I am not the resident Contract Tech expert but am able to provide some info on your Q5.5. Unrelated question, just curious - What is a hybrid tech?/why is it called that?
I have two versions of the RFB NEW plus the Hybrid Tech and I agree - the Hybrid Tech is the better shaver.The Hybrid Tech is a rhodium-plated, fantastic shaving little piece of unobtanium that is one of my prized possessions.
It's basically a Raised Flat Bottom (RFB) New but instead of open combs it has a safety bar. I have an RFB New, as well, and it's a great shaver, but the Hybrid Tech is better (IMO).
Thank you for taking the time to compare these two razors so thoroughly.In preparation for my first shave with the Baili 131 tomorrow morning I decided to clean the razor and disinfect it just in case, and I took the time to take some side by side pictures of it against the Sumatra from Global Shave Club. I can confirm everything that @never-stop-learning has said. It looks to be that the Sumatra is simply a better platted Baili 131.
Here are the two razors apart:
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Here are the two head, which appear to be identical, just different plating:
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Here are the base plates with the safety bars, I did find that the plating on the Baili wasn't quite as nice and that the ridges on the Baili tend to grab as the fibers of the towel I was using to dry things off, the Sumatra did not grab at the fibers, but I attribute this to extra buffing or work needed to do the rose gold plating on the Sumatra. I also note the 23 on the Sumatra head and the 21 on the Baili:
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Here are the two handles side by side and the have the exact same pattern and are the same length:
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Finally, here is an image of the plating on the ends of the handles, and this is where I find the quality of the Sumatra superior, the plating isn't great on the Baili. There is something under the chrome that will in time cause the Baili's plating to fail most likely. The Sumatra has better plating on the handle, base plate, and head. That's why IMHO the Sumatra is worth the extra money at $10:
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Hope you all are getting some great shaves and I hope this is at least helpful to others that are contemplating any of the razors being discussed here.
Welcome to the Hybrid Tech Club.I shaved with a post war Tech today; felt like a nicer/smoother shave than my Baili. I may try to shave with both on the same day, just to be able to give a better comparison. I also ordered a hybrid Tech from England (it's on my desk as we speak!) - will be cleaning it and giving it a spin later this week or weekend.
Nicely done! Thank you for contributing your experiences to the Clone Wars.OK, So the Baili BT-131 was up to bat today.
Blade: Baili Platinum Super Stainless (was in the packaging)
Brush: Omega 10049 Boar
Pre: Proraso Green
Soap: Williams Mug Shaving Soap
After: Aqua Velva Classic Ice Blue
Rating: 9.5/10 - Almost BBS and one of the most confusing shaves of my life! I think I hate that Baili blade. It made the shave feel kind of rough, but it didn't nick me at all. No irritation post shave either. But I hated using the combo today while I was shaving. I kept thinking I was going to have to stop the shave and switch either blades or razors, but I decided to take the risk head on and kept in it until I had done three passes (WTG, XTG, ATG) and a cleanup.
After the Aqua velva I had a wonderful near BBS shave. It didn't burn anymore than regular, and there is no irritation now. But I don't want to use that blade again. Like I said a great and confusing shave for me.
The BT-131 handled like the Sumatra. It was a good razor and I will be trying again tomorrow with a blade I know, and then I will do a side-by-side in two days time with the Sumatra.
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Looking forward to your shaving impressions.I received my second Baili yesterday. No packaging but came with 20 blades. It is the new style that covers the blade tabs. The finish is great for a razor that cost less than $5. Blade alignment is spot on. Looks like it should shave well.