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Thread: Cobra Classic razor from ClassicShaving

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Richardson (Dallas/Fort Worth area), TX
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    Default Cobra Classic razor from ClassicShaving

    I have been using this razor daily for almost three weeks. Since my "go-to" razor has been a Mercur Slant 37C with Feather blades, I had no trouble remembering to use a gentle stroke and letting the razor do all the work.

    The razor has a comfortable weight - it's heavy, but not unbalanced. The handle is knurled and has indents for gripping, so it's easy to hold.

    The blade is unusually wide; however, after a couple of minutes of use, it doesn't seem ungainly.

    I use my normal combination of B&B 2006 Finest Silvertip brush and Haslinger Sandalwood shaving soap. I was initially concerned about the agressiveness of the blade, so my first shaves were with the Feather ProGuard blade, rather than the Feather Professionals that were shipped with the razor.

    My first impression? "Darn, that's loud!" The sound of the razor against the beard is many times noisier than it is with a "normal" safety razor shave.

    The results? Excellent!

    I use two passes - First, with the grain, and second across the grain. There just isn't any beard left to require a third pass.

    Cuts, scrapes, nicks, etc.? I've had a few "weepers," but, overall, the results have been excellent.

    After 14 shaves, I retired the original Feather Pro Guard blade, and switched to a Feather Professional. After four shaves with the Professional, the results seem to be the same as with the Pro Guard.

    The razor is a little pricey, at $125 (including a pack of 20 Feather Professionals and a blade bank); however, it is a solid and exceptionally well-made (made in the U.S.A., by the way) piece of equipment.

    Discuss this razor HERE
    Last edited by Jim; 02-21-2009 at 06:59 AM.
    Ken

    "The only difference between death and taxes is that death doesn't get worse every time Congress meets" Samuel Langhorne Clemens

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Thread Starter

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by slantman View Post
    Does the razor shave like a non-adjustable injector? or is it smoother and even better then a "slant"
    It's been so many years since I've used an injector, I can't make the comparison. However, until acquiring the new "toy", I've shaved with a Mercur slant (39C) for more than a year. The new Cobra Classic razor, in my opinion, does a better job than the slant.
    Ken

    "The only difference between death and taxes is that death doesn't get worse every time Congress meets" Samuel Langhorne Clemens

  3. #3

    Default NOT a beginners razor!

    Let me start off by saying I am not a beginner. I have been wet shaving since the early 70s. My wife bought me an electric shaver on two occasions, but I always tried it to make her happy and put it away, always going back to my razors.

    My go-to razor is a Merkur barberpole slant, loaded with red pack Personnas. I've used pretty much every razor you can think of, and I like the Slant. Despite it's reputation as a machine that will take skin off to the bone, it always gives me the best, most irritation free shaves.

    I saw the Cobra Classic discussion spring up on the safety razor board and I had some spare cash. So despite the high price and my general dislike of Feather blades, I bought it out of sheer curiosity.

    When it arrived it was simply wrapped in a sheet of paper and taped up. No box, no instructions. The razor comes with a pack of 20 Professional blades. I also bought the ProGuard blades - more on that in a moment. It also comes with a blade bank as of this writing.

    The razor is VERY good looking. There isn't a prettier safety razor anywhere if you ask me. Nicely cast, well polished, all swoopy and sexy. Sweet! It's also quite heavy.

    Despite appearances, this is NOT an injector. In fact blade handling is very clumsy. You twist a latch under the head and the bottom jaw drops open to accept the blade. There are oblong slots on the blade and lands on the dropped jaw to mate with them. You have to set the blade (carefully!) on the lands and close the jaw, latching it shut. It's easy to misplace the blade unless you are paying attention, but when you know how it's supposed to go in it's obvious. The mechanism is simple and robust, but NOT user friendly. You are messing around a LOT with sharp edges. People cringe at the Futurs blade handling (actually easier than a Gillette 3-piece, which no one ever moans about) - this makes that look like childs play.

    So, you get the blade loaded, staunch the bleeding from your lacerated fingers, and get your face prepped and lathered up. You had better use GOOD stuff. You're gonna need it! Especially at first. My usual soap is Institut Karite. Although excellent with the slant, it wasn't good enough to learn this razor on. I went to a tallow based shave stick.

    The first shave was a disaster. There was blood everywhere despite the Proguard blades. If anything was sticking up it was made level with the rest of my face. The styptic pencil got a workout that first day. It turns out that even with a slant, you can apply some pressure and get away with it. And your bad habits WILL haunt you with this razor. The second shave was a little better, but still some blood. Third shave, no blood but some irritation. The fourth and fifth shaves were better yet. This morning I finally didn't even let the weight of the razor do anything, and just barely allowed the razor to touch my face - actively taking some weight OFF the razor. Don't let the weight of the razor do the work as is taught with a DE - let the BLADE do everything.

    And let me tell you, it does.

    After several days of messing with the Proguard blades, someone suggested I swap in the Professional, unguarded blade. So I did and the shave was the best yet. No blood, no irritation, barely even any sting from the aftershave. My face is the smoothest it's been since I was, maybe, 12 or 13. It beats even a slant in terms of closeness. And beats hell out it in terms of aggression!

    People have wondered about the width of the blade. Yes, it is considerably wider than your typical DE. But after a shave or two you won't even notice it. The width does NOT detract from the usability of the razor.

    It's funny. Now, if I want a less aggressive and easier shave, I will drop DOWN to the slant!

    So, gentlemen, if you want the absolute best, most aggressive, closest and (eventually!) most comfortable shave you can get with a so-called safety razor, this is your tool. Yes, you will bleed. Yes, you will curse yourself for a fool for buying it. But take the time to master it and it will pay you back. Maybe, just MAYBE a straight can do better in terms of smooth shaves. But this is the ultimate safety razor.
    Last edited by MikeLip; 02-21-2009 at 11:14 AM.
    "Would you mind not shooting at the thermonuclear weapons? "

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Paris - France
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    530

    Default

    First shave this morning with the Cobra and Feather Professional blade (I don't received the Pro Guard).

    Price : Pricey at $125.

    Quality : Good, beautiful finishes.

    User friendly : this razor is most dangerous than my slant or my Joris Open Comb.

    Grip : Good for WTG, average for ATG

    Ease of blade replacement : not easy and risk cutoff

    Agressiveness : Yes ! It's the devil's razor.

    Balance : very good, but I would prefer a longer handle

    I have a BBS shave with 2 passes

  5. Default There is a reason for the name

    This thing is just cool. The same way a vintage sports car is cool. It's not very practical, not cheap, not user friendly and potentially dangerous.

    Some comments to the ratings:

    Price: The price does not quite justify the product. I think the attention to detail could have been better. It's good but not great.

    Quality: It seems very solid. A simple and robust construction that does not have many things that could go wrong.

    User friendly: It is not user friendly. The changing of blades is fiddly and with the infamous feather blades this means significant risk of your weekly band-aid budget going up if you don't take care.

    Grip: The grip itself is not bad but the razor seems bottom-heavy and it just doesn't handle as easily as a normal DE.

    Blade replacement: See "User Friendly"

    Aggressiveness: Very, very aggressive. You need to take things pretty nice and easy when first trying out this razor. It's a real lawn-mower.

    Balance: It has a nice heft and feels good in the hand, but as stated previously it is a little bottom-heavy.


    Let it be said: This is a razor for people who know what they are doing.
    The packaging sort of says it all: No box, no instructions, no nothing. Just the razor from hell and a pack of blades from japan.

    But if you know your way around wet shaving and a sharp blade doesn't frighten you, this razor will give you probably just about as close and comfortable a shave as you can get. I was really blown away by it the first time I tried it.

    The downside is that the margin for error is so small. You really have to keep focused when using this thing. I think this razor is better for weekends or special occasions. You know, like when you're taking the old Aston Martin DB4 GT out for a spin
    ______________________________

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  6. #6
    Rasch

    Default Very nice shave

    First a little history: When I started shaving back in grade school no one showed me how to do it so I just grabbed a razor and scraped the hair off of my face, dry. Yes painful and yes I stopped that. I've been using an electric ever since, going on 25 years ... as of about a month ago.

    My electric died and the charging/cleaning base died too so I looked in to straight razors. I've been using a manual wheelchair since 1990 due to a motorcycle accident (spinal cord injury) and after I read for about an hour on classicshaving.com I decided that a straight razor was not for me due to a lacking in lateral stability. Enter the Cobra;

    Having NEVER wet shave in my life I can say that this razor is an awesome tool to have. I did a lot of reading and then went to, what I expected, cut my face off and pour alcohol on it to stop the bleeding. My first shave was awesome. I nicked the mole on my chin and that was about it. Only did one pass though ...

    1) Brush quality matters. I'm glad I got the brush I did; super badger for about $80.
    2) Truefitt & Hill pre-shave oil rocks and helps the lathering
    3) Taking a shower first helps a lot; may look for a hot towel steamer or something.
    4) Professional blades in the Cobra are the best (Can I use the Pro Super?)
    A) I need to change them quite often.
    5) Truefitt & Hill Ultimate Comfort Aftershave Balm is magical. Even with severe razor burn this stuff minimizes the pain and really makes it all heal nice and fast.

    If I skip any of these steps I get hamburger face as a reminder. My second shave entailed me skipping the shower; my whole neck was red or red and bleeding and I hurt for a couple days. If I go 'by the book' I get the closest and most comfortable shave I have ever experienced. I love the weight of the Cobra too ... kinda wish the handle was a bit longer though.

    My most recent shave (this morning) was the closest ever; 3 or 4 passes, no burning, no nicks or cuts, and no stubble anywhere.

    I've read a bunch of stuff saying that it's a dangerous razor to change the blades on. I don't really see why, personally. I've never cut myself changing the blade and really don't fear that it would happen. It seems straight forward to me. I actually like popping it open to rinse it out after I shave and the blade doesn't fall out unless I want it to.

    A bunch of my friends are now switching to wet shaving too .. it's infectious.
    Last edited by Rasch; 07-07-2009 at 08:26 PM. Reason: spelling errors ... I can't spell to save my life

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    1,026

    Default

    I was a little hesitant to try this razor after being savagely butchered on several occasions by the professional blades in an Artist Club non-folding Feather razor but I gave it a shot anyway.

    This razor has become one of my favorites. I don't find it to be the aggressive monster that it's made out to be by the other reviewers. As long as my prep is good and I take my time with the shave I get a surprisingly comfortable BBS shave with no irritation/weepers. For me it's an easy razor to use because of the large flat head - it's really easy to lay it flat on your skin and maintain the correct angle. All you have to do is make sure you're applying very little pressure and take slow, short strokes and you will be fine.

    I only had one bad shave with it when I was hurrying and got too cocky. Anyone who has tried a feather blade can tell you that if you lose focus 'there will be blood'.

    I've seen some guys say they can get 7 or more shaves out of a blade but for me they seem to get a little rough on the 4th shave so I toss it after 3 like a DE.

    The cobra classic is a very nice looking razor that delivers a great, easy shave. The only thing I was disappointed with was finding out that the professional super blades don't fit in it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    California USA
    Posts
    60

    Default

    Just received my Cobra razor from Classic Shaving. I'm 66 yrs. young and have shaved from my youth with about every safety razor around. I have for quite a while been cutting down Feather blades for a number of my vintage injectors for the best shave experience. So, I was very happy to see a manufacturer bring out a new razor for these fine blades.

    The 1/4 inch wider head of the Cobra takes a little getting used to. Not so much for the width but the balance, as I believe the handle on this razor should have been longer and of a different shape. I find I cannot get a comfortable grip on it as of yet. The angle of the triangular shape seems too much and makes my fingers want to slip off of it. The designer should have looked more at the handles of the late Schick Injectors. They are longer then on this razor, and not so much angle on the taper. But, all that a side, they did incorporate the striations on the safety bar of the original Schick design, and this is what makes for the great shave I'm used to. I have both the Pal and the Personna copies of the Schick which do not have the striations and they do not shave as well IMHO.

    The shave, well knowing the Feather Blades, I chose Cremo Cream for my first shave. The shave was close and very smooth, but I did have that control problem with the handle and kept searching for a proper grip on it. The Injector razor normally needs just a bit of pressure as they have no weight to speak of and hold their own angle. This razor has weight, and needs a light touch, just let it's own weight do the work. The out come was as smooth a shave as I've ever had, even a day later. I'm a red head with sensitive skin and fine beard. There was a hint of irritation, but the Cremo Creme seemed to negate it to a great degree, and I'm used to this with first shave with fresh Feather Pro Blade. All in all, I like this razor very much and may try shrinking some plastic tubing over the handle to increase my grip on it.
    COBRA CLASSIC Feather Pro
    SCHICK INJECTOR Type G,N
    PAL SS INJ.ADJ. PERSONNA SS INJ.
    Cut down Feather Pro Blades/Schick German
    MERKUR PROGRESS Merkur Blades
    VULFIX 2234
    CREMO CREAM, NANCY BOY Replenishing
    Sierra Cup 8oz. SS

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Massachusetts
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    Default Great Razor

    My Cobra arrived this morning. With 3-day's growth, I figured now is a good time to give it a test drive. After performing a "Kyle's prep", I did a 3-pass shave (WTG, XTG, ATG). What a razor!!! Gave a BBS shave with only two weepers and no irritation. I did read about this razor in the forums before using it and all of the advice and tips paid off...thanks B&B members.
    This razor will definitely join my regular rotation.
    Eddie B.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Sun Valley
    Posts
    421

    Default

    I think it important to note that this razor (which I love) comes with the more aggressive blades. When ordering (unless you have a very heavy beard) you might ask them to do an exchange to the less aggressive.

  11. #11
    Join Date
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    Default A very nice razor

    So I just got my Cobra Classic and I have to say that its reputation might be a little unwarranted. It certainly is aggressive, but not as a biting as an SE or as exposed as a slant. I think its more about the blade's reputation than the razor itself.

    Its very wide, which is actually pretty nice since it covers more "real estate" faster. Its very hefty, which is good because a light touch is definitely required and the weight of the razor allows one to just let it practically fall down the face.

    All the comments about the difficulty of blade replacement is true, but its not that terrible to change blades. Considering how long the blades last, its not something the user is faced with everyday.

    Overall, its a very nice razor and really gets the job done!

  12. #12

    Default

    Love this safety razor! Truely a different shaving experience compared to other safety razors. I differ from others opinions about the difficulty of blade replacements. IMO changing the blades is extremely easy. I have had no regrets at all...fantastic results and a very cool looking razor to top it off.
    Last edited by BEAR DEN; 04-22-2011 at 02:35 PM.

  13. #13

    Default First SE razor

    After using a DE and straights exclusively for the past 4 years, I finally made my venture into SE shaving. I got the cobra, and I am glad I did.

    I paid $105 for this beauty slightly used, but in excellent condition.

    I think the quality of the razor is very good, the nickel finish is a nice touch to change up the look of my shave den with chromed-out futurs and what not.

    After the end of the shave, it's pretty user friendly. Let me get to the blade replacement and handle first though.

    The grip is a little iffy at first. When I used the razor the first time, i had trouble finding a grip because it is triangular-shaped. It looks into place well when you are doing a S to N pass. Kinda takes practice to find that sweet spot for your hand. Once you do, its a cake walk.

    Blade replacement also takes a few seconds to get a hold of. It's quite different from the TTO DE razors, and the 3 piece razors (which I hate changing blades on a 3 piece). Previous reviewers did a better job explaining how to replace blades.

    Aggression-- Yea, it's fairly aggressive. It's not a futur set on 6.5 though

    It doesn't adjust.

    I think the balance is very nice. It's an easy razor to maneuver. It does have some weight to it which I like, but it's not too much.

    Overall, a nice shaver. At the current price range, I can see why a lot of people would shy away from it. It makes for a decent shaver, which I believe will be a rarity in the future.
    It's Beer Thirty

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