What's new
  • Guest
    As per our long standing policy of not permitting medical advice on the forum - all threads concerning the Coronavirus will be locked.
    For more info on the coronavirus please see the link below:
    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/summary.html

Above the Tie S2/S1 Rough Shave

Hey everyone! First time posting here so I apologize if Im not posting in the right sub-forum. I purchased an Above the Tie razor a fair bit ago, probably 6 months or so. My first DE was a Merkur 34c, followed by a Merkur 37c which was and is smooth as butter and more or less is the gold standard for a good shave for me. Shaved with the Merkur for 3 years. Now I was content with my Merkur 37c for some time, however the pot metal and the lifespan of the 37c started to bother me a bit as I kind of am the type of fella who wants to have the one right tool for the job that will last a lifetime and serve me faithfully until the end. Consequently I began to seek out a razor that is both as efficient and smooth as my Merkur along with being built like a tank. Cue Above the Tie. Now their razors are impeccably designed and don't even get me going on the customer service as Matt, presumably the inheritor of the company following Stans retirement, has been as kind and receptive as I could ask of anyone, even my own family. Unfortunately I simply cannot get a good shave with it. Its beautiful, I marvel at the craftsmanship of the razor almost every time I use it and most everyone on this forum or otherwise seems to give it rave reviews. Now ATT as a company is bar none one of the most 5 star, world class companies I can think of and after a fair few interactions with them recently I would not hesitate to recommend ATT to someone looking to invest in a SS DE razor. The customer service I received genuinely is unparalleled. But as I mentioned before I cant get a good shave with it. My prep is the same as it always is (about 3 minutes of soaking my face with warm water followed by letting the lather sit on my face for an additional minute) and this prep was effective with my Merkur so I have to believe it is not at fault. I have tried probably upwards of 10 blades with the razor, despite the Merkur working with almost every blade I put in it. I've utilized the razor at every conceivable angle and all to no avail. Am I doing something wrong? Is there a secret combination I am not familiar with? The razor itself is delightful aesthetically and I want so badly to find a way to make it work as there are only a handful of high scale slants on the market so If I cant make the S1/S2 work I simply am SOL as far as slants go and I really don't think my kinky facial hair would get along with a straight bar. Anyone have any tips for this razor or personal input? Some blades are smoother than others but this razor seems to have an almost unbearable amount of blade feel for me. Albeit the S2 is a little better than the S1. It would be much appreciated fellas! I really dont wanna end up having to sell the razor and would love some tips as its not impossible that i have just been somehow shaving the wrong way with it the whole time lol.

All the best

-Seth
 
I only have the S2. Mine is dated 2014. I don’t know if that is comparable to current production.

I had always considered my S2 to be a rougher shaver than my Merkur slants (37C, 39C, and a 36 purchased long, long ago). My most recent shaves with the S2 have been more comfortable.

I attribute the improvement to a very dense lather (greek yogurt consistency) that I build using both a little bit of hard shave stick plus some softer soap/croap or cream. Perhaps my touch with the S2 has lightened after a lot of Gem SE shaving, for which I typically use a very light touch.

I don’t know which blades you consider milder. For me an Astra or a Derby would be a milder blade than say a Voskhod or Supermax Blue Diamond.

My Wunderbar is still my #1 slant. I almost always use short (75-80mm), light (usually Ti), skinny handles with my slants.

As fas as tool quality goes, I bought my Merkur 36 slant in the 1970s. I gave it to my eldest son and it was still going strong when it disappeared from his workplace. Yes, stainless is forever, but well plated/well treated zamak will outlive the first purchaser.
 
Also, it is not expensive, but it is all brass. Beloved by some, cursed by others. Fatip, specifically the Lo Storto slant in both OC and SB. A little hard to track down right now, but it might please you. Read up on it on B&B.
 
Interesting. I have experimented with using a feather light touch, with using fast and sure strokes like I would any other razor, and even with tight slightly pressurized strokes all to no avail. I have used the whole spectrum of blades including derby, astra (ss and platinum), feather, kai, Personna red, blue, and med. Ive used Silver blues, blacks, 7 o clocks, and a few others. They all result in a somewhat uncomfortable shave. Now, if I pop one of those into my Merkur (and I mean any of them) then I can effortlessly attain an amazing shave. My lathers are consistent and I have used the same Noble Otter soap the whole time so as to keep one element of the shave constant. Im currently using the Atlas handle that I ordered with it however the kronos yields similar results. Perhaps if I simply revisited the razor in a few months I would experience a similar level of S2 clarity but im not sure as I have been at this for months and months. I am honestly surprised I still have a face as its been a good 6 months of almost consistently mediocre and irritating shaves as when I spend any significant sum of money on something I'm determined to use it. Not to mention its a good bit more beautiful than my Merkur and perhaps makes me feel like a big shot in that regard
 
Also, it is not expensive, but it is all brass. Beloved by some, cursed by others. Fatip, specifically the Lo Storto slant in both OC and SB. A little hard to track down right now, but it might please you. Read up on it on B&B.
Now that is a fascinating looking little razor! But honestly I may be the only person on this forum that resents the hell out of a concept like RAD. I really do just yearn for one good steady dependable work horse that I can in forty years reflect fondly upon and its accomplishments as my forever shaver. Perhaps that is something a straight would satisfy, but the cheapskate in me loathes the idea of any further significant investment into something that will only prove to tug at my beard. I have inflammatory skin conditions (mostly seb derm) and a beard that is borderline kinky, as in after one week my hair starts to kinda puff outward as it curls inward. So I am always anxious as to whether something will work for me. Multiblades basically just ripped hairs. Beard trimmers and shavers pull painfully as well. The 37c is perhaps the only shaving implement I have ever used that hasnt caused irritation. Maybe the real solution is to accept the pot metal and just sell my ATT. :'(. But also thank you for the input there sir!
 
  • Like
Reactions: nav
In order for a slant to shine, I believe it should twist + torque the blade. The S1/2 basically just twist versus a Wunderbar that twists and torques. I only used an S1 for half a dozen shaves but it wasn't the smoothest for me either. I hand wanted to try the Fatip but heard they are having qc issues with blade alignment; way too much wiggle.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
 
You have given the ATT slants far more attention than I have! Good luck with any further experiments.

RAD bit me post-retirement, a cheap hobby compared to some. For 4 decades I used a Gillette Old Type, with perhaps a couple shaves a week (especially after a missed day or two) using the Merkur 36. I was perfectly happy, well shaved, and two razors seemed like luxury.

So if your Merkur 37C is right for you, embrace it. You can easily get a backup if you’re worried about its lifespan. And if you need to flaunt some shave bling, you have both ATT slants. Not many can say that.
 
In order for a slant to shine, I believe it should twist + torque the blade. The S1/2 basically just twist versus a Wunderbar that twists and torques. I only used an S1 for half a dozen shaves but it wasn't the smoothest for me either. I hand wanted to try the Fatip but heard they are having qc issues with blade alignment; way too much wiggle.

Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
So do you get along well with the Wunderbar? That is an interesting point about the combination of the torquing and the twisting really making a slant do its work properly. I have long suspected that something about the design of this particular slant simply does not work with my beard. Man, that really is the downside to shaving. You can buy something designed so precisely...but it may very well just not jive with your hair and face.
 
You have given the ATT slants far more attention than I have! Good luck with any further experiments.

RAD bit me post-retirement, a cheap hobby compared to some. For 4 decades I used a Gillette Old Type, with perhaps a couple shaves a week (especially after a missed day or two) using the Merkur 36. I was perfectly happy, well shaved, and two razors seemed like luxury.

So if your Merkur 37C is right for you, embrace it. You can easily get a backup if you’re worried about its lifespan. And if you need to flaunt some shave bling, you have both ATT slants. Not many can say that.
I suppose thats true. Maybe I am a straight man though. There is something in me that is deeply discomforted by the idea that I must rely upon merkur to continue to manufacture something exactly to the same standard as I need it to be, or continue manufacturing it at all. I enjoyed the idea of the S2 because if it did work I did not need to worry myself about supply issues or so forth ever again. Maybe I am a paranoid shaver :closedeye. Though maybe the back up is what I need. And yes, I am tenacious but my face is starting to suffer. Experimentation on a daily basis really takes its toll on the old mug.
 
Its all making me want to try the timeless and so forth but theres a 50/50 shot im just gonna end up being saddled with a painful razor again. If only there were free trials for luxury shavers
 
If only there were free trials for luxury shavers
There is...Timeless (for one) give you 30 days to trial the razor.
If you are not happy, just return it...but I think there is a $10 fee for that. I don't know...never returned my Timeless!
Other makers also offer the 30 day return (Blackland is another).
I'm sure others will chime in too.
 
There is...Timeless (for one) give you 30 days to trial the razor.
If you are not happy, just return it...but I think there is a $10 fee for that. I don't know...never returned my Timeless!
Other makers also offer the 30 day return (Blackland is another).
I'm sure others will chime in too.
Thats true and I suppose ATT had a similar offer but im just so stubborn and maybe even irrationally annoyed by the idea of having to return something. Usually I just make it work. But there is something about the razor I dont get along with regardless of blade type. Although I am holding out hopes for there being some perfect blade combination but probably a pipe dream.
 
Also I suppose these are the aspects of life that teach you not to fork out immense sums of money on something that may or may not work better than your current tool unless you really are prepared to have no regrets lol
 

ackvil

Moderator
First, welcome to B&B.

I have had a number of slant razors over the years: RR Stealth Slant (steel and aluminum version) RR Wunderbar, Hoffritz Slant, Merkur 37c, and ATT S1 and S-2. I sold the RR SS version because the price was right. I also sold the Hoffritz Slant because it basically was the same as the 37c and I sold off the S-2 and Wunderbar because they were too rough.

The smoothest for me is the S-1. It just goes to show you that not every razor is for every person.
 
I don't get on with slants (tuggy shaves = ingrown hairs) & I don't get on with ATT razors (too much blade chatter = ingrown hairs). However, the exception proves the rule & I get great shaves from the ATT S1 (first version end cap). I also have the S2 plate, but find this a bit rough in use compared to the S1.

All the other razors in my rotation work best with a very shallow angle, which I find gives me the closest, most comfortable shave. Again the S1 is the exception, working best with a more guard first, steeper angle, but still providing a very close, very comfortable shave.

I use a Feather blade in my S1 & let the weight of the Kronos handle do the work. I tried the Atlas handle, but it doesn't work as well, as I was tempted to apply pressure.

I think the S1 is a slant for people who don't like slants!
 
:001_unsur I was drooling for an Att S1 for the past few moths. Luckily I was waiting for one to pop up in the BST with the right price. I found that price is bit high considering the fact I currently own too many razors in my rotation including 4 slants. (HD 37C, 39C, Ikon, Wunderbar) . I was thinking about S1 since many rated it as a mild efficient razor. But now it appears that some will encounter problems.
Same thing happened to me with PAA slant open comb. No matter what I did I couldn't get an irritation free decent shave from that because of blade chatter. Now its relaxing in a drawer .
It appears what ackvil told is correct " not every razor is for every person. "
 
Anyone have any tips for this razor or personal input? Some blades are smoother than others but this razor seems to have an almost unbearable amount of blade feel for me.
I'm surprised to hear about the blade feel. My first DE razor was the ATT S1 on the Atlas handle and although I don't have it anymore, it was super smooth and comfortable from the start (even with poor technique on my part). Maybe it wasn't super efficient (for me but clearly is fine for others) but definitely not uncomfortable.

The standard ATT range M1, R1, H1 etc do have a lot of blade exposure, like 1.5mm according to Stan.
The gap on the M1 is so small, you wouldn't feel the blade at all.

If the blade was better supported, I would never have sold the S1.
 
I've been working my way through a small line-up of slants lately. I started because I had picked up an ATT S2 2014 that I found to be the best razor I've ever shaved with. I went looking to see if some others were as good, or possibly even better.

I've been putting my day-by-day shave notes on the Brotherhood of Slant Shavers subforum, under the title "Tilted Picnic." The short-short is that I've found several that don't please me as much as the ATT for various reasons, and found the RazoRock Wunderbar which is also an excellent shaver.

To me, going through several slants was good training for the sensitive touch the Wunderbar demands. YMMV as always, but I find the S2 very smooth and mild. It's next (and so far last) in the Tilted Picnic.

O.H.
 
I'm guessing the ATT has a bit of positive blade exposure?
It would seem it to me, the blade definitely doesn't seem fully supported- a problem currently being resolved by the slow addition of various Windsor top caps for the different ATT razors.

In general I am not sure why so many have such amazing luck with this razor and I am left with a 150 dollar paper weight and am stuck using my pot metal 37c as a result. It leaves me feeling burnt, though not by the company, just wish it worked for my beard like it does everyone elses! Ill maybe try a few more blades in it but life seems too short to not enjoy my shaves for the 7th consecutive month! This purchase has got me nervous about ever trying a new razor again as there is no guarantee it will work. Although I can just as easily sell it, I suppose. Wish Merkur made stainless versions of their razor :/ id buy that in a heartbeat and im sure many others would too as Merkur designs seem to work for a huge demographic of shavers.
 
Top