Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

iKon Slant and Merkur Slant, along with Al’s Shaving

with 4 comments

SOTD 27 July 2013

I wanted to play around with different handles, so today the iKon head rests atop the UFO Zeus XL handle.

But first, the prep—always. I used the Jlocke98 formula with olive oil this morning, and it works quite well. My 24mm Whipped Dog Silvertip worked up a fine lather quite easily from Al’s Saigon, a very pleasant shaving cream—and a little goes a long way. (BTW, I highly recommend this recent Sharpologist interview with Al: illuminating.)

And now the shave. It quickly became apparent that, yep, I was right: the Zeus XL is too big for me. In addition, it made comparing the Merkur and the iKon difficult because the feel was so different. So I switch the iKon back to a UFO handle closer in size to the original.

The two are very close in performance, though I would give the edge in comfort to the iKon—but it’s an edge. Indeed, the iKon slant, the Bakelite slant, and the Merkur slant are like the gold, silver, and bronze medal winners at the Olympics: small differences in performance, and any of the three could totally dominate the average regional track-and-field meet. Any of these is better than most straight-bar razors, and the performance differences among them are slight.

The differences in design and construction are another matter. Take fragility: here the iKon is clearly superior to the (plated cast Zamak) Merkur, which is superior in turn to the Bakelite slant. Or design: the two-piece design has some definite drawbacks, including the inability to swap out handles, so here the Merkur comes in last. I will ignore aesthetics, since that is shaver dependent. With “comfort,” we are again back on the Olympics stand, with gold going to the iKon slant, silver going to the Bakelite slant (in a photo finish), and immediately behind and far ahead of the rest of the pack, the Merkur slant secures the bronze.

In other words, getting a Merkur is not at all a bad move in terms of shaving performance, but some will certainly want the iKon. In yesterday’s lengthy discussion on Wicked Edge, I learned that iKon will be selling the heads separately, a boon for those who already have a couple of handles (from iKon or Weber or Tradere or the like). Monday I plan to use the iKon Slant—not a big surprise, I’m sure—with a red jasper handle from Elite Razor.

After three passes, between the two razors I achieved a BBS result. A tiny dab of Al’s aftershave balm, and the weekend begins.

Written by LeisureGuy

27 July 2013 at 9:56 am

Posted in Shaving

4 Responses

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  1. Where does one purchase handles only, beside the obvious Ikon and Weber?


    27 July 2013 at 10:59 am

  2. I have been getting a very nice shave with the UFO Xeus handle(not the XL) and a Weber head with a Gillette blade. It was a matter of personal preference for me. I like the heavier handle but I also like a shorter handle so my hands are closer to my face. Probably more of a psychological rather than a physical difference.

    Rupe Bizzell

    27 July 2013 at 11:43 am

  3. These offer excellent handles for sale separately:

    * Elite Razors
    * iKon
    * Pens of the Forest
    * Tradere
    * UFO Razor Handles
    * Weber

    And, of course, you can use the handle from any three-piece razor—e.g., a Gillette Tech or NEW or whatever.

    I should note that I wrote a book filled with this sort of information. You might want to take a look at the reader reviews and decide from those whether you think it might be helpful to you.


    27 July 2013 at 11:57 am

  4. An Ikon slantbar? Dadgummit, now I’ve got to buy yet another razor!


    28 July 2013 at 3:04 am

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