Five Rapira Blades - reviewed

Discussion in 'Safety Razor Blades' started by poikkeus, Dec 12, 2014.

  1. Next five reviews only cover the branded Rapira blades - noted for their good quality, moderate price, and accessibility.

    $Rapira Supersteel.jpg

    RAPIRA - Swedish Supersteel

    Razor: ATT H2 and M2 plates

    Shave #1
    The mustache area shows significant resistance ATG, and there’s a slight nick on my mustache. The rest of the shave was uneventful, except that the sharpness clearly wasn’t close to GSB or Feather. In the end, the shave was a decent DFS. This blade would probably work better with a milder razor. Next time, I’ll use the less aggressive M2 plate.

    Shave #2
    Since moving to the M2 plate, shaving the mustache is much smoother - without sacrificing quality of shave. The mustache area isn’t as smooth as I’d expect from a top-tier blade, even after only two days’ use.

    Shave #3
    Smooth, close, DFS shave. My best shave with this blade, so far. The blade is in its “comfortable” stage.

    Shave #4
    More resistance on the mustache, and it takes longer to shave, but the results are DFS.

    Shave #5
    Another good DFS shave, though the mustache is significantly harder to shave, this time. Used the more aggressive H2 plate.

    Shave #6
    Still a very good DFS shave, though the problem areas - mustache and chin - are more difficult. Doesn’t have the closeness from earlier shaves.

    On B&B, there’s a common assumption: certain blades and razors “complement" one another. If you have an aggressive razor, pair it with a more forgiving blade…or at least, that’s how the theory goes. The Rapira Swedish Supersteel isn’t exactly Feather-sharp, so some would say it’s best to pair the blade with a more aggressive razor. Well, that strategy hasn’t worked for me

    The Rapira Swedish Supersteel is moderately sharp, and lasts a little longer than many blades. I’d begin with a moderately smooth razor and shave very lightly.

    At about $15 for 100 blades, it’s a decent value - but there are better values and blades, even in the mildly sharp category. The blade is probably suitable for an unaggressive razor.

     
  2. You know, that’s not a bad idea. People consult the Review section frequently, and it's a central place to read this kind of information.

    I'll continue posting the reviews in this thread until the Rapira series is over, however.
     
  3. $RAPIRA.jpg

    RAPIRA - Super Stainless
    ATT H2 and M2 plates

    Shave #1
    Noticeably sharper than the Rapira Supersteel, the Super Stainless shaves even the mustache area easily - at least when using faster strokes. Even when using the aggressive H2 plate, the shave is smooth and easy.

    Shave #2
    Aside from a small nick on the on my mustache, the shave was smooth and uneventful. It seems to be about a shave sharper than the Supersteel.

    Shave #3
    Noticeably less sharp than shave #1, but it’s still a clean smooth shave.

    Shave #4
    Same as before.

    Shave #5
    The blade is continuing to degrade. While I can still get a decent shave, there’s a tendency for tenderness on the left lip, though the overall quality of the shave is solid. Under normal conditions, I would toss the blade because of the lip issue. I’m going to have to use the M2 plate for the next shave to decrease the aggressiveness of the shave.

    Shave #6
    With the M2 plate, the shave is overall smoother than before. There’s still some pulling, and it’s harder to get a close shave. It’s time to toss the blade.

    The Rapira "Stainless" and "Super Stainless" are the same blade, in case you’re asking. Regardless, this is kind of a shocker: the price is $11 for 100 blades, but the quality is as good as - or slightly better - than the widely beloved Astra. Rapira Stainless may be the low-price leader.

    The Rapira Stainless is quite sharp. Use light pressure at all times, and use a razor that’s mild or only moderately aggressive. The blade is best during shaves 1 to 3, but will give decent shaves - albeit with some tugging - for three more shaves.

    There’s a lot a competition between blades, but the Rapira Stainless should definitely be on your “try” list.
     
  4. I like a number of the blades in the Rapira line, so I look forward to your reviews. I don't know if you consider Voskhod and Ladas part of the Rapira line. They doesn't carry the Rapira name but are made by the same factory.
     
  5. I hope you have the Platinum Lux lined up.....

    Nice reviews!
     
  6. While I've already reviewed the Voskhod blades in a prior post, the Platinum Lux are the very next in line. From what I understand, these may be the best of the bunch.

    I've discovered that the Rapira blades are really quite good in performance and value - easily up to the Voskhods in many ways. :001_smile
     
  7. I was whelmed by the Platinum Lux I tried. Not overwhelmed, not underwhelmed, just... whelmed. I definitely prefer Voskhod. That was the only one of the Rapira family I've tried, though. I'll be interested to read your review of it.
     
  8. I normally don't mind semi-sharp blades but for some reason the Voskhods didn't do it for me. I preferred the Platinum Lux and the Swedish Super Steel over the V's. The Voskhods were very smooth but a bit draggy on my face despite light growth.
     
  9. For me the Rapira Lux is an excellent blade, closely followed by the Rapira Swedish super steel's. Voskhod's are good, but not in the same category as the two premium Rapira blades. Rapira Stainless in the pink and blue box are generally a level below the Voskhod's but I've found them to be extremely effective in the humble SABI T1/T2 handle. Ladas always seemed to be rough for me.
     
  10. DoctorShavegood

    DoctorShavegood Steward

    +1 on that Bob. The Lux is better than the Swedish Steel, but both are really good blades.
     
  11. $Platinum Lux.jpg

    RAPIRA - PLATINUM LUX

    ATT M2 plate

    Shave #1
    Based on on my recent experience with the Rapira line, I’m starting of with the ATT’s M2 plate (medium aggression). The Lux is easily the sharpest of the Rapira blades I’ve sampled so far. Even the ATG shave on the mustache came easily. Optimal balance of comfort and sharpness.

    Shave #2
    The blade is still smooth enough for ATG mustache shaving, and smooth to boot. Very slight roughness on my chin after shaving.

    Shave #3
    Identical to shave #2. The Rapira Supersteel is like a Lux after two days.

    Shave #4
    Noticeable loss in sharpness, and one small weeper on my lip. Overall, however, the shave is DFS, but the blade is on the decline.

    Shave #5
    I soaked my face in lukewarm water this morning, and that probably accounts for the fact that whiskers still weren’t fully softened. In any case, there was a significant drop in sharpness. One tiny nick I’m going back to hot water tomorrow.

    In any case, shave #5 on this blade is not unlike shave #3 on Rapira Stainless.

    Shave #6
    A very good DFS shave. There’s a little bit of roughness on my chin, and extra buffing took care of the mustache…but the results are equal to a new blade. The only change I’d make is that I’d use an H2 (aggressive) plate for shaves #5 and 6.

    The Lux is clearly the “class” in the Rapira line. Superior balance of sharpness and smoothness, this effortlessly cuts through beard. The best price is about $11.20 for 100 blades, postage paid. It’s very similar to the GSB: sharpness is similar, lasts about as long. (And it's about half the price.) However, it’s essential that you soak your face in hot water for three minutes before shaving - just like everyone suggests.

    This blade works best with razor that’s mild or moderate in aggression. However, you might consider using a more aggressive plate or adjustment if you’re shaving over five times with the same blade. The blade easily has enough sharpness to go beyond a week.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2014
  12. I really appreciate your taking the time to write these up and present them here. Rather than pursue the "holy grail", I enjoy discovering new blades to try, and, to be honest, the graphics/packaging are fun to collect and enjoy on a visual level, too. You've shown me a couple of new blades to order!
     
  13. Nice review!

    Darnit, everyone's going to want them now. Will be like the Great Voskhod Rush of early '14.
     
  14. Rapira blades in all varieties are available for purchase on Ebay for around $10/100 from a number of Russian vendors.
     
  15. Indeed! On eBay, I found Rapira Lux for $10.20 for 100 blades - including shipping.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2014
  16. $Voskhod.jpg

    VOSKHOD
    ATT M2, R2 and H2 plates

    Although I’ve rated the Voskhod blade before, I’ve decided to try different ATT plates to see if my shaves improve. As many of you already know, Voskhods are from the same factory the Rapira blades, and I hope it meets my expectations this time.

    Shave #1
    Fresh after using the Rapira Lux, it's clear the Voskhod isn’t remotely as sharp. That said, it delivered a solid DFS shave, though the mustache ended up being a little rough for a first shave.

    Tomorrow, I’m changing from a moderately aggressive M2 plate to a mild R2 plate tomorrow so see if there’s a difference.

    Shave #2
    With an R2 plate, the shave is still close and smooth, though the mustache area still wasn’t as close and comfortable as I wanted. Otherwise, however, the shave was DFS quality - except maybe the neck, which was my fault.

    Tomorrow, I’m back to the M2 plate. The problem’s not the razor.

    Shave #3
    Especially clean shave - except for the mustache, and maybe the neck. I already have to apply additional pressure to get a clean jawline, but the results are satisfying.

    I’m really starting to lose some sharpness, so I’m going to use the aggressive H2 plate tomorrow. I’m really trying to find a combination of plates that works best with the Voshkod. So far, I’m underwhelmed.

    Shave #4
    Again…exceptionally smooth face and jaw, and pretty close neck. I was lulled into complacency, and shaving with more pressure than usual; four or five pin-prick nicks, and the shave itself left me slightly sore.

    So much for the H2 plate - and this blade. I draw the line at blood.

    Voskhod blades vary significantly in availability, but their relative cheapness make them well worth checking out. On eBay, packs of 100 can cost as little as $10, shipped - but that depends on the vendor.

    These blades aren’t what I’d call “smooth.” and the first shave’s sharpness is similar to a Rapira SuperSteel and SS Chrome: there’s some resistance ATG on the mustache, even on the first shave. By shave #3, I got clean shaves - with some effort. I’d toss a Voshkod after three, four shaves.

    This blade seems to work best with a mild razor; try faster strokes if you notice some tugging. In fact, I’m not sure if I’d use an open comb razor with a Voshkod. In any case, shave lightly as a rule.
     
  17. I just used one for 5 shaves in My slim, starting on 5, moving to a 8 by the last shave.
    I liked the shave so much I bought many more to make it through the 2015 restraint.

    I also plan on trying all the Rapira blades again in 2015. Currently my ratings:

    Sputnik (gives a great shave in my mild razors, still tuning in Slim)
    Voskhod, (though was harsh months ago. Recently used in Slim and man what a good blade)
    Rapira (red) (not a fan of in my tests months ago)
    Rapira Lux (found to bee too sharp for me months ago)

    Have not tried
    Ladas
    Rapira Sweedish Steel
     
  18. I was all excited tonight as it's been a long time since using Rapira Stainless, and I found a pack inside a razor case. WELL, Near the end of the shave I felt an awful burn, and I could see the redness I was going to be left with! I rinsed my face, and though it burned like anything when I did, I noticed it was a damned lousy shave, missing many spots. I let a good thick lather rest on my face a minute or 2 whilst I dug out my Sensor and cleaned it all up carefully. That was over an hour ago, and my face feels like I'm on fire!
     
  19. I've only discovered recently that there are two varieties of Rapira Stainless - Rapira Stainless Chrome and the Rapira Stainless. Rapira Stainless Chrome is roughly equal to the Rapira Swedish Super Steel.

    But today, I used a Rapira Stainless (not chrome) - and I was not impressed at all. I'm going to see if I can wring another shave or two out of this blade, but I'm not optimistic. :001_huh:
     

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