View Full Version : How can I make my '64 SS, shine?
03-01-2010, 02:03 PM
I was just wondering if anyone could provide some insight on how to really make razor shine. Here's some background.
I have a brand new Merkur 33c, so you can imagine how a brand new razor would shine, but about a month ago I purchased a 1964 Gillette TTO Superspeed, and while it's in perfect like new condition. It just doesn't have that shine. It's more or less -dull-.
I bought some polish, that was recommend on the forum, and I put some on a rag and wiped it down, let it sit, and cleaned it off. I've also scrubbed it with some toothpaste and a toothbrush. But it just seems like after one use, it's just dull, and seems like it gets water spots that I have to huff on and wipe off with my shirt.
So if anyone knows a way to really get it to shine (perhaps I'm not using the polisher right) that'd be great, and I'd appreciate it very much. :thumbup:
Sorry for the long post,
03-01-2010, 02:44 PM
It'll probably never shine much like the Merkur. They have a more chrome-like finish. A normal SS has a different luster to it.
What kind of polish are you using? I favor Metalwax but Maas is more available and pretty good. Was the SS really clean before you started polishing? The Metalwax comes with a metal cleaner that's great as a first treatment, but it's pretty pricey stuff. So you'll probably want to stick to S.B.
I assume your hand polishing?
It helps to get the whole thing as clean as you can first with a toothbrush and soap scum remover. That helps tremendously even if you can't see much scum.
Most waterspots will come out, or fade significantly with enough polishing. Use q-tips fiercely and wantonly inside and underneath the head. Pipe cleaners are handy sometimes.
You might just have a razor with a really dull finish that never comes back much. Maybe start with the cap and polish very vigorously a few times, using much elbow grease, as a test. There will either be gradual improvement, or it'll "stall". It may take 2 or 3 hard applications to the top cap to tell what condition it's really in. Rub like hell. If you rub through the nickel, it was no good anyway.
Be super careful if you're trying to use a dremel or something. That's a whole other thread.
Follow up polishing w/ toothpase and/or liquid dish detergent and hot water and a good scrub with a soft brush to clear out residue. Wipe dry.
Short of taking power buffers and heav-duty compounds to it, it just takes time and labor. And a lot of microfiber cloths.
03-01-2010, 02:46 PM
What polish are you using? Don't get too aggresive or you'll take the plating right off. It's not supposed to shine like a Merkur
Even my NOS ones have a nice, sensible, satin finish rather than a full out shine. It's nickel plating, IIRC, as opposed to the Chrome
03-01-2010, 03:21 PM
I have several SuperSpeeds. For a shine I use Maas or Blue Magic metal polish. For the tight areas I'll use a toothbrush to apply and another to remove. I don't let the polish sit and dry. I buff it on and buff it right off. When I'm done I'll rinse with water and hit with a toothbrush to make sure all the polish is off. The last SS I got was more hazy and had more water spots than others I've bought. Took some work to make it look even decent. It's still not as shiny as some. Maybe on this one the finish is so damaged you won't get a great shine. In any case I wouldn't expect any 50-60 year old razor to shine like the Merkur.
03-01-2010, 03:59 PM
Wait until your merkur is 46 years old and see how bright it is. You have to remember that these gillettes were made in a day and for a market where they were seen as consumables that sold for a dollar or two down at the drugstore. You probably paid more than that for your Merkur, all things being equa, the superspeeds were never seen as lasting half a century. You can polish it up with jeweler's rouge and a cotton ball if you like. Remember, toothbrushes are abrasive, they don't polish and can leave fine scratches. If it's a shine you really desire, then you need to re plate the razor, after 46 years it might be due. The cost will be around 25 bucks or so and it will be a nickel finish that will take a pretty bright shine. That's about all you can do, bc
03-01-2010, 05:40 PM
I usually scrub mine with toothpaste and a toothbrush. Then I finish it up with Maas.
A dip in rubbing alcohol will remove soap scum and any excess polish you let accumulate on the razor. It's not going to ever shine like a newer razor, but some guys get them to shine up pretty good. One thing, even though it won't shine like a new Merkur, these old Gillettes are much better made than the Merkurs.
One thing you'll notice is that the fancy Rhodium and Silver plated Gilettes shine much more than the standard razors like the Superspeed.
03-02-2010, 07:30 AM
Chrome vs nickel...the latter just does not shine the same way, why they chrome plate car parts, I guess. If it were silver you could polish it up, but nickel just does not seem to take to polishing and will forever remain a lot duller than the other finishes.
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