Not all that long ago there was a small business called Shave HQ, run by Chuck Falzone, that focused on cleaning, restoring, and selling vintage razors. While I never bought from him1 myself, he paired many a vintage razor with new owners.
Last week he posted on Reddit that the little pamphlet on how to shave that he used to ship with his starter kits was now “set free” – in other words, everyone can now benefit from his knowledge and advice. Chuck made it available both as a pamphlet, and as a straight up document better suited for reading on a screen.
Released under a creative commons license (CC BY-SA 4.0), the two versions of his explanatory text is free to download, share, and adapt as long as as you attribute and share alike.
You can find both of Chuck’s originals here. Download, enjoy, and share with other shavers – and tell them who made it.
I have been lucky, getting my vintage razors either as PIFs or for little more than cost of shipping from friends online.
While I’m personally a big fan of vintage razors in all forms, new manufacture traditional safety razors are being released frequently. One of the latest I’ve heard about is the Asylum Rx Gen II, soon to be released by Phil from BullGoose Shaving. And he recently showed it of on YouTube.
Dave Dhannoo – known as @DyspraxicShaver on Twitter – is putting out a regular podcast. Known as The Retro Wet Shaving Podcast it is quite regular and regularly features manufacturers and artisans I enjoy. As an example, he recently featured Tatara Razors from Portugal.
The Larkin Idea a home improvement magazine and mail order sales catalogue from the late 19th and early 20th century. It helped propel the Larkin Company into gigantic mail order conglomerate in the early part of the 20th century. Today both the company and their “idea”1 is all but unknown, even if Larkin rivalled Sears at its height. While the story behind the company is intriguing, to say the least, it is not the focus today. Rather I want to show you a tutorial in four parts that was printed in the Larkin Idea in 1905. They refereed to it simply as “Correct Shaving”.
Shave Library is a new wiki dedicated to shaving with a straight, tied to the Sharp Razor Palace forum. There is a lot of good information available on the wiki already, but like all good wikis it has room to grow.
A wiki is – as I’m sure most people know – a hypertext publication collaboratively edited and managed by its users. In other words, it’s a fountain of shave gear knowledge everyone can add to.
The site focuses almost exclusively the classic straight, and while shavettes are mentioned there is little to nothing on Gillette style razors to be found. For those of us who prefers shaving with a safety razor, there is still good reads on the site. In particular I’ve enjoyed the DIY-section, since I like to tinker.
I learned about the Shave Library through ShaveFan, who I’ve written a post about before. And now that you learned about it through me, perhaps you should go have a look at Shave Library?
A couple of years ago, I wrote up a short piece on a vintage European Vending Machine Razor. As a quick recap, it is a razor with stamped sheet metal head and a handle that some shavers like a lot. It was verifiable sold in Germany, and perhaps elsewhere.
Solid Shaves is one of the very few shaving related YouTube channels I follow. In his latest video he’s using a Stahly Live Blade vibrating razor. I’ve been intrigued by the Stahly Live Blade for years now, and it’s neat to watch it in use.
One of these days I need to find the patent for the Stahly Live Blade. I suspect the gear train is going to be interesting, even if it might not be much to snark about.
As some of you might have noticed, I like patents for old razors and related accoutrements. Like enough to have many, many posts about them. Enough to self publish a book about them. And more than enough to appreciate the work behind a site like razors.click.
Razors.click is a site mostly about razor patents. It have some added bonuses like a handful of inventor biographies, a few articles on razor related subjects, and short how-to’s on how to make your own wedge blade and taking 360° images. The main focus is on patents though, and where I will show of a patent and either snark on some of the odd details or ramble about the things I like, razors.click lays out the patent in a clear, readable format with interactive drawings.
Razors.click is a good resource for anyone who likes old razors and engineering. Personally I would enjoy seeing more shaving related accoutrements – brushes and bowls – but it is a great resource both for research and relaxation. Go check it out.
Williams Mug Soap is in many ways like the Arko shave stick… I’ll touch upon several of the ways during this review, but lets start with the big one: If you try it, you can not not have an opinion on it. And my opinion on Williams Mug Soap seems to run counter to what many fellow shavers think.
ShaveFan is a a shaving-focused link aggregation and discussion web site. In other words a place where interesting links from all over the shaving world ends up, so you don’t have to visit several blogs, forums and sosial media daily. In a way it’s like fark.com,1 but with more focus and less snark. ShaveFan uses tags to allow for easy filtering and searching.
It’s possible to use it just as a visitor, but to gain the full benefit you ought to sign up. As a full member you can submit and vote on links. You also need to be a member if you want to comment on any links listed. For the time being at least you have to have an invite, more on that later.
I’ve been a member on ShaveFan for a while now, and I find it useful both for finding out what is going on in the world of shavers, as well as – being honest here – promoting some of the more interesting things I write about on my blog. With more members I can see ShaveFan becoming an even more useful addition to the shave world.
Interested in joining ShaveFan? Ask either ShaveFan himself (he’s also active on Twitter) or me about an invite. Reach me through my contact form, on twitter, or via PM on my favourite shave forum.
Fark.com is a news aggregator and an edited social networking news site – a decent place if you want to know what is going on without having to visit several dozen news sites.