Gillette Rocket, the refined DE.

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by MTgrayling, Dec 1, 2008.

  1. Angelo85

    Angelo85 Well-Known Member

    I recently ordered a Gillette Parat a few days ago with the case. This will be my first British Rocket in my collection.
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  2. Trinidad

    Trinidad New Member

    Great post. I just bought a British red tip superspeed. Has the 111 marking. Is it true that this British red tip superspeed head is the same as the British red tip rocket with the 111 mark? Thankyou in advance
    Last edited: May 28, 2020
  3. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    Actually no British razor was called "Rocket". The first ones were Aristocrat jr-s, then came one piece razor (HDs), then Super speeds, then again one piece razor (Super speed and Parat).

    brit likes this.
  4. brit

    brit in a box

  5. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    Rocket is the set. Razor is quick action one piece.

    brit likes this.
  6. brit

    brit in a box

    what's your point?
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  7. Enrico

    Enrico Popcorn

    Brit isn't it obvious that the advert is referring to set of rockets behind the plexiglas? It has absolutely nothing to do with the razor.

    It's so good that we have knowledgable people here?

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  8. brit

    brit in a box

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  9. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    Mislabeling almost all saftey bar British TTO-s makes no sense, imho.

    brit likes this.
  10. brit

    brit in a box

    i get that.most folks around here understand the difference between a rocket and a superseed and its a common term used to tell the's also known that the case determines the name /number of a set.if i had to explain the difference between a #15 and #22 aristocrat folks would get bored quickly..this isn't a collectors forum,and collectors have thrown the rocket name around for ages.most were unaware it's a canadian made set from the late 40s with british razors.most ads are unreliable at best and until some one comes up with concrete proof or actual gillette catalogues it will remain that way are welcome to join in and add to the info pool if you wish,but you will get some resistance if you carry a crap attitude.b and b is a good place for that..cheers..just for reference.brit new rfb's weren't called rfb's either..:)
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
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  11. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    (edited) Following the numbering of the first post:
    #1: Aristocrat Jr. 3rd gen (stamped base plate, patent pending, knob wider than handle, notched center bar) nickel plated.

    #2: Parat in Germany, sold in Rocket set in England (stamped base plate, II marking Brit. Pat. 694093, knob same width as handle, notched center bar), nickel plated.

    #3: Aristocrat Jr. 3rd gen (stamped base plate, patent pending, knob wider than handle, notched center bar), aluminium, early 50ies, before Gillette realised aluminium TTO-s are a terrible idea.

    #4: Aristocrat Jr. 3rd gen (stamped base plate, patent pending, knob wider than handle) nickel or gold plated. No ad surfaced for the gold versions.

    #5: Aristocrat Jr. 2nd gen (flat, machined base plate, BRIT PAT NO 403030, knob wider than handle, notched center bar). nickel plated.

    #6: Aristocrat Jr. 1st gen (flat, machined base plate, BRIT PAT NO 403030, knob attached to handle with a crimp, no notch in center bar) Made for a short period right after Gillette England started again after ww2. Nickel plated.
    Called Super speed in the manual. Aristcrat Junior Set No48 Instruction.jpg

    #1, #4, #5 were sold as Rocket sets in Canada. At the same time US Super speeds and Milords were also sold in Canadian Rocket sets.

    Canadian Rocket and US Super speed manuals show a "mistery" razor (notched head, smooth band on handle), technically this is also a Rocket, if one will ever surface. Canadian Rocket.jpg

    HD and LD Rockets (#7, #8, #9, #10) These were „one piece razors” sold in Rocket sets (in England), except #10. This was preceding the Rocket era, anodised aluminium, called Anniversary set, sold in 1951.

    One piece razor in No 58 set, called Aristocrat Jr. only in December 1953 in Australia. Most likely a confusion/typo, as the No 58 replaced the Aristocrat Jr-s in that season. Alumium or nickel plated with our without II.

    #7 or #8 was called Aristocrat Jr. in 1952, in Germany, the catalogue page is too blurry to decide.

    There was also a gold plated, all brass version, set name or number is unknown.

    Flare Tip Superspeed

    The first British flare tips (#17, #18, #19) were identical to their US cousins, ads list them as Super speed. There is no evidence that later variants (#13, #14, #15) were ever called Rocket.

    After the Super speed trio was abandoned in favour of the adjustables, the Super speed name also disappears and later flare tips are „one piece razors”.

    Rhodium was not only used on the “TV” model (which actually didn’t exist), #13 and #16 pop up with that plating.

    Information has to be updated from time to time as new bits pops up. Like the Regent, if you remember it.

    Last edited: Jul 30, 2020
  12. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    Still not a Rocket, but part of the "family". A late Super speed head (low profile and crimped end connectors) on a Parat handle. Shouldn't exist.
    Picture from ebay, was part of a grooming kit.

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  13. fmueller

    fmueller New Member

    That's some interesting information! Since British razors don't have date codes like US ones, how do we know #17 18 19 came earlier than #13 14 15, and do we know when the change occurred?
  14. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    When the trio appeared, England was already using double screw handles on all TTOs. The last crimped handle models were the 1st gen Aristocrat Jr and Gen 2 Aristocrat in 1947-48.
    So switching back to crimped knobs just to produce some Super speeds makes no sense, imho. I suspect the crimped handles were supplied by Boston, as a stop gap measure, until England retooled for the double screw flare tip handles, wich were new in their sortiment.

    When the change happened is unknown.

    brit likes this.
  15. brit

    brit in a box

    interesting razor.i have 2 flare tip rocket mechanism razors with that head from the mid 60s that were common in canada,both bought locally in antique shops,passed on a few others.both are stamped k-1 on the baseplate,so brits first date code year 65? .maybe the parat handled one is another parts bin use up and got sold to grooming kit manufacturer.. 20200716_072648.jpg
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  16. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    The earliest date coded British TTO I saw is J flare tip. But further letters don’t pop up until the Super Slim twists, so it was most likely a test run for J and K.

    brit likes this.
  17. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Most likely a transition piece made from left over parts. There was overlap between the flare tip style British Gillettes and the later style of earlier one piece razors sold as the last iteration of Aristocrat Jr razors and in British Rocket sets in 1963.
    brit likes this.
  18. romsitsa

    romsitsa Well-Known Member

    Yes, but this has the small head, so skipped a "generation". Although the small head flare tip existed in 1964 and Achims No 54 is from 1962 (later than I thought), based on the blades. So the gap in time is smaller than I thought.

    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
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  19. brit

    brit in a box

  20. Douglas Carey

    Douglas Carey Wildman

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