Where to start? Firstly I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly it arrived from Portugal. Then, opening the package I was very impressed when I saw the box neatly wrapped in black tissue with a wax seal. It looked so classy – like a Christmas present – it almost seemed a shame to open it! However, with utmost care, that is exactly what I did; then to discover the Masamune beautifully presented in a cork display base. So far, so good. But what of the razor itself?
Well, the next observations you will, of course, already know, having created and manufactured the razor. The fit and finish is up there with the best, and the half-moon matching stand has such a close tolerance that there is barely any free movement, holding the razor perfectly vertical. The appearance of the razor is quite different from any other razor in my collection, but it is quite aesthetically pleasing. The rounded bottom end of the handle means it is very comfortable in the palm of the hand; and the handle length is good.
Taking the razor apart, I find the length of the thread on the head just right. I have read other reviews where the writer has thought the thread could be shorter. I have 3-piece razors with a shorter thread and have wished they were a tad longer. Personally, I find the length on the Masamune that much easier to get hold of, and I am grateful for it.
The Masamune comes with 3 Feather blades. I have to say that, from experience, I am not a great fan of Feathers. Firstly, they are extremely sharp and if used by the inexperienced in the ‘wrong’ razor can be a tiger; and if one’s technique still needs to be honed cuts and weepers are almost inevitable. Secondly, I have found that after a couple of 3-pass shaves the blade’s performance drops off rapidly. However, in for a penny… In the Masamune these Feathers are an absolute pussycat! Smooth, efficient and nary a cut at all. I was impressed! That said, I still managed only 3 shaves before efficiency fell off and I changed blades. Thankfully, having tried several different blades, such as Wilkinson Sword, Personna Platinum and some other wet-shavers’ favourites, which it may be more prudent not to mention in the current political climate & world situation, I found these others proved just as efficient.
Overall, then, IMHO the Masamune is an extremely well-built razor; is comfortable to hold, with a good grip; and efficient. For the most part I have used the closed comb bottom plate, and my comments refer to that in particular. I did also purchase the open comb plate, but on the odd occasion I have used it I haven’t found it as comfortable or easy to get on with – probably need more practice. But, for now, the Masamune head and closed comb plate combination provide a mild yet efficient shave, which is just what I want as a daily shaver. Needless to say this razor has found itself a permanent place in my rotation of favourite razors.
I have observed on platforms such as Youtube that some reviewers don’t like certain aspects of the razor’s construction, e.g. the handle and the way it locates into the top plate. All I can say – again IMHO – if treated with care this razor could/should last a lifetime. Its design is such that everything fits and locks together beautifully. And, if the worst comes to the worst and accidents happen, it is reassuring to know that each individual component is available to purchase separately rather than having to buy a complete new razor. And there aren’t many artisan manufacturers around offering that kind of facility!
So, bottom line, if you are looking for a mild, efficient razor that is beautifully crafted and engineered the Tatara Masamune is more than worthy of your attention.
Keep up the good work, gentlemen!
Best regards – and thank you for a brilliant razor!