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The BRGAS (Back Roads Gold Appreciation Society)

What?
BRGAS is a society for those of us who have had our razors etc replated, or tuned up (or both), by Chris at Back Roads Gold (or simply purchased a refurbished razor from him).

Why?
I thought it was time for some (more) love of that additional functionality and shine that Chris imparts on the razors he touches so well.
I love shiny things. :001_wub:

Who?
Customers of Chris who love the work he has done for them.



After reading so many rave reviews I emailed Chris with a load of questions (I always have loads of questions). Chris answered every single question in concise detail. I was impressed and placed my first order.

The order was for a Gillette Fat Handled Flat Bottom Tech, along with an antique blade bank, to be replated in palladium. Also three NEW/Tech caps, one for a palladium replate and the other two for mirror nickel replating.

You can imagine how happy I was when Chris sent me pics of the finished articles:

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All previous imperfections addressed. :cornut:

I was happier still when I received my order, and am now even happier since having used them all.



All who would like to join just say “I’m in” and feel free to add BRGAS to your signature (if you so desire). Do tell us about your experience(s) and let’s see your BRG shinies!
We LOVE pics! :a50:
 
@Cal , these look terrific! Can you tell the difference between the palladium and nickel? They look the same to these eyes.
Chris reckons the palladium is a tad lighter/brighter than the nickel. His eyes are obviously better than ours. I can't tell the difference either (in the photos OR in real life).

Of course, when it comes to tads (just like shaving) YMMV obviously applies. :lol1:
 
It feels good to be in the company of others who value shiney things. I had always been hesitant to post razors I'd gotten replated by either myself or Chris, since several years ago I got some downright snotty comments from those who value crud, corrosion and general neglect of time for their razors. They called it 'patina'.
Go to any car show and you'll see cars that have been lovingly and correctly restored to their former glory. The old car with torn (original) canvas top & upholstery, weathered, oxidized paint, broken spokes and general decay, gets nary a second glance, unless it's by someone looking for an old hooptie to restore.
Recently I inquired about what a hollow ball-end handle in beater condition, but minus cracks, would be worth. My intention was to determine if the cost would be worth adding a replate to for use with a Goodwill that currently has a replica handle on it. I got wisea$$ replies and general disdain from the better "know-it-alls" something that took the joy out of my upcoming project.
nevertheless, i decided that the shave from that Goodwill was nice enough to seek out an original handle. A couple of cheap, junk razors with said-to-be uncracked handles are now on the way to me. Chris did the plating on the Goodwill head &replica handle. I hope to have a correct matching handle for it soon.
Until then, here's a few samples of the work Chris has done for me over the past few years. They were all cheap worn out & corroded junk, destined for the landfill.
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It feels good to be in the company of others who value shiney things. I had always been hesitant to post razors I'd gotten replated by either myself or Chris, since several years ago I got some downright snotty comments from those who value crud, corrosion and general neglect of time for their razors. They called it 'patina'.
Go to any car show and you'll see cars that have been lovingly and correctly restored to their former glory. The old car with torn (original) canvas top & upholstery, weathered, oxidized paint, broken spokes and general decay, gets nary a second glance, unless it's by someone looking for an old hooptie to restore.
Recently I inquired about what a hollow ball-end handle in beater condition, but minus cracks, would be worth. My intention was to determine if the cost would be worth adding a replate to for use with a Goodwill that currently has a replica handle on it. I got wisea$$ replies and general disdain from the better "know-it-alls" something that took the joy out of my upcoming project.
nevertheless, i decided that the shave from that Goodwill was nice enough to seek out an original handle. A couple of cheap, junk razors with said-to-be uncracked handles are now on the way to me. Chris did the plating on the Goodwill head &replica handle. I hope to have a correct matching handle for it soon.
Until then, here's a few samples of the work Chris has done for me over the past few years. They were all cheap worn out & corroded junk, destined for the landfill.
View attachment 1467740
View attachment 1467748
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I do like shiny things, and sometimes a razor is too far gone for a cleaning and polish to suffice. However, I also do appreciate a razor with signs of use. One of my favorites in my modest collection is the subject of my first B&B post, 1918 Army issue Old Type.
PXL_20220509_184832139.PORTRAIT.jpg

I love that this razor has the typical cracks in the handle, but they've been repaired, either by silver brazing or soldering. The absence of tarnish suggests solder to me, but I'm not sure. I also love that the razor is in completely functional condition. Someone cared about keeping this razor in use. Hell, maybe someone NEEDED this razor to work. I feel privileged to be the steward of this simple implement that obviously meant so much to its original owner. The only thing that could make it more meaningful would be to know something of him.

So, shiny is great. I've got a birth year Slim Aristocrat revamped and replated by Razor Emporium, and I've got Chris working on a birth year Fat Boy for me right now. In both instances, the razors were ready for the trash, and the replate is saving them. I plan to pass them on to my sons someday.

But sometimes, the wear and tear connects me to something profound. I know it when I see it.
 
I do like shiny things, and sometimes a razor is too far gone for a cleaning and polish to suffice. However, I also do appreciate a razor with signs of use. One of my favorites in my modest collection is the subject of my first B&B post, 1918 Army issue Old Type.
View attachment 1467750
I love that this razor has the typical cracks in the handle, but they've been repaired, either by silver brazing or soldering. The absence of tarnish suggests solder to me, but I'm not sure. I also love that the razor is in completely functional condition. Someone cared about keeping this razor in use. Hell, maybe someone NEEDED this razor to work. I feel privileged to be the steward of this simple implement that obviously meant so much to its original owner. The only thing that could make it more meaningful would be to know something of him.

So, shiny is great. I've got a birth year Slim Aristocrat revamped and replated by Razor Emporium, and I've got Chris working on a birth year Fat Boy for me right now. In both instances, the razors were ready for the trash, and the replate is saving them. I plan to pass them on to my sons someday.

But sometimes, the wear and tear connects me to something profound. I know it when I see it.
Sure it's worn. But it's good honest wear from many years of use. It's been well maintained as a tool used for daily work - there's no corrosion or signs of neglect. It shows that it's done its' job well for any decades.
I would be proud to own one like it.
 
Just got this Old Type in the mail. That Goodwill was quickly becoming a big deal & just had to have the correct handle. I found this as a possible donor handle, and also have another razor, still enroute. I'd really rather send this to Chris for a replate, but it all depends on the other razor once it arrives.
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I've noticed that Chris' razors always appear to have been polished
both before and after plating.

I've seen pictures of razors done by others
which appear to only have been sand blasted prior to plating.
 
B8356A32-CF63-4464-A536-C0C1CD5E75A2.jpeg
This Fatboy was in pretty good shape, but, it came back from a tuneup from Back Roads Gold looking like new.
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I chose Mirror Nickel after considering Palladium because Chris recommends Nickel. Even though Palladium has a higher Mohs hardness, Chris says that Nickel is less prone to cracking. This made sense to me. He also correctly pointed out that the way he polishes surfaces before plating and the Nickel formulation with which he plates results in a finish that is virtually indistinguishable from Palladium

BTW, I just checked the status again, and my razor is DONE! I'm speed refreshing my inbox for his invoice so I can pay the man!
 
I chose Mirror Nickel after considering Palladium because Chris recommends Nickel. Even though Palladium has a higher Mohs hardness, Chris says that Nickel is less prone to cracking. This made sense to me. He also correctly pointed out that the way he polishes surfaces before plating and the Nickel formulation with which he plates results in a finish that is virtually indistinguishable from Palladium

BTW, I just checked the status again, and my razor is DONE! I'm speed refreshing my inbox for his invoice so I can pay the man!

Makes sense. Harder = more brittle, which I suppose could lead to cracking.

Regardless, the nickel is plenty shiny for me, maybe just not as bright but still looks exceptional. Like a frame-off car restoration: the restoration is usually better than new.
 
These razors were cheap when Gillette made them, and there were a lot of them made. Add in the ravages of time with wear, tarnish, corrosion and neglect and you've got a real piece of junk - that is what I was once told by a collector who only deals in the best unissued and pristine examples. My Dad once told me that just because something is old, age doesn't necessarily make it valuable - there's a lot of Old Junk out there.
Nevertheless, there's a certain magic that happens when your "junk" razor is cleaned, polished, replated and restored to it's former glory.
The snooty purists don't understand the wonder and excitement that comes with the return of your shiney "new" razor in the mail.
 
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