Classic Shaving has just announced the next generation of their “Cobra” razor line, the King Cobra, and I was lucky enough to get an early production example to play with.
The King Cobra vs. The Cobra Classic
King Cobra (top) vs. Cobra Classic (bottom):
The most obvious thing about the King Cobra on first look is its sheer size. This feels like one big honkin’ razor! However it is actually not too much different than a typical “hefty” razor: 5 inches long and 3.7 oz. (the Classic is 4 inches and 3.5 oz). But it feels substantial and incredibly solid when it’s held in the hand. But unlike other razors that might be described as “massive” (the Merkur Vision springs to my mind) the head is surprisingly thin so i can still get into difficult-to-reach areas like under the nose (more on that later). At the same time it is by no means too “bottom heavy,” with a good balance in my opinion.
While the Cobra Classic has a handle that might be best described as triangular, the King Cobra opts for a more traditional cylindrical handle style. That means you’re more likely to find a stand that it will fit into (though the King can–somewhat unsteadily–stand upright on its own, unlike the Classic). The handle is nicely textured (all the way around the handle, unlike the Classic) and combined with a resin-like coating it should be fairly immune to getting away from slippery hands.
The King’s blade-loading pivot under the head is similar to the Classic’s though it is more off-center. The action feels a little smoother and it seems more solidly constructed.
Shaving With The King Cobra
Like the Classic, the King Cobra uses Feather Pro blades. I find shaving with the King Cobra noticeably less aggressive compared to the Cobra Classic. This might cause some angst from Classic owners looking to upgrade–if you like the aggressive nature of the Classic the King might seem tame by comparison. However I think the King’s gentler bite will appeal to a wider audience. In my own case I find shaving with the King Cobra less prone to nicks and cuts in tight spots and detail work. Although the Feather Pro is a wider-than-usual blade (compared to DE blades) I find shaving in places like under the nose is not a problem.
In summary, though its price may be a barrier to some I find the King Cobra to be solidly constructed and more ergonomic than the Cobra Classic.
Paul Albanese says
were can I buy tha Cobra or the king cobra classic
Classic Shaving but it is often out of stock.
Giuliano Mosca says
even in the case of “in stock” it is better to use a lot of caution. A few days ago I bought a King Cobra razor from CS, he arrived in pitiful conditions and with a few scratches. I’m sorry to say that I expected the laconic response (after two reminders) of the company: “the journey was long” (I live in EU) as if it depended on the length of the trip because a razor arrives safe and sound. The most ridiculous thing, however, was their proposal to return the razor, at my expense of course, but “unused and properly packaged” (SIC!) Too bad I can not attach the photos of unboxing, so you could see how the CS has “properly packaged” the razor. No more purchases from Classic Shaving.
I wish I was a top-10 shaving blogger so I could get a hold of one of these!
Any idea what its made from? it sure has a hefty price tag
The head is made of nickel plated brass. It’s not clear what material is used for the black part of the handle, but it is reported to be powder coated metal.
Looks really cool, but how does the blade work? Are you able to re-sharpen the blade, or it is based off a disposable blade cartridge?
The Dean says
It’s not a cartridge, but rather a single edge blade like this:
I like the look and size of the Cobra and would try the new version given a chance but I’d most likely stick to my Durham Dorset. It’s also a “large” razor, using Personna Pathology Blades. Covers a huge swath of my head on each pass. I’ll be keeping my eyes pealed though for a Cobra in my travels.
Good looking design!
Thanks for the review Mark. I won’t be buying this razor any time soon because of the price, but it’s nice to know that there is still innovation going on with “injector-style” razors. I’m curious to know, how does this razor compare to your trusty Progress? Along the same lines, what’s your take on injector razors in general and how they compare to DE’s?