Adjustable Conundrum...

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by Slipperyjoe, Jun 18, 2012.

  1. Slipperyjoe

    Slipperyjoe Rusty Metal Tetanus

    Hi all..I recently posted on a thread about adjustables mentioning that there can be blade exposure differences between one side of a Gillette adjustable and the other. My own FB's seem to have some kind of variances there and I talked about this problem. I just dug up an old video where I first heard about the issue however it seems that adjustables have differences in blade angle gap?.. between one side and another rather than exposure and an explanation is given about half way into the vid. I've encountered many differing opinions on the subject ranging from those who have found issues to those who have razors with none of these problems at all. From what I gather the matter seems a bit murky and complex with YMMV further mudding the waters. So I've decided to post a thread on TSD in the hopes of finally clarifying the whole issue once and for all..well..we all have our dreams.. lol..YMMV...
    awake2shave likes this.
  2. IAmTheJody

    IAmTheJody Gillette-i Master

    Most vintage adjustables will have a variance, even if it's minute, that can affect the way it adjusts and blade exposure. This is due to what's inside the handle - which is usually old soap, whiskers, skin cells and lime scale. If it's a new, modern razor and has this problem - such as the well-documented poor quality control with the Merkur Progress - it's just unacceptable.
    Slipperyjoe and alpla444 like this.
  3. Slipperyjoe

    Slipperyjoe Rusty Metal Tetanus

    So Jody your saying that those variances can possibly be corrected with a good cleaning?..
  4. IAmTheJody

    IAmTheJody Gillette-i Master

    Oh definitely. All of that "gunk" causes resistance and jams in the mechanisms. Of course it could just be worn out parts too, springs usually. The problem is getting the razor apart. It can be done. There are threads all over the internet where people document the problems they've been having and how to take apart Fat Boys, Slims, Super Adjustables. It's not something I would take on myself but if you're industrious, good with your hands, have the tools and know how to keep up with all of the parts and where they go when putting it all back together...

    Run a Google search for "disassemble gillette adjustable" and see what comes backs. But you can start with this:
    Slipperyjoe likes this.
  5. Slipperyjoe

    Slipperyjoe Rusty Metal Tetanus

    Thanks Jody the info is much appreciated and I see what your saying.. I know that dirt and wear will definitely affect the performance of the razor sometimes dramatically. But is it possible that there is also some kind of issue in the design that contributes to the problem. The fellow in the vid seems to be intimating that the differences in gap..and I've heard this before..were due to a design quirk of some kind.. something to do with the spring.."it's on a spiral coil comin' down on the screw..that makes the blade a little bit cockeyed towards the front" He goes on to say that the blade becomes more balaced if you will on the 5 setting.. "puts both sides of the blade on pretty much an even playing field"..:think002:
  6. IAmTheJody

    IAmTheJody Gillette-i Master

    Well anything is possible. But we must keep in mind that, for this example, the Fat Boy is 54 years old. I don't think it's so much as blaming the spring from the get-go but blaming it because, well, it's 54 years old and tired. But yes, it's very possible some springs didn't live up to quality. But the majority of adjustable razors sold by Gillette, didn't have any problems with variances and such. At least, not when new. 54 years later, yes.
  7. Slipperyjoe

    Slipperyjoe Rusty Metal Tetanus spring has gotten a bit tired out
  8. PLANofMAN

    PLANofMAN Paperboy

    Article Team
    It's time to send them to the Fat Boy Retirement Center...I'll PM you my the address.;)
    Slipperyjoe likes this.
  9. Rob72

    Rob72 Member

    Horse poop. The ends of the spring are (should be) flat-ground. If the wire-stock was round, giving an unbalanced surface for the assembly to ride on, the exposure would be "equal" on every other, or every 3rd setting, based on the ratio of the spring diameter to the size of the closure knob, and whether the spring was completely free-floating, or set.

    If you really burn for consistency, you'll have to disassemble your razor, and use machinist's squares to adjust the blade elevator plate and the elevator shaft(which has more to do with lateral blade exposure than the blade elevator plate, as it is more exposed and susceptible to damage).
    DLP and Slipperyjoe like this.
  10. Slipperyjoe

    Slipperyjoe Rusty Metal Tetanus

    Thanks me it looks like it all boils down to the spring..if the mechanism is clean with no damage and there is proper tension then all should be well with regard to blade exposure, gap,etc. If there are problems then these are most probably related to age and wear and tear and some kind of an overhaul involving the spring mechanism might be what's needed to correct the issue...

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