Yes, others are doing this, but this is my own.
First off, let me disclose that I am a die-hard SI loyalist. They are my favoritist blade in the world (well, maybe sharing that spot with the NOS Gillette Bleue Extras). I personally cleaned out most of Miguel's supply (let's just say that I've got enough for my theoretical great-grandchildren to have a near lifetime's worth.
And I also have been the biggest skeptics to claims that "other" blades are the same as SIs.
Certainly not the "fake" Chinese-produced SIs that were out for a little while last year.
Certainly not the original Polsilvers. Last year, I tried them in a blind test vs. a SI. Very decent blade, but certainly not anywhere near the quality of the original SI.
So, when Xillium was kind enough to trade me two of the 'new' Polsilver SIs for two of my real, genuine SIs, I was, of course, skeptical. But, I decided to test them using a pretty reliable blind test methodology.
But before we get into them, let's clear up the issue of appearance. Original SIs and the Polsiver SIs blades. do NOT look exactly the same. The original SIs have a little bit of an oily sheen to them that the Pols do not have. Also, the blade stamping is different. the letters on the Pol SI are darker, a little thicker, and the registered mark is close to the logo. Which says to me that these are not necessarily being STAMPED using the same machine, even though they may be manufactured using the same machine.
Anyway, on the test. While I was tempted to use my R41 as the test razor, I realize that an R41 makes nearly every blade seem fabulous. I needed a razor that is rather finicky about the blades it uses, and for that purpose my two Fatboys fit the bill. When they love a blade, it's like Heaven. When they don't like a blade, it can be a nasty (a Fatboy with an Astra is like shaving with sandpaper. Then again, nearly anything with an Astra is a lethal weapon as far as I'm concerned).
Both Fatboys are user grade, and look exactly alike, so there's no way I could tell which one had which blade. I put one of each blade in a FB, closed my eyes and (carefully) did a "three card mone) move around of the razors, so I'd be even less able to tell which is which. Both FBs were set at 8 (my usual setting), freshly cleaned
For shaving soap, I alternated between Cade and my milled mix of Tabac and MWF.
To know which razor was which, I put them next to each other, and, following someone else's good system, I used the 'left' FB to shave the left side of my neck, cheek, chin and upper lip and the 'right' FB to shave my right side. Used the same techniques equally with both.
When I was done, I wrote down the results for the left and right razors. Then I opened the razors, look at the blades, and switched them into the other razor. Next morning, I did the three card monte thing again, and repeated.
I'm not going to release day by day results, but I did this for six days, and will give my general impressions.
First of all, I went into this fully expecting the "classic" SIs to beat out the Polsiver SIs without a beat. Nothing could possibly match the quality of those sainted blades.
But, after doing this test, I am forced to admit that I could not significantly tell the differences between the two. They both shaved smoothly and sharply, left consistently BBS results, and neither left more 'weepers' or irritation than the other (both produced few incidents of these at all). Even after five shaves both were still delivering excellent results.
If there was one difference I noticed it's that the 'original' SI produces a more audible and richer "lawn mowing" sound and feel--those of you with R41s know I mean--that makes you feel that you're really mowin' through the stubble. The Polsilver SI made this sound, too, but it wasn't nearly as loud or 'rich.' I can verify that this wasn't due to the razor because the same results happened with both razors and it wasn't a 'hearing related' issues because I used both blades on both sides of my face during the test.
So, my verdict, hard as it is to admit, is that the Polsilver SIs are either being manufactured using the same materials and processes as the 'classic' SIs, or they're using another system that is delivering nearly identical results. The new SIs are blades that have earned the SI brand name, as far as I'm concerned. If you've never tried the 'classic' SIs, these will give you as close as an experience as you're likely to find. If you can get them for less than 40 cents a blade including shipping, I'd go for it.