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Maul555
01-08-2010, 07:43 AM
I recently was given a vintage Gillette open comb safety razor. I cleaned it up with some scrubbing, popped in a new blade and was surprised at how well it works. I haven't used my mach 3 sense. I heard that It is possible to find out which Gillette I have by looking up the manufacturing code on the razor, but I have had no luck googling for it. Anybody know how to find information on exactly which model I have and how old it is? The code on the razor is 016769 and says Made in Canada. Also, does anybody know how this razor would stack up against the Merker 12c (open comb)? And I have heard many people say that the 3 piece design of these types of razors is a drawback, but I never hear why. I see nothing wrong with it and the blade always fits perfectly and doesn't move around any, so I'm a bit confused there. Any help would be appreciated, thanks...

drewmac
01-08-2010, 08:24 AM
Pictures will help greatly. As for the three-piece being a drawback, YMMV. A TTO is certainly easier to load with a blade, but I find three-pieces to be great!

Oldguy
01-08-2010, 08:49 AM
If you post a photo you'll probably get an ID within three minutes.

And the numbers on the Gillette razors are a date code and have nothing to do with the model.

Len

Maul555
01-08-2010, 09:13 AM
If you post a photo you'll probably get an ID within three minutes.

And the numbers on the Gillette razors are a date code and have nothing to do with the model.

Len

If its a date code then it could tell me when it was made right? That's one of the things I most want to know...


Here are some pics:

http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb84/Maul555/DSCF0761.jpg
http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb84/Maul555/DSCF0760.jpg
http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb84/Maul555/DSCF0758.jpg
http://i206.photobucket.com/albums/bb84/Maul555/DSCF0766.jpg

As you can see, the head is a little worn, but it still works great...

Oldguy
01-08-2010, 09:48 AM
It's a ball handle Old Type pocket razor. The date code does not follow Gillette's USA numbering. I would have expected a letter either before or after the numbers. But that model was made between 1917 and 1929. The cap looks like the thinner model so most likely the razor was made between 1917 and 1921, the WWI period when most of these were made.

Len

Oldguy
01-08-2010, 09:55 AM
Also you are very lucky if the handle doesn't have a crack in it, most do. I see no drawback to shaving with it. It's a little more aggressive then say a Super Speed but once you get your technique perfected with it you'll be rewarded with an extremely smooth, close shave. Enjoy. I enjoy mine.

Len

Maul555
01-08-2010, 09:55 AM
It's a ball handle Old Type pocket razor. The date code does not follow Gillette's USA numbering. I would have expected a letter either before or after the numbers. But that model was made between 1917 and 1929. The cap looks like the thinner model so most likely the razor was made between 1917 and 1921, the WWI period when most of these were made.

Len

Well its made in Canada, so that would make sense... Thanks for the info!! I had good reason to believe that this razor had been through WWII, but now it looks like it is much older, Thanks!





Also you are very lucky if the handle doesn't have a crack in it, most do. I see no drawback to shaving with it. It's a little more aggressive then say a Super Speed but once you get your technique perfected with it you'll be rewarded with an extremely smooth, close shave. Enjoy. I enjoy mine.

Len

There is no crack... Its pretty solid metal, i don't see how a crack would ever form. This is the first and only saftey razor I have ever used, and I love it. I havent had any problems nicking myself yet, but I bet its just a matter of time. Do you think that a merker open comb would perform similarly. Im just starting to get into this and I plan to go the extra mile and get a brush, bowl, real cream and a brand new razor or two, as well as some different blades.

sandmountainslim
01-08-2010, 10:58 AM
Great razor!! :thumbup1:

I shave with the same model everyday!
Wp

**Bingo_Bob**
01-08-2010, 11:12 AM
that isnt just any ball end old type.... notice the skinny handle and the ball doesnt have any knurling. These type are quite rare. Every one I have seen was from Canada.

mr-razor
01-08-2010, 12:33 PM
that isnt just any ball end old type.... notice the skinny handle and the ball doesnt have any knurling. These type are quite rare. Every one I have seen was from Canada.

... the handle is thinner than the US Old Type handles and the Gillette Logo is on the right side. Nice one :thumbup1:

Maul555
01-08-2010, 05:31 PM
From your responses it sounds like this is quite a rare razor. I would never sell this item, but out of curiosity, how much do you think a razor like this would go for?

BBrad
01-08-2010, 06:37 PM
From your responses it sounds like this is quite a rare razor. I would never sell this item, but out of curiosity, how much do you think a razor like this would go for?

Achim has given it a cool thumbs up . . . the darn thing is priceless!! :w00t:

Nice razor - I'm sure it will always be among your "special" ones! (You will have more . . . and more . . . and more!!)

Maul555
01-09-2010, 03:41 AM
Achim has given it a cool thumbs up . . . the darn thing is priceless!! :w00t:

Nice razor - I'm sure it will always be among your "special" ones! (You will have more . . . and more . . . and more!!)

Priceless? Now them be strong words there... Surely someone can throw out a ballpark figure of some sort, eh?

BBrad
01-09-2010, 05:01 AM
Priceless? Now them be strong words there... Surely someone can throw out a ballpark figure of some sort, eh?

Our fellow B&Ber Achim (Mr-Razor) is one of this hobby's most renowned authorities on Gillette razors. His website, www.mr-razor.com contains a wealth of information and photos. He is one that will usually point out the rare or special points on a particular razor being discussed on B&B.

I was being a bit of a "wise guy" when I said "priceless" . . . but then again, Achim said . . . :001_rolle

As to your razor's value, I couldn't really say. Old Types with solid handles in great condition such as yours can be found for under $20 in antique shops or on eBay. The rarity of your ball-end should add value, but only if a potential buyer is knowledgeable enough to recognize the rarity and assign a value to it. Of course, the razor's correct case and blade safe in comparable condition would add more to its value.

I certainly missed the lack of knurls on your handle's ball . . . until Achim pointed that out!!

It is one that I probably would not sell, either!

Maul555
01-09-2010, 07:46 AM
I see what your saying. Its worth what someone is willing to pay for it, as most things... allright then. I guess my only real remaining question would be how will this stack up against a brand new open combed merker in terms of shaving quality.

sandmountainslim
01-09-2010, 07:49 AM
I guess my only real remaining question would be how will this stack up against a brand new open combed merker?

It is better than any brand new Open Comb Merkur.

The Gillette is made of brass plated with either silver or nickel and will outlast you and your grandchildren.
The Merkur while a good design and much better than any cartridge razor is made of inferior metals compared to the Gillette.
Wp

Maul555
01-09-2010, 07:51 AM
It is better than any brand new Open Comb Merkur.

The Gillette is made of brass plated with either silver or nickel and will outlast you and your grandchildren.
The Merkur while a good design and much better than any cartridge razor is made of inferior metals compared to the Gillette.
Wp

wow. I was under the assumption that the build quality of merkers would be on par with the old stuff, only new. Are there any manufacturers of new razors that you know of that are built like a tank like the old stuff? I am willing to spend some extra on a razor that is built better.

sandmountainslim
01-09-2010, 08:02 AM
wow. I was under the assumption that the build quality of merkers would be on par with the old stuff, only new. Are there any manufacturers of new razors that you know if that are built like a tank like the old stuff? I am willing to spend some extra on a razor that is built better.

Why would you want to spend more money when you have the most solid razor ever built? You could always upgrade the Gillette with a new handle. As to the new razors,
No. Not to be insulting but the modern manufacturers all build from pot metal.
There was some company in Pakistan who made a brass TTO razor but the review said it was inferior to......just about everything.

The best "modern manufacturers" would probably be Bobs Razor Works which makes brand new fancy handles for 3 piece Gillettes and sells replated heads with them also. Also an outfit called Ikon sells brand new copies of the Gillette Old Type made of stainless steel but I have heard people on this forum say there is an issue with the aggressivess of the razors.
Best bet is to get a vintage Gillette head and add a new Bobs Razor Works Bull Mastiff or other handle to it. That is what I am doing.
Wp

Here is the Bull Mastiff
Imagine your razor lookin like this
http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:qXIYoVGUUC6xaM%3Ahttp://badgerandblade.com/gallery/displayimage.php%3Fimageid%3D16999

Maul555
01-09-2010, 08:47 AM
Well, you have given me a lot to think about regarding my next razor purchase. Perhaps I will do a bit of lurking on ebay, and those bob's razor works look very nice and clean too, Thanks! I don't think that I'll be separating this razor from its handle though, But I defiantly want some more options in my arsenal...

sandmountainslim
01-09-2010, 08:49 AM
Well, you have given me a lot to think about regarding my next razor purchase. Perhaps I will do a bit of lurking on ebay, and those bob's razor works look very nice and clean too... Thanks.

Have a look at Bobs website (https://sites.google.com/site/bobsrazorworks/razor-handles) He is a member here and an artiste of razors. Affordable also.
Wp

mmack66
01-09-2010, 08:53 AM
Unless you are overly clumsy, or you buy a Vision, a new Merkur razor will last for a very long time.

Maul555
01-09-2010, 10:36 AM
I'm now thinking that perhaps I should get something a bit less aggressive next. Maybe a old butterfly door (TTO?) or something...

Maul555
01-09-2010, 09:24 PM
does anybody have any suggestions on a new razor that would be easy to use, relatively cheap, and less aggressive? I have heard great things about Merkers, and I think I still want one, maybe a Merker classic head or a butterfly door (TTO) of some sort?

Blondie
01-09-2010, 09:40 PM
Probably would suggest a Merkur HD. You could also try one of the open comb Merkurs, they are far less aggressive than the Gillette you are currently using. With the HD though, if you end up not liking it (which is unlikely) you can sell it on the BST relatively easily and get something else.

mmack66
01-09-2010, 09:43 PM
does anybody have any suggestions on a new razor that would be easy to use, relatively cheap, and less aggressive? I have heard great things about Merkers, and I think I still want one, maybe a Merker classic head or a butterfly door (TTO) of some sort?

Get a 40's style or a 50's style Gillette SuperSpeed.

T Rick
01-09-2010, 10:07 PM
Or, a Gillette Tech (1938-1973). It's a 3 piece like your Old Type, but updated to the new (by 1938 standards!) safety bar configuration (no open comb). The Tech is a really sweet mild shaver, and is plentiful and downright cheap.

Great Old Type BTW, there are other variants too. The Old Type is my favorite, and gets the majority of face time for me these days.

**Bingo_Bob**
01-10-2010, 08:33 AM
Priceless? Now them be strong words there... Surely someone can throw out a ballpark figure of some sort, eh?

realistically, if you were to take professional pictures of it and sell all the hype of it being rare, you might get $50-$75 for it on ebay. If you were to sell it with the pictures you showed here, expect to get $30 at most.

Maul555
01-10-2010, 10:59 AM
realistically, if you were to take professional pictures of it and sell all the hype of it being rare, you might get $50-$75 for it on ebay. If you were to sell it with the pictures you showed here, expect to get $30 at most.

hrmm, I thought the pictures came out quite well... lol. Thanks for the ballpark figure though. To me it is priceless anyways, I was just curious really. Thanks.

Maul555
01-11-2010, 06:50 AM
I was just looking through the forums and found this (http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php?p=1490636#post1490636) great post about gillette old types. I noticed that every razor pictured has a long threaded shaft (name?) used to attatch the head to the handle. Mine is very short. What is the standard? Short like mine, or long? Wont this effect which handles I can use? I was told in a different post that 99% of all old types have the same threads for switching around handles. Does mine fall into that remaining 1%?

texbilly
01-11-2010, 06:57 AM
hrmm, I thought the pictures came out quite well... lol. Thanks for the ballpark figure though. To me it is priceless anyways, I was just curious really. Thanks.

+1 Nice pics and nice razor! Congrats.

BBrad
01-11-2010, 10:30 AM
I was just looking through the forums and found this (http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php?p=1490636#post1490636) great post about gillette old types. I noticed that every razor pictured has a long threaded shaft (name?) used to attatch the head to the handle. Mine is very short. What is the standard? Short like mine, or long? Wont this effect which handles I can use? I was told in a different post that 99% of all old types have the same threads for switching around handles. Does mine fall into that remaining 1%?

The "Pocket Edition" razors (like yours) are different from the "standard" razors that have a long threaded stud. The guard (the piece with the combs) and the cap are not interchangeable, but do share the same head dimensions and geometry. The Pocket Edition Old Types all use the same thread size as the "New" and the "Tech", which gives us the ability to swap handles between those models.

In terms of overall production numbers, the Pocket Edition was produced in greater numbers. From 1921 until the New was introduced in '29 the PE was Gillette's low-priced entry-level razor and sold like the proverbial hotcakes.

AsylumGuido
01-11-2010, 01:43 PM
I was just looking through the forums and found this (http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showthread.php?p=1490636#post1490636) great post about gillette old types. I noticed that every razor pictured has a long threaded shaft (name?) used to attatch the head to the handle. Mine is very short. What is the standard? Short like mine, or long? Wont this effect which handles I can use? I was told in a different post that 99% of all old types have the same threads for switching around handles. Does mine fall into that remaining 1%?

Hi! If you look at the fourth picture in that thread you'll see a pocket edition set similar to one yours would have come in. The pocket editions were far and away the most common, in number, of all the Old Types. That said, being so inexpensive they were also virtually disposable and many were tossed when newer models hit the market. Many of the less numerous "top shelf" models were kept even if replaced by a newer model for daily use.