Don't fear the R41

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by NoWeepers, Oct 21, 2018.

  1. Herm2502

    Herm2502 off to elf practice

    I have a Merkur 39c and don't find it particularly aggressive at all. It's 'efficient' and gets the job done quickly, but there's not an excessive amount of blade feel.

  2. Parallax

    Parallax Member

    That matches my memory of it. At the time I was stunned by how easily it shaved and I really liked it. But I stuck with the Futur because it worked too and, as I gained confidence, found I could set it to 6, run it with a Feather and just get super close shaves with ease. So after returning the 39c I didn't bother getting one of my own. Just shaved with that Futur day after day until about a month ago when, for whatever reason, I returned to the boards on another site and began conversing. At first I talked about the fact that I was satisfied with the razors I have and how I use only one. Within a week or two, I posted a thread asking for razor recommendations. And now I'm back in full blown RAD, checking out all these incredible razors.

    The Ikon Tech has become my go-to. Bought one from another fellow and then managed to find a shop that had a few still on the shelf. Bought out the stock and now I have my used one plus three new-in-box versions.

    Also managed to buy a 2011 R41, a 2013 R41, a Fatip v1, a Fatip V2, a PAA BOC, a PAA BAES, a German 37, a Fendrihan Mark-I. I've got several razors on loan too. An El Jefe, a Karve with an F plate, a Dart, an ATT SE2. Hell, someone even PIFed me a devette. And a trip to an antique store (plus a trip through my razor drawer) netted a bunch of GEMs. The MMOC is my favorite though I like the 1914 Ever Ready a lot too and the 1924 model isn't far behind.

    I've bought hundreds of new blades. PTFEs for the GEMs. Hundreds of Feathers, Nacets, Yellows, Blues, Astras and maybe a few others. Guys have sent blade samples too. So I find myself in this swirl of experimentation.

    Good thing I'm a shower shaver or I'd be back in the deep end of the pool with soaps, creams and all the rest. My old scuttle continues to just sit forlornly.
    Keithmax, brit, Herm2502 and 4 others like this.
  3. Terry

    Terry Well-Known Member

    Full RAD ahead!
  4. Linuxguile

    Linuxguile dating an unusual aristocrat

    Supporting Vendor
    As you head down the rabbit hole keep your eye out for a RazoRock WunderBar. To me the Dart is the king of aggressive razors in my den, but I was just sent an R41 and Ikon Tech to compare it to. The Dart has been the only razor to be able to pull off a two pass out the door BBS for me. Happy testing!
    Keithmax, RyX and Terry like this.
  5. jmudrick

    jmudrick Well-Known Member

    Asylum RX handle works well on the R41 too, good balance. Surprisingly good one pass head shave with the Chinese Wilkinson.[​IMG]
    Tdmsu, Keithmax, brit and 4 others like this.
  6. Parallax

    Parallax Member

    Looking forward to your write-up of the comparison.
  7. Parallax

    Parallax Member

    I've got it running with an Ikon Bulldog, which to me feels like a perfect match.
    jmudrick likes this.
  8. RyX

    RyX DoH! Staff Member

    Valuable info there. I've got a Fatip, but haven't determined if it's V1 or V2. Any easy way to tell from the razor itself, or the box it came in? I ebayed mine slightly used & didn't ask. Gathering your review data tells me I don't need to try a '13 R41, but the '11 could be interesting.

    Should you wish to share your daily evaluation or have question about gear, stop by The 30 Day thread. Several very experienced Enablers available to point you towards other interesting razors.
    Keithmax and Frijolero like this.
  9. Parallax

    Parallax Member

    Hey thanks. Was able to find photos on one of the shave sites that showed the difference in blade exposure between the two versions. Don't have the link but it wasn't hard to find. The exposure on the first version was way larger. But it surprisingly made little if any difference in shave quality. In fact none that I could detect. The V2 was more comfortable. If, when you load a blade, the exposure doesn't look scary, it's probably the V2.
    GatorJoe, Keithmax, RyX and 1 other person like this.
  10. Frijolero

    Frijolero Well-Known Member

    There's a thread over on badger & flame on the subject. Says that the top cap is 18mm on V1, 19mm on v2. Much better qc too. Decent blade alignment doesn't necessarily mean V2, but really awful alignment is likely V1.
    Keithmax and Linuxguile like this.
  11. RyX

    RyX DoH! Staff Member

    Calipers confirm mine's a V2 at 19mm. Never had blade alignment issues and the entire unit is acceptable from a cosmetic viewpoint. Guess I got a good one. I learned to Ride The Cap on the Fatip so it's never been harsh. Feather & Kai blades serve me well.

    When I was shopping I looked for but didn't find the Grande handle so I settled for a Piccolo. Later I read the shorter Piccolo is heavier & solid instead of the longer & hollow Grande.

    Sorry for the off topic discussion @NoWeepers. Back to the R41!
  12. jmudrick

    jmudrick Well-Known Member

    Fatip Mk1 and Mk2 packaging[​IMG]
    Tdmsu, Keithmax, brit and 3 others like this.
  13. RyX

    RyX DoH! Staff Member

    Thanks @jmudrick! Making a mental note; Need to dig out the box and see which one I have. The left one looks like what I remember, yet my top cap at 19mm denotes 2nd gen.
    Keithmax and Linuxguile like this.
  14. NCoxSTL


    I have never tried a slant or the R41 so thanks for this thread! It reminded me to get some new razors onto my "list of things to acquire". I have been enabled!
  15. Linuxguile

    Linuxguile dating an unusual aristocrat

    Supporting Vendor
    SOTD NOvember 7th

    Stirling Mentholated Pre-Shave Soap
    Blackland Dart
    Muhle R41
    Rapira Platinum Lux(3)
    Hardright Anchorset (24mm, Frigate class)
    Soap Commander Refreshment
    Stirling Glacial Lemon Chill PSB

    Throughout the shave it was clear that the Dart was both more aggressive and efficient then the R41. There was nothing really left for the Dart to do on the third pass whereas the R41 needed the third pass to pull off the BBS finish. We will have a rematch next shave to see if the R41 can benefit from some fine tuning of the angle.
    Tdmsu, Keithmax and brit like this.
  16. The Other Donald

    The Other Donald Well-Known Member

    My biggest complaint with the R41 (both 2011 & 2013) is marginally defective top caps.
    There is supposed to be a slight blade gap; enough to slide a thin piece of paper between the blade and the baseplate, but often this is not the case.
    Sometimes it only works on one side but not on the other, and sometimes the blade is cinched down on both sides, so as to have no gap at all.
    This is caused by uneven tolerances on the two sides of the top cap, and is a very common problem which will result in a rough shaving razor, on either one or both sides.
    Before I would buy an R41, I would check it by assembling the razor and trying to pass a thin piece of paper (like a cash register receipt) between the blade and the baseplate.
    If it doesn't slide smoothly and easily between them, don't buy the razor.

    If you have a 2013 with a defective top cap and would like to up the efficiency to above the level of the 2011, there is a 3D printed top cap you can buy that gives very impressive results.
    It's called the C410i Spitfire Mk. Ia (8JV58CPXG) by Aimsport, and is produced by the Shapeways 3D printing company. You won't be disappointed.
    Tdmsu likes this.
  17. Somnos

    Somnos Well-Known Member

    I have a Merkur 39C and R41 2013 amongst many others and love them both. Honestly the R41 was my second razor after the Edwin Jagger 89lbl. So I perfected my DE technique between these two razors. I honestly can say that a 3 pass shave with the R41 will lead to an 18 hour BBS shave and that is impressive. Nothing else I own and I have many can do that. I love a razor that “wakes you up” a quarter of the way your first stroke....LOL.
    Tdmsu likes this.
  18. Dansco

    Dansco Well-Known Member

    This has been done to death. How does that razor leave your face BBS for longer? It can't cut the hair any shorter. If other razors give you BBS, that shave the hair you skin level, how does the r41 go any lower??
    brit and Frijolero like this.
  19. Somnos

    Somnos Well-Known Member

    You are absolutely correct it doesn’t but I have many more hours on the R41 than my other razors and so it comes down to technique. I love my slant but I can get no where near the shave I get from the R41 from it.
    Dansco and Frijolero like this.
  20. cubancigar2000

    cubancigar2000 Well-Known Member

    I have tried many safety razors. None work for me as well as my straight razors until I found the R41. It gives a nice close shave f used properly
    brit likes this.

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