Muhle R89, not aggressive, - Really?

Discussion in 'Double Edged Razors' started by gduke, Jun 4, 2010.

  1. I recently purchased a new Muhle R89. I will say that I am pleased with the construction and finish quality.
    I had read here on B&B and on other forums, that this razor is not considered very aggressive. But my experience with this razor has not matched that description. This razor seems much more aggressive than the Slim Adjustable, or the Merkur Progress when set at the highest settings.

    Anyone else have that experience? Any chance I got an older version? Any way to tell the difference?
  2. Why don't you post a picture or a link to a picture of the one you got.

    I have all variants of this EJ/Muhle razor and they all are mild to moderate shavers. You say it's worse than Gillette and Merkur adjustables dialed all the way up? There's something wrong there?!
  3. My EJ with the late Muhle head has a pretty large gap between the clamp and safety bar. This exposes more of the blade, and makes the razor more pressure sensitive. Try using light pressure and practice keeping the angle constant. I got excellent results using several different blade brands. I didn't try Feathers yet. I rotate between a dozen or so Vintage Gillettes, and none have bettered the EJ. For reference I use a Fat boy on #4, so no I don't think the EJ is overly aggressive when used without too much pressure. I just let the weight of the razor do the job, and it does it very well.
  4. Also make sure the razor is assembled with the handle screwed in all the way until it stops. Anything less would produce the condition you describe.
    I think the earlier head was noticeably different looking than the latest offering. You could compare photos of the new one to yours to see if yours is the latest. The earlier ones were reputed to be more aggressive I have heard.
  5. Luc

    Luc Moderator Emeritus

    +1 on posting a picture

    The old R89 model was quite aggressive, I had one and it was the most aggressive DE I ever used.
  6. Right, and they are noticeably different in appearance (for sure) and packing (I THINK).
  7. I'd bet you got an older model. I had the EJ version of the new head, and it was much too mild for me.
  8. I have recently bought a R89 and am curious as to which one I have. What are the differences between the versions?
  9. +1 on pics or a link. I have both the old and new R89 as well as the new R41. The old R89 is very aggressive indeed but the other models are mild to average in my book.
  10. If you have purchased the newer version of the R89, it would be a relatively mild razor. The other models were far more aggressive. You can tell if you have the older model if it looks like this...
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2010
  11. The originally Muhle R89 (that is considered to be madly aggressive) was an open comb razor, the current is a closed comb model. I think that would classify as noticeably different in appearance. :lol::lol:
  12. Luc

    Luc Moderator Emeritus

    That's the beast!
  13. I just had a shave with Muhle R89 (Same head) and it looks to me that it's a lot more aggressive than my HD. I also got a Slim (Aristocrat) which I've used once, but it was with a different blade, so I can't compare.
  14. Well, I have a DE87 (same head as the 89), have only used it a few times, and I am just into my 2nd month of wet shaving. From my limited experience, the 87 seems pretty similar to a Slim on 5. I would not say it is a more aggressive shaver. Here's a chart which compares the specs of these, and other razors.
    I think you'll find these are merely guidelines, and YM will DEFINITELY V! :w00t:
    I have not gotten consistently comfortable shaves with the Slim, but of course, I am still learning. However, my 40's SS delivers consistent good results, seemingly regardless of blade selection (so far). I must confess, I bought into the Fatboy craze, and it too gives me a great shave - I haven't used it enough to completely evaluate it, but it seems more forgiving than the Slim, to ME.
  15. Mine is a closed comb, so I guess it is the 2009 model.
  16. Sorry for no picture - I am traveling and not in the same State as the razor this weekend.
    The one I recently bought is NOT the open comb pictured a few posts up - it is the closed comb version (not sure if there are more than one closed comb version).

    I will try a different blade next week - and try to ensure I use less pressure.

    This may be just be an issue of getting used to the new razor...
  17. I'm used to using feather blade in my HD which just slices off all the hair with minimum tagging, but it leaves my face a bit irritated. Astra SP is my 2nd best blade so far. I've been using this combo for 4 years.

    I've shaved with R89 again this morning on one side of my face and my trusty HD. I've lathered up using Tabac soap on my face (yesterday I used Pre de Provence). I've started shaving with R89 with Super Iridium (new blade to me as well) on my left side of my face as I did yesterday and the blade was tugging on my follicles and I could feel the blade scraping on my skin, I had hard time getting the angle right.

    So I've removed the blade from R89 and loaded it up into my HD. Straight away I notice that the razor is heavier and it cuts the hair with a lot less effort, still there's a fair bit of tugging, a lot more than Feather and Astra SP. I'm thinking it might be a dud blade, so I loaded up a new Astra SP into the r89 and start XTG pass on my left side from ear to nose. I notice there's a lot less tugging, but again, I can feel the blade draggin on my skin and it either cuts and scrapes or it doesn't scrape and doesn't cut too welll, maybe it's my technique with this razor. I put the blade into my HD and did the right side of my face, and it was much smoother shave. I've swapped the blade around and did another XTG pass in the opposite direction. Same result as previous pass. After applying Thayers Witch Hazel aftershave the left side (R89) of my face was burning like hell while my right was tingling a bit.

    I'm going experiment with this razor for a while longer, I'm going try few different blades and soaps/creams. But so far it seems to be a lot more aggressive razor than HD. Also I'm missing the extra weight of HD.

    Can you guys who love R89 and EJ tell me what razor blade and cream/combo works for you? I'm not too keen on trying a feather with it since I think I will have no face left.
  18. I would love to help, but I find it a mild razor that works best with the sharpest blades...i.e. Feather, Kai, Super Iridium

    Maybe it's the lesser weight in the handle. If you've got another heavier handle that'll screw on there, try that. The Muhle chrome version is the lightest of the razors with that head, I believe. Personally, I prefer the EJ DE89L for this reason.

    You could also try a steeper angle. Instead of the normal 30 degrees, you could try moving the handle up higher to maybe 40. If you don't end up liking it, you'll be able to get rid of it on BST easily. Good luck.
  19. I don't have the Merkur, so I won't be able to compare, but if I compare to my Feather portable, the R89 is definitely milder than the Portable.
    I think you may need to find the correct angle, but for me even with a Feather blade I can get an irritation free shave with no problem, and am quite a "newbie".
  20. I think the quoted part is quite telling. I think you are subconsciously applying a lot of extra pressure to make up for the difference in weight between the two razors.

    Even if the R89 were more aggressive (and I don't think it is; I consider it to be fairly mild) you shouldn't automatically get a bad case of razor burn as a result.

    Razor burn is the result of a bad angle and/or too much pressure.

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