Gillette English-made Rocket HD

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brothers
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Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by brothers » Fri Aug 26, 2016 12:52 pm

This is one very fine razor. I bought it through ebay from someone in Luxembourg a few years ago. What an amazing razor! The fit and finish are superb, as with most of the Gillettes that came out of England. I have read several discussion boards regarding the Rockets and SuperSpeeds from the same era. This particular razor seems to be slightly different than the detailed descriptions posted here and elsewhere. The head says Patent Pending rather than a patent number. The razor weighs 75.5g as opposed to the others which weigh in at varying numbers all of which are lighter than this one. There are no identifying numbers or designations stamped anywhere on it, while most of the others carry one or more marks. The finish is quite shiny, especially the butterflies and the head. I had no idea that there would be so many variations among the Rockets. The shave seems quite mild while the shave is taking place, but the finished shave is quite close and smooth, such as would be expected from an aggressively designed head. The other razors have been safely secured in their respective storage containers, and I think this one will do quite nicely for the foreseeable future.
Gary

SOTD 99%: soaps & creams, synthetic & badger brushes, General V2 by Colonial, Kai & Schick blades, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444

slackskin
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by slackskin » Fri Aug 26, 2016 1:11 pm

Great score, Gary. You are very fortunate. I have read about these before, to rave reviews. If you ever decide that it's time to move it on, I am your guy!

CMur12
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by CMur12 » Fri Aug 26, 2016 4:22 pm

Nice razor, Gary. I have one of these with the original polystyrene case, though I haven't used it much. I remember it being a mild shaver, but your post encourages me to try it out again soon.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

brothers
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by brothers » Fri Aug 26, 2016 4:36 pm

I checked with Mr. Razor and it says this razor is from 1953/54. It lists the weight as 70g, but for some reason mine is 75.5. Other than that, it's the same as mine in all respects.
Gary

SOTD 99%: soaps & creams, synthetic & badger brushes, General V2 by Colonial, Kai & Schick blades, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444

Antique Hoosier
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by Antique Hoosier » Sat Aug 27, 2016 1:20 pm

I bought one for my Dad. They are very fine tools.
Mike

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BPman
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by BPman » Sat Aug 27, 2016 2:01 pm

I have three English Gillette "Flare Tip" Rockets and they are fantastic daily shavers. :wink:

brothers
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by brothers » Wed Aug 31, 2016 4:50 pm

This is one of my all-time favorites. I'll stick with it as the daily razor of choice for quite a while, I'm sure.
Gary

SOTD 99%: soaps & creams, synthetic & badger brushes, General V2 by Colonial, Kai & Schick blades, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444

brothers
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by brothers » Wed Sep 21, 2016 7:41 pm

As I've reduced my lather to only one application by brush, followed by a single shaving pass consisting of a full wtg/atg/xtg razor run, the English Rocket HD500 has proven to be smooth and close with no nicks or cuts whatsoever.
Gary

SOTD 99%: soaps & creams, synthetic & badger brushes, General V2 by Colonial, Kai & Schick blades, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444

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gagarin
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by gagarin » Tue Sep 27, 2016 11:15 am

Hi Gary. I purchased several HD Rockets during my accumulation phase several years ago. At the time, I found them to be smooth but not particularly efficient. Based on your experience, I'll dust one off and give it a whirl.
Chuck

“Hundido en horizontes
soy polvareda que al viento va.
Zamba, ya no me dejes,
yo sin tu canto no vivo más…….”

CMur12
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by CMur12 » Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:58 pm

Chuck, I recently did just that, inspired by Gary's thread. Like you, I found it smooth but not very efficient, so I returned the lovely little thing to its polystyrene case.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

brothers
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by brothers » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:58 pm

These were issued with a variety of patent numbers over a few mid-50s years. Mine is known as the HD500 because it shows as Patent Pending, and was identified as the "HD500" in a French language magazine advertisement that someone on one of the forums was able to dig up a couple of years ago. I believe I was very lucky to have located this one through ebay in Luxembourg. These and two other (Aristocrat) versions of the razor were apparently made at more than one Gillette factory and distributed in Europe for a limited time. I am please with the efficiency of this particular model, and surprisingly it is less aggressive than the Darwin Deluxe (no cuts/nicks/harshness due to blade exposure), while delivering dependably close and smooth results with all of my favorite blades.
Gary

SOTD 99%: soaps & creams, synthetic & badger brushes, General V2 by Colonial, Kai & Schick blades, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444

preidy
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Re: Gillette English-made Rocket HD

Post by preidy » Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:54 am

Agree. The Rocket HD is my smoothest shaver right next to my DE89. I'm a Rocket Fan and have about 7 different models. Highly recommended.

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