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That Windsor feeling! My journey with the Windsor from Above The Tie.

I want to share my experience with my new Windsor from Above The Tie / ATT with you. I got it on 1. February and have used it exclusively since then.
Actually I have shared my findings since then on a German board, but was too short on time to post them in simultaneous in English here. So these are my reports so far, once I'll be sharing my record with the R-plate, we will be up-to-date.

Before I start, I want to mention that @nav had posted a great and detailed review of the Windsor as well as the new Windsor Pro here, which is a good read I recommend for those interested:
REVIEW: Above-The-Tie (ATT)...The all new Windsor Pro SS & AL (and Windsor original)

Okay, here we go:

For quite some time I was lusting for a first class razor. One that is of a different tool-class than my Zamak-buddies and it had to be of a classic, traditional design. Nothing eccentric or 'loud', nothing quirky like the beautiful Progress, no dedicated designer-piece which you could possibly find in the Museum of Modern Arts like the Futur, nothing that screams retro and also no striking object of luxury like so many razors these days.
I was looking for a razor with a charming and noble yet discreet beauty and a timeless, classic look and so I went with the Windsor.

As I am shaving for many years with a Futur and the R41, I could have just ordered the Windsor SSH1 with the 0.91 mm blade gap and would have been fine, I guess.
But the R-plate with the 0.58 gap was praised for it's effiency and so I thought, why not try a milder route after all these years. And as I'm a sucker for complete things, I ordered the 5-piece Windsor set, which also includes the M-base serving a 0.25 mm blade gap. Ah, and of course I had to have the sexy stand.
As I love short handles I decided for the Atlas.

Btw, the communication with Matt and Manda from Above The Tie was simply stellar! The great reputation of ATT in general as well as Stan Hickam's pioneering work on fixed-adjustables also attracted me to seek my good shaving fortune with one of their products. I send my thanks and warmest good wishes to you kind and great folks at @Above The Tie !

And here it is:

210201_13900-AboveTheTie-Windsor_set.jpg

And what a stunning piece of jewelry the Windsor is in the flesh! Of course I had viewed each and every picture on the web before and had quite a concrete idea what to expect, but I was surprised how glorious it's visual impact is. Awesome!
Ah, and something I especially love is that on close inspection of the finish you can see, that the Windso is polished by real humans. It's not 'machine-perfect', yet superfine great work. In the best meaning: Handmade.

Knowing it would arrive that day I had waited of course with my shave. To get a hunch how it will could feel one day, when my hands will probably get a bit shaky and in some kind of very relaxed, contemplative mood I decided to start out with the mildest of the base-plates, the M. And I used a Wilkinson Sword bladem which had it's first use the day before in my R41.
That didn't work for me. Initially. The Sword is already a mild blade and with the - for my habits - very mild gap I was missing it's presence and couldn't feel the right angle as easy as I'm used to.
So after one pass WTG and one CTG, I inserted a brand-new Feather blade and started all over again with three passes, including one ATG at the end.

And yeah! Now the thing rocked. It's been an eternity that I had such a thorough shave with a mild construction like the Windsor SSM1 is. However, my initial feeling is, that the M-version is not for me. Probably I will check this out one day, but my next and second shave will happen with the H-base as I probably should have done it directly.

Okay, the start of our relationship wasn't perfect, but very, very promising. Tbc.
 
@Beefdrippings & @jackgoldman123 :
Thank you so much! 🍻:)

---

Second shave, February 2:

First visit to Windsor level H today.

Yesterdays shave with the M-plate was really in-depth, though mild, I made effectively 5 passes as reported. So I did let pass a whole day and waited some more hours to get an idea of the closeness of the shave and how my skin feels later on.

Once again I inserted a new Feather blade and went for 3 passes as usual. This time there was no uncertainty about the right angle any more. Two strokes and I was there, the rest was adaption and building muscle memory as you do.

My first and preliminary conclusion: Just Wow!
The closeness felt on par to the level of the R41, but more tender. And it takes quite a lot ot make me write these words, because the R41 & me ... we are a true match. The R41 is like my eleventh finger and feels so easy and natural on my skin. Every day. And most of the times with three passes.

The sound feedback with the Windsor is quite rich. It doesn't sing like as high as the R41 or the Futur, but it gives a nice hum. And the way I can lead the blade on my skin is extremely defined and rigid , no irritation. Super! Surely the wide cap, which covers the blade complety introduces additional stability.
Btw, I like that the cap covers the edges of the blade. Not that I ever had problems with the edges exposed, but with the usual razor heads I'm always 'aware' when I reach the borders to my lips. With the Windsor I almost instantly experienced some kind of unsuspicious easy feeling when nearing those danger zones.

So that was my first shave with the H-plate (Windsor SSH1) and I will stay on Level H for the next days to get a deeper understanding, how this will work for me.

To celebrate my new Windsor and in anticipation of a great shave to come, I opened my splash bottle of Kouros from 1992 and here's the pic of the set-up:

210201_13923-AboveTheTie-Windsor-Stand_Chubby3S.jpg
 
Last edited:
I bought an ATT M1 (Kronos) way back in late 2013!

Absolutely beautiful thing it was, but it simply loved to nick and rarely left me completely irritation-free.
In the end, I found any excuse to use something else and sold it - if the latest versions are better behaved then I can think of few better looking razors (and indeed yours looks stunning!) but I'm hesitant to even consider pulling the trigger on ATT again.

It's not so much that I don't trust companies to improve their products, but that it's the most expensive razor I ever bought new and it'd take a hell of a lot to displace my current favourites (which are no more aggressive!) - the risk reward isn't compelling enough.

Sounds like the Windsor is working great for you - long may it continue!
 
@BubblesUK , thank you so much! Above The Tie has a very generous return policy, so there would be no risk for you, if you were curious enough to try. ;)

@never-stop-learning , thank you very much! I know your thread, it's a great one! :cool:

As you mention the mixed metal /copper options, yeah! Actually I have ordered two copper plates on top, just because the mix is so beautiful. 😸

---

February 6, Windsor SSH1, 5 days on my skin:

The first four shaves with the H-plate I used that new Feather as mentioned above and today I inserted the Sword I had originally used with the M-base and put it to it's second use.

Man ... fantastic-o!

I am almost willing to call out to my R41 "Twilight of the Gods, Baby!" as I my shaves with the Windsor SSH1 worked out very quickly on the level I'm used from the R41 in terms of closeness and efficiency, but with less aggressiveness.
Not on all days, though shaving with the Windsor with the H-plate is extremly intuitive, I haven't build the practiced implicitness (muscle memory) - naturally as the Windsor is still 'new' to me. Like everytime I reactivate my Futur, just that the muscle memory returns faster after many years of use.

Today I didn't reach BBS, but I blame it on the mild Sword blade. And two days ago it was only almost BBS, but the difference was totally minmal. It was less than the difference between satin-matte laquer and piano varnish and if a difference is there, I cannot really sense it by touching my skin at the end of the day of a morning shave, it's more a feeling than a concrete proof I could see or feel.
To verify and probably improve my resutls I will stay with the H-base some more days.

For today I think it's safe to state that my plan has worked out and my expectations for the Windsor were not too high, though the level it had to match was quite a high one. And the handling with that small but massive fine piece of a razor gives a more noble shaving experience than I'm used to. That's high-end to me!

And here's a picture with the Windsor resting in it's stand:

210206_13938-AboveTheTie-Windsor_Atlas_Stand-Chubby2MFT.jpg
 
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I want to share my experience with my new Windsor from Above The Tie / ATT with you. I got it on 1. February and have used it exclusively since then.
Actually I have shared my findings since then on a German board, but was too short on time to post them in simultaneous in English here. So these are my reports so far, once I'll be sharing my record with the R-plate, we will be up-to-date.

Before I start, I want to mention that @nav had posted a great and detailed review of the Windsor as well as the new Windsor Pro here, which is a good read I recommend for those interested:
REVIEW: Above-The-Tie (ATT)...The all new Windsor Pro SS & AL (and Windsor original)

Okay, here we go:

For quite some time I was lusting for a first class razor. One that is of a different tool-class than my Zamak-buddies and it had to be of a classic, traditional design. Nothing eccentric or 'loud', nothing quirky like the beautiful Progress, no dedicated designer-piece which you could possibly find in the Museum of Modern Arts like the Futur, nothing that screams retro and also no striking object of luxury like so many razors these days.
I was looking for a razor with a charming and noble yet discreet beauty and a timeless, classic look and so I went with the Windsor.

As I am shaving for many years with a Futur and the R41, I could have just ordered the Windsor SSH1 with the 0.91 mm blade gap and would have been fine, I guess.
But the R-plate with the 0.58 gap was praised for it's effiency and so I thought, why not try a milder route after all these years. And as I'm a sucker for complete things, I ordered the 5-piece Windsor set, which also includes the M-base serving a 0.25 mm blade gap. Ah, and of course I had to have the sexy stand.
As I love short handles I decided for the Atlas.

Btw, the communication with Matt and Manda from Above The Tie was simply stellar! The great reputation of ATT in general as well as Stan Hickam's pioneering work on fixed-adjustables also attracted me to seek my good shaving fortune with one of their products. I send my thanks and warmest good wishes to you kind and great folks at @Above The Tie !

And here it is:

View attachment 1229392

And what a stunning piece of jewelry the Windsor is in the flesh! Of course I had viewed each and every picture on the web before and had quite a concrete idea what to expect, but I was surprised how glorious it's visual impact is. Awesome!
Ah, and something I especially love is that on close inspection of the finish you can see, that the Windso is polished by real humans. It's not 'machine-perfect', yet superfine great work. In the best meaning: Handmade.

Knowing it would arrive that day I had waited of course with my shave. To get a hunch how it will could feel one day, when my hands will probably get a bit shaky and in some kind of very relaxed, contemplative mood I decided to start out with the mildest of the base-plates, the M. And I used a Wilkinson Sword bladem which had it's first use the day before in my R41.
That didn't work for me. Initially. The Sword is already a mild blade and with the - for my habits - very mild gap I was missing it's presence and couldn't feel the right angle as easy as I'm used to.
So after one pass WTG and one CTG, I inserted a brand-new Feather blade and started all over again with three passes, including one ATG at the end.

And yeah! Now the thing rocked. It's been an eternity that I had such a thorough shave with a mild construction like the Windsor SSM1 is. However, my initial feeling is, that the M-version is not for me. Probably I will check this out one day, but my next and second shave will happen with the H-base as I probably should have done it directly.

Okay, the start of our relationship wasn't perfect, but very, very promising. Tbc.
Thank you for the mention!

Congrats on acquiring such a beauty!

Excellent review of the windsor! You have captured the essence of this gem of a razor perfectly!

I bought an ATT M1 (Kronos) way back in late 2013!

Absolutely beautiful thing it was, but it simply loved to nick and rarely left me completely irritation-free.
In the end, I found any excuse to use something else and sold it - if the latest versions are better behaved then I can think of few better looking razors (and indeed yours looks stunning!) but I'm hesitant to even consider pulling the trigger on ATT again.

It's not so much that I don't trust companies to improve their products, but that it's the most expensive razor I ever bought new and it'd take a hell of a lot to displace my current favourites (which are no more aggressive!) - the risk reward isn't compelling enough.

Sounds like the Windsor is working great for you - long may it continue!
The biggest difference between the classic and Windsor is the blade reveal.

The classic reveals a lot of blade beyond the top cap and this causes more blade vibration (blade chatter), which leads to an aggressive shave/irritation.

The Windsor reveals 1mm of the blade and feels as rigid as a GEM razor on the skin.
 

BigJ

Ambassador
I want to share my experience with my new Windsor from Above The Tie / ATT with you. I got it on 1. February and have used it exclusively since then.
Actually I have shared my findings since then on a German board, but was too short on time to post them in simultaneous in English here. So these are my reports so far, once I'll be sharing my record with the R-plate, we will be up-to-date.

Before I start, I want to mention that @nav had posted a great and detailed review of the Windsor as well as the new Windsor Pro here, which is a good read I recommend for those interested:
REVIEW: Above-The-Tie (ATT)...The all new Windsor Pro SS & AL (and Windsor original)

Okay, here we go:

For quite some time I was lusting for a first class razor. One that is of a different tool-class than my Zamak-buddies and it had to be of a classic, traditional design. Nothing eccentric or 'loud', nothing quirky like the beautiful Progress, no dedicated designer-piece which you could possibly find in the Museum of Modern Arts like the Futur, nothing that screams retro and also no striking object of luxury like so many razors these days.
I was looking for a razor with a charming and noble yet discreet beauty and a timeless, classic look and so I went with the Windsor.

As I am shaving for many years with a Futur and the R41, I could have just ordered the Windsor SSH1 with the 0.91 mm blade gap and would have been fine, I guess.
But the R-plate with the 0.58 gap was praised for it's effiency and so I thought, why not try a milder route after all these years. And as I'm a sucker for complete things, I ordered the 5-piece Windsor set, which also includes the M-base serving a 0.25 mm blade gap. Ah, and of course I had to have the sexy stand.
As I love short handles I decided for the Atlas.

Btw, the communication with Matt and Manda from Above The Tie was simply stellar! The great reputation of ATT in general as well as Stan Hickam's pioneering work on fixed-adjustables also attracted me to seek my good shaving fortune with one of their products. I send my thanks and warmest good wishes to you kind and great folks at @Above The Tie !

And here it is:

View attachment 1229392

And what a stunning piece of jewelry the Windsor is in the flesh! Of course I had viewed each and every picture on the web before and had quite a concrete idea what to expect, but I was surprised how glorious it's visual impact is. Awesome!
Ah, and something I especially love is that on close inspection of the finish you can see, that the Windso is polished by real humans. It's not 'machine-perfect', yet superfine great work. In the best meaning: Handmade.

Knowing it would arrive that day I had waited of course with my shave. To get a hunch how it will could feel one day, when my hands will probably get a bit shaky and in some kind of very relaxed, contemplative mood I decided to start out with the mildest of the base-plates, the M. And I used a Wilkinson Sword bladem which had it's first use the day before in my R41.
That didn't work for me. Initially. The Sword is already a mild blade and with the - for my habits - very mild gap I was missing it's presence and couldn't feel the right angle as easy as I'm used to.
So after one pass WTG and one CTG, I inserted a brand-new Feather blade and started all over again with three passes, including one ATG at the end.

And yeah! Now the thing rocked. It's been an eternity that I had such a thorough shave with a mild construction like the Windsor SSM1 is. However, my initial feeling is, that the M-version is not for me. Probably I will check this out one day, but my next and second shave will happen with the H-base as I probably should have done it directly.

Okay, the start of our relationship wasn't perfect, but very, very promising. Tbc.

Great review! Enjoy that lovely razor!! :clap: :clap:
 
Great review I’m glad it all came together. ATT has some fine stuff. It didn’t take me long to outgrow the m plate and move to the r.
Thank you, Rhody! ☀

Yep, the R is fantastic! I did more than a week now with the R, my report will follow later, but I was stunned about it's magic combination of mildness and thoroughness!

I have an SSR1 on the way from the BST but it's stuck in the USPS purgatory of "Your package will arrive later than expected, but is still on its way. It is currently in transit to the next facility."
Congratulations! 👏

I hope you will love that SSR1! I saw that it's the satin beauty. Yep, USPS, seems like its not as easy with them these days as I learned from reports I read about massive complaints and people missing their paycheck or getting cancelled from services for invoices not paid because they weren't delivered. So it's good that it's 'only a razor', however these pieces of personal joy are also important to the heart. 🤗

Thank you for the mention!

Congrats on acquiring such a beauty!

Excellent review of the windsor! You have captured the essence of this gem of a razor perfectly!
Hey-o! 🍻 And thank you so much for dropping by and the details you gave about the Pro in comparison!

I acquired the Windsor Pro SB90 when they became available and I’ve since gotten rid of every other razor. This is “ The one” and only.
Super! :cool: I must admit I'm curious about the Windsor Pro. Given how much Above The Tie praises the Pro, it must be a hell of a machine! And the will add further plates to the Pro this year as I understood.

Great review! Enjoy that lovely razor!! :clap: :clap:
BigJ, thank you very much! 👊 It's always nice and heartwarming when you drop by!
 
February 9, after 7 days of daily shaves in 3 passes with the SSH1, here's my conclusion: The Windsor is the bomb!

First of all: The R41 is a bit more thoroughgoing, but also more aggressive. And of course it is, the R41 supplies more free blade. I don't say, the R41 wins, as I don't think in terms of 'better' or 'worse' here.
One of the advantages of DE-shaving often mentioned is that it's cost-saving. I especially feels this when wearing turtlenecks in the colder seasons.
And the Windsor SSH1 and the R41 are almost equally turtleneck-friendly, so little is the difference in efficiency, however there is a difference.

The first 5 days I didn't do direct comparisions, I just adjusted myself to the new Windsor and evaluated the shaves for me. The sensed smoothness (instantly after shaving) and effiency (smoothness sensed over the whole day) were on R41-level on three of those five days.
Yesterday with a Feather blade and today with a new Perma Sharp I left out the first pass (WTG), but did the passes for XTG and ATG twice: First happened with the Windsor, the second of the same pass with the R41. And I felt on my skin as well as I heard from the audio-feedback, that the R41 digs a bit deeper and finds more stubbles.

But one really has to wish for such in-depth results and the Windsor has one advantage that also helps the efficiency: Even with the wide gap of 0.91 mm, ATG it is much smoother (less aggressive) than the R41, which bites more easily. This is especially evident in seinsitive areas like above the upper-lip.
Not that I would really have to to an ATG-pass with either of these great razors given their effiency anyway, but I walk this path much more light-footed with the Windsor H. The Windsor's comfort on ATG is a dedicated strength that I want to point out.

As I am 'one' with my R41 for many years, I wasn't missing mildness and wasn't looking for it, but I noticed with much delight, that the time after the shave in which I have already forgotten about my skin goes by is shorter. Given the smoother feeling while achieving comparable efficiency is a quality that leaves no wishes open for me. I think I have a new favorite razor!

I could now just stay with the H-base plate, but of course I'm very curious how the R-variant will do, so ... tbc.

Here's the pic of the shave of that day:

210208_13960-AboveTheTie-Windsor_Chubby1M.jpg
 
Another Windsor SSR1 on the way to its new home. I figured I had mild covered with my Feather and therefore decided on the R.
Bravo! 🎆

Though I still have to write my report on the R, which I have used exclusively for two weeks now, I must admit here already: It was a revealing experience for me, who hasn't been living on the mild side of shaving-life so far. I adore the Windsor SSR1!
 
Great update keep em coming
Thank you from the heart! 🌞

Here it comes, my last update the H. The next update sometime soon will be about the R and then I will be up to date finally.

---

February 12, one add-on about the Windsor SSH1:

As I'm now so used to the new Windsor that I can achieve perfectly smooth shaves as if it was a natural habit one just does en passant, I wanted to enjoy some more days with this configuration.

Another reason for staying on level H was, that I had a mega-wow-experience with the Perma Sharp I had used three days before. From the first stroke I noticed an absolute effective sharpness, but without feeling it on my skin. It was as if I had used an oil-coated Feather (an example I just made up). The shave was like one gigantic orgy of tender, caressing strokes and after the first pass I almost felt as I was already done with the complete shave, it was that good. This was so extraordinarly a blade-experience, that I had to give it more runs in the same set-up.
The following two days the sahves were similar but with a slightly reduced magic. Probably it's the PTFE-coating that wears off with use, I don't know, but will study the Perma Sharp extensively in the future.

My last shave, today, with the H happened with an old trusty friend, I inserted the ASP Green and it was the same as it ever was with my other razors, the ASP Green behaved like a slightly more gracious Feather.
Tomorrow the ASP will move to the SSR1, which I will start to learn about now.

And here's today's shave of the day:

210212_13971-AboveTheTie-Windsor_Chubby2STBS.jpg
 
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