I have been primarily a Vintage Gillette guy since I started wet shaving. I am 48 yrs old and learned how to shave with my fathers vintage Gillettes. My twin brother and I were adopted by older parents...Dad was 43 when we were born. A WWII Vet that pretty much his whole life only used DE razors. My only other new razor has been the EJ DE89, which for me has proven to be too mild. My vintage Gillettes, primarily the Slim and the NEW open comb have become my "go to" daily razors. My first impression when I took it out of the box was how well built the razor was. Everything fit perfectly and the finish is flawless. Weight seems nice and very well balanced. Well worth the price. Quality is evident is this product, much better than Merkurs other other new razors I have checked out. When I loaded a blade (I know everyone seems to recommend feathers in this...BUT my "go to" blade is the Supermax Super Platinum...so to keep it "fair" that's what I loaded) my first thought was "Holy crap! that blade really sticks out a lot more than it does on my other razors! I compared it to a loaded NEW and the R41 seems alot more intimidating! To say I was slightly nervous to give it a try was a under statement. After my prep I started my shave under the side burns....Hmmm...what's this,,,, a slight tug? I took a short stroke and slight adjusted the angle. I continued with my first pass....no weepers, nicks or cuts...!! What I did notice is this razor GIVES alot of feedback, and will tell you the right angle and touch needed. it requires ZERO and I mean ZERO pressure. I rinsed my face after the first pass, and to be honest, was not that impressed. My WTG pass had left more stubble than I would normally see with my NEW. I lathered again, this pass ATG starting on my neck.My neck is always sensitive, prone to bad razor burn...so again I kept my tough light. small light stokes with some "buffing" in between strokes....washed my face...WOW...with two passes I had a DFS and my cheeks were BBS! OK, lets push it and do another pass. I lathered up again...(my favorite lather lately is a combo of soap and cream....I load my silvertip with VDH soap till the puck is dry, then put a almond size of Bigelow/ Proraso in the mug..add some water and WOW!) This pass was a combo of "V" and a XTG pass...again, very light touch...I was amazed at the feeback this razor gives! I can feel and hear the stubble removal, but yet it seems to glide flawlessly across my face! This pass I used longer strokes, rinsed with cold water and applied a sample aftershave gel sent to me by Razor Blades and more..Velerio...Highly recommended!! Great scent and feels wonderful! Up till today, I would have said that the Gillette NEW was the closest, best shave ever. I was WRONG..the Muhle R41 IMHO gives the BEST SHAVE OF MY LIFE!! I am now a card carrying member to the Cult of the R41! I would highly recommend this razor to newbies and experienced shavers alike. What it will require is a light touch and a good technique. For a beginner, I think this will help to shorten his learning curve. For experienced shavers, you will attain a shave Nirvana you never dreamed was possible. My mind is still blown away on how smooth my face feels...BBS isn't just a saying...cheeks, jawline, neck...feel like I've never had hair on my face. This is NOT a razor to use if you are in a rush....I spent 12 minutes shaving, can probably reduce that some next time...but take your time! Don't be afraid, give this razor a shot... I'm pretty sure you will love it!!