Rex Supply and Razor Emporium have launched the Konsul, an adjustable slant bar double edge razor. I’m a sucker for adjustable razors and have been curious about slant’s too, so I bought a Konsul to try.
Rex Supply Konsul Adjustable Slant Razor Background And Specs
Image from the Rex Supply website
From the Rex Supply website:
“Rex Supply Co. presents “Konsul,” the only Adjustable Stainless Steel Slant Razor in the world. Designed for a lifetime of use and Made in the USA from marine grade stainless steel. The Konsul customizes your shaving experience in both closeness and comfort, and provides a ‘blade neutral’ feel with the efficiency of a slant….
“The Konsul is infinitely adjustable, making it easy to find the best possible blade exposure for your skin. Just turn the integrated dial up or down to adjust the amount of blade gap for a milder or more aggressive shave. It is fully compatible with any double edge blade, giving you lots of options and combinations to “dial-in” a consistently perfect shaving experience. After just a few passes, you’ll find the razor glides across the skin almost effortlessly, while leaving behind a noticeably soft, clean and fully groomed path.
“The Konsul is Made in the USA and designed for a lifetime of use. Each razor features an individual serial number and a manufacturing code that adheres to the classic Gillette® product dating system….”
“Now available is the Konsul DeLuxe, a high mirror finish with either 24K Gold Plating or Rhodium plating performed by the same team of our popular Razor Revamp service. Our gold plating is hard acid gold which allows for good wear and brightness. We plate exclusively in 24 Karat, the purist form of the element Au (Gold) at 99.9%. It has the highest luster of that deep and rich yellow color. Cleaning of the razor would be similar to any gold jewelry; best carried out by a professional or specialized Gold cleaning products. Rhodium is a metal in the platinum family. It is a bright white shine that will not tarnish like silver. It rates high on the Moh’s scale of hardness and is brilliantly shiny.”
- Length: 3.5″ 87mm
- Weight: 3.7oz 106g
- Blade Gap: Slanted
What Others Are Saying About The Rex Konsul Adjustable Slant Razor
Image from the Rex Supply website
Here are some of the comments about the Rex Supply Konsul adjustable slant razor I’ve found in various corners of the internet, and emails to me about it:
“…Blade gap was even upon full adjustment, 0 manufacturing defects, and the dot on the dial has been set to more of an angle now (which I greatly prefer). The handle is also VERY unique, it rotates beautifully in the hand, without allowing for any up and down movement. It looks almost like a Pinecone, but the steps to the knurling are not sharp – and are potentially the best knurling I have ever touched. “The actual shave – set to 6.5 – was as mild as a sunny mid-spring day. I would say it has around 1/3 (yeah…like 66%) less bite to it compared to the Ambassador – and you can see visually that the blade exposure has been greatly reduced. It almost feels like the “Little Blade” hack I did, and comparatively – had as much blade feel as something like a Pre-War Tech (or maybe a step up from a DE89). The efficiency is still there – and the Konsul still gives that ULTRA close Slant Shave feel and experience. Buffing on the 6.5 without worry of a knick – smoothly swiping away stubble – left me wondering if this isn’t better for my skin than the OG Ambassador. I know the YMMV thing greatly applies to our craft, but I think RE listened to many of its customers, and made adjustments that make sense for the masses of shavers – in all skill levels.” [Link]
“Shaving: I wasn’t sure exactly how to shave with a slant, so I didn’t change anything consciously in my technique compared to the Ambassador. Giving it every chance, Personna blade, Jack Black’s Beard Lube with each pass, SW’s Carmilla (a soft, cushiony, voluminous-lathering soap in my hands), with a dab of Nivea’s shaving gel for an uberlather, shaving scuttle and my favorite Shavemac brush, followed by SW’s aftershave. Three-pass shave – WTG, XTG, ATG. At first I wanted to accommodate the slant by changing the angles, but just went with my normal stroke. The results were surprising. I suppose I expected a shave like the Ambassador, but it was actually one of the most comfortable – if not the – of any DE razor I have used. Ever. My shocked face. You almost literally cannot feel the blade moving through whiskers. As a caveat, one shave with one soap, but I’ll change up the combos with further use, and it’s definitely a keeper in the stable. I don’t know how every other slant works, but Wow.” [Link]
“First shave overall superfine, no-nonsense mild shaver, just shave away! The grip is much better than any vintage razor I’ve used and the weight is no problem at all. I like this razor and look forward to dialling it in more over the next week.” [Link]
“I had a bit of trouble loading the blade and getting it to lay flat and stable against the top cap hard points but eventually it seated properly…. Other than that, it’s my new # 1.
“It was a bit more aggressive than I anticipated given that it was promoted as having a “neutral blade exposure”. I did a two-pass shave (WTG & XTG) on settings 3 and 2. The knurling was exceptionally grippy which I liked. Good weight to it. I got the polished upgrade which gives it an added bling effect. Overall, I got a close, comfortable shave which are my usual shaving goals…. The $350 price point will keep new wet shavers away I believe. These high-end SS razors are like a niche market within a niche market.” [Sharpologist reader Paul F.]
“The Konsul is a very interesting razor. The adjustable mechanism is inspired by the vintage Gibbs adjustable DE. While there are many adjustable DE razors, there are very few adjustable slants. The Walbusch B5 was one such, although it was a tilted slant rather than a helical slant.
“Regarding blade-feel, it’s useful to define a couple of terms. “Reveal” is the amount of blade that is showing from under the cap. “Exposure” is a measure of where the edge of the blade is with reference to a line drawn from the cap to the bar or comb. The Konsul has what I would call a “medium-low reveal” and is designed with a slight “negative exposure.” That means the edge of the blade is not the first thing to contact the skin, giving a milder shave with less blade-feel. The blade is also well-clamped and not prone to chatter even with a large gap. My personal preferences fit right in line with the Konsul’s design….
“Some users have noted that the Konsul seems to “drag” on their skin, particularly the model with machined finish. There are pronounced machining marks on non-contact surfaces like under the baseplate, but I don’t find them objectionable. The top of the cap is well finished. I have discovered two “Keys to the Game” that make the Konsul work better for me. One is that the razor seems to perform better with a slightly wet/slick lather as opposed to the “cake-icing” kind that makes lovely lather-porn pictures. The other key is that the razor seems to need a slightly steeper angle on the blade. Experiment, but I found bringing the handle closer to the skin helped….
“Subjective comparisons: It’s less prone to “biting” or touchdown nicks than the Merkur 37 or 39; On setting 6 it feels at least as efficient as the RazoRock Wunderbar, but with slightly less blade-feel; It’s smooth at all settings. It’s not hugely slanty but it makes a difference. The “pineapple” knurling on the handle is nice and grippy, even when tested with soapy fingers. One of the things that pleases me most is that it’s not another Merkur 37 clone. Nothing against that design, but having more choice in the marketplace is a good thing.
“I’m happy with it. I’ve bought other high-end razors and been disappointed, but not with the Konsul. As someone who’s shaved almost exclusively with slants for a few years, the Konsul is a nice step up in quality and experience.” [Sharpologist reader Chuck H.]
My Experience With The Rex Supply Konsul Adjustable Slant Razor
[Note: I purchased a Rex Konsul. My views expressed here are my own opinions and have not been reviewed or approved by Razor Emporium/Rex Supply.]
The over-all look, fit, and finish of my Rex Supply Konsul is excellent. I find the weight and balance of the razor is just right for my preferences. I think the handle might be a bit short for some but it has been no problem for me and I find the grip from the knurling very secure in my hand.
Image from the Rex Supply website
I find blade loading a bit fussy, as some other reviewers have noted: the Konsul’s blade alignment bars (vs. pins of most other double edge razors, see image above) are designed for a snug fit along the center cut-out of a double edge blade but this can make a blade “pop off” when I start to attach the top cap. A trick I learned from using the Rex Ambassador (which has the same alignment design) is to press the blade onto the bars then, holding the blade down with my non-dominant hand’s index finger, grip the top cap by the ends with my dominant hand’s index finger and thumb holding the cap/blade by the ends, carefully sliding the cap onto the handle.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not a deal-breaker, but I find it an annoyance.
I think the adjustment range is reasonably wide and biased slightly toward the aggressive side–I prefer “mild” razors and I keep the dial setting below about “2.5” on my Konsul. Again, not a deal-breaker but I find the Konsul a little less generous at the low end than other adjustable razors (of course, other adjustable razors are not slant bar razors so this might be a result of the Konsul’s unique design).
In actual use I find shaves with the Rex Supply Konsul adjustable slant razor provide an experience I have not had with any other razor–adjustable, slant, or otherwise.
First, like some other reviewers, it took me a couple shaves to find the right hold angle.
I also had to find the “right” blade for this razor: my go-to blade, a Parker, was acceptable but could be better. I finally settled on an RK blade currently being distributed by Henson Razors.
But mainly I have found that the Konsul “likes” fairly heavy stubble! Shaving daily feels a bit less comfortable than when I’m rocking a multi-day growth on my face! An unusual experience for me. However the over-all experience has been quite positive.
The Rex Supply Konsul adjustable slant razor is unique. If you have a fairly heavy beard I think you will appreciate this razor quite a bit. The Konsul is currently available at Rex Supply (and Razor Emporium) and is beginning to show up at other wet shaving vendors (I’ll list them here as they get inventory).