Got it late this afternoon. The pictures Rudy sent don't do it justice! Having expected it (and being retired) I skipped this mornings shave so I could try out the brush this afternoon. The longer handle is exactly what I had wanted. I bowl lather and my shorter handles get completely covered by my aggressive whipping :)
Now I already have a high grade silvertip, a super silvertip, a pure badger, and a boar. This TGN Finest XH fills a niche I haven't previously experienced. Initial impressions is that it is soft but not quite up there with the silvertip and super. Definitely more backbone than any of my other brushes save the boar which is what I wanted. Of course the differences in loft are a factor here too. I used some Mama Bear's soap (Tuscan Memories) and the RV produced thick rich lather very quickly. It doesn't hold near the water nor carry as much lather to my face as my Shavemac silvertip brush but certainly more than my boar although again this is an initial impression based on a single shave. I'm not contrasting it with my pure badger as I haven't used that one in a long time (inexpensive relegated to my travel kit).
I'll take a comparison shot and post it in the next day or two.
Last edited by bald1; 06-19-2012 at 06:54 AM.
Well here is the promised comparative picture. You can easily see how much bigger the Rudy Vey handle is :) It is indeed one heck of a lathering monster! LOL
Left to right:
2002 Shavemac custom oiled Thuja wood 23mm Silvertip #22064 (Ht 110, Handle 48, Loft 62)
2007 Rooney Style 2 Size 1 Faux Ivory 22mm Super (Ht 107, Handle 55, Loft 52)
2012 Rudy Vey custom stabilized boxelder burl w/TGN 24mm Finest extra hair (Ht 124.5, Handle 72.5, Loft 52)
1999 Shavecenter made in Germany 19mm Pure badger (Ht 110, Handle 53, Loft 57)
2010 Omega #80005 /Wm Marvy #5 beechwood 24mm Boar (Ht 110, Handle 55, Loft 55)
Last edited by bald1; 06-19-2012 at 05:55 AM.
I know it's only been a few days but I'm starting to develop an opinion about my brush battery. I've always loved my high loft Shavemac as it is not only luxuriously soft but has sufficient backbone to work well with both soaps and creams. It also can soak up an ungodly amount of water and carries a huge amount of lather to the face (and in my case dome). As an aside there was a lot of discussion about the pre-July 2005 Shavemac silvertip versus the then new D01 versions. Many opined that they preferred the older silvertip. Regardless both are praised as outstanding.
The Rooney Super silvertip is a worthy performer but is smaller with all that portends. I don't face lather but if I did I would think the Rooney would be the bees knees. While the well broken in Omega boar can whip up suds from soap in a heartbeat, it just doesn't carry enough lather nor feel anywhere near as good on my skin as the high grade badgers. Accordingly it doesn't see much use. Enter the Rudy Vey / TGN Finest XH. It has softened up nicely already and I'd place it between the Rooney and Shavemac in terms of performance and enjoyment. It also has the firmest backbone of the three. That big handle provides a whole different lather creating experience. What I'm basically saying is that were I to need to pare things down, I'd end up with my Shavemac and Rudy Vey.
So folks who have lauded the TGN Finest XH especially in 24mm have certainly been on to something :) And Rudy's execution in response to my big handle request has for me, enhanced things further.
Last edited by bald1; 06-21-2012 at 02:55 PM.