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Canadian old set with unusual stamp and an unidentified box?

Hi guys,

I picked up this Canadian old type the other day and set about cleaning it up. It turned out very nice!

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What's strange is that after cleaning I came cross this unusual stamp on the bottom plate, does anyone have any clue as to what it is?

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I've also been unable to find a similar razor set on any of the reference sites and thought I would link to this thread in the Canadian serial number thread here.

Here is a picture of the set (I suspect the blades are not the originals!):
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And of the serial number:

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Any help would be greatly appreciated - thanks!
 

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These are Great Razors, They are Solid and wont ever get that hairline crack the American Ball End Type Get.

I have me two of them, Once in Chrome or Nickel and one in Silver. When i first got the silver one it was Black, I thought that was the color of the razor till i used some Baking Soda and Aluminum Foil Cleaning Method, then Buffed it and that Canadian Silver Solid Ball End Looked like Rhodium. Enjoy your Solid Ball end it should last Many Many Years :eek:)
 
These are Great Razors, They are Solid and wont ever get that hairline crack the American Ball End Type Get.

I have me two of them, Once in Chrome or Nickel and one in Silver. When i first got the silver one it was Black, I thought that was the color of the razor till i used some Baking Soda and Aluminum Foil Cleaning Method, then Buffed it and that Canadian Silver Solid Ball End Looked like Rhodium. Enjoy your Solid Ball end it should last Many Many Years :eek:)
what does the letters spell?
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Nice find!. My old type is Canadian as well and it is a pretty darn good shaver.

Cheers. I was really glad to find it. It's the best "in the wild" find I've had. If it shaves better than my other Old type (which I expect, given its added heft) then it'll be a dream.

These are Great Razors, They are Solid and wont ever get that hairline crack the American Ball End Type Get.

Thanks! The first thing I checked was for the "crack syndrome" and was chuffed it had none. I really can't believe how well it cleaned up, I'll have to try the bicarb soda trick and see if it does any better.

The old types provide nice close shaves, enjoy many years out of it!

Thank you, I have another (less minty) Old that I really enjoy so I'm looking forward to taking this one for a run.

what does the letters spell?

I really can't make it out. It was suggested to me elsewhere that it may be a mark to highlight the fact that it is silver plated. Like these. I must say that it does look similar to some of the ones on that site. Were these razors silver plated from the factory? If not then someone may have had it done after-market?
 
Very nice score!!
No idea what those markings are on the bottom plate...they do sort of look like some sort of mint/makers markings..
 
That middle "letter" does look more like a proofmark
Yeah, that's the main thing that makes me think it's an aftermarket modification. Definitely not a number or letter.

Very nice score!!
Thanks. I'm really pleased at how it came out. I must confess it was actually my girlfriend that found it for me!

I've also found a matching set in this thread with the same box too. Here's the photo from that thread:

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I started to reply in the Canadian serial number thread, but then I figured it was really better to move this specific conversation back over here to this thread. I'm not clear on what we're confused about here, though. The extra stamping on the guard plate is the only obviously puzzling thing that I can see.

The razor itself is a thin-handled Canadian Ball End -- the Canadian plant appears to have had at least three main different handle styles in their Pocket Editions during the time that the American plant was using the ABC-made razors and even a little beyond: there's this one, the thin-handled Ball End, which appears to be the most common of the three; there's the "True Ball End" (on the right in this picture of mine, and Achim's got an example that's completely unknurled) which is similar to this one, but without the flat end on the bottom of the handle; and the "Nut End" which has an odd hexagonal finial in place of the ball (see this example).

This thread has some pics of various generations of these sets. In particular, the Plain case that Kevin's got there is the era as your Floral one here. Although, if your case is actually gold plated, and not originally silver plate that's been stripped down to brass, then I would expect that it's probably a later pairing up by someone consolidating pieces.

As far as the odd stamping, I don't see any reason to think that it's anything but an odd multiple-striking of a serial number. Granted, I'm just looking at that one picture and not seeing them in person, but they don't really look like hallmarks at all to me -- many of the characters are very clearly numbers, and others could be combinations of numbers. That middle one in particular looks like a 6 with something else struck over it, maybe an upside down 4.

At least in Gillette's Boston plant during this era, it was their practice to stamp a secondary serial number on razors that had been returned for repair. These carried an "L" series number like this example:

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This is what I was talking about in the other thread as being possibly what they were trying to do here. It's also possible that it was just a straight up error in stamping the part.
 
Wow! That's really interesting, thanks. It never ceases to amaze me how knowledgeable people on these forums can be.

I suppose I was being a bit over-keen but under-descriptive with my "confusion", I'm sorry.

The first was definitely the weird stamp. I initially thought that it was another serial number, but I wasn't sure why that would have been stamped on the bottom of the base plate as opposed to on the same side as the original stamp? But if it was a mis-stamp in the factory that would seem more likely. That 6 and upside-down 4 theory is great, I think you might be right. I would never have worked that one out, thanks.

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My second confusion was the case. I couldn't find a matching case on mr.razor's site and in the threads I was checking (until the one mentioned above). I could find the more elaborate floral cases (like the ABC style ones) but not the same as mine. I do believe that mine has simply lost its plating rather than being gold.

I found myself really drawn to this razor - it feels more elegant than my British Old and the American one that I gave away and it looks really well designed. I was hoping to get an accurate date on it, using the case/ set as a guide, hence my over eager trawling of past threads.

I was posting the links to other threads and serial numbers in the Canadian Serial number thread as I thought that the hope was to compile a database of numbers for each type of razor and try to narrow down production dates in the Canadian factory.

Thank you so much for linking to those threads - they are very useful - and thanks for your insightful contribution and help in finding this info, I'm very grateful.
 
Wow! That's really interesting, thanks. It never ceases to amaze me how knowledgeable people on these forums can be.

I suppose I was being a bit over-keen but under-descriptive with my "confusion", I'm sorry.

No worries. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing out on something else there.

The first was definitely the weird stamp. I initially thought that it was another serial number, but I wasn't sure why that would have been stamped on the bottom of the base plate as opposed to on the same side as the original stamp?

Yeah, that's definitely not "normal" but it's also not without precedent. I can't put my finger on one right now, but I know that I've seen a few different examples of serial numbers that had been stamped on the bottom of the guard plate instead of the top. There may not have been any rhyme nor reason to it... it might have just been an occasional case of "Oh... well, good enough," at the factory. But yours having both a clean stamp on the top and this weird mishmash on the bottom is definitely more strange than that.

My second confusion was the case. I couldn't find a matching case on mr.razor's site and in the threads I was checking (until the one mentioned above). I could find the more elaborate floral cases (like the ABC style ones) but not the same as mine. I do believe that mine has simply lost its plating rather than being gold.

Back over in the Canadian serial number thread when I was talking about a "thick, no-rivet" case this is the style that I meant. In fact, I've apparently got a floral one just like yours with the same razor. I'll see if I can't put my hands on it when I get home from work.

The closure style is most similar to the modified Pocket Edition case that Gillette used for the Old Types during the '20s after the original patents expired (like the one below); however, instead of the full piano hinge like that one has this Canadian version uses two separate hinges that are mounted to the inside of the case.

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I found myself really drawn to this razor - it feels more elegant than my British Old and the American one that I gave away and it looks really well designed.

I know what you mean. I have a particular weakness for these Canadian razors, too. As far as I can tell they really were, more or less, the inspiration for Gillette's later ball-end handle design, but being solid metal they're much nicer feeling in the hand and obviously not prone to cracking.

There's one little signature flaw that I've seen on almost every single example of these handles, though, so it has to have been a manufacturing defect: a scratch in the plating in the smooth band just above the ball end that starts down at the shoulder where the handle stops and rises up to about halfway to the knurling and then falls back down to the shoulder as you turn the handle. It looks like yours has this same issue:

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I was hoping to get an accurate date on it, using the case/ set as a guide, hence my over eager trawling of past threads.

If I were to hazard a guess as to when your set was made -- and it would be a very rough guess at that -- I would put it somewhere around the late 'teens, possibly very early '20s.

I was posting the links to other threads and serial numbers in the Canadian Serial number thread as I thought that the hope was to compile a database of numbers for each type of razor and try to narrow down production dates in the Canadian factory.

Yes, you were absolutely right to post there. It just probably makes more sense to have the deeper conversation about your particular set here was all I was saying.

Thank you so much for linking to those threads - they are very useful - and thanks for your insightful contribution and help in finding this info, I'm very grateful.

Can't promise that I'm always right, but I'm always happy to help. :wink2:
 
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