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Gold Dollar "Classic Quality" (aka W59)

A reasonable quality Gold Dollar

Item Description

The "Classic Quality" (aka W59) is an upper market Gold Dollar straight razor (SR) that retails for about USD 12 (2020). Due to its Spanish point, this razor is probably not that suitable for a beginner in SR shaving.

I received my first new GD SR on 26 January 2020. It was one of their top-of-the-line models, a "Classic Quality" for about USD 12 + 2 shipping through Lazada Philippines. The razor was delivered in a tin case.

GD Box.jpg
The razor was secured inside the tin in a dense foam cut-out.

GD Box Open.jpg
The half-hollow blade length is 61mm (2.4") with a Spanish point. A width to top of honing line of 17.6mm (0.69") or 11/16 and spine thickness of 4.9mm (0.19") gives a theoretical bevel angle of 15.85deg. The blade has no stabiliser to get in the way of honing/stropping. The shank has a finger cut-out on its upper edge that assists in holding the blade. The tang is quite long and I found it comfortable to use when shaving. There are no jimps.

GD Profile.jpg
The quality of the timber scales is nothing to write home about but they serve their purpose. The spacer (GD still don't know about wedges) is of stainless steel 3.4mm thick. There are no washers (not needed) at the pivot pin.

The edge has a noticeable smile of about 2mm over its length. A marker pen test shows that the edge was honed with tape so the actual bevel angle is a bit greater that 15.85deg.The edge tree tops as delivered - not well, but it does - just. Here is the edge as received with the bevel measuring 0.50mm (0.020").

GD Edge.jpg
I thought that I would give this blade a drive this morning straight out of the box. No honing or stropping before the shave.

I preped as normal; cold water wash with bath soap, cold water rinse, face lathered using Proraso green. First pass was WTG. All went well. Second pass was XTG, a bit tuggy in most places. My final ATG pass was noticeably uncomfortable so I stopped and finished off with my normal SR. As expected, the edge of this GD will need some work.

This is my first Spanish point. At first it looks intimidating but when using it I find it better to shave with. With care, it allows you to better get into those tight spots.

Overall I was quite impressed with the quality of this SR, particularly for the price. The blade is heavier than most of similar size due to the added metal towards both ends of the spine. I quite like this arrangement in a heavier blade as it increases the mass moment of inertia about the mid length of the edge. I find it is more conducive of letting the blade do the cutting. As the bottom edge of the spine is rather straight, I expect the the edge's smile will decrease with latter honing.

Latest reviews

Pros: Good price for what you get
Cons: Bevel will need to be properly set. Scales are not the best of quality.
See the overview that I wrote.
4.00 star(s)
Lasting Edge
3.00 star(s)
4.00 star(s)
Easy to Sharpen
3.00 star(s)
Easy to Maintain
4.00 star(s)
Shaving Smoothness
3.00 star(s)
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Over time, I have purchased 10 of these W59's and have given away/sold 9 of them. They all honed up well but one in particular to an exceptional edge. This edge was sharper than a Feather DE blade but still smooth and comfortable to shave with.

Now my most treasured SR.
How I prepare my Gold Dollar W59 straight razors is detailed here:
I measured the bevel angle of two W59 SRs after honing them up. They measured out at 16.7° and 17.3°.

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