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Safety Razor

Patent US369909

Invention Safety-Razor

Filed Saturday, 18th December 1886

Published Tuesday, 13th September 1887

Inventor Henry C. Bliss

Language English

CPC Classification:   
  • B26B21/16
    Safety razors with one or more blades arranged transversely to the handle involving blades with only one cutting edge
  • B
    Performing Operations; Transporting
  • B26
    Hand Cutting Tools; Cutting; Severing
  • B26B
    Hand-Held Cutting Tools Not Otherwise Provided For
  • B26B21/00
    Razors of the open or knife type; Safety razors or other shaving implements of the planing type; Hair-trimming devices involving a razor-blade; Equipment therefor
  • B26B21/08
    Razors of the open or knife type; Safety razors or other shaving implements of the planing type; Hair-trimming devices involving a razor-blade; Equipment therefor involving changeable blades
  • B26B21/14
    Safety razors with one or more blades arranged transversely to the handle

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No. 369,909.Patented Sept. 13, 1887.
United States Patent Office.

Henry C. Bliss, of West Springfield, Massachusetts. Safety-Razor.
SPECIFICATION forming part of Letters Patent No. 369,909, dated September 13, 1887. Application filed December 18, 1886. Serial No. 222,003. (Model.)

To all whom it may concern:

Be it known that I, Henry C. Bliss, of West Springfield, Hampden county, Massachusetts, have invented certain new and useful Improvements in Razors, of which the following is a specification.

My invention relates more especially to a class of devices commonly called “safety-razors;” but the same can with advantage be employed in razors not having an edge-guard, which is the usual distinguishing feature of a safety-instrument of the above class.

It has been found by practical experiment and use that razors of the “hoe-handle” style of construction are more easily manipulated than the old form, in that the motion of the hand and fingers in using the former is more natural and more easily directed by the sight. These razors, however, have heretofore been at this disadvantage. In order to sharpen and generally to clean the blade it has been necessary to remove the same bodily from the holder, and for stropping to insert it in a ferrule made expressly for that purpose. In my device herein shown I have completely met these difficulties and provided an arrangement of parts which permits the sharpening and cleaning of the blade without removal of the same from the holder, an arrangement which, I believe, in fact renders the sharpening of the blade much easier and more certain than any other method heretofore known. I have further provided a convenient hood or protector for the edge of the blade when not in use, thus rendering the instrument less liable to injury or dulling, and, generally, by certain novel arrangements of parts have materially added to the simplicity and efficiency of this class of implements, all of which is illustrated in the accompanying drawings, in which—

Figure 1 is a perspective of the device. Fig. 2 is a perspective view, with blade turned back and hood removed; Fig. 3, an end view showing blade raised in convenient position for shaving, with hood removed; Fig. 4, end view with blade in position for use and also for stropping; Fig. 5, an end view with blade turned back, showing manner of stropping; with hood removed; Fig. 6, end view, with modified form of guard; and Figs. 7 and 8, details of said guard.

In Fig. 1, a is the blade; b, the body of the holder, and c the handle of my device. The blade a at the ends or corners of the shank is notched, as shown, and provided with pivots a′, adapted to fit within the loop-bearings e at the upper extremity of the frame, as seen in the drawings. These loop-bearings are sufficiently open at the bottom for the removal of the blade.

Under the shank of the blade, and impinging against it at its rear edge, is spring c′, which elongated forms the handle c. This spring-handle is firmly riveted to the body of the frame. The spring constantly presses up against the blade, thus holding the pivots normally within the loop-bearings e, and, the shank of the blade being squared or angular at the back, the spring holds the blade knife-fashion, either closed—that is, resting upon the guard b'—half open, or wide open.

For cleaning the blade it is sufficient to turn it half back, as seen in Fig. 3. This exposes the trough beneath and the guard in front—in fact, all parts necessary to be cleaned. When the blade is closed or when it is swung back, as shown in Figs. 4 and 5, no part of the device is above the upper surface of the blade, and a strop may then be passed freely over the same, as illustrated, and as a whetstone is drawn over a scythe, or the razor may be drawn over the strop, as is done when the blade is being honed. The operation of turning the blade back and reversing the uppermost side is so easy in my said device that it will be found that this method of sharpening a razor is preferable to the old way. The above arrangement has this further advantage, that the blade is held more easily and firmly in the hand for the friction of the strop.

The above arrangement of blade and spring and holder is also valuable with the guard b′ left out. With such an arrangement the device is much more convenient and effective than the old form of razor.

To enable the blade to be readily engaged by the finger for the purpose of turning it back, I have found it advisable to shorten the central and rear portion of the holder and correspondingly deepen the notches in the shank of the blade, as shown in Fig. 2. This allows the central part of the blade to project slightly beyond the corresponding part of the holder, and gives more room for operating the blade.

The hood d is constructed, as shown, of a front plate, d, and arms d′. These arms are provided with eyelets, which slip over the pivots a′ and become the center of motion when the hood is thrown back. When resting down upon the blade, as shown in Fig. 1, it completely protects the edge from harm, and when thrown back to the position shown in dotted lines in Fig. 4 it is entirely clear of any interference with the practical working of the device. The hood is easily removed by spreading the arms d′ until the pivots are disengaged.

To remove the blade from the holder, it is only necessary to press the blade downward against the spring until the pivot at one end is free from the loop, and then withdraw the blade entirely, as will be readily seen.

In Fig. 2 I have simply shown a guard of common form made by notching the front edge of the holder; but the guard which I have devised and consider best adapted to this class of implements is shown in Figs. 6, 7, and 8.

In Fig. 7 m is a small wire, preferably steel or spring brass, plaited, as shown.

When thus fashioned, the wire is soldered or otherwise secured to the front of the holder and bent forward, as shown in Figs. 8 and 6. When somewhat stiff wire is used, the projecting looped ends may be filed off, leaving a comb-shaped wire guard, as shown in Fig. 8. Of course the wire may be bent outward instead of inward, and form a guard with transverse section, like that shown in Figs 3, 4, and 5.

Other modifications maybe made in my said device without departing from the scope of my invention—as, for instance, the notches may be omitted from the shank of the blade and the pivots be inserted in the plane end. The spring and handle may not be integral, and the pivoted blade, spring, spring-handle, and wire guard be used in other combinations.

It will be seen that when the blade is swung back to the most rearward position (a position which it occupies when being stropped on one side) the body of the blade rests upon the rear portion of the spring c, and as the spring is necessarily considerably stiff it furnishes a sufficient and necessary support for the blade when a strop is pressed down upon it.

I am aware that razors have heretofore been constructed having the blade held in position by lips or clamps projecting on the concave face thereof, which arrangement, in a measure, leaves the upper face of the blade clear, and I do not include such form of construction in my claims. It will be found, however, practically that when a common elastic strop is passed over a blade thus held in position the face of the strop will be abraded by the clamps, and aside from improving the construction in view of the above, it is very desirable to have the upper face of the blade entirely clear for wiping and cleaning.

Having now fully described my invention, what I claim, and desire to secure by Letters Patent, is—

1. In a razor, the blade a, provided with pivots a′, adapted to engage bearings in the holder, and thereby being capable of swinging backward, substantially as described.

2. In a razor, the pivoted blade a, having its shank notched at the corners for the introduction of pivots and bearings therefor, substantially as described.

3. In a safety-razor, a blade forming the uppermost part of the device, pivoted or hinged to the holder thereof by pivots or hinges projecting from the body of the blade between the upper and lower face of the blade, said pivot or pivots and pivotal connections being flush or lower than the upper face of the blade, whether turned forward or back, to facilitate the sharpening of the blade, substantially as described.

4. In a safety-razor, a holder provided with loop-bearings e, a blade pivoted therein, and means of retaining the pivots in said bearings, substantially as described.

5. In a razor, the combination, with the holder, of spring c′ for holding a pivoted blade in one or more positions, substantially as described.

6. The combination, in a razor having a pivoted blade, of an integral spring and handle, c and c′, for manipulating the device and holding the blade in position, substantially as described.

7. In a razor, the combination, with a holder of a pivoted or hinged blade having an angular shank, of spring c′, arranged to impinge against the shank for holding the blade in various positions corresponding to the faces presented to the spring, substantially as described.

8. In a safety-razor, the combination, with a pivoted blade, of a spring, c′, projecting rearward and arranged to hold the blade in one or more positions and to serve as a support for the blade when swung back, substantially as described.

9. In a safety-razor, the combination of a blade provided with pivots a′, a holder provided with loop-bearings e, and a spring normally bearing against the blade and holding the pivots within the loop-bearings, substantially as described.

10. In a safety-razor, the combination with a blade having pivots projecting longitudinally from the shank, of a trough-shaped holder having at its front an edge-guard and at its rear portion arms bent to form bearings for the pivots, substantially as described.

11. In a razor having a pivoted or hinged blade, the arrangement of the pivot or pivotal or hinge connections between the plane of the upper and plane of the lower face of the blade, whereby the uppermost face of the blade, whether turned forward or back, is left unencumbered for convenience of stropping and cleaning.

12. In a safety-razor, a rest or seat arranged at the rear of the blade for supporting the blade when swung back for stropping and cleaning, substantially as described.

13. In a razor, the combination of a blade protector or hood, d, having arms d′, pivoted to the shank of the blade and capable of being swung either over the edge of the blade or backward, so as to clear the upper portion of the device, substantially as described.

14. In a safety-razor, the following organizations: the holder b, provided with guard b′ and loop-bearings e, the blade a, longitudinally pivoted thereto in said bearings, the integral spring and handle c and c′, and hood d, substantially as described.

Henry C. Bliss.


Robert O. Morris,

M. Wells Bridge.