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Thread: Comb or no comb?

  1. #11
    Senior Member leadduck's Avatar
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    May 2007
    Concord, NH
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    Interesting thread. When I started shaving at 14 or 15, and the only alternatives to the DE in the drug stores was the newly intorduced single edge injectable, I never saw a DE with a comb. Seeing them on ebay, I thought they must be just an earlier version of the standard DE. It never occured to me they might have been used for different beard thicknesses.

  2. #12
    Chasing the Edge WadePatton's Avatar
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    Aug 2012
    Middle Tennessee
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    not mentioned here is the fact that an open-comb is better for taking out longer growth as well. only thing better for massive (length) removal is a straight...and i'm using that on "long" sessions.

    have a short and long comb now...much prefer them.

    as to the historical development, methinks that more men went longer between shaves in the 20's and 30's. the stubble passing through the notches of the comb allow the blade to ride closer to the skin--than if all the stubble had to pass under-as in a solid bar.

    Methinks the comb is more about long stubble than "aggressiveness" but i'll say, just by feel that my OC's are about like the my FB set to six or seven. But i've not measured or directly compared 'em. must be respected, as all sharp things.
    Last edited by WadePatton; 10-13-2012 at 08:11 PM.

  3. #13
    lobeless earcutter's Avatar
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    Feb 2012
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    The thing I find kind of useful about using an open comb is that on each pass, if I haven't done the pass correctly, I leave cream behind. If the blade is gliding smoothly and completely over my face, than I know I am making full contact.

    I never hear anyone else say this - maybe I am off my rocker lol, but it's a big plus for me.

  4. #14
    Senior Member matloffm's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
    Culver City, CA
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    In addition to the above comments, I have found that if you don't have smooth skin (like mine, wrinkled, lumpy and lots of scare tissue) safety bar razors with blade exposure well above the level of the bar, are very difficult to shave with. Even with well honed technique, anything above skin level (moles, etc) is a candidate for getting chopped off. If the height of the blade above the bar is small, the razor is easier to use (more forgiving), but you sacrifice closeness. I have a Feather AS, which I love using, that gives a good low irritation shave, but you will never get a BBS shave from it unless you have a very light beard (or your into shimming razor blades).

    I prefer open combs with longer combs (Gillette old type, Merkur (the heads are all the same, so model is not important)). With good technique, I get great shaves with these razors. The blade lays flat on the comb, there is no gap. If the comb is on your skin, the blade is there also. No guessing about angle as you move over different terrain. But some open comb styles can be very aggressive. If the comb is short and/or there is a gap between blade and comb (FatTip, Muhle 41, etc.), even with great technique, your face may not be able to handle it.

    So, which design is best? The one that works for you.
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