tell. A Fatboy, a flare tip, an aristocrat junior and a Milord. I have owned a few Fatboy’s and sold a few Fatboy’s so that didn’t excite me as much as the other three which I had never used. When they arrived I gave the Fatboy, aristocrat, and flare tip a cleaning and boy did they every sparkle. Beautiful specimens and great shavers. The Milord on the other hand looked like this…….
Yes is had been hit with the ugly stick pretty hard. The inside of the case was tattered and non existent in some parts and the supposedly gold razor looked brown and pretty gross. This razor and case needed some work. I scrubbed the razor and polished it and used pipe cleaners and tooth brushes and scrubbing bubbles and mothers and some stuff called ‘sparkle’ all in an attempt to bring it back to its past glory. I also took the case apart and restored it. This was my first restore of its kind. The hard work and effort paid off and now this razor is absolutely one of my favorites. It shaves nicely, but its the feeling I get when I open it up and see my work that makes it special.
It’s funny how a razor I hadn’t ever really though much of could become so dear to me. I think when you put work into something it changes your views. I think this is what CAR GUYS feel when they are working towards finishing a project or restoring an old vehicle. Sure it costs a lot more to restore a car, but I get to use my razor regardless of the weather or where I am. It is one of the beauties of our hobby. We can enjoy it anywhere anytime and the experience is always different.
So what is your Prize Possession in wet shaving? Perhaps it’s not even a razor. Maybe its a scuttle or a brush. Let me know what your top piece of gear is as I would love to see all the different answers. I wonder if anyone shares a similar Grail item.
Cheers all. I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed writing it.
“Shave you, Shave me; Shave it for always. That’s the way it should be” – Lionel Richie