I am really upset about what just happened. We have talked on the forum about GEM razors and SE blade varieties, sometimes disagreeing. You seem to have your position, while I have been trying to find mine. Well tonight really has me concerned.
Let me give you some background. I have thrown a new razor (Gillette NEW) and soap (custom milled mixture of Tabac and T&H) into the rotation, having a few bad shaves mixed with some good shaves. After Monday's shave, I was a little annoyed and decided to skip my shave this morning. Getting close to two days growth tonight, I decided I would have a shave...my face was definitely recovered. I was dividing up the last Pella blades I have, since I was giving some with a couple of GEM's (Featherweight and a Push-Button) to a member as part of a sale in the BST. For whatever reason there was an extra blade after putting together three sets of five. This combined with the fact that I pulled the Push-Button out of a tin where my other GEMs are stored made me realize I should give a GEM a go. Looking at the two other GEMs in the tin (an old 1912 and a Micromatic), I figured I would shave with something I have never used before.
Enter the GEM 1912 shave. So I load the Pella into the 1912, which honestly looks really sad. The razor polished up nice, but has TONS OF BRASSING. I note that the blade seem closer to the guard (less gap) than my other, newer, GEM razors. Interesting, lets move on.
I rinse my face with hot water, soap my face with my custom milled Tabac/T&H soap (thanks Lou!) and then start soaking the brush. After loading my 2008 LE brush upside down (thanks Mantic!), I get some good lather built up on my face. Yes I face lather baby! Here comes the shave.
DAMN. This 1912 cuts through the extra growth like it is nothing. Each pass almost pulls off BBS!!! WTF?!? After a single pass WTG, I rinse off with warm water. F**king A. I could just stop right here, totally close shave, ZERO IRRITATION, NOT A NICK. Well this is a GEM, we don't f**k around with a man's razor. I lather up again, and do my signature second pass, ATG (FYI, I only do this with SE razors). After the face is done, I rinse again. BBS, not freaking joke. Just 2 little blood spots on my neck (big surprise, as I always have trouble with SE and my neck). The good part is, the neck is smooth as silk (not something I always can say with even a good shave).
Well you were right, these old 1912's are a serious tool, not to be underestimated. I stand corrected and please accept my apology. Guess what? That Pella blade I don't care for? Worked like a charm this shave. Go figure!
I really wish this shave had gone different. I can already see myself searching "gem razor" on ebay tomorrow. Argh.