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Why are SE shavers uncommon?

Yeah, I feel like it was cheaper for Gillette to produce DE blades than SE on a massive scale because I think SE blades are straight-up solid metal, while DE blades are more of metal ribbons...

What would be a cheap way to start SE? Would the CVS SE blades be fine?

Also, does SE shaving take longer because you can't flip its side like a DE?
 
Single edge razors are a niche within a niche. My "path to enlightenment" was from canned goo to shaving soap & brush, then from cartridges to modern DE's. Then I discovered vintage Gillettes and quickly put together a small collection.

I was in a forum discussion regarding aggressive razors, and someone mentioned something called a Gem Micromatic Open Comb. My curiosity was piqued, and the rest, as they say, is history. I now have something like 75 SE's and never shave with anything else.

I agree that part of the reason SE's languish in obscurity is that there are no modern SE's. I don't count the Cobra and Mongoose because they are expensive, hard to get, and use a different blade.

SE's shave differently than DE's and there is definitely a learning curve. I think a lot of DE users try an SE for a shave or two and then decide it's not for them. I would suggest than anyone curious about SE's should use one exclusively for at least a couple of weeks before drawing any conclusions.

The standard SE blade is also part of the problem. Despite its being a "single edge razor blade," people equate it with box cutters and paint scrapers. "You mean you actually shave with those?" I get that a lot.

That's okay. There are a lot more SE razors that there are SE users (at least for now) and that keeps prices down.

Besides, I like being part of an elite group. :001_smile

--Bob
 
What is the reason for SE shaving being very small? Is it because DE is cheaper to produce?

I was just curious. Every person who returns to traditional style will always go DE for some reason

At first they do until they discover that the SE's provide excellent performance, and awesome razor designs that have held up to the test of time.
 
I don't see a whole lot of logical distance between, say, injectors and single edge cartridges, even twin blade cartridges.

The legacy of little wedges in lather catchers through the GEM and Ever Ready lines is one which has little by way of comparison with anything on the market today.
 
I have both De and SE in my rotation , SE s provide much more feed back and nostalgia for me, especially the lather catchers ,all SEs require a little more attention to angle and stroke, but you are rewarded with an awesome sound when the angle is right , I like my SEs when I have plenty of time for a relaxing shave , Hot towel , pre shave oil, a nice hand whipped lather , mmmmmmmmmmm I gotta go shave !
 
When I look at it, cart shaving is shaving with a SE razor. They aremulti-bladed - twin to many - but each blade is a single edge. Considering that, SE shaving is vast.

-jim
Ehhh...not so much. After using a real blade, a cart seems more like "squeegeing" than shaving...
 
What would be a cheap way to start SE? Would the CVS SE blades be fine?

Also, does SE shaving take longer because you can't flip its side like a DE?

Answer to first question is yes, they are fine for starting out, but I would also try the PTFE coated blades. You can get them from razorblades and more, or if you just want to try a few, tryablade carries them.

As far as razors, it depends on how aggressive you like. I really enjoy an aggressive razor, so my favorite SE so far is an EverReady 1924 (shovel head). If you keep an eye out, you can pick one of those up on bay cased for under $20.

If you like something milder, you might consider the bullet tip. Again, you can find them at very reasonable prices on the bay.

As far as the second question, I don't think it really takes any longer. You adjust to it and rinse a little more frequently, but the time difference is negligible.
 
When I look at it, cart shaving is shaving with a SE razor. They aremulti-bladed - twin to many - but each blade is a single edge. Considering that, SE shaving is vast.

-jim

So you would feel that shaving with a twin cartridge is the same as a DE because it has double blades/edges?

SE and cartridge are very different. Blades are different, angles of use are different, no pressure required with an SE.
 
I have two Gems. A 1912 and a newer one, only about 60 years old. I shave with each one once and swore off

There's a bit of a learning curve with SE. A 1912 uses a completely different angle of attack than a DE. I'd strongly encourage you to give them a few more tries. Use a very shallow angle. Barely above parallel to your skin.

I have many, many DEs and my go to is a 1901 GEM Junior lather catcher. Fitted with a Treet blade the shave is just terrific. An easy, peasey BBS whenever I want.
 
I can see the wedge blade lather catchers being the grandpappy of all SE razors. A single edge blade with a similar shave angle and method of shaving.

-jim

Yep. The "Junior" designation in GEM's line of SEs originally meant it took the new fangled disposable SE blades. There's very little difference in design between a late 1890s wedge lather catcher and a 1901 GEM Jr.
 
Was there a time when single edge razors predominated, or coexisted on a more less equal basis with double edged? I saw double edge razors when I was a kid, though by the time i started shaving, double blade disposables and cartridges were the name of the game. I didn't even know that single edge razors existed until I recently started reading about wet shaving. Even Googling doesn't turn up a whole lot about them. Single edge blades are for scraping paint, not faces. :laugh:

What are the differences or advantages of single edge razors?
 
I think the heyday of the SE blade was in the 20's and 30's DE's just proved more popular due to advertising or comfort/perceived comfort I don't know.
I don't think there are are any major differences or advantages between DE's or SE's if there are they are minor like angle and how long a blade lasts. like EVERYTHING here on this site YMMV!
 
There's a bit of a learning curve with SE. A 1912 uses a completely different angle of attack than a DE. I'd strongly encourage you to give them a few more tries. Use a very shallow angle. Barely above parallel to your skin.

I have many, many DEs and my go to is a 1901 GEM Junior lather catcher. Fitted with a Treet blade the shave is just terrific. An easy, peasey BBS whenever I want.

I'm with you dcobranchi, the Gem Junior gave a easy BBS shave the first time I used it. However, I came across a 1912 Treet a few weeks ago and a carefree/effortless BBS shave now has a new definition for me. I always have the 1912 Treet on ready standby to assist with cleanup, it sports a closed safety bar so it is very forgiving. (For the record, I have only used drugstore Gem(Personna) SE blades, I have not even tried a Treet SE blade yet)
 
I'm with you dcobranchi, the Gem Junior gave a easy BBS shave the first time I used it. However, I came across a 1912 Treet a few weeks ago and a carefree/effortless BBS shave now has a new definition for me. I always have the 1912 Treet on ready standby to assist with cleanup, it sports a closed safety bar so it is very forgiving. (For the record, I have only used drugstore Gem(Personna) SE blades, I have not even tried a Treet SE blade yet)

I find the Treet carbon steel blades sharper than a SS blade. They're higher maintenance, of course, and I really only get 4 good shaves from a blade. But, oh what great shaves, they are!
 
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