Handmade in France
Uniquely special and always entirely made by hand, Thiers-Issard razors are the most hollow and flexible razors in the world still produced today.
Their Thiers, France production facility has stood nearly 100 years now, and therein continues to employ traditional methods of manufacture unique to this most special of nations, such as their lead tempering and the use of a single forging die and multiple hammer/reheat/hammer cycles versus the quicker method employed elsewhere where a progressive series of forging dies are used in sequence with just one heating cycle.
“Le Grelot” was a historic trademark originating from a deceased operations Thiers cutler, and at some point the ownership of Thiers-Issard purchased the Grelot trademark along with a cache of ‘blanks’ of vintage forging of unknown time or recipe. Those original forged cylinders are long gone and the name is just kept for posterity, though they do use a particular die set (from modern forging), slightly thicker than the profile of the Evide Sonnant Extra et al and rather emulates the shape of those original Grelots. All the same processes are occurring to the two distinct profiles of steel cylinder/formulation, and in these cases inevitably some blanks are better at getting super concave than others. So you can think of the Grelot today as as hollow as any Solingen standard full hollow ground, but not as hollow as the Evide Sonnant Extra, 188 ____, 889 ____, etc.
The Le Grelot 5/8″ size model is supplied with cheeky paper coffin packaging, and with handles made of simple white celluloid. While this is their most economical configuration, the quality of the pinning and durability are high. In this configuration weight is approximately forty-six grams.
This business is wholly centered upon the sale of one hollow ground straight razor to one shaver one at a time; “1 str8rzr alone” is ~50% of all our orders. You may elect to have your TI with its factory edge (which we think is exceptional, but that’s just one subjective opinion, and opinions vary) or further honed by ‘TSS’, as only you see fit; there is not a right or wrong answer. ‘TSS’ rather doubts the worth of debating this ‘Shave Ready’ concept today; anyone can bandy that term about as if objective, meaningful information (like a sprinter’s time), but in fact it is completely subjective.
If you elect for the factory edge, you’ll receive your razor exactly as its manufacturers intended…pretty simple!
If you elect for The Superior Shave to further hone your razor, this TI shall be honed in the manner taught in 2016 to The Superior Shave’s proprietor by two kind Solingen master grinders (whom did/do not work for Dovo, but do use similar 1840s grinders’ textbooks methods). Regardless of their poor refinement compared to further-honed ‘Honemeister’ edges on offer, some physical elements of factory edges remain superior to most further honing attempts. The Superior Shave will devote the extra time to your razor a dying industry cannot afford in overhead, without taking away the factory edge’s inherently advantaged geometric metrics. We’re confident we offer the materially thinnest further-honed-by-vendor edge available for purchase – you’ll need to try that to understand why it matters. Please note: in the professional opinions of German and French razor grinders, a straight razor is not properly honed unless flush to the hone, without tape, so visual evidence of honing is unavoidable when honing is performed correctly according to its makers (we add Vaseline to your razor’s faces and use compatible honing fluid to help a little).
We hone with a method best coined as “the opposite of tape“ where a hone’s geometry’s wholly catered to performance of the razor and to no other concern. Unfortunately, this topic cannot be discussed upon any English-based straight-razor-centric forum because a select group of e-enthusiasts cannot abide such open discourse. Be encouraged to think for yourself, and let your beard and sense of touch be the judge; there is a lot of misinformation out there, much purportedly from experts! We wish you good shopping, and Happy Shaving.