Weekly Razor Review

alfredus

Auctioneer-in-Chief + organises many group buys
Staff member
Site Moderator
State Convenor - SA
Grand Society
Group Buy Caporegime
Charity Auction Team
Joined
Nov 14, 2014
Location
Adelaide
Now.... I understand WHY you couldn't use the R41? Are you a real man who loves to drink milk on a hot summer day or are you a mouse and too scary to go out and get some cheeses, because you hate being chased by an angry mad cat.
I am a real man who likes to get his cheese from a decent fromagerie...but to be honest I rarely drink milk...I prefer my barista texturing it perfectly into my coffee ;)
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Rocnel Sailor Adjustable Gen 2 (Turkey)

“Please Note: The Rocnel Sailor Series razor is designed to be used with Feather Hi-Stainless DE blades. That said, the following blades also fit perfectly: Ladas, Voskhod, Gillette 7 O'Clock blacks, Rapira Platinum Lux, Rapira Swedish Supersteel, Rapira Super Stainless, Viking's Sword and Derby Extra.”

The above warning was, for a long time, posted on the Bullgoose website and I’m pleased to have copied it when I did. It was posted for this very razor but the blade selection is applicable to many early Rocnel razors. I cannot for the life of me understand the logic of making a razor and being so hung up with your machining ability that you want to exclude so many different blades. Anyhow that is Rocnel and the users are held to ransom as this Sailor has been designed to be used with Feather blades. I like Feather blades but I also cherish the freedom in not being forced to use them.



There were only quantity 10 of the original Sailor Gen 1’s made and I don’t have one and let me tell you, it’s not from the lack of trying. It’s no good lamenting the fact, let’s have a look at the Gen 2. Yet again, the Rocnel Sailor Gen 2 features the spring loaded two section plate design, however Rocnel have utilized two springs, one on each end of the head to maintain pressure on the plate sections. Two springs working in tandem is a good idea but they did not always exert equal pressure so one end of the two piece plate would cock out more than the other. Oiling the mechanism alleviate the problem to some extent but I always had to make sure the gap between two sections were equidistant at each end. In the Gen 2 Sailor, the lower section extends to form the main spindle of the handle and when combined with the strengthening at the corner of the handle provides a very robust design. The cap is a fairly simple design with a longer than normal centre post and round blade posts.

Rocnel’s Sailor Gen 2 utilise a rear knob for adjusting and blade replacement that incorporates a spindle that goes through the handle to engage the cap centre post. Right here is a major mechanical fault with this razor, there is only one complete thread engaged to the centre post and that is simply not enough. In practice the spring loaded plate must be squeezed together for the threads to make engagement; the lack of thread engagement is that critical. I’ve heard the same complaint from other users so I put the grievance down to simply poor design. When stored, I never leave the thread engaged because I just don’t want to tear out the little bit of thread engagement present by applying constant spring pressure to it. The setting numbers #1 - #5 are lightly engraved just forward of the rear knob and I had difficulty reading them, even with my glasses on. Overall, the Gen 2 Sailor has a very presentable machine polished finish, however the underside of the cap is simply machined, no issues I don’t mind a machined finish especially in those out of site places provided no attempt has been made to polish it.

Rocnel may have got the mechanics of the razor all wrong but there is nothing but praise for the delivered shave. Smooth, close and comfortable with a pleasing amount of blade feel. I did not need to go past setting #3 and was, in fact, hesitant to even try; with the lack of thread engagement between the adjuster spindle and the cap, the razor literally falls apart just after setting #5. I did not want to destroy the razor so stopped the review after just two shaves. Rocnel’s Gen 2 Adjustable could have been so good.
  • #1 – Karve CB Level #B
  • #2 – Karve CB Level #C
  • #3 – Karve CB Level #D plus
This is not one of Rocnel’s better razors and to put it bluntly; it’s a flop.

Adjustment Range – #1 through to #5 with mid-way markings
Blades Used – Ladas
Material – Stainless Steel
Blade Tab – Slightly exposed
Weight – 130g
Head Width – 42.08mm
Handle Length – 75.64mm
Handle Diameter – 14.11mm
Availability – Out of Production
Final Word – Poorly engineered
 

Mark1966

Canberra dwelling Happy Clapping Bean Counter
Staff member
Site Moderator
Grand Society
2016 Sabbatical Fail
2018 Charity Auction Winner
2019 Charity Auction Winner
2020 Charity Auction Winner
Joined
Apr 26, 2011
Location
Canberra
Another amazing job Errol! Your razor reviews are what originally attracted me to this forum so far from home. And I have to say that Paste & Cut is fast becoming my favorite wet shaving forum.
Come for the reviews, stay for the people :)
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Well @Errol - you have done so many reviews I've had to split the index into two!

A-K here

L-Z here

Other recommendations etc here

Man, this keeping up with you is hard work!
@Mark1966 you‘ve done a stellar job with the index system. It’s surprising just how many times I use it myself. I’ve been upsetting the razor manufacturers now for just over two years and at the present rate can see me continuing for about another five years (if I live that long). It might pay to split the index four ways now, but I’ll leave that decision to you. Thanks for maintaining the index, it’s much appreciated.
 

Pbgoose

Active Member
Joined
Jun 1, 2017
Location
Dubbo
Rocnel Sailor Adjustable Gen 2 (Turkey)

“Please Note: The Rocnel Sailor Series razor is designed to be used with Feather Hi-Stainless DE blades. That said, the following blades also fit perfectly: Ladas, Voskhod, Gillette 7 O'Clock blacks, Rapira Platinum Lux, Rapira Swedish Supersteel, Rapira Super Stainless, Viking's Sword and Derby Extra.”

The above warning was, for a long time, posted on the Bullgoose website and I’m pleased to have copied it when I did. It was posted for this very razor but the blade selection is applicable to many early Rocnel razors. I cannot for the life of me understand the logic of making a razor and being so hung up with your machining ability that you want to exclude so many different blades. Anyhow that is Rocnel and the users are held to ransom as this Sailor has been designed to be used with Feather blades. I like Feather blades but I also cherish the freedom in not being forced to use them.





There were only quantity 10 of the original Sailor Gen 1’s made and I don’t have one and let me tell you, it’s not from the lack of trying. It’s no good lamenting the fact, let’s have a look at the Gen 2. Yet again, the Rocnel Sailor Gen 2 features the spring loaded two section plate design, however Rocnel have utilized two springs, one on each end of the head to maintain pressure on the plate sections. Two springs working in tandem is a good idea but they did not always exert equal pressure so one end of the two piece plate would cock out more than the other. Oiling the mechanism alleviate the problem to some extent but I always had to make sure the gap between two sections were equidistant at each end. In the Gen 2 Sailor, the lower section extends to form the main spindle of the handle and when combined with the strengthening at the corner of the handle provides a very robust design. The cap is a fairly simple design with a longer than normal centre post and round blade posts.

Rocnel’s Sailor Gen 2 utilise a rear knob for adjusting and blade replacement that incorporates a spindle that goes through the handle to engage the cap centre post. Right here is a major mechanical fault with this razor, there is only one complete thread engaged to the centre post and that is simply not enough. In practice the spring loaded plate must be squeezed together for the threads to make engagement; the lack of thread engagement is that critical. I’ve heard the same complaint from other users so I put the grievance down to simply poor design. When stored, I never leave the thread engaged because I just don’t want to tear out the little bit of thread engagement present by applying constant spring pressure to it. The setting numbers #1 - #5 are lightly engraved just forward of the rear knob and I had difficulty reading them, even with my glasses on. Overall, the Gen 2 Sailor has a very presentable machine polished finish, however the underside of the cap is simply machined, no issues I don’t mind a machined finish especially in those out of site places provided no attempt has been made to polish it.

Rocnel may have got the mechanics of the razor all wrong but there is nothing but praise for the delivered shave. Smooth, close and comfortable with a pleasing amount of blade feel. I did not need to go past setting #3 and was, in fact, hesitant to even try; with the lack of thread engagement between the adjuster spindle and the cap, the razor literally falls apart just after setting #5. I did not want to destroy the razor so stopped the review after just two shaves. Rocnel’s Gen 2 Adjustable could have been so good.
  • #1 – Karve CB Level #B
  • #2 – Karve CB Level #C
  • #3 – Karve CB Level #D plus
This is not one of Rocnel’s better razors and to put it bluntly; it’s a flop.

Adjustment Range – #1 through to #5 with mid-way markings
Blades Used – Ladas
Material – Stainless Steel
Blade Tab – Slightly exposed
Weight – 130g
Head Width – 42.08mm
Handle Length – 75.64mm
Handle Diameter – 14.11mm
Availability – Out of Production
Final Word – Poorly engineered
Hey @Errol, thanks for the Sailor review. I have seen some very good reports of the Gen 1 Sailor over the last couple of years and thought the Gen 2 should automatically be on my wish list. The Sailor looks to be a solid well engineered razor so if Rocnel addresses the issues I'd quite happily return it to the list. Again your reviews prove to be a valuable reference.

The Rocnel Elite I purchased was also made to suit Feather blades so I accepted the exclusivity from the start and in fact was one of the main attractions to the razor. I thought if a razor was designed around a Feather blade then it's performance could possibly be as it's name suggested, 'elite'. I enjoy the Feather in the Elite but fortunately a number of other blades also work well. So I guess Rocnel designing a razor around a specific blade will attract some and not others, after all the Feather blade does have a following.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Another great, informative review Errol. Thanks for your continued input!
It boggles the mind how a company could think to have such little thread engagement would be a good idea. Having a razor literally fall apart if the user adjusts slightly past #5 seems downright absurd.
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Rocnel Sailor Adjustable Gen 3 (Turkey)



Only about four years ago Rocnel were making a name for themselves in the design and machining of razors and were acknowledged for their innovation and low priced razors. How things have changed; still innovative but their prices have sky rocketed. Sailor’s Gen 3 can trace its heritage back to the first B&R Adjustable but this time it’s a two piece design, well the user has two pieces but there are 10 individual parts. There is a simple cap and the handle/spring loaded plate assembly forms the other piece. Again, two springs are employed between the upper and lower sections of the plate but this time they were reliable. Milled squares in the handle provide a positive and reliable grip and as soon as you touch them there is immediate confidence that you are not going to experience any handling difficulties. On the Gen 3 Sailor, the rear adjuster/ handle screw is devoid of any knurl and is totally ineffective with anything resembling wet hands. In another move from convention, Rocnel have done away with numbers on the adjuster that advise the selected setting; instead there are efficiencies engraved – M – M+ - M/A – A – A+ and I can see no reason why this system will not work. Reading the efficiency level was difficult due to the small size print and shallow depth of the engraving. Rocnel must have learned something from previous model as there are a number of threads engaged when the cap is screwed down; at least with this razor I won’t be worried about the one thread engagement as on the Gen 2. There are machine marks on the underside of the cap but all visible surfaces are polished to a finish as good as you’ll see on most razors.

Bullgoose’s influence on the Rocnel brand is again evident and the Sailor Gen 3 will now accept all DE blades; logic prevails. There is no denying that the Gen 3 head is a great big lump of metal, but because of my technique the chunky head was not a problem, however I can see where many may struggle using the Gen 3 due to the depth of the head. There certainly is the opportunity to remove a lot of metal and thus reduce the depth of the head to be more user friendly in future versions.
  • #M – Karve CB Level #B
  • #M+ - Karve CB Level #C plus
  • #M/A – Karve CB Level #D plus
  • #A – Correct
  • #A+ - Beyond where I care to go
Kicking off at setting #M/A was a great place to start. At that setting efficiency was a greater than the Karve CB Level #D and there was an ample amount of blade feel; a reasonably smooth and certainly close shave resulted. For my comfort, I settled on a setting between #M/A and #M+ as being my preferred setting, the advantage of an adjustable. As I progressed down the settings there was a corresponding drop in blade feel. The Gen 3 Sailor delivered a satisfying result although those who prefer the super smooth shave with no blade feel would be well advised to pass on this one.

Adjustment Range – #M through to #A+
Blades Used – Ladas and Gillette 7 O’Clock Yellow
Material – 316L Stainless Steel
Blade Tab - Slight protrusion
Weight – 143g
Head Width – 41.90mm
Handle Length – 82.45mm
Handle Diameter – 13.8mm
Availability – Out of Production
Final Word – Take it or leave it
 

Razor Burn

President of the TF Custom Brushes Fan Club
Grand Society
Da Menth Heads
2019 Charity Auction Winner
2020 Charity Auction Winner
Joined
Dec 4, 2017
Location
Canberra
You've got to give it them as they machine some nice looking razors :)

Another informative review @Errol - well done and hoping to see whether you landed one of the Everyday Razors from Charcoal Goods...? :nailbiting:
 

Razor Burn

President of the TF Custom Brushes Fan Club
Grand Society
Da Menth Heads
2019 Charity Auction Winner
2020 Charity Auction Winner
Joined
Dec 4, 2017
Location
Canberra
Glad to hear and again I was upset seeing that he released some brass ones that sold out quickly as I assumed they'd only be made in SS. :( Starting to think the Shaving Gods are giving me a sign that I'll never score a brass CG...? :facepalm:
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Glad to hear and again I was upset seeing that he released some brass ones that sold out quickly as I assumed they'd only be made in SS. :( Starting to think the Shaving Gods are giving me a sign that I'll never score a brass CG...? :facepalm:
Like you I was expecting The Everyday to be released only in stainless steel and this small drop of about 10 in brass came somewhat unexpectedly. In another move from left of field, the handles offered were the old style handles. No complaints from me, I chose the Anchor handle. @Razor Burn have you ever considered an email direct to Brian with your requirement, he is very good to deal with. The CG move in August has been postponed to December so there may be a window of opportunity there. Good luck.
 

Razor Burn

President of the TF Custom Brushes Fan Club
Grand Society
Da Menth Heads
2019 Charity Auction Winner
2020 Charity Auction Winner
Joined
Dec 4, 2017
Location
Canberra
Like you I was expecting The Everyday to be released only in stainless steel and this small drop of about 10 in brass came somewhat unexpectedly. In another move from left of field, the handles offered were the old style handles. No complaints from me, I chose the Anchor handle. @Razor Burn have you ever considered an email direct to Brian with your requirement, he is very good to deal with. The CG move in August has been postponed to December so there may be a window of opportunity there. Good luck.
In all honesty mate the Smart Helix Apollo shaves near perfection and I'm unsure as to whether the Everyday Razor would be as efficient as the Level 2 in Brass that blew me away and the SS currently on sale is too light for my liking. :( Alternatively I could get that one and pair with a discontinued brass handle but can't justify the added cost with shipping from US costing a fortune and taking forever... (n)
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
The Rocnel Sailor Gen 3 completes the reviews I’d been doing on 10 stainless steel adjustable razors when the Detroit Alpha and Phoenix Ascension are included. I was thinking about which of them I enjoyed most and from that point there was little trouble in producing a list of the razors in the order I thought they rated:
  • Rex Ambassador Adjustable – First release
  • B&R Adjustable
  • Rex Ambassador Adjustable – 2019 release
  • Homelike Taiga SB – Titanium handle
  • Homelike Taiga OC
  • Phoenix Ascension
  • Rocnel Sailor Gen 3
  • Detroit Shaving Alpha
  • Janus 3000 Toggle
  • Rocnel Sailor Gen 2
If neutral blade feel and a super smooth shave are your priority, the Homelike Taiga razors will be at the top of the order.
 

Errol

Razor Review Guru
Joined
Apr 29, 2017
Location
Nhulunbuy
Focus Dynamic R50 (Italy)



Italy is blessed in having some of the best engineers in the world; leaders in the design and manufacturing of anything made of metal including some very desirable automobiles and the most complicated machinery to be seen on the planet; let’s see if they can design and build a razor? When I first read the description for this razor, I had no idea what was being described; hooks, pins, special keys and calibration, what are they talking about? To be perfectly honest I did not know what I was about to purchase. Opening the package, I’m confronted with what is definitely a different looking shaving device. For a start the handle has probably started life as a round piece of stainless steel but has had sections milled off/ out of, but it does feel like it will work OK. When I undone the plastic band around the head, the cap which is a simply plate promptly fell on the floor. Two pins on the cap mate into slotted holes in the bottom plate and with no blade fitted there is no pressure against the cap so as soon as the razor is rotated the cap falls off. Now I’ll be upfront and admit that I’m very predigest when it comes to floppy headed razors, ahhhhhhh! floating head (for the purists) and to make things even more interesting the R50 takes a ½ DE blade. Basically, this is a two piece razor although there are many pieces used in the design so they can get their floppy head working. A very pleasing satin finish has been applied to the R50; looks nice but it’s not enough to get me over the line just yet; the quality of the shave has to do that.

It’s suggested that the DE blade should be broken in two and not cut; the curved portion at the break assists in retaining the cap in position. Sounds like a plan, I’m not a plumber and don’t want to be searching through the gunk in the U bend of the basin looking for a wayward cap. In practice, loading the blade is a fiddly operation that would take time learn and I must admit that I didn’t learn. My first pass is mainly upstrokes and for the most part the razor done an admirable job although the spring action never seemed to be working so this made the cutting angle noticeably acute. Re-lather, downward strokes and all hell broke out. It was not the weepers on my neck that were the problem, it was the two long cuts (12/ 15mm) on the left side of the face and I’d only attempted shaving one side of my handsome mug. Bugger this, I don’t have to put up with this crap so I finished the shave off with another razor and packed the Focus away.

Blades Used – Leaf Super + Platinum
Material – Stainless Steel
Blade Tab - Covered
Weight – 93g
Head Width – 44.08mm
Handle Length – approx 102mm
Handle Diameter – 11.9mm
Availability – Focus
Final Word – Not for this little black duck
 

Mark1966

Canberra dwelling Happy Clapping Bean Counter
Staff member
Site Moderator
Grand Society
2016 Sabbatical Fail
2018 Charity Auction Winner
2019 Charity Auction Winner
2020 Charity Auction Winner
Joined
Apr 26, 2011
Location
Canberra
For a country that have produced some FANTASTIC designs over the centuries and, as you say, has soem high quality engineers that looks well, pretty amateur!
 
Top