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Merkur 34C vs. Fine Marvel?

It's time replace my year old 34C (it's pretty gunked up from hard water use and has some scratches on it). I've been very happy with its intuitiveness/ease of use, weight, balance, and level of aggressiveness. I shave my head every other day and the 34C has been especially good in this area. However, I'm also intrigued by the new Fine Marvel, which seems at first glance to be a similar product. Anyone have experience with both of these that can offer a comparison? I use Astra SP blades if this happens to make a difference.

Happy Shaving,

Ken Surfs on YouTube did at least one video on it, if not two. He seemed to say it was aggressive and safe at the same time because of the gap and massive safety bar. I haven't used one, but it would probably be the next razor I would get. I wouldn't be surprised if it was unique in the world of razors.
I found the Marvel one of the scariest looking razor that ended up being very comfortable and efficient. I would rate it about as comfortable as the 34c, but much more efficient. Don't let that blade gap scare you as the angled top cap and extra large safety bar just sets the proper angle for you and if you keep that angle, you will get a very close shave without even feeling the blade. I don't know how it would do with head shaving, but for regular shaving, it has quickly moved to being one of my favorites.
There are only two designs in the world of DE razors that stand out (imho): Merkur Progress and Fine Marvel.

Additionally, when asking via e-mail mr Fine, he was the only producer that spoke directly, honestly and outright which materials were chosen and why. None of that marketing bullcrap 'metal alloy' yada yada. The man said all chromed zamak, or the price would be too high. Seems like an honest fella.

However, you're not buying the design, so read the reviews thoroughly :)
The Marvel is a darn good razor IMO. I have never owned a 34C so, I'm no help on that question. Gillette made tons of Zamak razors & a lot of them are still giving good shaves to this day. So, Zamak does not bother me in its longevity.
I have a couple of things to add. 1) not all Zamak is the same. The mixture of the alloy can vary in quality, going from pretty strong to pretty darn flimsy. It isn't *necessarily* something to worry about as long as it's quality. 2) in addition to the Merkur Progress and the Fine Marvel designs, there is also the Merkur 45 Bakelite. The 45 also has that big blade curvature seen in the Progress as well as a sizable safety bar. Some people don't like Bakelite, but the 45 is a gorgeous black and red mottled pattern. I think it's an amazing razor.

If anyone wants to try the 45, I know a US seller that offers it for $20 instead of the normal $35.
I might consider a bit of a different tack based on your description. Your 34C provided great shaves over an extended period. Tough to do much better than that!

Fine’s product is definitely intriguing and might provide something different!

So I would replace the 34C and also get the Fine!! (Classic B&B!!) :a14::a14:
ive had it since beggining of october and out of the ten blades used, i only could get the perma sharp to give me some what nick free shave or irratation free. if ur face can take more then most i think be fine. it gets close shave but i keep going back to merkur 23c. not as close but way more comfortable shave. honestly wished tried out something razorock like the sloc or old type. if anyone has experience with those, let me know. thanks
I don't know what 10 blades you have tried but, I get close smooth shaves with Dorco Prime, Wilkinson Sword, Gillette Green & Yellow.
none of those. i guess i gotta order some packs of those and see what happens. well i have wilkinsin but those did not work for me in my merkur. unless ur talking about gillette ones
The 34c only lasted a year? Is one year of mileage from a chrome razor typical?

When I was new to the whole wet shaving thing, I bought an Edwin Jagger 89 which did last a year before I replaced it, because the chrome on the threads wore off and it felt 'nasty' to have that black thing sticking in the handle (it left residue on the towel). However, I never read anything on the materials then and wasn't aware of any differences between zamak and other materials. Consequently, I used to overtighten the thread as a rule (I thought that's the best way). Don't confuse it with chrome, as chrome is just coating.

Upon reading and deliberating, I have decided to not care if the razor is zamak anymore. The material is inferior, but more easily molded. It makes razors very affordable. And I like affordable, since, considering it's my hobby, I'll probably replace my razor every couple of years just for the sake of it. Though, if Giesen & Forsthoff ever make their closed comb head in stainless steel, I'd get one for the vintage razor.

And one other thing, nobody mentions what happens when you drop the razor. I'd rather drop my zamak razor and have it break, than a 110g stainless steel razor doing damage to my 300$ sink. I'd rather replace the razor than a part of my bathroom, which is more tiresome and way more expensive.

If cared for properly (not dropping it by accident, though that happened a couple of times with my EJ with no damage), maybe greasing the threads every now and then and not overtighten them, then a zamak razor should last you a long long time.
The 34c only lasted a year? Is one year of mileage from a chrome razor typical?

I haven’t been completely honest...it’s not so much that it “needs replacing” so much that I “lost it and can’t remember where the hell it is.”
Lol, okay I feel a little better. I was worried that zamak only had an expected one year life span. If that was the case, I would have invested in a SS or bronze razor. I generally take good care of my razors but I did buy a 34c from an auction site...Luckily, it didn't have any dents. I will have to check the threads when I get back to the States.
I'm convinced that Zamak can last many years if you're careful and gentle with it. I've noticed that when I screw the handle on the threaded post of the head, it usually takes me two or three tries to align the threads. If I used too much torque, it would wear out those threads prematurely. So I use a light touch until the threads align, then twist it home. I also remove the blade from the razor and wipe everything dry after every shave. The threaded post even gets an occasional drop of oil.
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