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Brush Chronicles No. 10 Omega Pro 10049 Boar

djh

Moderator Emeritus
Welcome Shavers!



On behalf of Shawn (Sullybob) and myself I would like to welcome you all to the newest instalment in our Brush Chronicles Series. Over the next two weeks we will be leading a discussion on the Omega Pro 10049 but any thoughts, photos and questions regarding other Omega brushes are also very welcome.

Up until recently, I will freely admit that I knew more about these Omegas


than these Omegas




but since purchasing my Omega 49 about a month ago, I have set about breaking it in and getting to know her in order to be able to bring you this Edition of the Chronicles. There are already a number of B+B Reviews of this brush and hopefully some of our other owners will chime in with thoughts to add to the fun here.


After following the standard advice- washing, lathering, soaking and drying for about 10 days, I put my Omega to the test and she proved to be a very effective shaving tool. Of course a new boar brush doesn't hold as much water as one of my badger brushes, but a little adjustment in technique allowed me to make plenty of wonderful lather and the brush appears to be softening and improving as we go along.

This morning's shave was great and myself and Shawn are really looking forward to putting this brush through it's paces, answering questions, adding more photos and thoughts and having lots of fun during these two weeks.




Continuing the break-in process (tips splitting and the brush is holding more water)


 
Thanks for doing this David and Shawn. I have been using badger brushes up til now and I have been thinking about getting a boar brush (other than the el cheapo Burma brush I have). This brush and the Semogue 830 are the two brushes I have been looking into and so I am really looking forward to following your progress with it. :thumbup1:
 
Here's my custom Pro 49 in red. I have a few brushes in badger, Simpson Berkeley, C&E along with a slew of cheap ones, this one and my Semogue 830 are my go to brushes, I guess that means I'm a boar man. Amazing brush for $10, it looks too big sitting on the shelf, but in the process of lathering it feels just right. It kills hard soap, loading fast and beating it into a great creamy lather, does excellent on creams as well. The tips are very soft on the face and it holds enough lather for 4 passes (maybe more).

I think the handle cracked when rushing out the door I left it wet bristles up on the bathroom counter after a shave. Still works perfect.

My next two purchases will include a Omega 10066 as it looks like similar boar bristle with a smaller knot, just to see how it plays.



 
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As a dedicated face latherer. I actually love this big boar shaving brush. Most of the time I use shaving sticks. And in my experience the Omega 10049 after a good soak contains just about the right amount of water for the amount of soap that I smear on the stubble area on my face.

Because the brush is so large it takes some finesse to face lather with otherwise a big mess will be created( drops of water flying around and lather where you do not want it ). The way I do this is by letting the brush drain for a few seconds after I have soaked it then gently flick it a few times towards the sink. After this there is still quite a bit of water in the brush. So I start off by very gently lathering on my face with just the tips of the brush making sure it does not splay ensuring that the water in the brush does not drip out of it. After the beginnings of lather start to form on my face I carefully start to splay the brush on my face forcing more water out of it making it mix with the soap on my face. This process is continued until I have a fully mixed layer of lather on my face and in and on the brush( for subsequent passes ).

The Omega 10049 is because of its size excellent for bowl lathering and was probably designed for that( it is after all a barbers brush ). But for me its an ideal face lathering brush if I want enough lather for three or four passes.
 
I have had this brush for close to a year and a half, I originally purchased it for my son as a starter brush, he used it a couple of times but found it to be too big for him and he traded it for my Semogue 620. I've used it a couple of times since then and I am really looking forward to getting to know this brush better over the next two weeks.

For my first shave I decided to use Martin De Candre.

After soaking the brush I gave it a gentle squeeze and loaded it with soap.


It doesn't look like there is very much soap in the brush but after about a minute of building lather in my later bowl this is what I ended up with.


In the previous picture you can see that the lather is almost were it needs to be. I ended up adding a lot of water to get the lather to look like this.


I had enough lather for a generous 3 pass shave with enough lather left over for touch ups. The shave was great.

This is post shave after rinsing and drying.


You can see that I don't have many split ends yet. It will be interesting to see how much that changes over the next two weeks.

 
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gearchow

Moderator Emeritus
Excellent work! I love pictorials.

About how long does it take for the brush to develop split ends?

-jim
 
You can see that I don't have many split ends yet. It will be interesting to see how much that changes over the next two weeks.

[/QUOTE]

Nice pictures.

Do you intend to use the brush daily the coming two weeks? I have red that the splitting of the boar hairs requires a full drying cycle because the splitting happens when the hairs dry out. I am not 100% sure of this though if anybody knows more about this please share it.

Anyway from looking at your pictures I think your brush will get much better and softer still.
 
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djh

Moderator Emeritus
Excellent work! I love pictorials.

About how long does it take for the brush to develop split ends?

-jim
If you like pics, you have come to the right place Jim! I have had my brush about a month and although I haven't shaved with it that often, it has been lathered, soaked and dried regularly. Certainly some of the tips have split- being new to boar brushes myself, I am not sure whether to expect that most of them will split or if things will settle down and stay as is. There will be more reporting!
 
Nice pictures.

Do you intend to use the brush daily the coming two weeks? I have red that the splitting of the boar hairs requires a full drying cycle because the splitting happens when the hairs dry out. I am not 100% sure of this though if anybody knows more about this please share it.

Anyway from looking at your pictures I think your brush will get much better and softer still.

My plan was to use this brush every day for the next two weeks. I think you are correct drying cycle for the ends to split. It will be interesting to see how much they split, if at all over the next two weeks.
 

franz

Moderator Emeritus
Looks like this Chronicle is off to a great start! :thumbup1:

EDIT: Congrats on 4,000 fine posts, David.
 
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djh

Moderator Emeritus
For those of you who have never set eyes on the Omega Pro 49, here are a couple of comparison pics to give an idea of size. This is one large brush!


Omega 49 + B&B 2011



Omega 49 + Chubby2
 
David and Shawn, great start, gentlemen! Omega, in my opinion, is the quintessential boar shaving brush. I used to own an Omega Pro 49, but trimmed the end to shorten the brush - VERY BAD IDEA - completely ruined the brush. Go figure :wink2: Honestly, it seemed like a good idea at the time. C'est la vie.
 
I am glad to see the Omega getting some love.

The 49 is a fantastic brush performing well above its meager price.

I bought mine last year when I was still pretty new to wet shaving. Honestly, it was a bit large for me at first, but my tastes have changed towards larger brushes and it has been seeing regular use. The handle fills the hand and the knot breaks in quickly while retaining plenty of backbone. I strictly face lather with Big Red and it just decimates soaps and creams easily holding enough for 4 or more passes. Getting the upper lip can be tricky, due to the size, but it hardly detracts from such a great brush.
 
My next two purchases will include a Omega 10066 as it looks like similar boar bristle with a smaller knot, just to see how it plays.
The 10066 is an awesome brush. Had mine for over a year and still love it. I've only bought another boar (Semogue 1460) simply because I wanted a brush on the smaller side. I use the Omega much more often than the Semogue.
 

djh

Moderator Emeritus
Sunday morning is, for me, normally a chance to have a relaxed shave and take it easy. Today was no exception!




The Omega was given a good soak in warm water whilst I was under the shower....




I chose to use a Palmolive stick this morning. A very good quality and great value shaving soap. For the sake of the Chronicles, I will mostly be bowl lathering and for that purpose I rub the stick in the bottom of the bowl to deposit some soap.





I gave the brush a gentle shake. That seems to leave enough water in the brush to allow it to collect soap efficiently without immediately making a sloppy soup in the bowl.




A few more drops of water and then 30 seconds of lathering




Another couple of drops of water and then after a minute of lathering, I was left with this:





Seeing as this brush is still quite new to me, I am learning as I go along but so far I haven't encountered too many difficulties. This morning's shave was great- loads of wonderful Palmolive lather and I am looking forward to trying more soaps and creams over the next couple of weeks.
 
I decided that it was time to try a new soap.


I've had this soap for a while now, but I've been trying to use up some of my other soaps before I start in on new products.

After soaking I loaded the brush. I gave it a slight squeeze to get rid of excess water, I didn't want to have a soapy watery mess on my hands.
Here is the brush loaded. I took the puck out of the container and loaded the brush that way. I needed to choke up on the brush to prevent the bristles from splaying out too much.


After lathering for about a minute the lather is looking pretty good.


With a little more water this is what I was rewarded with.


All in all it was a great shave.
 
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My next two purchases will include a Omega 10066 as it looks like similar boar bristle with a smaller knot, just to see how it plays.
I own two boars: an Omega 10066 and Semogue 1305. In honor of this installment of the brush chronicles, I used the 10066 today. It's a mighty little brush once you get to know it. It certainly took a lot longer to break in then the 1305. The tips split slowly, but improve and reward with age.

After soaking the brush in hot water while showering, I took it full of water (no flicks or shakes) to a puck of Arlington. After a minute of working the puck, I was rewarded with mounds of lather. The was plenty of soap left in the brush after 3+ passes.

I've certainly grown to respect its abilities.
 
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