Later On

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

Two open-comb razors compared: Parker 24C and Maggard’s

with 4 comments

SOTD 24 Nov 2015

The Stirling angel-hair synthetic in a 22mm format is quite a nice brush—as, indeed, is the Stirling 26mm. Both perform quite well, though of course the size difference is felt on the face. Both have ample capacity for a full shave, and the lather this morning from Razor Emporium’s Connecticut Yankee was, as usual, superb—plus I am now accustomed to the citronella fragrance. (Citronella oil is derived from a species of lemongrass, something I learned thanks to the Internet.)

I tried two razors, and I have finally learned that if you want to compare two razors, you should put a fresh blade in each, since otherwise you are also comparing blades. Both the Parker 24C (in front) and the Maggard open comb head ($16 at the link) on a Wolfman handle (in back) have a new Gillette Silver Blue blade.

Both razors gave absolutely first-rate shaves. Indeed, I could not detect any difference in feel or performance between the Maggard open-comb head and the Parker 24C head. If you have a spare handle, the Maggard open-comb head is a very good buy.

On the quality of the result: there’s a notion about that a shave with a straight razor can be better than any shave you can get with a DE safety razor. This idea is false. First, of course, the quality of the end result can vary a lot, depending on the razor, the prep, the skill of the shaver, and so on. But the best straight razor result is no different from the best DE safety razor result: skin that’s so smooth you cannot feel any roughness in any direction.

The difference between the two is in the experience of the process of the shave, not the final result. And indeed some much prefer the experience of a (good) straight-razor shave: the ritual of stropping the razor, the degree of focused attention required, the two-handed technique, with one hand stretching the skin, the other wielding the blade. The experience during the shave is different; the final result is much the same.

Three passes to a flawless BBS result, followed by a tiny dab of Esbjerg aftershave gel, and we approach the holiday.

Written by LeisureGuy

24 November 2015 at 9:03 am

Posted in Shaving

4 Responses

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  1. Michael, when I looked at the new Maggard OC head, I thought “this looks like an exact clone of the Parker 24/26C head.” How similar are they? If they’re the same, then the impetus for getting the Maggard is that it will be more easily used with a variety of handles. I remember you writing that the Parker 24/26 for some reason does not fit well with non-Parker handles.

    Thanks in advance! Alex

    Alex Norman

    24 November 2015 at 11:09 am

  2. In appearance, the Maggard is somewhat shinier and looks as though the plating might be better. OTOH, my 24C has now had quite a bit of use, so the head might simply have worn/gotten dirty. In feel and performance, I could detect no difference.

    The Maggard head did resist a bit at first when screwed onto the Wolfman handle, but that initial bit of forcing seems to have cleaned up the threads, so that the second effort (to load the blade), the action was fine. And I did have trouble when I tried to use the 24C head on a stainless Stealth head (same threading as the Wolfman). I’m not sure how rigorous the quality testing is for either head, though. But at $16, it certainly seems worth the (small) risk.

    Update: Since my Parker 24C head did not work with a third-party handle with standard threading, I know for a fact that some Parker 24C heads don’t fit on standard threading.

    Since the Maggard OC head did fit well, I do know that some Maggard heads work with standard threaded handles, but I don’t know whether that’s true of all of them. But certainly this one worked, and I hope their QC is good enough for that to be consistent.


    24 November 2015 at 11:37 am

  3. I am a cream fan, but that soap has my interest. I think it is being able to use the original Williams soap is a great link to the shaving past.


    24 November 2015 at 4:42 pm

  4. I’m consistently pleased by the quality of the lather. Quite good. The fragrance may or may not please. I keep in mind that this was probably hot stuff in 1840.


    24 November 2015 at 7:14 pm

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