Buying And Restoring My First Vintage Razor – Part 1

Last month, I made a purchase on a local online auction. Honestly, I didn’t know exactly what to expect, as the description on the auction site was quite vague.

“Nostalgic Gillette” and “Old metal box with razor in it”… That was pretty much all I knew when I made my first bid. But I didn’t care. This was the first vintage razor I had seen on any Danish sites, so I just had to get it.

It turned out that I won the auction as the only bidder, and paid the equivalent of 10 dollars for it – plus a bit for postage. The box arrived a few days later, and I was eager to get it cleaned and to find out more about this.

I turned to the Badger&Blade forum to ask for help, and after a few days, we had it identified as a Gillette Old Type Single Ring razor from somewhere between 1908 and 1920. It doesn’t have a serial number on it, so we haven’t been able to come closer to a specific year. But hey – I am still excited about owning a razor which has survived nearly 100 years and two world wars. It’s one of the coolest things I have ever bought.

Having identified the razor, it was time to clean it and prepare it for use. You can read more about cleaning vintage razors in my next post, coming soon. Make sure you get updates by email or follow my tweets.

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    • Shaina
    • January 26, 2011


    My name is Shaina. I just recently found a razor that looked almost EXACTLY like this one and I’m interested in finding out more about it. Do you have any good places to start?

    1. Shaina, send me an email on – then I’ll try and help you out. Another great place is the forum at

  1. Hi just, today picked up a 1906 Gillette in box in dirty but great condition. No creaks. Great teeth. Serial number everything.
    I’ve alway cleaned my razors as soon as I bought then. My question is when not to ‘clean’ them. Is this razor worth more in as found condition ‘if’ I were to sell it? Of if I just clean the grim off and sterilize it it would be ok?

    • HappE
    • August 3, 2011

    Where is Part II? Great score! I’ve heard the Gillette Old Type is a somewhat aggressive shaver. Is this your finding? I’ve been using a Gillette New to learn traditional wet shaving for the past two months and I love it. My morning shave has gotten much more interesting. I found your blog while doing a Google search for shaving supplies in Denmark. Doesn’t look good. How about Sweden? Cheers!

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