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New rules for US airport security

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The only thing anyone needs to know is this ——

“The final decision rests with the TSA officer on whether an item is allowed through the checkpoint.”
Right. You might meet a TSA agent who is sensible and reasonable. There might be a few of these. OTOH, you might meet a TSA agent who is clueless or on a power trip (or that unpleasant combination of both). Best not to take chances.

(No offense to anyone who works for the TSA, of course. These are just my experiences.)


C.C. & D.U.
Staff member
Of course, this is perfectly acceptable, because no one could possibly use it as a weapon.

Right. You might meet a TSA agent who is sensible and reasonable. There might be a few of these. OTOH, you might meet a TSA agent who is clueless or on a power trip (or that unpleasant combination of both). Best not to take chances.

(No offense to anyone who works for the TSA, of course. These are just my experiences.)
I actually had both the last year at the same checkpoint. Was flying from Lexington, Kentucky to Punta Gurda, Florida. Had my Otto Roth NEW LC (disassembled, no blades) with me. The TSA agent that initially took a look at it wasn’t sure about it. He fortunately asked another agent about it. Fortunately the other agent was a razor collector so everything ended up working out
Just a warning to upcoming travelers, I attempted to carry on my merkur progress to a flight with no blade in it, which ended up getting confiscated. Apparently some guy held a lady hostage with a straight razor a couple of weeks ago and they don't allow safety razors, bladed or not, in the carry on.
I hope that you were able to get it back. “Confiscate” is basically just legal stealing.
So instead of taking responsibility for their astonishing negligence letting a passenger through security with a straight razor, and instead of fixing it, they instead opt to do something that makes nobody safer but gives the appearance of action.

It reminds me of that mass shooting some guy did in a cinema, dressed as the Joker (was it Kansas?). The action taken in response was to ban costumes from cinemas.

Or as Sir Humphrey Appleby once said, “Prime Minister, we must do something. This is something. Therefore we must do it”.
If you absolutely must carry on a safety razor, it strikes me that disassembling it and keeping the parts separate might get it overlooked by the TSA.

There was a gent in the straight razor subforum that got a 7 day set of tortoiseshell Heljestrands confiscated recently. Still not sure what the heck he was thinking trying to carry those on.


I shaved a fortune
Before 9-11, I always just kept my EDC knife with me... no problem because it was within the specs for knives allowed on a flight. The blade was just over 2" and the allowable blade length was around 4", so not even close.

I went through security in Philadelphia without a hitch but when I tried to go back through security at the Dallas/Fort Worth airport, the TSA tried to confiscated it. I sort of smiled at him and said: "I know this Syderco knife is pretty nice and you'd love to have it... but it's well within the allowable blade lengths. I'd like to have it back."

He smiled also and handed me back my knife. I got a bit lucky. If he had a different personality and didn't enjoy my humor, that knife would have been long gone.
That's infuriating. I'm moving to where ever the Baldwin's go when they get mad. What has happened to us?
It's called "security theatre." Measures like the above won't do a damned thing to make plans more secure, but it just may make a few people feel more comfortable.

If you want real security measures, do what the Israelis do.

Thanks. We have an overseas trip coming up in April. I'll just check the razor(s) I take. I always put the blades in checked luggage.
Same. I have a separate bag containing just my Post-war Tech + blades that I always put in checked luggage. If, on the other hand, I wanted to go carry-on only, I'd suck it up and buy a disposable at my destination. One thing I learned when traveling for business literally every week was to do nothing to potentially make the process more difficult.

We are all pretty much immune from our own house's germs, but I have a hard time staying in a place away from home.

And let's not anybody mention bedbugs!

I always have those issues. But, well, when you travel for business as much as I did, you need to deal w/both.

Problem #1: Be very careful when you check over a room for cleanliness, especially in the bathroom, upon checking in. Be as friendly as possible w/hotel staff, especially if you're going to be staying some place for more than a night, and maybe they reciprocate by remembering you when you ask for a favor.

Problem #2: The only thing that really did a number on bed bugs was DDT. And oh, did we use DDT in the US. It's typical of the US, that something is either THE BEST THING EVER!!! and we use it everywhere, or THE WORST THING EVER!!! and we ban its use. In the 1950s, you'd see trucks going down neighborhood streets literally blasting the entire street w/DDT. Then, we discovered that, due to such overuse, it was harming significant animals, such as the bald eagle. So, rather than cut back on its use- fun fact, DDT is remarkably effective even when used at a fraction of the way we did in the US during the '50s- we banned it entirely. As a result, we've seen a big rebound over the past 30 years in head lice and bedbugs, two pests that were well-controlled by DDT. Oh, and the heavy use of DDT also led to faster evolution of DDT resistance in both pests, so even bringing its use back might not help. Good times.

But, whatever the cause, travelers need to deal w/be very diligent when checking for bed bugs. My wife has an incredible procedure for looking: she strips the bed, checks every crevice of the mattress, and every indentation in the frame, and every bit of furniture in the room. Plus, we never unpack the suitcase on the bed, and only store things on the tile floor of the bathroom.

FWIW, since traveling w/her I've never seen any bedbugs. But, I have no doubt whatsoever that were they present, this check would find them. If we did, then the first step is to report them and demand to be moved to another room. Then repeat the check there. If the 2nd room fails the check, too, well, I suppose you ask for a refund and look for another hotel.

Here's a new rule, why not make life simpler, and stop taking flights. Problem solved!

That's the thing about the US, though: it's so huge, and our high speed, or even middle speed, rail network is so inadequate, that flights are virtually the only way to travel between Points A + B in a reasonable time, given some conditions.

Those conditions are:

#1: The time of the flight + 3 hours (estimated average of total time to travel to the airport + get through security + wait for the flight) must be less than the time to drive or take the train, if the latter is even an option. Up and down the Northeast Corridor- Boston to Washington, via New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and smaller cities for the non-Americans reading this- rail kicks air travel's *** for this reason. Yes, a flight from Boston to DC may be shorter- when you consider just time in the air. But, add on the 3 hours above, plus the indignities that are part of air travel today, and rail becomes far more preferable. Plus, I've ridden the rail over both NEC trains and longer ones, and riding the train is just so much more civilized than flying these days. Hell, aside from the absence of indignities like TSA, you can actually get up and walk around a train without a flight attendant growling at you to return to your seat. And, depending on where you're going, you can actually see things out the window of a train.​
#2: Depending on cost considerations, flying could easily wind up being significantly more expensive than driving, especially if you're traveling with a family.​
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