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Marc

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Marc last won the day on May 22 2018

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About Marc

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  1. I have a Rolls in the collection. It's a kind of evolutionary step between a straight and a safety in that it comprises what appears to be a 1.5 inch section from a straight razor with a safety razor type handle attached. It all comes in a cunningly designed case which contains a honing surface on the inside of one lid, and a stropping surface on the inside of the other lid, and a fiendishly devised mechanism to allow the blade to be honed and stropped at the precisely correct angle within the case. I have used mine and does deliver quite a good shave but being a half way house between a straight and a DE it's neither as good as the straight nor as quick as the Gillettes. I have also had pass through the collection a number of Gem and Ever Ready single edge safety razors, a couple of Valet Autostrop razors which also use a SE safety razor blade but are cleverly designed so that a specially made strop can be threaded through the razor head and the blade stropped in situ, and a Wilkinson Sword 7 day set which is like a cross between an Autostrop and a Rolls; it uses blades that look similar to the Rolls blades and has an Autostrop type arrangement for keeping them stropped. It's called a 7 day set because it comes with 7 blades, marked with the days of the week, so that you only have to bother with a (marathon) stropping session once a week and just use a different blade each day.
  2. About 20 years ago I came across my dad's old straight razor, a Sheffield made Taylor's Eye Witness. It was just the blade and dad had relegated it to cutting quill pens for calligraphy. He once told me that he considered one of his greatest achievements to be successfully shaving with it on a moving steam train just after WW2 without any blood loss. Anyway, I made new scales for it, honed it up and gave it a go, and was mightily impressed. I have since managed to accumulate around 30 of the things along with a couple of vintage strops, and they are regularly used as part of my daily ablutions. However, for speed on workday mornings I use a DE razor. I have 2 of them, a 1950's Gillette Aristocrat, and a 1920's Gillette #77 set open comb (the only 2 piece Gillette ever made), and they get used in equal measure. Using Wilkinson Sword blades they are about the best shave I've ever had after the straight. As for saving money, my entire shaving inventory has been sourced from car boot sales for a total cost of about £40, and that includes 25 unopened packs of NOS Wilkinson Sword blades. Vintage Gillettes are now very collectible. I have managed to pick up a good half dozen at car boot sales over the last couple of years, never pay more than about £2, clean them up and straight on ebay. The one piece TTO's and adjustables always fetch good money, and mint boxed Aristocrats reliably get well over £100.
  3. It's a Revue GT56, a nice little movement.
  4. check out this thread, including the link to a TZ-UK thread. All you need to know.
  5. @AndyHull assuming gunmetal finish your best bet may well be to polish it up to a bright steel finish and then re-blue it with a gun bluing kit. There are plenty of them about that are a lot simpler than the hot caustic process described in the link that I posted. Just google DIY gun bluing
  6. OH, my apologies. having gone back and re-read the article myself in a little more detail I can see the source of my confusion. It would seem that "gunmetal" is a bit of an ambiguous term, referring as it does to both a specific alloy, and also to a colour. A bit like like "silver" which is both a metal and a colour.
  7. I'm not suggesting that gunmetal isn't used for watch cases, just that as gunmetal contains no iron it cannot possibly rust. Assuming the crud that can be seen on the case is rust (which it certainly looks like) that case cannot be gunmetal. Have a look here: http://www.vintagewatchstraps.com/watchcases.php You need to scroll down about 3/4 of the page to the heading 'Black oxidized steel watch cases' and it explains the process in detail. I have a couple of examples somewhere. I'll try to dig them out and post a pic.
  8. Not gunmetal. Gunmetal is a type of bronze, so an alloy of copper, tin, & zinc, so nothing ferrous and nothing to rust. The rust that can be seen on the case shows that it's ferrous. I have come across many budget pocket watches in steel cases that have a black finish. No idea how it's done though.
  9. +1 on the Tyvek. I picked up a set of disposable Tyvek overalls at a car boot sale for that specific purpose. It worked a treat.
  10. Sometimes referred to as a douzieme gauge..... could be a clue?????
  11. I wouldn't dream of running away, West End have made some very good watches, and they've actually been going for 133 years this year. Look out for early Secundus models; some of them had unbranded Longines movements in them.
  12. To be fair (and not particularly helpful since the spring has already been removed) the trick is to not remove them in the first place. They are designed such that once the tail is free the whole spring can be hinged upwards, pivoting around the tips of the arms until the cap jewel can be slid out from underneath. Reinstallation of the cap jewel is simply the reverse sequence. Interestingly, these are not strictly shock absorbers, rather they are just retaining clips. The design of shock absorber settings is such as to allow the pivot to enter further into the setting under shock until a shoulder on the staff, which is much more substantial than the pivot, contacts the jewel and arrests the movement without damaging the delicate pivot. The spring then returns the staff to its operational position. If you look at the pivots of the wheels served by these settings you will find no such shoulder as the pivot is already substantial enough to withstand most knocks without ill effect. Also the springs flex only very little as a function of the mass of the wheel they support, unlike the shock protection set up on balance wheels where you have a comparatively large mass, a very fine pivot, and a lot of flex in the spring. That being said they probably do flex under extreme shock and as such may help to protect the pivot.
  13. I apologise to all who have been horribly scarred by the listing. It was irresponsible of me to have failed to provide an appropriate warning of the graphic content contained in the link. To be fair I was still in shock having stumbled across the listing mmyself. Who'd have thought that searching ETA 2783 could be so dangerous.
  14. This has to be the boldest attempt at marketing a complete b@lls up that I have seen in a very long time....... https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Vintage-1979-Bulova-Automatic-ETA-2783-Custom-Art-Watch-Sunburst-Steel-Dial/264251494279?hash=item3d869dcf87:g:9tYAAOSw0lhclftJ What were they thinking when they did it? Who are they really trying to kid with that listing?
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