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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Sat Oct 26, 2013 6:20 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2012 11:14 am
Posts: 190
Location: Florida, USA, Earth
Here is a question (or two). Both are probably hard to answer. The new shave ready razor gave me a very good shave. So it now should be stropped to maintain the edge. The question is how to do it. I am more confident I can do a better job using my flat strops with a combination of CBN and diamond spray down to .25 micron. If I try to strop it on the hanging strop (leather, no compound) I may damage the edge due to a lack of skill. I am not skilled in using it. I have used it and gotten very good results but one stroke with the spine too high may take be backwards in sharpness. My options as I see it is to stick with what I feel confident with (bench strops) on my new razor and continue to practice with the hanging strop using the older Boker razor I have honed from scratch. OR, should I start using the hanging strop on my new, sharpest razor? Since I have a shave ready razor I want to keep it that way. Being as new to straight razors as I am I accept the possibility of screwing up the edge but I'd rather not.

Here is another thought. Who thinks it possible that the razor that has been honed on stones then stropped with a hanging strop is more comfortable to shave with because stropping creates a slightly convex edge compared to a pervect "V" shape that comes from stones? Can anyone get a razor shave ready using only stones? Stropping seems to be an essential step in getting a razor shave ready and as sharp as possible. I'm wondering if the slightly convex edge is more comfortable to shave with until it's time to refresh the edge on hones then stropping again. And, what is it about strops that make them so important? Is it the extremely high grit? The use of trailing strokes? Would trailing strokes on the stones be of benifit?

I've thought about these questions regarding knives but with razors the need for perfection is higher. Especially when the edge will be coming close to my face. :) I don't need my face going through what my fingers have gone through. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:42 pm 
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JACK <> I'm no SR expert, but my observations. You can be upsetting bevel geometry by trying to get close with your EP. Tape the spine as illustrated in the video I attached, and run the stone flush.

As for the strop questions, I have found naked leather stropping absolutely necessary before every shave. Generally speaking, loaded strops are to bring back an edge before a full honing is necessary & then to refine the honing upon its completion, not to daily finish an edge before shaving. Hanging strop to bench strop, I reckon is preference, but the hanging is a classic due to efficiency. 40 laps on a bench seems like it would take forever. As for, convexing. Again, I'm no expert, but the point of a stropping is to align the edge of the edge, not to convex. And in fact, if you are convexing, you are effectively rounding of your edge... not good!

Check these out: http://blog.modernmechanix.com/wonder-photos-reveal-unsuspected-facts-about-razor-blades-and-shaving/
http://www.artofmanliness.com/2011/04/22/how-to-buy-and-restore-vintage-straight-razors/

Lastly, I have never heard of anyone shaving right off the stones. Always stropped.



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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:35 am 
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Location: Peoples Republic of Massachusetts
I agree with everything Melanpus said with one minor exception that is probably just me. I always take my first shave after honing straight from the finishing stone. Only the first shave though and that's just for me to feel how effective my honing was. If its a good shave (if I honed properly) I'll strop after that. If the shave sucks, its back to the stones to figure out where I messed up.

I have used both bench and hanging strops with equal results but really enjoy the 'retro' and quicker hanging strop.

Chris


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 1:49 pm 

Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 11:01 pm
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Location: ATL
I have a couple of shaves under my belt now and so far so good. Still only doing about 1/2 the face at this point, but no sudden trips to the hospital.


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 2:19 pm 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2012 11:14 am
Posts: 190
Location: Florida, USA, Earth
Melampus wrote:JACK <> I'm no SR expert, but my observations. You can be upsetting bevel geometry by trying to get close with your EP. Tape the spine as illustrated in the video I attached, and run the stone flush.

I understand what you mean. My choice to use the EP was based solely on laziness. When sharpening knives I have stones for the EP that will eat steel very fast. This razor needed the amount of work (steel removal) that I didn't want to spend the time it would take using the bench stones I have. Also, the stones I have to speed the process are diamond. I didn't want to risk removing too much spine due to my lack of skill. The EP solved my problem of lack of skill and being in a hurry. The edge had significant chips that needed to be removed. However the sites and info you placed below were very enlightening as to how a tiny chip may still be sharp enough inside to still work. But these chips were obvious to the naked eye and I wanted them removed. When the edge was chipless and smooth I started using my ceramic stones. I didn't want to use diamond, no matter fine a grit, on a razor. I don't know if this is a good opinion or bad. I've read about using tape on the spine and that makes sense. I think I may start restoring used razors as a hobby and tape would be an obvious method. I don't see an attached video however
.

As for the strop questions, I have found naked leather stropping absolutely necessary before every shave. Generally speaking, loaded strops are to bring back an edge before a full honing is necessary & then to refine the honing upon its completion, not to daily finish an edge before shaving. Hanging strop to bench strop, I reckon is preference, but the hanging is a classic due to efficiency. 40 laps on a bench seems like it would take forever. As for, convexing. Again, I'm no expert, but the point of a stropping is to align the edge of the edge, not to convex. And in fact, if you are convexing, you are effectively rounding of your edge... not good!

Check these out: http://blog.modernmechanix.com/wonder-photos-reveal-unsuspected-facts-about-razor-blades-and-shaving/
http://www.artofmanliness.com/2011/04/22/how-to-buy-and-restore-vintage-straight-razors/

Lastly, I have never heard of anyone shaving right off the stones. Always stropped.


In my very limited experience I agree with your comments about strops. I have a naked horse leather bench strop that does wonders for an edge. However, even that edge can be improved in smoothness by a naked kangaroo strop. I've been using these on knives. Using the same tools on razors is working so far however my skill is not adequate to judge any tool as I can screw up an edge with the best possible tools there are. This is ok as I'll learn as my skill improves. My interest in sharpening knives and achieving the sharpest edge in the world was a main reason to decide to start using a straight razor. Obtaining a true razor edge actually on a razor is very intriguing. I'm enjoying the shaving also. So, so far so good. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 12:22 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2012 11:14 am
Posts: 190
Location: Florida, USA, Earth
I emailed my honing/shaving questions to a professional honer and got this reply. I don't think he would care if I posted his identity but I don't have his permission so I won't. I'd be interested to hear what others think of his method and tools. I was glad to hear I probably don't need to buy anything else. For now anyway. :)

HERE IS HIS REPLY:
I finish on an 8K, 12K, 0.25micron diamond and leather. The 12K is optional, and you certainly don't need anything above a 12K. If you are only honing for yourself, the 8K does fine. I hone tons of razors, and the 12K saves me time. For you, time won't mean much.

A lot of unjustifiable emphasis is placed on hones about 8K (I think he meant above 8k) in my opinion. To explain, consider the following scenario. You hone a razor, then use it day by day for shaving. Let's say you get 50 shaves between rehonings. How many shaves could you get if you didn't strop on leather between shaves? One, two shaves at the most. So, 48 of the 50 shaves are on the STROPPED edge and not the honed edge.

Even though this is probably not true, let's say the 12K edge is slightly better than an 8K edge. What is that worth? You might, might get part of one shave, one shave at the most with a slightly better edge. After that, your are shaving with the stropped edge.

You are fine with your 8K hone in my opinion!

Why don't you lay your hanging strop on the edge of a table, which will turn it into a bench/paddle strop? That is what I do. I don't remember the last time I stropped on a hanging strop. The advantage of a hanging strop is space, it just doesn't take much space in a bathroom. But, stropping on the edge of a table works as well, And it sounds like it will be easier for you.


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 2:05 am 
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Thanks for sharing that info! I'm always trying to learn more about SR shaving and honing in particular!!

Chris


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 6:35 am 
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JACK <> The video is attached in the thread on the first page of posts, and although the video demonstrates using the stones as hand stones, I was suggesting you tape your spines even when sharpening on the EP.



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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:06 am 

Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2012 11:01 pm
Posts: 473
Location: ATL
Third shave under my belt today. First time getting the whole face other than mustache area, haven't quite figured that one out yet. Also realized I wasn't developing enough lather with my Razorock cream. After watching a couple videos I figured that out and it helped the shave. I'm using a hanging strop I purchased from the same gentleman as the razor. I've got a bit of a slight razor burn (feel rather than see), but still progressing nicely. Now if I can just get the mrs. to leave the wide bottomed coffee mug by the sink rather than take it to the kitchen I'll be in great shape.


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 Post subject: Re: Dipped my toe in today
PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:25 am 

Joined: Wed May 02, 2012 11:14 am
Posts: 190
Location: Florida, USA, Earth
I'm not getting a good foam. The soap is in a container. I get hot water on the brush and swirl it around on the soap and apply it to my face. But it's still watery and drips a lot. I'd call it about 20% foam and the rest is real soapy water. The shave seems ok but I may not have had a really nice shave with good lather.

Jack
PS
I have been wondering if the water is hot enough. I can put my hands under the hot water without it being REAL hot. But by the time I get the brush to my face the water is NOT hot. Any thoughts?


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