The "what is" and " how to" thread for the Rolls Razor

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by gregindallas, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Hi yes, I have two handles like this that appear to be totally solid, I can't find a join anywhere. the top hook part will unscrew but that is it. I can slide a blade into both handles with a effort but it does not provide a firm blade grip.
    Don't know if I would want to shave with it like this.
    As both are not serviceable like this I'm going to totally sacrifice one and clamp it in a vice and apply a pair of heavy duty pipe grips to see if it's possible to break what I assume is a rust seal.
    Gra
     
  2. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    The solid 'one piece' handles come in two styles, one has an end cap (opposite end from the blade mounting clamp) which is shallower than the 'two piece' handle, this end cap would appear not to be removeable and the other style of one piece handle does not have an end cap and the knurling of the handle extends up to the end of the handle. If the handle isn't holding the blade securely, it may be that corrosion or other contamination is preventing the spring loaded ball in the top of the handle from moving through its full range, you could try soaking the top of the handle in WD-40 to see if this will free up the sprung loaded ball.
    The one piece handles I have all secure the blade with no issues and one other thing to consider is that the 'C' shaped blade clamp may have been strained so that it no longer has the correct profile to secure the blade, if you have another handle compare the profile of the 'C' clamps, they should be similar, it one is wider it is possible to carefully bend the clamp to close the 'C' up a little to restore the grip on the blade.
    I have never been able to determine how the one piece handles are assembled during manufacture, I am presuming they are pressed together.

    Steve
     
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  3. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    I see, I had assumed the Ball was the end of the inner shaft, not considered a sprung ball!!
    However,
    I have had a good old go at the handles this morning to try and determine just how?
    The one piece is totally solid, the "C" clamp unscrews off the main shaft and yes the ball is defiantly under spring tension and with some encouragement now moves I've just done that now.
    However this morning I found that inserting the blade into the C clamp and the screwing it all back onto the shaft gave me a good tight blade fit. I compared the now fitted blade angle with a blade fitted to a good two piece handle and there is little difference if any, so that works as well ( probably not intended method by rolls )
    I will try and get a couple of pics uploaded.
    Many thanks
    Gra
     
  4. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

  5. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Pictures above are
    Three solid and one two piece
    The C clamp removed
    C clamp Refitted with the blade


    I've just checked and all the solid handles I have come from Imperials and my two piece ones come from Viscounts could just be coincidence??
    The solids I have are the End cap type, I've not seen a handle knurled right to the bottom.
    Gra
     
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  6. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    Here's a picture of the single piece handle which doesn't have the end cap, notice that the knurling extends to the end of the handle, this particular handle came with a 1953 nickel plated Viscount
    single_piece_no_cap.jpg


    Steve
     
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  7. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    The 'C' clamp is not supposed to be removed from the handle in normal use, according to the Rolls instructions, the blade should be 'held between the left-hand thumb and forefinger, grip the shaving handle in the fingers of the right hand, and firmly slide the hook onto the blade until central' the instruction go on to caution 'Do not wrench sideways':

    single_piece_instructions.jpeg

    Steve
     
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  8. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Thanks Steve, that's really tidy.
    I've not seen that knurled style handle before or for that matter those printed instructions, utill now
    I wonder if that is the Viscount version of the solid one piece as my three solids came from Imperials, I guess that's something we will probably never know for sure.
    I have found that removing the C clamp allowed me to more easily free off the spring loaded ball simply by applying better positioned pressure on it. All three now are free and per the new instructions the blades fit well on them all so many thanks for your information.
    I will have to start cleaning them up as they are now working kit not possible scrap
    Gra
     
  9. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    If you would like will gladly scan them for you, I've also the original card insert with some instructions, sales letter with illustrations of different sets of razors produced and the distributors location card

    Steve
     
  10. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Yes please that would be great to have
    Gra
     
  11. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    Here's a selection of leaflets etc. I have in my collection, for your information

    Steve
     

    Attached Files:

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  12. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Wow their great, many thanks for sharing them.

    I love the sales letter, it's a piece of social history dated Jan 1939 the eve of world war 2.

    And I see some things just don't change, with the one leaflet, along the lines of, we're sorry there is a shortage of boxes so the writing on yours is probably wrong!

    I must admit I admire their forthright approach. So you now have a rolls razor you must be having the best shave ever yes?
    No!! well sorry but its your own fault for not reading the instructions properly. go away and read them all this time
    Don't forget to make sure you tell everyone how good it is but don't stop there buy all your friends a new RR as well
    Oh and just to help you decide here is a sales leaflet to help you choose.
    Fantastic.
    When I was reading it a thought came to me, that it would be soooo funny to hear the letter read out loud in that 1930's news reel style voice over?
    You know the "blimey grandma I should say so" style

    However all that said its a real testament to the product that 70 80+ years later we are still getting great shaves from them. I bet they never ever in their wildest dreams thought that come the next century blokes not even born then would be so taken with them and literally in some cases buying them by the handful!!
    Crazy amazing really
    Gra
     
  13. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    Well I use a Rolls for every shave, once you get the blade shave ready and mastered the technique of using the razor I find that they're excellent shavers.
    I must admit to 'buying them by the handful' I picked up a 1947 Imperial last week from a local antique shop for the sum of 4.00 GBP (approx $5.25), no box but everything else present and in a useable condition, just needs a clean and light restoration and it'll be good to use!

    Steve
     
  14. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Four quid, you can't go wrong, what's that about 1.5 fusion blades if you are lucky that will last no time at all.
    Yeah I must admit I'm guilty too, I have 7 and one on the way. They are addictive that's for sure. It's an incredible bit of kit And reading through the posts we are not alone with this.
    Gra
     
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  15. pisces_0

    pisces_0 Well-Known Member

    Yes, Rolls are amazing pieces of engineering, and provide an excellent shave when honed up properly.

    On the topic of honing, how many people are honing outside the case on traditional straight razor stones?

    After a solid progression in grits, I'm finding I get a keener edge on a Rolls blade from a Naniwa 12K than a Zulu Grey. Straights are the opposite, with the Zulu producing a buttery sharp edge.

    Odd?
     
  16. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    I initially restore the blade using a progression of stones then finish using lapping film, the final film 0.5 microns, then I strop using the Rolls system and strop which I would have restored, I find that the blade keeps a keen edge for several weeks using only the Rolls strop, if the strop doesn't restore the edge I spend a few minutes on a progression of lapping films to bring back the keen edge

    Steve
     
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  17. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Oh goodness this is my waking nightmare, what happens when I can no longer get a good edge in case.
    So far I've been really lucky to have picked up along the way two really good blades and in case work has good enough for me, but I know at some point my luck will run out. ( can't go back to rolls for a new one )
    I'm not a sharpener the only thing I've ever sharpened sucessfully is a pencil and with a sharpener .
    I have several blades in various states.... of sharpness, I guess we all have and would like them looking at.
    But as I say with my current two are going well for now though some time soon I expect I will have to find someone in the UK that can get a tidy edge back outside the case back for me.
    There seems to be several opinions on the best way to get the correct blade angle and then be able to use the case for day to day use.
    Gra.
     
  18. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    I picked up another Viscount yesterday as you do and not in bad nick, however on closer inspection I was horrified to find a date of 1958 !! This makes it younger than me!
    There I am saying to my family and friends about these old time antique razors only to find I'm also in that catogary much to my shock and my wife's amusement... Followed by several old timer jibes.
    Gra
     
  19. pisces_0

    pisces_0 Well-Known Member

    I'd be happy to hone them up to a Naniwa 12K edge, but postage costs from the UK to the States and back would be prohibitive.

    I do recall seeing a few Rolls enthusiasts from the UK, and in this thread nonetheless, but cannot place usernames at the moment. Honing done on both stones and lapping film.
     
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  20. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Active Member

    Hi, thank you very much for that offer but sadly yes postage would be a nightmare and goodness knows what UK customs would make of it all what with our mega, mega strict knife laws here,no its not a knife but an open super sharp blade!! I'm sure they would find something.

    I have read the thread right through but must have missed that one or perhaps thought its was someone from the states. I will have to look through it again or perhaps start another thread aimed at rolls users, one thing for sure is that I'm amazed at how popular these are in the states and the only adverts I've seen for brand new, or new old stock rolls razors come from the states and I have seen some lovely pictures of new rolls in presentation cases.
    Gra
     

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