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What is Micarta?

Developed in 1910 by American engineer George Westinghouse, Micarta is a sturdy and lightweight composite material that was named by its US producer, General Electric. Now, it is a commonly used term for similar fiber/plastic composites made by several manufacturers today. Micarta is typically found on knife handles, straight razors, and other high-tech tools and applications.

Composite materials consist of two or more base materials that bond together while retaining their own structure and are usually used when weight reduction is a priority. Micarta is a combination of absorptive fibers (like wood, linen or cellulose) and a synthetic resin (mainly epoxy or phenol resin). To make Micarta, the fibers are first saturated with resin. When the resin is cured, the composite material is processed by grinding or sanding.All of these composite materials have in common that they consist of at least two different base materials which are bonded together but retain their own structure. Therefore, composite materials combine the different properties of their base materials. They are usually developed to offer all the advantages of comparable conventional materials at a much lighter weight. That is why they are mainly used in high-tech applications where weight reduction is a priority (e.g. in aircraft or vehicle construction) but also where the use of light materials makes for easy and pleasant handling, e.g. in the production of high-quality knives.

Not only is Micarta lightweight, but it is extremely dense and resilient. With a high level of stability, it’s able to retain its shape and measurements in various temperatures and humidity, making it great for razors that are often stored in the bathroom. Micarta is also pleasant to the touch and offers a firm, comfortable grip so you won’t slip up next time you need to focus on your face.

You can find these handles available in our Boker collection. Specifically the Boker 4/8" Treebrand Straight Razor and Boker 5/8" Treebrand Straight Razor.