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GIVEAWAY! Challenge PIF - In The Footsteps Of Legends

I am using my own blades, but neither are in my top rotation. I don’t have an issue with Feather. I just find them harsh and have not used one for a very long time. I never got a good shave from a Kai DE blade. They always leave me irritated and with weapers. I think I have only ever tried 2 or 3 Kai’s. So I am really no more experienced with these blades than most of you guys. Since I see people starting to receive their PIF blades, I will start my testing tomorrow. I just need to decide if I will use one blade each day, or both blades head to head in duplicate razors. Thoughts?
 
Shave 1 - Feather #1

As mentioned, I have never cared for either blade. So I figured i would start with the blade I dislike less... the Feather. I have previously gotten a decent shave from a Feather in the past, but it always comes with some irritation, weepers, etc. This shave was no exception. I chose my mildest Wolfman, and installed the fresh Feather blade. The WR2 1.15 is a super smooth, high precision shaving instrument. If I were ever going to get a good smooth and comfortable shave from a Feather, this would be my best chance.

The shave wasnt bad. It wasnt a blood bath by any means. I think my technique has evolved quite a bit since I have last used either of these blades. But the shave was very far from perfect. And much less comfortable than with my preferred Wolfman blade, the Perma Sharp. This shave was a bit on the rougher side... relative for this razor anyway. And I was quite surprised to experience some tugging around the chin area during pass one. I did three standard passes, and no touchups. I was left with 2 small weepers, and some irritation on my neck. Not a blood bath, but less than ideal.

The results were just barely into DFS territory. There is a lot of micro-stubble remaining on my chin and jaw line that I can feel rubbing my fingers against the grain in these areas. I can do much better with this razor with almost any sharp blade. I can get darn near a BBS with this razor and a Perma Sharp... and this same amount of effort. Prep, lather and beard conditions for today's shave were all perfect. The WR2 1.15 is a fantastic razor, and the results should be much better than this.

I will look forward to shave #2 with this blade. My experience is that the second shave on a Feather can potentially be better than shave 1, but after that, it goes down hill. The question is whether it goes down hill during shave 2, or will it wait until shave #3. I have had it happen both ways.

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Kai edge 1 shave 1. Wilkinson Sword Classic (plastic) razor, Palmolive stick, Omega S-brush knot in homemade handle.

My plan for this PIF was to interleave shaves between the Feather and the Kai, using the same razor, soap and brush for each shave cycle. Since I was also planning to use a different soap and brush for each cycle, it's become clear that the first blade is at a potential competitive disadvantage, so I'll be testing them in the order Feather, Kai; Kai, Feather; Feather, etc.. (Assuming the Feather makes it to shave 3!)

My lather was slightly improved after using the Palmolive stick 48 hours ago, but still not great. Despite this the Kai felt a little rougher than I remember the Feather feeling. There were fewer weepers, which wasn't a surprise, but there was also significantly less alum feedback, even where the weepers occurred.

Immediately following the shave it felt slightly less close than the feather, but at +5 hours there's not much in it.

I enjoyed this morning's shave more than I did Monday's, but can't pin all that on the blades just yet. Watch this space!
 
Feather Blade #1 - Shave #1

Equipment:
Merkur 20C, Legendary Feather (1), PdP Bergamot & Thyme Soap

The Results: a very nice, smooth, DFS+ shave!! I haven't used Feathers in a very long time, so I was very careful, especially around the areas that I typically get weepers (corners of my mouth, between my bottom lip and chin, sides of my adam's apple). No blood nor weepers, no irritation. The lather that PdP Bergamot & Thyme is thick and slick and complements the Feather nicely.
 
Feather: Blade 1, Shave 2
Gillette Old Type thick cap

Much better shave. The blade definitely goes for blood when it isn’t really necessary. It has it in for my mustache corners in particular. That said, this shave is probably the sweet spot, as it lost considerable sharpness from the first shave but still got the job done. In fact, I’d have to say the shave was closer and longer lasting than most blades. That’s valuable as an every-other-day shaver who has to be presentable on off days. If every shave were a Feather No. 2 shave,(and if price were no object) it would be worth a little blood for such a shave. Or, given some extra time, I’d do a fourth pass to trade some extra irritation for a reduced likelihood of getting a nick.
 
Kai shave #2

Wednesday 11/24 shave- excellent with two and 1/2 passes, a clean shave with no weepers, and just a hint at redness in a few spots from buffing:

Pre-shave: shower
Razor: 1959 Fatboy- set on 4 to emulate many vintage Gillette razors
Blade: Kai DE (2) - still sharp and smooth
Soap: Noble Otter Neon Sun
Brush: Vulfix 1000A in Pure
Post-shave: cool rinse, then NO Neon Sun splash; with glycerin and aloe the NO splashes do leave my face a bit sticky, but the post-shave feel, after it soaks in, is quite nice

This Kai blade does seem a little less sharp than a Feather, but seems to be a good balance between sharp and smooth. Shave today was DFS+ with a bit of stubble remaining under a few spots under my jawline, cheeks and neck smooth as silk. I read the Kai blade has a smidge of added width, but so far I haven't noticed any difference in my shaves.

I picked the Fatboy today as it's a good Gillette vintage razor. Set on 4 it shaves about medium for me, a lot like a Superspeed and many modern DE razors. The Kai did really well with this razor, no weepers or real irritation and overall my shave was fine.

On a scale of 1 to 10 (best) for blade attributes, today's outing was:

Closeness/Sharpness: still 9
Smoothness: still 9
Longevity: no noticeable fall off in performance

Manana!

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I changed my mind, it's not going to be 4 shaves, more like 8-12+, hehe. I enjoy these blades too much to bin em after 1!

Shave 1, Feather (1)
Tradere OC, Tabac, Wee Scot

Been a few months since I last used a Feather, so I gave it a bit extra on the carefuling. In my experience, they tend to be a little eager right out of the tuck, and the Tradere OC doesn't put a lot of effort into holding them back either. I let the heavy stainless razor do all the work, and reined it in after two passes (WTG/XTG). Easy and comfortable shave with only a little grit left in my trouble spots. I'll go for those spots with the next shave.
 
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