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Ebay buys

I started recently with a shavette and as usual ran across all the straight razors on ebay while learning about shaving. I was surprised at what's available in vintage razors. Today I received my first buy, a Genco head barber (I'm very pleased with the condition it's in especially for $20).
My next one will be here in a few days. A nice looking 'Lang Bros Gold Medal Solingen Germany Metropol Straight Razor' and is marked '95 Feramud on the other side', again, for right at $20.
I really enjoy researching items I buy but I see specific details aren't easily found. I'm having to rely on things like made in Germany to feel that I'll might be able to make a shaver out of it.

I see quite a few razors marked with a variety of HDW companies, and Bros companies such as the Lang Bros I just bought. Were these just distributors that stamped the shank or did these companies actually make the razor.
At these prices I know I'll be buying more as time goes on but I'm wondering if any of you already made this specific 'mass produced razors?' journey and might have some words of wisdom to share from your experiences, I'll be polishing and cleaning them up for personal use, and I'm also in the process of learning to hone.

I just joined the forum and have been doing some searching already but apparently haven't found the right words to put in the search bar.



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"Self appointed king of Arkoland"
Some person much smarter than I will hopefully be along soon with some information. In the meantime, make yourself at home, and welcome to Badger and Blade!


Girls call me Makaluod
Quite often hardware stores and other retailers had straight razors made for them and marked with their store's name. These SRs were generally made in Sheffield, England and later in Germany. This retail badging was common in North America and many of the British colonies.
The Genco is probably the first razor I was able to get a good edge/ shave with. I have quite a few now. Genco/Geneva.

Just went through my collection and yes, there are quite a few hardware stores, businesses and Bro’s that had razors made. Fun tracking them down when you can.
Yes, razors were a marketing tool and razor companies would rebrand a razor with your mark for a very small run. Genco was one of the largest quality razor maker of the day. At the height of razor making, early 1900’s Genco, Geneva Cutlery Company advertised making over 6,000 razors per week.

Buy the best quality razors in the best condition you can afford. Avoid rust, spine wear and misshaped blades. The Genco is in need of heel correction and likely the cause of the wear at the toe. The toe is narrower than the heel. It is an easy fix and Genco’s are great shavers.

The rust on the Lang Bro may be difficult to remove completely.
Most vintage razors make good shavers.
The branding is fun, like the Palmer razors from the Palmer hotel. Hardware store brands too. All of it, all of them, all good stuff.
Great decision and welcome to the forum and rabbit hole, @Rick1500!

There is an endless supply of good vintage straight razors out there. A great way to learn about the different makers and models is to peruse the last year of these two threads:

And ask plenty of questions. BTW, we love pictures :)!
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