Water dispensing razor

I have written about quite a few self lubricating razors. More than a few, to be frank. But the idea seems to turn up like a bad penny over and over and over again. Although – if the patent drawing is anything to go by – the water dispensing razor invented by Ralph Galli Jr in 1978 makes for a happy shaver.

As I’ve said before, the majority of patents seeks to fix a problem. And Ralph’s patent sought to fix the “problem” of the skin not being moist and lubricated. In the words of the patent:

Description of the Prior Art
In order to obtain close, smooth shaves and to minimize cuts when using a safety razor, it is necessary to maintain the skin in a moist lubricated condition. Various devices have been proposed which have fluid dispensing containers and tubes attached to or within the handle of a razor. These devices have generally been quite complex, difficult to use and require entirely new razor configurations, such as shown in U.S. Pat. No. 3,139,683, issued July 7, 1964, and U.S. Pat. No. 2,336,806, issued Dec. 14, 1943.
Summary of the Invention
It is therefore the primary object of the present invention to provide a safety razor having a simplified water dispensing arrangement which does not require extensive modifications of standard razor types.

From US patent 4,177,556

A problem I fixes every time I shave by not using canned goo or, even worse, no lather at all. But that idea wasn’t good enough for Ralph. Instead he came up with a single edged razor that you could hook up to the bathroom faucet.

Yes, you did read that right.

Ralph invented and patented a razor that, in order to work as intended, needed to be connected to the water tap in your bathroom.

Yes, that is as crazy as it sounds. The only thing that would be more crazy if is the patent drawing contained a severely misshapen man using… the… razor… oh. Right. At least he is smiling. Moving on!

Patent drawing for Ralph's water dispensing razor. Note misshapen shaver.
Patent drawing from US patent 4,177,556

Odd looking drawing aside, the water dispensing razor is fairly straight forward. A okay looking single edge razor have a manifold in the head. The handle is hollow, and has a small pushbutton valve in the upper part. The handle is connected to the faucet with a flexible hose, which has an adjustable clamp bearing down on it.

In use, the shaver would first spend a few minutes untangling the hose before attaching it to the faucet. Then he would open the faucet, adjust the clamp, before pushing the pushbutton valve. And then water would come out of the razor head and flush any soap or lather away from the shavers face.

I mean, I do get it. Some people like shaving in the shower. This would be much the same, but without the shower. I don’t like shaving in the shower, in part because water, while wet, don’t give me any cushion nor glide. Water is lousy lather.

From a technical point of view, this invention will work as intended. The water dispensing razor will dispense water. I’m just forced to ask why… why go to all the trouble to create a moist lubricated condition, when the solution is called a brush and a puck of soap?

As usual, you can read the full patent on Google Patents.

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  1. Pingback: Water dispensing razor - Razors n Blades the shave that saves

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