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Dirty Bird Brush Scuttle and Lather Bowl

Item Description

On September 21, 2008 I sent an e-mail to Julie Moore (Dirty Bird Pottery) regarding and idea for a brush scuttle with a conical chamber that would maximize the contact area between the brush and scuttle. After a flurry of e-mails, the completed scuttle arrived at my door on October 6th!

Julie did an amazing job of working with me to turn my overly-complex initial ideas into a simple, elegant, and functional final product.

Brush Scuttle and Insert

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The Brush Scuttle comes in two pieces: the Scuttle and the conical Insert. The Scuttle is approximately 4” tall by 4” wide. It narrows near the top to provide an easy grip. The Insert has an outside diameter of 4” across the top, matching the diameter of the Scuttle. The ‘brush chamber’ has a 2 ¾” diameter opening at the top that tapers to a diameter of 1”. The brush chamber is 2 ¾” deep.

Lather Bowl

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The lather bowl is a separate piece and has an inside diameter of 3 ¼” and is 1 ¾” deep. The bowl interior has spiral grooves that help create lather. It also has a slight bulge and a lip which work together to keep the lather in the bowl and directed to the bottom of the shaving brush.

Quality Touches

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All three pieces are of very high quality. The finish is beautiful – my photos don’t do justice to Julie’s work. All the pieces fit together securely. You can stack the Scuttle on top of the Lather Bowl or the Lather Bowl on top of the Scuttle. The bottom of all three pieces is completely flat – absolutely no wobbles - and skid resistant.

The bottom of the Scuttle is stamped with ‘Dirty Bird Pottery King George VA” in black ink. Additionally, the manufacture date and unit number are inscribed. Mine has a unit number of ‘#1’ and a date of 08-03, meaning the third quarter of 2008.

Performance evaluation
I wanted to provide some hard numbers regarding the Scuttle’s performance. I used an infrared thermometer – just point it, press the button, and the temperature shows up on the display. All times were measured with my watch.

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With the insert in place, the Scuttle holds about 10oz of hot water. For these tests, the ambient air temperature was 78 degrees and the water coming out of my faucet was a very hot 125 degrees – I can only hold my hand under the faucet for a few seconds at that temperature.

I filled the scuttle with 125 degree water and put on the insert. The insert is heavy and easily displaces the excess water. I let this sit for 2 minutes while I made lather in the lather bowl. For all these tests I used a Shavemac 177 with a 23mm knot. Temperature readings were made from the tip of the brush.

I did not heat the lather bowl – the increase in temperature over ambient was from using hot water. Here are the results:

Test 1 – Keeping a brush warm

Elapsed Time, Brush Tip Temp Degrees F
0 Minutes, 82 Degrees
2 Minutes, 112 Degrees
5 Minutes, 118 Degrees
8 Minutes, 117 Degrees
11 Minutes, 116 Degrees
14 Minutes, 114 Degrees
17 Minutes, 111 Degrees
20 Minutes, 110 Degrees

Conclusion: The relatively small size of the Scuttle does not seem to hamper its ability to heat a brush and keep it hot. The brush was heated from 82 degrees to 112 degrees in 2 minutes. It remained over 110 degrees for the next 18 minutes. To me, a 100 degree brush feels ‘warm’, 110 degrees feels ‘hot’, and 115+ degrees feels ‘very hot’.

Test 2 – Initial heating of a brush
This test was to see how long you would have to wait to have a nice, hot brush. One goal in this process was to come up with something that would not cause delays in my morning routine, so it would need to heat the brush quickly.

Elapsed Time, Brush Tip Temp Degrees F
0 Minutes, 82 1egrees
1 Minute, 110 Degrees
2 Minutes, 112 Degrees
3 Minutes, 113 Degrees
4 Minutes, 114 Degrees
5 Minutes, 112 Degrees

Conclusion: It heats a brush in a minute.

Test 3 – A ‘Real’ Shave
Well, I did slow things down to 5 minutes between lathering, but this at least takes into account the fact that the brush is being removed and heat is being lost as you apply the lather.

• Add hot water to the Scuttle.
• Place insert on top.
• Wet brush and make lather (taking 2 minutes while the Scuttle heats).
• Brush tip is at 82 degrees.
• Place brush in Scuttle.
• Apply hot water to face (taking 1 minute while the Scuttle heats the brush)
• Lather with brush at 118 degrees, replace brush in Scuttle, make 1st pass.
• Five minutes later, lather with brush at 115 degrees, replace brush in Scuttle, make 2nd pass.
• Five minutes later, lather with brush at 113 degrees, replace brush in Scuttle, make 3rd pass (I would be done here).
• Five minutes later, lather with brush at 109 degrees, replace brush in Scuttle, make 4th pass.

The Scuttle has been used with these brushes:

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Savile Row 3118, Rooney Style 3-Small, Savile Row 3120, Lee's Vulfix Boar #9, Shavemac 177 (23mm knot)

I could not be more pleased with the Dirty Bird Brush Scuttle and Lather Bowl. Everything is extremely well made, compact, simple, and performs wonderfully. The two-piece design of the scuttle allows for easy filling and cleaning, and seems to hold in the heat efficiently – maybe because there is no filling spout to allow heat to escape.

The Lather Bowl whips up lather quickly without a mess and stacks on top of or under the Scuttle.

The bottom line is that I can have hot lather without having to add extra time to my morning routine.

The Brush Scuttle and Lather Bowl are available separately – check here for more information:


Bob Pope
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Latest reviews

I received my blue brush scuttle and lather bowl 3/3. It is cold this morning (38) in Florida, so I really enjoyed the warm lather on my head/face. The pieces are made well, look beautiful, and work wonderfully. I used the secong setting on my hot pot, and TBS Maca Root SC I used was warm. Two passes on my face, followed by two passes on my head, and the brush was still toasty after 25 minutes.
Another happy DB customer. Julie does a great job.
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How big of a brush will this take? I had a 20mm that worked great, but I want to get a 26mm and I'm wondering if I'll need to either get a custom larger Brush Scuttle or just get a regular scuttle to fit the bigger brush in.
Thanks for the review...have been wanting to see more shots/reviews of these for a while now...

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