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#1
(This post was last modified: 08-18-2020, 01:10 AM by AQU. Edited 2 times in total.)
I first saw this razor pop up on a couple different forums this past week, and upon inspection of their website I noticed they manufacture razors not far from here. I picked one of their aluminum razors up this morning and just had a shave with it. My initial thoughts are that this is an amazing razor for its price and could potentially disrupt the entry-level market for safety razors. 

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Talking with Jonathan from Henson razors, he told me that they are only 3 weeks old, but have been quite busy. A machine shop that manufactures parts for the international space station has recently seen some of its machinery slow down in usage over the last little while. This shop seems to be well known for their precision in their craft. He mentioned that there’s over $7 million worth of machinery being retooled to produce some of these new razors. There are no plans to move manufacturing from Cambridge, Ontario. Ever. 

You can tell immediately how well machined this razor is. From the moment I unscrewed the handle, the threads felt as well crafted as a Karve I used to own. As far as aluminum razors go, this put the threads on my Lupo to shame. The head fits tightly to the base and holds the blade firmly, carefully keeping the blade aligned using the two bars that seem common today. 

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The razor itself is manufactured to hold the blade as closely as possible to the edge in order to prevent the dreaded chatter. By looking at the razor, this is really magnificent. The cap reveals one of the smallest slices of blade I’ve seen from a DE. Blade exposure is minimal, and combined with an .85mm gap, I found it really difficult to nick myself, even as I carelessly threw this around my face on the first shave. 

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The razor comes in multiple colours. I picked up “Tan” that may get renamed Bronze. That’s the exact reason I purchased it, the similarity to bronze, but there’s a multitude of colors to choose from to suit different personalities. 

The handle was perfect. Even when wet there was more than sufficient grip from the etching in the handle. I’ve really enjoyed tapered handles of late, like on my General V2, and the Henson’s handle was easy to use even when inverted to shave the neck areas. 

A little shaving background to understand the razors I prefer: I own and enjoy shaving with a Yates Hybrid Razor, Paradigm Diamondback, and Colonial General V2. I own a few other odds and ends, but nothing special. I usually shave every two days with coarse stubble, often requiring sharper blades. 

Today’s shave was on 3 days worth of growth, a good challenge for a new contender in the den. I popped in a fresh Astra SP and got to work (a 5 pack is included, or pay $10US to get a 100 pack if you need a restock, another deal). 

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From the first few strokes I felt a familiar “suctioning” type feeling as I was guided to the proper angle by the shape of the head. It reminded me of the way the Blackbird used to feel as the outer geometry is similar. I found it really easy to maintain the angle and finished the first pass and rinsed off. I noticed I was surprisingly clean shaven, but still he work to do. As a side note, there’s zero chance you could clog this razor. It rinses very easily due to the head design. 

After the second and third passes (my usual routine) I was BBS with zero irritation, and can say that even ATG this razor was VERY comfortable. Comfort is one of the constants that the razors I use provide, and I found that the razor can really hang with the big boys. The closest comparison for comfort and efficiency would be my YPM Hybrid. Washing up after each pass, I found them eerily similar. To go back to a commonly referenced razor, these two razors shave with the efficiency of a Rockwell 7 plate, but the comfort of the 3 plate. 

But here’s what shocked me. They’re asking $40USD ($54CAD) for this beautifully machined razor, that gives a shave that punches way above its price point. 

Here’s the competitors (August 2020)
  • $50 USD Rockwell 6C, Zamak, made in China, free ship
  • $100 USD Rockwell 6S, Injection Mold Stainless, made in USA, free ship
  • $54-58 USD Gamechanger, machined stainless, pay shipping 
  • $75 USD Karve brass, machined brass, $8 USD shipping. Same for Karve Aluminum, but good luck getting one
I know that when speaking with Jonathan from Henson Razors he mentioned that they were targeting cartridge users and helping them convert, but they crafted an amazing razor. Us enthusiasts can’t go wrong with more makers like this in our little niche. 

If anyone else picks one up, let us know how it shaves!

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Tony
#2

Administrator
Philadelphia, PA
I sent them a message a few days ago but haven't heard back from them yet.

if you chat with them, tell them to message me on here or check out my email. Smile

AQU likes this post
Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito.
#3

Member
Florida
I've noticed that razors with flat sides on the top cap tend to be great shavers and also have a unique feel. Others I can think of are the Blackbird and the RS-10. I hope to see this design feature in more future razors.

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#4
Thanks for the review, I also heard about this on another forum but haven't seen any reviews yet other than yours.
I'm glad that they moved to the option of getting it without 100 Astra's, I think a lot of folks will appreciate being able to knock 20% off the price if they don't want a lot of those blades.
I do hope that they offer an option for a shorter handle though, I haven't seen anything about the actual length of it but seems to be at least 4" which is longer than I would like. I'm sure customers will appreciate different handle length options if they can offer them, a la Karve.
AQU when you spoke with him did he mention anything about their titanium product? It sounds like that was teased on the website and I'm sure that would generate a lot of interest as well.

AQU and Matsilainen like this post
#5
(This post was last modified: 08-18-2020, 02:22 AM by AQU. Edited 1 time in total.)
(08-18-2020, 02:15 AM)jesseix Wrote: Thanks for the review, I also heard about this on another forum but haven't seen any reviews yet other than yours.
I'm glad that they moved to the option of getting it without 100 Astra's, I think a lot of folks will appreciate being able to knock 20% off the price if they don't want a lot of those blades.
I do hope that they offer an option for a shorter handle though, I haven't seen anything about the actual length of it but seems to be at least 4" which is longer than I would like. I'm sure customers will appreciate different handle length options if they can offer them, a la Karve.
AQU when you spoke with him did he mention anything about their titanium product? It sounds like that was teased on the website and I'm sure that would generate a lot of interest as well.

I asked their PR guy about different materials. He said they’re focusing on just growing right now. Sounds like there could be options down the road.

They’re also trying to find ways to cut shipping costs to the US, sooner than later.

Edit: the handle comes in at 3.79” I think? Someone measured it. It didn’t feel long to me and I usually prefer 3.5”, no longer.

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Tony
#6
I just ordered one. For $40, I'm willing to try almost any new razor, especially a unique design.

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#7

Member
Florida
I'm all for a shorter and thicker handle. Looks like a great design though!

Handle length is on their website, it was 3.7X (don't remember the exact length)
#8
Here’s a couple more shots to see how the head holds the blade. It’s truly impressive. You can also see how big the lather channels are. 

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Tony
#9

Member
Florida
It is a very nice razor. I would love to see a stainless steel version and one with a shorter handle.

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#10

Member
Indiana
(08-18-2020, 01:46 PM)AQU Wrote: Here’s a couple more shots to see how the head holds the blade. It’s truly impressive. You can also see how big the lather channels are. 

Very interesting. If you can spare the time I'd very much like to see a shot at a more acute angle to the edge with the blade slot (i.e. looking more along the face with the slot) to get a more precise idea of the blade exposure.


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