back to article LASER RAZOR blunted by KickStarter ban

KickStarter has suspended funding for the Skarp Laser Razor, a crowdfunded effort to replace conventional razors with a laser-powered shaving implement. Reg readers have shared a KickStarter communique in which the crowdfunding platform says “we’ve concluded that it is in violation of our rule requiring working prototypes of …

  1. Gene Cash Silver badge
    Go

    Good for them!

    IMHO, this is shaping up to be a non-laser-assisted fleecing of major proportions.

    I'm no Richard Feynman, but I'm pretty sure something that'll take off hair in a jiffy isn't going to be hand-held.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Good for them!

      Hit the right nitrogen ionization frequency with a none to major energy and you'll do hair just fine. This also works for a wireless Taser. What they should do is take a look at the optical transistor (article in Scientific American back in the 80's as I recall). Pulse modulate the input. Basically it acts like an accumulator for light. (And if you really step it up, there's a neat material for that from Corning.)

      That's one method.

      1. Fraggle850

        @ Jack of Shadows Re: Good for them!

        Not sure why you got three down votes, sounds like you know what you are talking about. Have an upvote to mitigate the negatives.

        1. TheOtherHobbes

          Re: @ Jack of Shadows Good for them!

          Because if you're aiming for nitrogen the frequency you need is in the far ultraviolet, which makes it even more dangerous than a CO2 infrared laser.

          And if you're aiming for CO2 - might as well if you're burning things - you're not going to fit a useful one into something the size of a blade head.

          And even if you could, giving yourself burns instead of small bleeding razor cuts isn't the best idea ever.

          KS have done the right thing. If these people discover Magic New Miracle Technology[tm] and build a working prototype with it, then they can think about asking for cash.

          Until they do this has "Scam" written all over it in glowing and rather warm letters.

      2. Stuart21551

        Re: Good for them!

        Go help them with a proto, Jack. See you in a decade or so! or so!

        Ban has put Kickstarter up, in the credibility stakes -

      3. Rick Brasche

        Re: Good for them!

        or you can simply modulate the phase inducer on the deflector grid.

        Geordi may claim Prior Art but Scotty beat him to a demonstratable prototype by over a decade.

        1. Martin-73 Silver badge

          Re: Good for them!

          Pah, you could achieve the same effect by reversing the polarity of the neutron flux

  2. MrDamage

    Load of bollocks

    I would rather my bathroom not stink of burnt hair, and I would definitely prefer a small shaving cut, than a small 3rd degree burn due to a misaligned head (either mine, or the razors).

    Not to mention the immediate clamor from unfunny morons demanding the handle be made to look like a shark.

    1. Simon Sharwood, Reg APAC Editor (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Load of bollocks

      Shark Laser Razor? GENIUS.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Shark Laser Razor

        As an unfunny moron can I ask for a TWO-HEADED SHARK LASER RAZOR? Or even a THREE-HEADED one?

        1. Martin Gregorie Silver badge

          Re: Shark Laser Razor

          A Hammerhead Shark Laser Razor with nice blue headlights for eyes would do nicely.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Load of bollocks

      I would rather my bathroom not stink of burnt hair

      It won't. It doesn't burn the hair, but "cuts" certain molecules which bind the hair together.

      I would definitely prefer a small shaving cut, than a small 3rd degree burn due to a misaligned head

      You'd get neither, because IIRC this laser isn't even powerful enough to be considered dangerous to look directly at.

    3. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

      Re: Load of bollocks

      "handle be made to look like a shark."

      I hadn't thought of that.

      Now I want one. No, now I MUST HAVE ONE! Even if it costs a meeelion dollars!

    4. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Load of bollocks

      > and I would definitely prefer a small shaving cut

      Or you could grow a beard. Beardies of the world unite!

  3. Richard Freeman
    Black Helicopters

    looking at the video, is it my imagination or does that 'laser' bend when in contact with the skin?

    Also it seems to pick up spots of dirt from coming in contact with the hairs, so my guess is that it is probably really a thin piece of heated Nichrome or similar wire.

    1. stucs201

      It's a plastic fibre. I think this 'works' (*) by using the laser for it's property of being a single-frequency light source, not for being a straight narrow beam. Apparently the frequency is chosen to affect a certain molecule in the hair or something.

      (*) for very loose definitions of works.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yeah I agree, it looks to me like a hot wire of the type used for cutting polystyrene

  4. Hilmi Al-kindy

    Will it work with blonde people?

    Laser hair removal doesnt work with people who have pale body hair. I wonder if this concept would work with people who have a pale colored beard.

    1. Filippo

      Re: Will it work with blonde people?

      They claim they've found a molecule that's in every hair regardless of color, and a frequency that targets it.

      1. PleebSmash
        Mushroom

        Re: Will it work with blonde people?

        The claim sounded a lot better before they were punted off the crowdbeg platform.

  5. PCS

    Just give me a cream that will kill off the hair follicles dammit

    1. LaeMing Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      What!? And pass up all those ongoing-for-life blade sales?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Just give me a cream that will kill off the hair follicles dammit

      We can do the cream bit: look here.

      It has plenty of reviews :)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Oh wow. Thank you for the epic review link.

          You're welcome. You must be new here - we *live* for that sort of humour :)

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ... and flying car and hover skateboards

    You have 8 days left.

  7. Raumkraut

    So what is it?

    [The] video from the project's KickStarter page suggests there is a prototype in existence, but not a very effective one: the device does knock off a few hairs, but is a long way short of the experience of pulling a conventional razor down one's skin and having the majority of hairs beneath the blade cleft.

    Isn't that the very definition of a prototype? Something which proves the concept, but needs more work to become a finished product?

    1. Fraggle850

      Re: So what is it?

      Upvote with the caveat that there's a difference between a proof of concept and a prototype. (Probably a few iterations)

    2. DropBear Silver badge

      Re: So what is it?

      "Isn't that the very definition of a prototype?"

      No. It isn't. A prototype should do everything the final version is supposed to do, as the final version is expected to do it, without necessarily being made up from the actual components of the final version in their final form of assembly. If it's a production prototype, the only difference is actually not having one beeelion of them only the first (few). In other words, it can be a breadboard with a laser pointer and a bunch of loose wires, but it has to shave exactly like the final one is expected to.

      1. Boothy

        Re: So what is it?

        @ DropBear

        Erm, nope, it isn't a near final version. By definition it's a first, or early version of a device/application etc.

        Here's the formal definition (Oxford Dictionary):

        * A first or preliminary version of a device or vehicle from which other forms are developed.

        * The first, original, or typical form of something; an archetype.

        1. TechnicalBen Silver badge

          Re: So what is it?

          I suggest we ask them to shave with it, then decide. ;)

  8. Zog_but_not_the_first Silver badge
    Coat

    Phew!

    That was a close shave.

    {Puts money back in wallet.}

    1. Crisp Silver badge

      Re: Phew!

      I agree. We should hold out for a prototype that's a cut above the rest.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Now restarted on Indiegogo

    https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-skarp-laser-razor-21st-century-shaving#/

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Now restarted on Indiegogo

      Ah Indiegogo will take anyone, they aren't fussy.

      No doubt it will be 'flexible funding', just in case, and also it will then be 'in demand' so they can keep raking it in.

      I would trust Kickstarter over Indiegogo any day as at least Kickstarter do listen if there are a number of complaints. Indiegogo will completely ignore them and will claim as long as they follow the terms and conditions of the site they won't do anything (even if the creators don't follow the terms and conditions they won't actually do anything).

      Unfortunately there is so many chancers and fraudsters on crowdfunding, especially Indiegogo, with little comeback you are better off saving your cash, seeing the end product reviewed and paying full price for it.In the long term you will save more money.

    2. Siv

      Re: Now restarted on Indiegogo

      I was a backer and I was getting more and more disturbed by their videos. 1. none of them were clean shaven which made me concerned they were taking the piss. 2. The videos seemed more like pranks done by students than real scientists. When the notification came that it had been discontinued I was relieved as I was beginning to think the whole thing was a scam.

  10. Apprentice Human

    Back to soap and water.

    It shows how much people hate shaving but want a clean shave.

    I signed up knowing it was externally powered but believed the money needed would make a viable device in mass production.

    Alas, back to the water, soap and a sharp blade for me. Still the modern blades beats the hell out the single blade safety razor I started with and I'm really glad I didn't need to learn how to use a cut-throat razor like my old man showed off with. Yes, he used a safety razor most of the time.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Back to soap and water.

      Alas, back to the water, soap and a sharp blade for me

      Same here. I stopped at 3 blade heads, though, because the prices were getting ridiculous (and the Gillette blades I bought last are as far as I can tell blunt straight out of the package, so I switched to Wilkinson which also seem to last about 3x as long. Weird).

      I do occasionally use an electric razor, but it's rare - a proper blade works best for me.

      1. ISP

        Re: Back to soap and water.

        Gave up on the Gillette money making machine when the Fusion ones exceeded a tenner for four. Switched to a German Merkur safety razor and Astra Platinum razor blades at 100 for a tenner and got a better shave.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Back to soap and water.

          Switched to a German Merkur safety razor and Astra Platinum razor blades at 100 for a tenner and got a better shave.

          OK, I must check this out - it's worth throwing a few bob out for a test, thanks.

        2. fnj

          Re: Back to soap and water.

          Switched to a German Merkur safety razor and Astra Platinum razor blades at 100 for a tenner and got a better shave.

          This is the way to go. Any decent quality double-edge razor from 55+ years ago will last your life, the life of your son, and probably HIS son - and more. The Merkur is a great one you can get today brand new. The Feather is an excellent blade, as well. I never got suckered into disposables or multi-blades. The idea was stupid. Plastic doesn't give you any heft; no momentum. I have EXTREMELY tough wiry bristles on my chin and upper lip.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Redesigning the wheel

    I use straight razors that are all over 70 years old. Best shave ever.

    These guys are trying to reinvent the wheel with a bag full of guff

  12. Blueman

    If you're going to support a shaving related startup...

    Can I strongly suggest you try The Bearded Colonel? Superbly sharp razors at a fraction of the "usual suspects"

    I'm not going to put a link as I've done this as an altruistic recommendation and the one I have has a referral code embedded.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If you're going to support a shaving related startup...

      Can I strongly suggest you try The Bearded Colonel?

      If he has a beard, how can he have any razor expertise?

      /pedant :)

  13. Andy Christ

    I'd be more impressed with the KickStarter ban had they managed somehow to recover the funds raised so far and return them to the original punters. But am assuming this is not the case so perhaps not the most effective deterrent. But the message KS is sending reads rather more like "Just take all that dirty money and get out of here right now!"

    1. cang

      Well Andy, prepare to be impressed. Kickstarter doesn't charge credit cards until AFTER a project is successfully funded - https://www.kickstarter.com/help/faq/backer+questions#faq_41760

      So no backers have lost anything except maybe their innocence.

      1. Andy Christ

        But they already surpassed their goal by about ten times.

        I take it there is still a time frame before the funds are released? The article does not spell that out.

    2. Captain Underpants

      @Andy, I'm guessing you're unfamiliar with Kickstarter then

      If it hasn't completed its funding campaign, then nobody's actually been charged. Kickstart doesn't take the money but requires people backing a project to preauthorise an Amazon Payments account for the amount they're pledging. If the campaign is successful a payment request is then submitted against that account. Up until the campaign deadline is finished, you can withdraw your pledge. Meaning, nobody who'd backed the project has actually had any money taken from them so far.

      For what it's worth, Indiegogo functions in a similar fashion - with the key difference last time I checked being that Indiegogo will still hand over the cash even if the campaign doesn't reach its target. The campaign still needs to finish before payments are made, though.

  14. Ugotta B. Kiddingme
    Unhappy

    this saddens me

    Here I was hoping they were really on to something clever and useful... At least Kickstarter did the right thing, which is nice.

  15. David 164 Bronze badge

    I chuck in a fiver on Indiegogo, what the worst that could happen, they take their prototype laser razor that can cut a few hairs over a couple minutes to a final product that can shave my face in a few minutes and put it on general sale and I spend 300 quid on a Laser razor. I spent 300 quid on worse things.

  16. Zmodem

    there are already hundreds of laser shavers on the market, most are for woman, real men buy a stubble shaver

  17. hatti

    Lesson from James Bond

    I have this picture in my head of Sean Connery strapped to a table in Goldfinger's lair struggling to prevent his privates from being torched.

    I'm afraid it will be difficult for me to exorcise this image when I'm in Boots or wherever kitting myself up with shaving supplies in the future.

    Even the sexy Shark Lazor Razor packaging and seductive TV commercials suggesting I will get laid more would not prevent my hand opting for a blade only option.

  18. Valet2

    There's a wire on the video that cut his hairs - not a laser beam.

  19. d3vy

    Well, its started, It was originally estimated to be delivered "JUNE 2016" we are in the last weeks of may now and *SURPRISE* they have announced that its going to be delayed... Hands up if you are shocked.

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