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I'm Not In Love With My Superspeed

I have a black handle Superspeed. I want to like it, since it is a birth quarter razor (T3), but I really don't. I've shaved with it a few times now and with a handful of blades that are usually go-tos for me (7 O'C Black, Astra SP, Personna Lab).

It's just so... mild. If I look at it from the profile view, there's almost no blade exposure and just a very small angle window where the blade would even come in contact with my face. If I shave with the same pressure as my trusty DE89, which gives a beautiful shave, my face feels as though it hasn't been touched. Then I start to ramp up the pressure and we all know where that road leads - hamburger neck.

Anyway, I'll probably keep this because of the date significance, but I don't see it getting shaved with very often, if ever.
 
I think it's an outstanding razor for someone looking for a mild shave but if you're looking for anything more than mild you won't get it. It's still a great razor though.
 
Well, as long as we're confessing, I'm not in love with mine either for the shave. But the design? Oh, yeah, that I love. Each distinctive style is a classic.

But for shaving? Fatip, please.

Cheers,

rick
 
You might try shimming the blade. Take an old blade and trim off the edges with a pair of scissors. Then put it in under the blade you plan to shave with. That will make the razor more aggressive. Just be a little careful.
 
That was my experience with it, as well. I had to do too much touching-up, which always leads to irritation. That's why I'm digging OC's right now; two passes, and maybe a little touch-up in the most difficult areas, and I have a BBS.

That said, the Super Speed was the perfect razor for me when I was starting out. But, once my technique developed, it was time to move on to bigger and better (more aggressive) things.
 
I'm not in love with my birth-quarter razor, either. Its a Z-3 TV Special, banged up and a little rusty, but still working, just like its owner.

I only use it on my birthday, but there are some years I don't bother to shave that day. It provides an acceptable shave, but nothing like I can get the rest of the year out of some of my more preferred models.

I bought my brother an F3 FatBoy for his BDR, he hasn't used it ever.

There's no reason why your BDR has to be your daily choice. Keep it for what it is, a once-a-year event. Even if you never, ever use it, its hard to part with, since its one of the few items in your shave den that has an interesting story to go along with it. (Interesting to non-hobbyists, that is.)
 
The Gillette super adjustable (black handled adjustable razors) are very mild as you have found out.

Put it aside for a while and come back to it later. Always best to put a razor away for a while if you think you don't like it as sometimes when you give it a rest then take it back out, your techinque has changed enough that you get a very acceptable shave
 
The Gillette super adjustable (black handled adjustable razors) are very mild as you have found out.

Put it aside for a while and come back to it later. Always best to put a razor away for a while if you think you don't like it as sometimes when you give it a rest then take it back out, your techinque has changed enough that you get a very acceptable shave

Not that I disliked my 23C when I started, but it is funny how much better that thing works each time I throw it back into the rotation every now and again. I even throw in a Merkur Super blade for old time's sake :001_tt2:
 
I've heard both ways on super speeds. I personally love my superspeed. It never fails to give me a close shave. I guess its a ymmv thing though.
 
I may try the shim, but not sure. I think I'll be heading down the vintage adjustable path next instead though.

As far as non-adjustables, what are some more aggressive vintage Gillettes to try (preferably TTO)?
 
I agree that the super speeds are pretty mild. But, do you have a black handle super speed or a black handle adjustable super speed? With the adjustable, you should be able to dial it up to a pretty aggressive shave. The black handle adjustable SS comes up quite regularly on ebay and there is a T2 on there now. A T3 should show up eventually.
cottontop
 
Is it possible to loosen the doors for a more aggressive shave? I know you can do this with some of the early TTOs.
Don't do it. That quarter-turn lock is there for a reason.

I once forgot to tighten down the blade in 39C Slant. Yeah, I got a more aggressive shave ... so aggressive it tore my face to shreds. Weepers and bleeders and cuts and nicks all over. I did a pass and a half before I figured out what the problem was, but by that time, the damage was done. I couldn't shave again for a week and a half before my face healed up.
 
Don't do it. That quarter-turn lock is there for a reason.

I once forgot to tighten down the blade in 39C Slant. Yeah, I got a more aggressive shave ... so aggressive it tore my face to shreds. Weepers and bleeders and cuts and nicks all over. I did a pass and a half before I figured out what the problem was, but by that time, the damage was done. I couldn't shave again for a week and a half before my face healed up.
Ouch! This is advice to heed!
 
Don't do it. That quarter-turn lock is there for a reason.

I once forgot to tighten down the blade in 39C Slant. Yeah, I got a more aggressive shave ... so aggressive it tore my face to shreds. Weepers and bleeders and cuts and nicks all over. I did a pass and a half before I figured out what the problem was, but by that time, the damage was done. I couldn't shave again for a week and a half before my face healed up.

The mechanics are a lot different between the slant and a TTO. Gillette Old Types, as well as early TTOs were designed to be somewhat adjustable. The instructions advised loosening the adjuster knob for a closer shave.

http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php/173528-Adjustable-Old-Type
 
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I may try the shim, but not sure. I think I'll be heading down the vintage adjustable path next instead though.

As far as non-adjustables, what are some more aggressive vintage Gillettes to try (preferably TTO)?

TTOs
Red Tip Superspeed (SB) [safety bar]
Senator (OC) [open comb]
Sheraton (OC)
'34-39 Aristocrat (OC)
'40-51 Aristocrat (SB)
President (SB)

Non-TTO
NEW LC (OC)
NEW SC (OC)
Old Type (OC)

These are just a few. I agree with you on the SuperSpeed, it just does not do it for me. Staying with the TTOs, the Red Tip is probably the easiest to find at a good price. It might be a good next choice.
 
A wise man once said “When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.”

There is sometimes a penchant for people to place value on "aggressive" as an attribute to a razor, but truth be told, unless just poorly designed (as some of the early Weishi's were) a "mild" razor is every bit as effective as an "aggressive" one.

The technique for a Super Speed or a Tech is certainly different than that for a NEW or and Old Type, but they all shave equally as well when the proper technique is used.

When I read that someone has to make up for a lack of aggressiveness by applying pressure, I get the impression that the habits learned from Cart use have not yet been completely abandoned.

I could be totally wrong on that, and if so, apologize in advance. We certainly have our favorites and razors can vary from model to model, and within the same model. I've seen cases where a razor model was criticized as a poor performer only to find out that THAT particular razor had been dropped and the gap was off.

I'd suggest putting it away for a while, and if you get the opportunity to try a different razor of a similar model to do so.
You might find that there is some issue with yours mechanically, or you might find that after some time that it "grows" on you.

Or you could still hate it after years of experience, but at least you'll have given it the benefit of the doubt and removed some of the variables.
 
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