A Cautionary Tale

Use a straight. You know it makes sense.
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drmoss_ca
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A Cautionary Tale

Post by drmoss_ca » Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:01 pm

I have never had a problem with rust on straight razors, as we only have two humid weeks each year in Nova Scotia, and I am fairly obsessional about drying a razor after use. But disaster struck my seven day set of Zowada damascus razors recently, which live in a padded box with a slot for each. Five of them simultaneously developed little black pits along the edge, and one even had some along the shoulder of the spine. It seems I put one away as usual with a dribble of lather that had run in between the scales, a place where I failed to see it and dry it off before putting it away. I found the dried evidence when I started to correct the problem this evening, and felt sure that this was the cause as this razor was the worst affected and also was the one with pits along the shoulder of the spine. All five went to have the pits removed by approximately 100 strokes on a DMT1600, followed by 60 strokes on a Spyderco Fine, 200 on a Chinese 12k, then 100 on a Spyderco UltraFine. Each then has 50 strokes on Flexcut Gold, 50 on Liquid chrome on a hanging strop, 50 on the same on a bench hone, 50 on linen and 50 on latigo. I took the opportunity to freshen up two other razors that just needed the last few stages. 3,650 strokes in all, which took about two and a half hours. That will teach me to look between the scales as well in future! They'll likely need some fine tuning as well when I have shaved with each.
I suspect I shall stick to the stainless damascus Livis until the humidity is gone and then wallow in the glory of the Zowadas again. I'm so relieved to have them all looking pretty and sharp again, not only because of the investment in them, but I suspect Tim would come after me with a cluebat if I ruined so many of his gorgeous razors in one go!

Chris
Big right arm, scrawny left one
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
Pierre-Simon de Laplace

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whitebar
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Post by whitebar » Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:29 pm

Thanks for the heads up! Needless to say, I'm glad the razors are OK as they are true masterpieces.
-Stephen

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ZethLent
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Post by ZethLent » Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:29 pm

Chris,

Do you have a picture of the set that you could post?

I think many of us would like to see your Zowada set. And live a somewhat vicarious fantasy by just looking at them. :)



- Seth
笑う門に福来る。

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xChris
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Post by xChris » Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:32 pm

I too have had problems with reminents of lather between blade & scales causing corrosion. It is definitely an anecdote worth puting out for other straight razors to keep in mind for their own collections.
Chris

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Squire
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Post by Squire » Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:38 pm

We have high humidity here, well, almost every day, so I leave my open razors out on a shelf and monitor them regularly.
Regards,
Squire

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matt321
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Post by matt321 » Sat Jul 25, 2009 7:20 pm

Out, damn'd spot! out, I say! :shock:

So maybe there was moisture locked inside the box. Is the box vented? Is there desiccant inside? This set could qualify as a National Treasure. You really must do better Chris! :wink:

Chap
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Post by Chap » Mon Jul 27, 2009 2:56 am

I wonder why the pits formed on the edges only? Maybe it has something to do with the texture of honed metal being conducive to condensation? A desiccant in there sounds like a good idea.

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Post by Tim Zowada » Tue Jul 28, 2009 6:43 am

Howdy,

I hate it when that happens!

I dry and oil them after every use. The edge on all carbon razors will corrode a little without oiling. You just might need a microscope to see it. I use the Classic Brand Razor Oil (shameless plug).

Light staining, or even rust, on the Damascus patterned section can be cleaned up by lightly sanding with 2000 grit Silicon Carbide sand paper

Chris, if you look on my web site, you'll see I offer lifetime maintenance on my knives and razors, for the original owner. If you want to go through the hassle with US and Canadian customs, I'd be happy to clean them up for you.

Tim Z.

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drmoss_ca
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Post by drmoss_ca » Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:41 am

Hi Tim, I'm happy that I have them back as they should be, though thanks for the offer. Any opinion about supposed long-lasting protective coats (like TufGlide)? Do they just come off with stropping?

Chris
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
Pierre-Simon de Laplace

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Post by Tim Zowada » Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:35 am

They all come off with stropping. So, oiling the blade is a daily ritual. I apply it with my fingertips, running along, and away from, the edge. Before the next use, I wipe the oil off the back of the blade with T. paper. I use my finger tips to wipe the oil off the edge. I don't like anything made with cellulose and lignin touching the edge of my razors.

For long term storage, I have always preferred RIG Gun Grease. It isn't too thick and doesn't evaporate.

I hope this helps.

Tim Z.

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Squire
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Post by Squire » Sat Aug 01, 2009 2:31 am

I use Balistol, or any good gun oil.
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Squire

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Post by brothers » Sat Aug 01, 2009 3:43 pm

I use Hoppe's lubricating oil, recommended for firearms, after the shave. I bought it from a gun shop, upon their recommendation. So far, so good!
Gary

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Post by scruffy » Mon Aug 03, 2009 7:44 am

I use a few drops of olive oil. If it was good enough for the Knights of the Round Table it is good enough for me.
Ed

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drmoss_ca
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Post by drmoss_ca » Mon Aug 03, 2009 9:36 am

scruffy wrote:I use a few drops of olive oil. If it was good enough for the Knights of the Round Table it is good enough for me.
God's Teeth! If we are going to involve that lot I shall have to buy (?crush my own) camelia oil.

Chris
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
Pierre-Simon de Laplace

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Post by Utopian » Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:01 pm

After shaving I always dip my razors in a 0.5% solution of mineral oil in isopropanol (rubbing alcohol). The alcohol evaporates quickly and takes residual water away with it, leaving the oil behind to protect the blade.

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Post by ferroburak » Sat Sep 04, 2010 3:14 pm

Utopian wrote:After shaving I always dip my razors in a 0.5% solution of mineral oil in isopropanol (rubbing alcohol). The alcohol evaporates quickly and takes residual water away with it, leaving the oil behind to protect the blade.
Might alcohol rust the blade as well?

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