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Hello from NoVa

Hi all,

I’m a regular on audio forums - I build my own hifi tube amplifiers - but I’ve been lurking here for a little while and finally decided to say hi. I’ve been wet shaving with a cartridge razor for a while but this past week finally dove into the hard stuff with a WCS shavette. I liked it so much I’m starting to research for when I finally break down and go for a straight razor. Still weighing the pros/cons of a Feather shavette, Dovo Inox and every other blade under the sun, but thought I’d at least introduce myself before I start asking questions on the forums.

Cheers,
Ben
 
Hi all,

I’m a regular on audio forums - I build my own hifi tube amplifiers - but I’ve been lurking here for a little while and finally decided to say hi. I’ve been wet shaving with a cartridge razor for a while but this past week finally dove into the hard stuff with a WCS shavette. I liked it so much I’m starting to research for when I finally break down and go for a straight razor. Still weighing the pros/cons of a Feather shavette, Dovo Inox and every other blade under the sun, but thought I’d at least introduce myself before I start asking questions on the forums.

Cheers,
Ben
Welcome, I hope you enjoy the content. Any questions don’t hesitate to enquire.
 

ajkel64

Moderator
Welcome to the forum Ben. Thanks for sharing with us. You could hop over the the Straight Razor Forum, the members there would love to hear from you.
 
Actually, home from work with a bad cold, so managed to snap a picture.

As a teenager I started with the Barbasol canned foam my dad had been using but quickly realized that just dried my skin to parchment. I started wet shaving with a cartridge in the mid-2000s after buying a starter kit from Mertz’s in Chicago, where I used to live. It had a stand with a brush (the same in the photo - no idea what type - synthetic?) and a cartridge razor with matching handles. That’s pretty much what I’ve used for the past decade a half. I also bought my first bottle of Lucky Tiger at Mertz’s. That’s been my go-to balm since then. I’ve had occasional flings with others, but I always go back to LT.

Last Christmas my brother bought me a jar of Proraso pre-shave, and that really started me down the rabbit hole. Since then I’ve been exploring life outside cartridges for a variety of reasons: 1) Carts didn’t always give me a good shave, and if you’re paying that much money for each one, you’d better be getting a good shave every time; 2) Costs. I already have one expensive hobby (a record collection that I started when I was in high school, back when CDs were ascendant and records were dirt cheap. I’m hoping to stay out of the shaver deep end of the pool and keep the accessories to a minimum. And 3) I’ve gotten increasingly squeamish just from the sheer amount of plastic that goes in the trash can with each purchase of cartridge blades. The idea of just having small metal blades for a DE razor or, even better, no disposable parts at all for a straight razor appeals to me.

So here’s what I’m rocking after a couple of weeks of shopping:

1) A 1961 Gillette SuperSpeed black handle, about to be fitted with an Astra blade from a sampler pack. This has been little used yet as I’m finding I really like the use of:
2) A WCS shavette with an Astra blade, and
3) Mitchell’s Wool Fat shaving soap refill in an aluminum tin. I’ve come to prefer soaps over creams, but am in no way dead to creams.

On their way though the postal system:

1) A Semogue 620 boar brush I picked up from this site’s BST,
2) A Tanifuji-stamped Cape 1000 straight razor I bought from an eBay seller who B&B folks have vouched for, and
3) A second-hand Kanayama 15000 strop.

The Cape 1000 is supposedly “shave ready,” and other B&B members have told me the seller does in fact a good job of making sure of that. Once it needs a hone I’ll send it somewhere that can also do a polish and scales replacement. If anyone has suggestions as to such a place (Whipped Dog? Razor Emporium?) please let me know.

The humble system so far:

IMG_20200127_155554.jpg

Here’s the Cape 1000 I’m expecting. A little rough, but I’m hoping it can be saved:

s-l1600.jpg


Thanks for reading, and happy shaves to you.
 
Looks like you are well under way! Is the NoVa in the title Northern Virginia? If so, we are practically neighbors. Glad to have you.
 
Looks like you are well under way! Is the NoVa in the title Northern Virginia? If so, we are practically neighbors. Glad to have you.
Yup, Northern Virginia - in an neighborhood on the McLean, Falls Church and Tysons border.
 
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