Mini-Rant

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Lenp
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Mini-Rant

Post by Lenp » Wed May 02, 2018 6:24 pm

Since things are a bit slow, I thought that I would throw this out for whatever reason is acceptable!

I have a Gillette Fusion razor. As a matter of fact, I have had several and all were gifts or promos. These are Gillette's wondrous battery motor driven conventional looking shaver with a vibrating 5 blade head. A single AAA battery is the motive force, it vibrates the blades and actually, it does a pretty good job on these seasoned whiskers, when it works.

There's the Ah-ha! When it works.
Several have failed, and sadly they are pretty expensive razors +/- $15 with blades in the over the top price $3+ each range. One day you'll pick it up and nothing, no fire in the hole. You can change the battery, check the battery contacts, push the switch a hundred times, shake it, cuss it, and it is still dead.

So on to the autopsy:
The end of the handle unscrews for the battery access and inside there is a battery contact and a strip coming up the inside for the battery ground like a cheap plastic flashlight. A quick test shows that there is a few ma drain on the battery...with the switch on or off! This doesn't look too good now. There's not much else to see from here since the working parts are well hidden inside the molded housing.

Cutting it away, bit by bit I got past the inner contact and at last there was the works. All of it is mounted on, and in, a cylinder that slides snugly into the handle cavity. Pulling it out was a surprise. I expected to see a vibrator motor and a switch, but there was a lot more. There are many assorted surface mount parts on a double sided board including an 8 pin IC with house numbers, resistors, caps a transistor (maybe a charge pump circuit) and something else quite unexpected. A big gob of green corrosion that completely destroyed one end of the board and whatever else might be underneath it.

Now, that was also a bit of a surprise since the whole shaver seems so well made, it even has an 'O' ring for the handle cap, and a molded rubber handle inlay. So where did the moisture come from? That wasn't hard to determine, it came from around the on/off button that had absolutely no sealing attempt, with an obvious space between the button and housing for easy water entry.

Come on Gillette! You are smart enough to put this technology into a razor, you make a ton money on this model and the over-hyped blades, and yet, you forgot a simple button seal?
Nonsense, I doubt that you did. Possibly many tests were done to see how many wet thumbs and rinses were needed to do this kind of damage. Was it controlled product life expectancy?
It is similar to the hardware/software upgrade circle...You buy the razor then buy more blades. The razor quits and expensive blades are still left so you buy another razor, and then do it all over again!

Should you be 'lucky' enough to have one of these wonders, maybe a thin piece of heat shrink over the button will stop this problem and make it last longer, at least until another failure mode surfaces.
Maybe Gillette changed the design since they now have one with an indicator and automatic shutoff, but as expected, no mention of a button seal!

Comments?
Len

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a big pile of junk.” (T. Edison)
"I must be on the way to success since I already have the junk". (Me)

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evahle
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Re: Mini-Rant

Post by evahle » Wed May 02, 2018 9:07 pm

Not much to say. You covered it well! Thanks.

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CeaSaR
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Re: Mini-Rant

Post by CeaSaR » Thu May 03, 2018 6:57 am

Ah yes, planned obsolescence. That's why I still look for things that are built more old-school - when product quality and longevity were the expected norm.

A few years ago my washing machine finally died (motor went - was worth more than the washer 2x's over) and was looking around. All the name brands had all electronic controls, even the ones that had "retro controls", ie, dials (rotary encoders). The one place near me that I talked to gave me the lowdown: most have a 3-5 year failure rate on boards, and most drive mechs are plastic gearing. EXCEPT Speed Queen. Real mechanical operations along with high quality metal gears. Guess what I bought.

Back to the razors. I still have the Atra handle and the generic blades I buy are $5 for 10 blades. And it never breaks down. I guess I'll move on when I can't get blades for it anymore.

CeaSaR

(PS - I know it sounds like blasphemy, but when the current crop of products show such a short lifespan, who wouldn't want to think that way?)
Hey, what do I know?

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Lenp
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Re: Mini-Rant

Post by Lenp » Thu May 03, 2018 7:07 am

As an aside to all this, I have a rather collectable portable razor and blade sharpener. It's a metal case with a very simple single edge razor that uses a thick steel blade. When the blade dulls you put it into the case and pull back and forth a slide that strops both sides of the blade, making it 'good as new'. All metal, several moving parts, built like a tank..and it still works, but you'll need to pull with two hands to shave :sad:
Len

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a big pile of junk.” (T. Edison)
"I must be on the way to success since I already have the junk". (Me)

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evahle
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Re: Mini-Rant

Post by evahle » Thu May 03, 2018 11:13 am

:razz:

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Janitor Tzap
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Re: Mini-Rant

Post by Janitor Tzap » Fri May 04, 2018 7:01 pm

Yeah,

The items we purchase now have a limited life span.

Speaking of razors.........


I have an OLD Norelco Electric Shaver, Model 725RL.
Image
{No Rechargeable Batteries, plugs right into the 120VAC Outlet.}
Only problem I've had with it was bad solder on the rectifier board.
The only thing I need to worry about now, is how long I can still get blades for it. :lol:

Before I got the Norelco.
I had a Remington Electric Shaver, single cutting head with a mesh screen.
It lasted me some 10 years, before the plastic locking pin for the cutting head had worn itself down to the point it would no longer lock the cutting head in place.
If the razor had used a steel, or aluminum locking pin, it would of lasted much longer against the wearing action of the cutting head.
Thus, I possibly would still be using it.
:wink:


Signed: Janitor Tzap

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