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Motherlode synthetic brush build

After reading a few posts about how Wald synthetic knots are amazing, I wondered if there was a "bargain similar" that one could either buy or make (I don't think that I would ever spend anything close to what they cost, and I also like different handles). My understanding is that Wald synthetic knot fibers are 0.07 mm, and that the Motherlode synthetic knot also has 0.07 mm fibers (either the brown one, or the Boti "Tuxedo thin fiber" which is the black colored version of the same knot - I think). I'd also read that the Motherlode knot is very soft, but I'd never seen any comparisons between that and a Cashmere synthetic knot, which has been the softest synthetic knot I've used to date.

I ended up buying a 24 mm brown Motherlode knot and a 24 mm Shave Forge orange acrylic handle, used silicone adhesive on some plastic washers, and . . . I now have a new brush!

Softness - the Motherlode knot definitely feels different than a Cashmere knot. The tips may or may not be softer, but the overall feel is of a much softer brush. It definitely has less backbone, which isn't surprising as I think the Motherlode knot was actually designed as a makeup brush rather than a shaving brush. It easily has the softest face feel of any brush I can recall. I can see how some people wouldn't like it for not having much backbone, however.

Lather - it's great at building lather from creams and soft soaps/croaps. Easy to use, nice lather. No problems.

I'm already planning a 29-30 mm Motherlode style knot in another handle, so whomever said that making one brush leads to making more - you were absolutely correct!

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I have made two brushes with motherlode knots. You're right, they are very soft and rather floppy. The first one I made is on the left and is 24mm. It is probably too floppy. Today I set the second one, it is a 30mm and I bored out the hole a little bit to sink it lower with the hopes of having a bit more backbone. It does have more and notice that the 24mm and 30mm have about the same spread, so the 30mm is more dense. It works better, but I think it would be even better if it was a taller knot and mounted deeper. I think you are having the same ideas I had with this one.

The one on the right is not a motherlode knot, at least I don't think so. I bought that one assembled for $7 and it is much more like my Wald. It is 30mm and must be mounted quite deep, as it has even less spread, is more dense, and has more backbone. I don't know what they used to make it, but that is what I wanted to get closer to with the middle one.


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I have two Boti Mother Lode brushes, a 26 mm and a 30 mm. They are both very dense, very soft. The 26mm is borderline floppy. The 30mm however is not floppy at all, it has a decent backbone and I like it a lot. Face feel is excellent and I have no problems with using it with harder soaps, as Stirling , Martin de Candre, or Saponificio Varesino.

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Another knot with thin fiber is the FS-G4 Frank Shaving, which can be purchased on Aliexpress. The thickness of the fiber is 0.08 mm. I have a brush with a 28 mm FS-G4 knot. Very good impressions.
The thickness of the fibre may be the same between vendors but in my research it is where the fibers are sourced is what makes the difference and is why one stands out from the others!! The APShaveCo G5 series has been attempted by Frank Shaving, Boti, and Oumo but has proven not to be the same though they look and act quite similar. Even the Cashmere and SynBad knots from APShaveCo and Yaqi are different but not by much. The Mother Lode which was introduced to wet shaving a few years ago by Elite Razor is in fact a makeup brush that he took a chance on and although I don't think it really panned out for him it would seem that Yaqi and Boti have opened the market for the knot and its seems more are saturating the market today.

Current top of the heap is the Wald A1 knots that everyone is chasing but memory serves me that Jannick has an exclusive on the fiber he uses so it may be a while until anyone gets close... My advice is if you don't have a Wald brush, save your pennies and get one because it is an experience like no other on the market.
Beautiful brush and a nice review!

I prize softness over all other qualities in brush, and the Mother Lode is the softest knot I've used. IMO, it's softer than the Cashmere.

Here's a photo of a 26mm Mother Lode from Oumo in a handle Rudy Vey made for me. It originally had a Muhle STF knot, which is a great knot, but I prefer the extreme softness of the Mother Lode, so I swapped it out.

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