Restoring a Vintage 1960 Gillette Adjustable Fatboy F1 Safety Razor

The Gillette 195 Adjustable Double Edge Safety Razor, also known as the "Fatboy" was made for just over 3 years between 1958 D-3 and 1962 H-1. The models from 1958 D-3 through 1960 F-2 are of interest among shaving enthusiasts and collectors because of their high restore-ability.

In this video, we restored a 1960 F-1 version, that had heavy signs of wear, rust, deformations, etc. The razor was disassembled to its 13 pieces, thoroughly cleaned, buffed and polished with fine steel wool before nickel plating it to bring back its original shine. Deep scratches and deformations could not be restored fully, as it would require a great deal of stripping to its brass layer. It's not an impossible task but not worth doing. You may even appreciate it's aged quality.

Though nickel plating (electroplating with nickel) wasn't necessary for the restoration of this safety razor, minor rusts present needed to be covered that could creep deeper into the metal over time. Should you decide to plate your razor, make sure you do it at low amperage, around 200mAh is good and no more than 500mAh. At higher amperage, the plating will be very uneven.

Restoring anything vintage is certainly a love of labor. Taking it all apart helps you to appreciate the original work more. You'll need to decide how much of the original work needs to be untouched beyond simple clean and polish. We are trying to restore, not replace, after all.