Dating rolls razors

By the standards of today the razors from this era look a bit crude - but they were the cutting edge (pun intended! Decorative handles of pressed horn began to appear.

The biggest change in this decade was the discovery, by Michael Faraday, of 'silver steel' - the addition of silver to steel in a proportion of 99.98% steel to 0.02% silver - not much but it made a huge difference, if only to the appearance of the metal.

About this time the blades were made of the best steel around, the profiling of the blades reached a peak and - let's face it - they couldn't get any sharper.

It was as likely that these were made by the local blacksmith as anyone.The first signs of hollow grinding came in around 1825 and it took another 60 years to bring that process to its final stage.Flutting, or 'Jimps' began to appear on the top and bottom of the tang to aid grip - 40 grooves per inch was the standard.The straight razor may be a simple tool but that doesn't mean to say it's crude. The modern (1950-ish onward) straight razor (from here called a 'razor') is a distillation of design that has been evolving since about 1600. The reason the razor is a simple tool is one of refinement - modern razors may not have the collectability value of the ones made 100 years ago but we suspect they're now made of better steel.Razors reached their design high point in about 1930 or so, in our opinion (that will be no doubt hotly contested).

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Blades had no tang as such and very often no 'monkey tail' (the curved 'trigger' piece at the end of the handle). Typical handle materials were horn, wood and bone, though tortoiseshell and ivory were also used.

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