Log date Reference(s) Comment
02/02/16 General disclaimer We aim to make and offer for sale fine shaving brushes of the kind and quality we want for ourselves, to treat others as we wish to be treated, and to go about doing that in a manner that provides a positive experience for all. Accordingly, we will strive at all times to communicate honestly and transparently with the wet-shaving community in general and our customers in particular. The information, observations, and opinions set out here are offered in furtherance of that goal.

That said, it is important to note with emphasis here at the outset that badger-hair is a natural product, that the badger-hair knots we use to make Paladin™ shaving brushes are hand-made, that there are inevitably differences within as well as between batches or sorts of knots, and that much that is interesting to say about badger-hair knots and their qualities is highly subjective (i.e. mileage varies). So what is communicated here should be understood as an attempt to provide perspective and guidance rather than provision of representations and warranties.
02/02/16 Loft Loft is the vertical distance from the top of a handle where the knot is inserted into the socket (i.e., knot hole) to the highest point of the knot at its crown. It is the most common, and often the only, measurement given in description of a brush’s knot besides diameter at the insertion point. (See also Brushology: Anatomy and nomenclature.)
02/02/16 Free loft Free loft is the vertical distance from the highest level glue reaches at the center of a knot (i.e., the top of its so-called glue bump) to the knot’s crown, unless the top of the glue bump is recessed beneath the socket rim, in which case a brush’s free loft will be the same as its loft. (See also Brushology: Anatomy and nomenclature.)
02/02/16 Blonde Badger, Finest, Lee Sabini Brushes with KANSAS CITY · LONDON engraved under PALADIN and/or with BLONDE BADGER or FINEST on the side opposite to PALADIN contain knots that were hand-made and installed in England by Lee Sabini (of Morris & Forndran) or under his direction as part of the second batch of Paladin shaving brushes.
02/02/16 Paladin™ knot codes Six-character knot codes associated with individual shaving brushes signify type (e.g., 2-band), source (e.g., China), primary sort or characteristic(s), secondary sort or characteristics(s) (if any, with N indicating none), batch month (of delivery); and batch year, respectively. These codes are primarily intended for our own reference; however, others in the community might find them of interest.

When we post notes with regard to primary sorts and or related characteristics, we will indicate whether those are generally applicable to any knot associated with a particular sort code or more specifically in relation to a batch or series of batches. For example 2CA would be used in the former case, and the full code (e.g., 2CANL2 for 2-band, China, A sort, no secondary sort, December, 2015) would be used in the latter.
02/02/16 2CLNL2 
December 2015
Hand-made in China to our specifications, these knots generally tend to be a little taller in overall height than 2CSNL2 knots (which were sourced as part of the same order); consequently, most of them are set deeper than 2CSNL2 knots, which might be expected to result in somewhat different splay characteristics, all else being equal. Note that these knots also generally have a bit more free-loft, which seems to us to yield a softer and comparatively less scrubby feel, but without being floppy.
02/02/16 2CSNL2
December 2015
Hand-made in China to our specifications, these knots generally tend to be a little shorter in overall height than 2CLNL2 knots (which were sourced as part of the same order); consequently, most of them aren’t set quite so deep as 2CLNL2 knots, which might be expected to result in somewhat different splay characteristics, all else being equal. Note that these knots also generally have a bit less free-loft, which might yield stiffer backbone and a somewhat scrubbier effect by comparison.
06/04/16 2CLND3
April 2016
When ordered in March 2016, these knots were expected to match the specifications against which the 2CLNL2 knots (see above) were produced in the fourth quarter of 2015, with the exception of a slight reduction in base diameter and/or density for knots sized to fit 26 mm handle sockets. This was due to the fact 2CLNL2 knots intended for 26 mm handles combined overall height and density such that we set most of them a bit higher than we might have otherwise.

This worked very well for larger handles such as the Lotus. And those knots were very well suited to brush users who prefer high density. We tend to favor medium density, however, and so aimed to dial it down a little for 26 mm L-type knots in the second order. Consequently, although 2CLND3 hair is indistinguishable, at least to us, from that used in making the 2CLNL2 knots, 26 mm brushes with 2CLND3 knots will probably, for the most part, be lofted a bit lower (in the ≈49-51 mm range), and we expect them to exhibit more moderate density than 26 mm brushes with 2CNL2 knots, which by and large we considered to be quite dense.

We have found the hair used in making 2CLND3 knots to be virtually identical to 2CLNL2 hair in terms of appearance, feel, and resilience (independent of density and loft). Free-loft has also been closely comparable for knots we’ve measured so far.
06/04/16 2CSND3
April 2016
When ordered in March 2016, these knots were expected to match the specifications against which the 2CSNL2 knots (see above) were produced in the fourth quarter of 2015, and they generally turned out to by appearance as well as in terms of base and height dimensions. Overall, however, the 2CSND3 knots we’ve measured to date have appreciably more free-loft than the 2CSNL2s. Moreover, although we detected a bit scritch in some of the 2CSNL2 knots we trialed, so far we haven’t experienced any scritch from use of 2CSND3 knots. That said, we’ve only tested a few of them. And mileage will inevitably vary.
01/26/17 2CM2L3
December 2016
These knots were ordered in November 2016. The hair from which they were made is relatively long and of high grade; however, it has a noticeably different feel than that characteristic of previously sourced 2CS or 2CL knots, so we assigned a new primary-sort code to designate the general type. Within this primary sort, we identified a subset of 26 mm semi-bulb knots that was further distinguishable by subtle differences in both color and feel, so we also assigned secondary sort codes (2CM1or 2CM2).

In general, 2CM knots have a coarser, scrubbier feel than 2CS or 2CL knots. 2CM2 knots appear to us to have more naturally colored tips than 2CM1 knots, which have somewhat whiter tips. We experienced a bit of scritch in use of a couple sample knots from the 2CM2 group. That seems to have subsided after some initial break-in; however, mileage will inevitably vary in this regard.

In terms of guidance, if you prefer 2-band knots with ultra-soft tips, 2CM2s probably aren't the best bet. On the other hand, if you enjoy a scrubbier brush, one of these knots might be just what you’re looking for. And we'd expect them to perform very well with hard soaps.
02/14/17 2CSNL3
December 2016
Ordered in November 2016, these knots are more closely comparable to 2CSNL2s (December 2015) than 2CSND3s (April 2016).
02/14/17 2CLNA4
January 2017
These knots are comparable to 2CLNL2s and 2CLND3s. Based on the samples we've tried, it seems like this batch might have a bit more presence (i.e., individual hairs could be felt to a greater extent), but that's highly subjective. The 2CLNA4s we've measured so far have slightly more free loft than earlier L knots.
05/23/17 2CSLD4
April 2017

The badger hair used to make these knots was sourced from the supplier of earlier 2CS knots; however, these were handmade exclusively for us by the producer of 2CL knots, in relation to whom we appear to have attained greater (and, hopefully, sustainable) influence over quality control directed to meet our requirements.

The several knots we have sampled for evaluation (i.e., lathered and used) exhibited to varying degrees what are often referred to as hooked and/or gel-like tips that tend to dry in rather hard clumps. We believe these characteristics, which many brush aficionados regard as highly desirable, result from the sterilization process. They have appeared among some previous 2CS knots, but based on sampling so far, we expect them to be more widespread and pronounced in these, although mileage is bound to vary.

Subjectively, I would say the knots I've tried from this batch all exhibited very nice presence with no hint of scritch, to which I am highly sensitive. As with most 2-band knots, performance and feel depend significantly on knot shape and density as set, overall loft, and free loft (all of which are -- or should be -- at least in part a function of the length of hair used to make the knot). 

Knots associated with this code sized for 26 mm handles were made with longer hair (by about 1 mm on average) and have slightly larger base circumferences. As might be expected, we've found they want to be set at correspondingly higher lofts.

05/23/17 2CSLE4
May 2017
Same as SCSLD4.