Gillette adjustables 1961 - 1988

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by BBS, Jul 8, 2021.

  1. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    This is the follow up to 1958 - 1960 thread found here.

    This covers the end of the Fat Boys, full Slim production years, the introduction of the Super Adjustables and Super Deluxe Adjustables.

    In 1961 Gillette sold standard Fat Boys for the full year, Executives up until around Christmas season. Christmas season of 1961 usually around end of October they introduce the gold plated Aristocrat adjustable. They produced these with date codes from G3 (1961) - M3 (1967). They were sold continuously from Christmas of 1961 until Christmas of 1969. In 1962 the Fat Boys are dropped by May though it is known they sold excess inventory for up 2 years afterwards in foreign markets like Australia.

    The Slim is formally brought to market around May of 1962 in time for Father's Day. They produced them with dates codes of G3 (1961) - N4 (1968). Any Slims with date codes of G3 - H2 were most likely originally produced to be Aristocrats but were nickel plated and sold as Slim adjustables instead when first introduced. The Slim was sold continuously from mid 1962 until Sept. of 1969.

    The Super 84 and Super 109 formally come onto the market in Sept. of 1969. The Super 84 would last until 1975 and the Super 109 until 1988 The Super 84 was produced with date codes of N3 - V3 (68 - 75) and was sold from Sept of 69 at least until 1975. The advertising record is unclear on exactly when retailers stopped selling them. The Super 109 went through 3 major revisions first being from 1969 - 1976 date codes O1 - W4, second being the base plate going from metal to nylon being from 1977 - 1981 date codes x1 - B4 and the final revision being a knurling changed on the handle overlapping the second revision being from 1980 - 1988 date codes A1 - I2. The advertising record is also unclear exactly when they stopped selling these in stores. They may have still been available on shelves or through mail order as late as 1990.

    The Super Deluxe gold plated adjustables were produced with date codes of O1 - P2. The Super Deluxe adjustable was sold in the US starting around June of 1970 for Father's day until Christmas of 1971. The discrepancy in dates can possibly be attributed to fact these razors may have been introduced first in Japan in 1969 as the New Aristocrat before being brought stateside in 1970 and repackaged and branded as a Super Deluxe adjustable for the US market. The other factor in play is they may have delayed the introduction of the Deluxe Super Adjustable in the US until 1970 even though they might have been selling them in 1969 in Japan to sell down the remaining inventory of the Aristocrat razors.

    I'd be remiss to not mention that in 1968 adjustable band cartridges were first introduced making the Techmatic an adjustable.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2021
  2. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Here is the first instance of the Techmatic going adjustable.
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  3. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Here are some key dates for the Fat Boy, Executive and Aristocrat.

    One of the last instances I found in the US for the Executives being sold. Later in the year instances exist in other countries.
    March of 1961
    mar61.jpg mar61full.jpg

    Last instance of the Fat Boy I found in March of 1962. They were offered at least until May of 62 before formally being discontinued in the US.
    mar62.jpg mar62full.jpg

    First instance of the Aristocrat in time for Christmas of 1961.
    dec61a.jpg dec61afull.jpg

    dec61b.jpg dec61bfull.jpg

    Last instance of the Aristocrat adjustable being sold in December of 1968 other instances throughout the year exist.
    dec68.jpg dec68full.jpg
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2021
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  4. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    First instance I found of the Slim being sold in May of 62 in time for Father's day.

    Last instance I found in July of 1969. The Slim is discontinued and Super adjustables are formally introduced in September of the same year.
    jul69.jpg jul69full.jpg
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  5. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Formal introduction of both the Super 84 and Super 109.

    Earliest instance of the Super 84
    Sept6984.jpg Sept6984full.jpg

    Earliest instance of the Super 109
    Sept69109.jpg Sept69109full.jpg

    October of 1969 showing both together
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  6. brit

    brit in a box

    very slim adjustable is dated G-4.
  7. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Looks like I was wrong on the final sale date of the Aristocrat it was sold until December of 1969 not 1968.

    Ad from December of 1969 multiple instances are available throughout the year.
    69art.jpg 69artfull.jpg
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2021
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  8. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Super Deluxe (gold plated) adjustable sales date range in the US. It is possible the O1 through P2 razors were introduced prior as New Aristocrats in Japan. What is known is they do not show up for sale earlier than for Father's Day of 1970 in the US. The other factor in play is that besides being introduced in Japan first they may have delayed the introduction in the US as they sold down remaining stock of the gold plated Aristocrat through Christmas of 1969.

    early instance from June of 1970, earlier instances exist in May


    One of the last instances in June of 71, later instances exist as late as Christmas of 71.
    1971.jpg 1971full.jpg

    I rewrote and expanded the synposis to include these razors since they had a short production and sale range.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 8, 2021
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  9. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    The thread wouldn't be complete without pictures. What the razors share in common is they all use the same style of blade adjustment by lifting or lowering the base plate.

    Fat Boy style razors 1961 - 1962

    Fat Boy
    61 - 62


    Slim style razors 1961 - 1969

    62 - 69

    61 - 69

    Super Adjustables aka Black Beauties 1969 - 88

    Super 84

    Super 109 V1

    Super 109 V2
    77 - 81

    Super 109 V3
    80 - 88

    New Aristocrat (Japan) / Super Deluxe (US)
    69-70 (Japan) / 70 - 71 (US)
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2021
  10. IAmTheJody

    IAmTheJody Gillette-i Master Staff Member

    @BBS What was the first year the black beauty changed to plastic bottom? 1977 or 1980?
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  11. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

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  12. brit

    brit in a box

    is this an oddball? F- dated slim adjustable..
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  13. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Not sure what it is. Could be a prototype for all I know. If it was an earlier run of parts and not some prototype or limited test market piece you should find some F dated coded Aristocrats also out there.
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  14. brit

    brit in a box

    it wasn't posted for long.will keep an eye out..:)
  15. Tallships

    Tallships Well-Known Member

    I have my Dads Fatboy '58 E3 that my brother and I bought him for his birthday, he used it till his passing in '86. I have my Slim G3 that I bought in '61, would have bought the Fatboy but it would have gotten mixed up with my Dads, so I got the Slim that I still use today.
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