THE GILLETTE ARISTOCRAT

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by brit, Aug 15, 2018.

  1. mr-razor

    mr-razor Well-Known Member

    The case gives the name of the set. I know this third generation Aristocrat as #15, #16 and #22 set.
    Gillette does not stop to confusing us with his set names :kar::signs002:
     
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  2. brit

    brit Well-Known Member

    just missed out on a complete# 15 set with shipper and instructions on ebay. identical to mine and mr razors.it was in mint condition and wet for almost$300 dollars.at least more around..
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2018
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  3. Dansco

    Dansco Well-Known Member

    Finished last night?? It was gorgeous ... I was in at about £130 but it went a good bit over... and to be honest I wasn't 100% happy paying that much!!
     
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  4. brit

    brit Well-Known Member

    i stopped at 125 pounds... ,nice looking example...grateful for my lightly used one...
     
  5. CrustyCat

    CrustyCat Member

    I have a couple of 46-47 Aristocrats. Currently using one of them as my daily shaver. Love them.
     
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  6. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    The 3 types of US open comb Aristocrats made from 34 - 38/39?
    aristo3.jpg
     
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  7. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    The 3 types of handle styles on the US made Aristocrats though technically if go by set names the 3rd style would be a Diplomat.
    3types1.jpg
    Using set names

    Left most was on the 40 Regent Tech, 41 and 46 Aristocrat, 47 Aristocrat
    Middle one was on the 47 - 53 Aristocrat. 53 rhodium plated President
    Right most one was on the 53 - 55? (not sure the final production year) Diplomat, 53 - ?? rhodium plated President.

    The other distinguishing feature that is consistent to the handle styles is the left most one is only on models without notches in the center bar while the middle and right one only have notched center bars.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
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  8. mvd

    mvd Well-Known Member

    I am cleaning up a Jr today and decided to check evilbay for current values. Two things I notice: 1. with the exception of the 46-50 styles, aristocrat razors are expensive! 2. There are a lot of suspicious aristocrats for sale in mint condition; in particular, the gold slim version.

    I guess the 46-50 style was more common ( I accidentally ended up with three, somehow), and/or the barber pole handles are just more appealing. Anyway, evilbay is always a surprise. It's evil because it is tempting... :)
     
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  9. brit

    brit Well-Known Member

    couple of nice ones on ebay uk at present..
     
  10. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    I have to walk back the left handle not having a notched center bar. I finally found an example of one that does. There are a few other uncommon variations I suspected existed and finally found an example. More on that in another post but look at this picture you can see the lack of knurling on the top ring through the safety bar slots. You can also tell for sure it is an Aristocrat and not a Milord. So the next question would be did they really change the handles in 47 or later then. I can say with almost 100% certainty they changed to notches on the center bar in 47. When you put all the information together which I will in another post it becomes obvious what is what here.
    47 no knurl.jpg
     
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  11. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Assuming the 1947 date is correct for the introduction of the Super Speed product line then we can use that as the basis to date some of the common and more uncommon variations of the US Aristocrat.

    First we need to know what changes were made to the Super Speeds in 47. Important details circled in the pictures.
    superspeed1.jpg superspeed2.jpg notchss.jpg

    First picture shows the base plate safety bar change, the one on the right is the first iteration same as the base plates 1946 and earlier on other models like the Ranger Tech for example. The one on the left shows crease in the safety bar which was applied to all their razors regardless of product line in 1947 and up. It had to have been revised in 47 unless the Super Speeds were issued in 46.

    Second picture shows that they made no notch versions with both base plate safety bar designs. Revision also had to have happened in 47 for same reasons as above or else we'd see notched Ranger Techs.

    Third shows the notch version and the crease.

    With this we know the product revision order curved safety bar to creased safety bar then notched center bar. Now onto the US Aristocrats. First the handle styles.
    3types1.jpg

    The left and middle one are of interest since they apply to Aristocrats, the right applies to Diplomat models.

    The left one as far as Aristocrats does shows up on 41,46 and 47 models.
    The middle one shows up on 47 - 53 models.

    The 41 models are straightforward to spot since they don't have Patent Nos on Package stamped on the base plate. The 46 and up to 50 does. All we are trying to determine is model year of ones without date codes.
    46aristocrat.jpg
    This is the common 46/47 Aristocrat which is not notched and has the curved safety bar and left handle style in the picture above.

    The next one is an uncommon variation but can be dated to 1947 exactly based upon the information above.
    47gss2.jpg 47gss3.jpg

    This one has the creased safety bar, no notches and left most handle style.

    This one proves they didn't revise the handle style to the middle one until at least 1947. I've only seen one of these so far but wouldn't be surprised if more exist.
    47 no knurl.jpg

    This is also an uncommon variation since it has the notched center bar and left handle style, it also has the notched safety bars.

    Here is the last variation this is the most common one out there, the 47 - 50 NDC Aristocrat.
    47common.jpg

    Notice it has the middle handle style, notched center bar and creased safety bar.

    The last revision before date codes is on the base plate they changed the writing from Pat Nos on Package to Pat Nos on Pkg. This change happened in 1950. Those have the middle handle style, notched center bar and creased safety bar. The ones without the date codes are a common variation while the Aristocrats like the Super Speed that were stamped V3 are uncommon. If I can find a decent picture of one I'll update the post later.

    With all this we know the revision order of the US Aristocrats now being curved safety bar to creased safety bar then notched center bar and finally handle revision from no knurling on either ring to knurling on the top ring with all these changes unless new information surfaces otherwise happening in 1947. The final change being the base plate changing from Pat Nos on Package to Pat Nos on Pkg happening no earlier than 1950. The secondary information that backs this up is the case changes made with the super speeds between 49 and 50 and the fact the 49 cases had razors with Pat Nos on Package and 50 case had razors with Pat Nos on Pkg.
    See here for case differences.
    https://theshaveden.com/forums/thre...fo-you-probably-dont-need-to-know.8468/page-4


    With this information we can also date the US Aristocrat Jr. and show for sure it is not a Super Speed but that is for another post.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
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  12. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Now onto the US Aristocrat Jr and time to remove some of the mystique and misinformation since this one commonly gets misidentified as a Super Speed which it is not.

    First we need to cover some ground in a previous post which is to identify the iterations and changes to the 40s style super speeds made in 1947 when they were first issued.
    superspeed1.jpg superspeed2.jpg notchss.jpg

    The first iteration in the first two pictures is the razor on the right.
    The second iteration in the first two pictures is the razor on the left.
    The third iteration is the razor in the third picture.

    We know they didn't change the safety bars until 1947 or else you'd see the newer style on Ranger Techs same as going from the a lack of notching to notched on the center bar.

    So our iterations in order of change are the following
    First iteration has the curved safety bar and lack of notches on the center bar
    Second iteration has the creased safety bar and lack of notches on the center bar
    Third iteration has the creased safety bar and notches on the center bar

    Now onto the US Aristocrat Jr., if I still had mine I would use pictures of it but this will suffice.

    1947 Arisicrat Jr marked.JPG

    What dates this 47 for sure is lack of notches on the center bar and creased safety bar. What differentiates it from a super speed visually is the collar. There is another test that also differentiates all US Aristocrat Jr from the 40s style super speeds regardless of iteration. I am going to use my is it an US Aristocrat Jr or Milord razor to prove this since I already did the test with a regular US Aristocrat Jr.
    milord jr1.JPG Milordjr2.JPG

    As we can see it matches the Aristocrat Jr but is gold plated and is in a Milord case so which one is it? Onto the base plate orientation test which proves what razor it is. It is impossible to photo both sides of the base plate so I used tape to show the orientation on the flip.
    roate1.JPG rotat2.JPG

    You see how the orientation changes depending the razor this holds true for both Aristocrat Jr razors nickel or gold plated and on the 40s style super speeds regardless of iteration including the later date stamped 40s style models.

    The other difference I know for sure is how they shave the Aristocrat Jr does not shave like a 40s style super speed. So what is the deal with that Milord version then? First off I have never seen a case for a gold US Aristocrat Jr. Gillette unless someone can show me otherwise Gillette always put their gold plated razors in cases so if this was sold as an Aristocrat Jr like the nickel plated version then a case should exist also. Show me a case and I will change my conclusion below. There are also plenty of examples of US Aristocrat Jr razors in the wrong box. If the base plate orientation doesn't match the 40s style super speeds regardless of iterations since they are consistent all the way through it is not a super speed simple as that regardless of the collar. Show me a US Aristocrat Jr that matches the base plate orientation of a 40s style super speed and that will prove the collar style was used on both razors then.

    One other interesting feature that also holds true is the base plate orientation for known model years always is opposite concerning Aristocrats and Ranger Techs / 40s style super speeds. The assumed to be 46 US Aristocrats orientation test is opposite of the 46 Ranger Tech same as the known 47 and later US Aristocrats are opposite of all the 40s style super speed iterations. Anyone can test this with their own razors.

    BTW the base orientation test is how to tell a common 46 from a common 47 US Aristocrat aka this pictured below with the curved safety bar, lack of notches on the center bar and first handle style iteration. Reason being the orientations on Ranger Techs and Super Speeds are reversed and the same pattern shows up on this razor and into the 47 and up US Aristocrats, I know having owned this razor with both base plate orientations along with all these other ones and doing the comparisons on each these are the conclusions I draw based upon the patterns that would otherwise not be observable.
    46aristocrat.jpg


    Knowing all this if we group the razors by family lines using base plate orientation then the US Aristocrat Jr falls into the 47 and up US Aristocrat family line same as the 47 Aristocrat Jr style Milord.

    What I believe based on all the evidence here is that Gillette did the equivalent of what they did with British Aristocrat Jr razors putting them in Rocket cases and selling them as Rockets in Canada. The Milord sets came with various different style razors through the years like the Ranger Tech style, Aristocrat Jr, third iteration of the 40s style super speed, a british rocket style model among other variations. Using the Milord as a basis to name a razor is not best way to go about it since it really seems to be a set name for leftover razors and parts to sell them after the primary set or model had been discontinued or changed or to sell excess stock by replating it in gold. The better way is to name them based upon a set they are unique to so US Aristocrat Jr it is.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2018
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  13. lloydrm

    lloydrm Well-Known Member

    58 is not a Jr.
    But, an Aristocrat Jr. is an Aristocrat, isn't it?
     
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  14. mr-razor

    mr-razor Well-Known Member

    Gillette called the #58 as Aristocrat jr.

    1953-12-16 No58 No66 Australia.jpg
     
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  15. lloydrm

    lloydrm Well-Known Member

    I stand corrected.
     
  16. PLANofMAN

    PLANofMAN Paperboy

    Article Team
    I'm confused by your reference to different base plate orientations? In the photo, if you spin the handle of the gold razor 180°, the orientation would be identical between the razors, yes?
     
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  17. PLANofMAN

    PLANofMAN Paperboy

    Article Team
    It is, but it isn't. Aristocrat Jr.'s are Aristocrat heads on non Aristocrat handles...mostly.
     
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  18. brit

    brit Well-Known Member

    thank you..was looking for that reference.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
  19. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    If you group by family of razors only the ones in a particular family.

    In 46 you have the Ranger Tech and Ranger Tech Milords in one family then the 46 Aristocrat in the other. 47 - 54 Super Speeds including the black tip super speeds, and Milord Super Speeds in one family and in the other the Aristocrat, Aristocrat Jr and Aristocrat Jr Milord. Doesn't matter which side you orient to read left to right once you spin it based on the picture 180 degrees either the other side will have the same lettering orientation or it won't. If it makes it easier think of a page on a book and turning the page only one family will preserve the lettering orientation when you do. Aristocrats will always be the opposite of the Ranger Tech / Super Speed razors if produced in the same year 46 or year range from 47 - 54. The trend on the base plate orientation is consistent from 46 until the issue of the flare tip super speeds in 54. The test is not valid for anything 41 and earlier.

    The only 3 I have never tested is a 46 and 47 and up Milady or the American Rocket Milord.

    The key here is they stamped the base plate stocks before they bent them so this test is not dependent upon someone working a machine putting some of the plates in one way or the other. They specifically used different stamped base plate stock for Aristocrats from the other razors.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
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  20. BBS

    BBS Well-Known Member

    Some more pictures to that show a 40 Regent Tech and 41 Aristocrat and how to tell the difference. Unfortunately we can't see the base plate on the Regentcrat but we can safely assume it didn't have any Pat Nos on Package on the base plate. the Pat Nos on Package came into play from 46 up to 50.
    regent1.jpg regent2.jpg 41 aristocrat.jpg

    The first 2 are the Regentcrat aka Regent Tech while the 3rd one is a 41 Aristocrat. The only difference assuming the Regent Tech wasn't re plated is the 40 models didn't have end caps the 41 models did. Everything else styling wise is identical. If you look at that 41 you can tell it used to have end caps prior to it being plated. Every gold plated Gillette I've ever seen and I've seen numerous missing the end caps they never plated the tabs gold under the end caps so unless it is a replate those tabs will also be gold plated like the Regent Tech if it really was made in 40. That delineates a 40 Milord and Milady from the 41 Milord and Milady and 40 Regent Tech from the 41 Aristocrat. Assuming you consider end caps a reliable dating method which I don't.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
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