Need help!

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Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Need help!

Post by Southbound » Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm

Hi,
I am relatively new to straight razors shaving. I'm just over 100 shaves in. I wasn't in a hurry to learn honing. I just wanted to learn the stropping and shaving part first, and to see if I was in this for the long hall. Well I did make up my mind and I decided I was in it for the long hall. So I did buy me some stones. I haven't used them yet because I am waiting on the old beater razors to come in that I ordered, because I don't want to ruin my good ones while learning to hone.

I have run into a bit of a dilemma though. I bought my Ralf Aust razor new and it was shave ready. I successfully stropped and shaved with it 64 times without rolling or dulling my edge. At shave 65 I did a refreshing on a balsawood strop with crox. It did wake up my edge and make it like new again, and it shaved very well for another 6 shaves. Today's shave I did my normal stropping routine, and I always check the hht test before and after a shave and it failed the 1st 3/4 of the blade.

I don't have any magnification yet, but I did look at the apex under a strong light source. Its does appear to have glimmers of light catching in spots on the apex. I don't understand what went wrong, because I'm OCD as crap. I always strop using a light touch with a taught strop. I never rinse under the facet, because of the fear of dinging the edge, so I wipe the lather in a stropping motion on a soft sponge. I always post strop to insure the edge is dry. I always oil the blade with ballistol. My routine has never changed. I have read of guys getting over 100 shaves without touchups.

So did I over do it when I did my refreshing on the crox? I did do 80 or so laps. I was thinking can crox cause a wire edge? Did I create a wire edge, and the edge just crumbled. I was reading on the PDF of Iwasaki honing guide. He claims that stropping with crox does remove the wire edge. On wood he suggested that it causes the blade to chip, so he recommended some kind of cloth. Anyways I don't know if I created a wire edge or not, but something went wrong. Any suggestions on what might have went wrong?

I indeed have lots to learn, but I wouldn't think that crox would cause a burr, because in the knife world we use stropping compounds to remove burrs. I here of people saying only do like 10 strokes on a 12k, or 3-4 strokes on a 16k, because of microchipping can occur. So How can a person achieve a 16k edge by only doing 3-4 laps?? I'm my mind their is no way that those stones are that fast. I have read of some experienced honers say that some stones its impossible to over hone. For example they said that they have used a certain natural finishing stone and no matter how many strokes they do they can not over hone, but using a very high grit synthetic stone, they can experience over honing in 3-4 strokes. IMO one can over hone on a knife, razor or any tool with "any stone", if you use to much pressure. Advice please?

CMur12
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Re: Need help!

Post by CMur12 » Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:21 pm

Hello Southbound. Welcome to SMF!

I'm not a straight razor shaver myself, so I can't offer you the advice you seek.

This topic would be much more readily noticed in the Straight Razors forum, so I could transfer this thread there, if you like.

Either way, I will put an alert to this thread in that forum to direct attention here.

- Murray
Give me Soap or give me death!

Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Re: Need help!

Post by Southbound » Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:29 pm

CMur12 wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 9:21 pm
Hello Southbound. Welcome to SMF!

I'm not a straight razor shaver myself, so I can't offer you the advice you seek.

This topic would be much more readily noticed in the Straight Razors forum, so I could transfer this thread there, if you like.

Either way, I will put an alert to this thread in that forum to direct attention here.

- Murray
Thanks Murray! Yes if you would, go ahead and transfer me there please.

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drmoss_ca
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Re: Need help!

Post by drmoss_ca » Sat Feb 23, 2019 6:59 am

Southbound wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm
Hi,
I am relatively new to straight razors shaving. I'm just over 100 shaves in. I wasn't in a hurry to learn honing. I just wanted to learn the stropping and shaving part first, and to see if I was in this for the long hall. Well I did make up my mind and I decided I was in it for the long hall. So I did buy me some stones. I haven't used them yet because I am waiting on the old beater razors to come in that I ordered, because I don't want to ruin my good ones while learning to hone.
Welcome! Please feel free to ask all the questions you like and we'll do our best to help.
Southbound wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm
I have run into a bit of a dilemma though. I bought my Ralf Aust razor new and it was shave ready. I successfully stropped and shaved with it 64 times without rolling or dulling my edge. At shave 65 I did a refreshing on a balsawood strop with crox. It did wake up my edge and make it like new again, and it shaved very well for another 6 shaves. Today's shave I did my normal stropping routine, and I always check the hht test before and after a shave and it failed the 1st 3/4 of the blade.
Sounds grand right up to the last bit. Frankly 64 shaves without any touch up is very good going, but I bet the last shave had changed quite a bit from the first, maybe just a little at a time so it wouldn't be noticed unless you could compare first and last side by side. It is absolutely unnecessary and unhelpful to do the HHT before and after each shave, and it sounds like you will go bald if you keep doing that in several places on the blade! The shave is the only test that counts I don't do HHTs, and only use a TNT if honing out a ding in the edge. Shaving tells me what I need to know, and anyway, what would I do if a razor just shaved me perfectly and failed a HHT? I'm not risking losing that next perfect shave with unneeded honing. You'll drive yourself mad if you overthink this.
Southbound wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm
I don't have any magnification yet, but I did look at the apex under a strong light source. Its does appear to have glimmers of light catching in spots on the apex. I don't understand what went wrong, because I'm OCD as crap. I always strop using a light touch with a taught strop. I never rinse under the facet, because of the fear of dinging the edge, so I wipe the lather in a stropping motion on a soft sponge. I always post strop to insure the edge is dry. I always oil the blade with ballistol. My routine has never changed. I have read of guys getting over 100 shaves without touchups.
OCD will not necessarily be your friend here, at least too much of it won't. If you had a microscope it would drive you crazy. You would see the best edge you can create look pretty beaten up after a single shave. Imagine it after 64. You'd feel the need to hone away all that imperfection, and no longer enjoy long runs between honings, never mind having a razor that would wear away to a sliver quicker than you would expect. I remember someone once sending me a razor he couldn't hone. It was 3/8" wide and had a frown - he had consumed half the blade with his frantic honing (I sent him a new razor out of pity).
Southbound wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm
So did I over do it when I did my refreshing on the crox? I did do 80 or so laps. I was thinking can crox cause a wire edge? Did I create a wire edge, and the edge just crumbled. I was reading on the PDF of Iwasaki honing guide. He claims that stropping with crox does remove the wire edge. On wood he suggested that it causes the blade to chip, so he recommended some kind of cloth. Anyways I don't know if I created a wire edge or not, but something went wrong. Any suggestions on what might have went wrong?
It's very difficult to create a wire edge with pastes, almost impossible. 80 laps is probably more than was needed, but that depends on the steel and what state the edge is in. If a razor has been shaving well and after 64 shaves you think it might need some help, then starting with 10 or 20 laps is fine. You can do more if it hasn't helped, but you can't undo excessive laps. If you think about an abrasive particle, it's hardness, the amount of 'give' of the substrate it is mounted on and the brittleness of the blade, you can see the play of variables that determines chipping. Larger and harder abrasive particles increase the risk of chipping, as does an inflexible surface they are applied to, and so does brittleness and included angle of the edge. I wouldn't use hardwood, but balsa is fine, as is denim, leather - shiny or suede side. Without looking at your blade, I don't know what you're seeing for certain, but it probably represents some post-shave deformations of the edge. Plain stropping on linen and leather should lessen the glinting you see in that case.
Southbound wrote:
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:43 pm
I indeed have lots to learn, but I wouldn't think that crox would cause a burr, because in the knife world we use stropping compounds to remove burrs. I here of people saying only do like 10 strokes on a 12k, or 3-4 strokes on a 16k, because of microchipping can occur. So How can a person achieve a 16k edge by only doing 3-4 laps?? I'm my mind their is no way that those stones are that fast. I have read of some experienced honers say that some stones its impossible to over hone. For example they said that they have used a certain natural finishing stone and no matter how many strokes they do they can not over hone, but using a very high grit synthetic stone, they can experience over honing in 3-4 strokes. IMO one can over hone on a knife, razor or any tool with "any stone", if you use to much pressure. Advice please?
Knives and chisels tend to have a larger included angle on their edges and will resist chipping much more than a razor, but really, chipping and wire edges from pastes aren't things you need worry about. I'm not sure you need think about micro-chipping either. I have a shameful number of straight razors, numbering in the hundreds, and I can think of only a couple where the edge tended to crumble in that fashion when examined under a microscope. The guy who forged the damascus for them felt he hadn't got his technique right at that time, and later razors didn't have the issue. I don't begin to believe people who do three strokes on a hone and call it good. That razor was sharp already. And claiming they get 'microchipping' if they do more - I'll take that as a 'micro-aggression' against common sense. [Redacted] has become a nerd-fest of people trying to outshine each other with ever more arcane and unlikely knowledge that is posted simply to make them look good.

I'm going to make a suggestion that would sound odd to those who know me - RELAX! This is supposed to be fun. I know, you're at the stage of enjoying a new interest and trying to learn all you can whilst having relatively little experience. I know the feeling, and I know it can suck out some of the fun to have to worry about doing it wrongly. Remember that without the internet, without books, if you kept at it you would learn how to get the best edge achievable by you, with your tools, and your razor, just by trial and error. Sure, it would take a long time and you'd be tempted to give up, but you would learn. Osmosis is a wonderful thing, and even without trying, something you do repeatedly over a long period of time tends to get better and better even without conscious effort to adapt, experiment and learn. I don't really know how it happened, but when I hone, when I cook, or when I develop a film or print in the darkroom, I expect it to work and it does. Just by doing it for some years you get good without trying too hard. But when you read about strangers on the internet enjoying nirvana-like shaves because they bought this or did that, it makes you feel you must compete. No fun that way (and do you think they all really get those shaves?)

So how to proceed? Despite what I've just written, I'm not saying you should blindly rub your razors on stones! Experiment with your older razor on your new hones (which ones did you buy?) Know that received wisdom has changed over the years since Lynn started his Yahoo group, from simple edge-first strokes, to pyramids, to back and forth and the to circles. All can work, but I like to go back and forth on one side for ten laps, then back and forth on the other for ten more, then repeat lightly, then do a few edge-first strokes, then move on to the next hone. It's not so much what you do but how you do it - light, even, pressure applying the blade gently to the hone. No rough or careless movements, and don't press down hard; you bend the blade and end up honing just proximal to the edge. By all means use a 60x handheld microscope to look at the results, but don't use that to tell you when it's sharp. You'll learn to sense the drag on the hone, and maybe hear the change in sound as there is a perfect flat surface of the bevel contacting the hone. In the end the shave is the only way to tell. Feel free to use some paste after your finishing hone; it will do a better job than you can with hones alone until you are very, very good with them. It's OK to put tape on the spine, just one layer, and mostly to protect the razor from clumsiness and overhoning. You alter the bevel angle and get a different edge, but save the slightly smaller angle and better edge of no-tape honing until you can get there without grinding away too much steel. Stropping is far more important than most people think. Correct technique can make all the difference to a shave. You quickly learn to see what works best in terms of strop tautness, stropping pressure and so on. You must never let even tiny nicks appear in the strop, not because it ruins the strop which can be salvaged, but because it means you caught the edge and will have bent a divot in it. Go slowly, there is no benefit in the showmanship of competitive speed stropping. It's better to be satisfied with the kind of shaves that men generally had in the pre-safety razor age, possibly just going WTG, rather than giving up because nothing is "BBS". Perfect shaves, going ATG, are not hard to achieve, but only when you master the basics. Painful and irritating shaves are just going to make you give up, so alter your expectations until your skills can justify them. Have fun, and ask questions.
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
Pierre-Simon de Laplace

EL Alamein
Posts: 2853
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 7:55 pm

Re: Need help!

Post by EL Alamein » Sat Feb 23, 2019 7:28 pm

Follow Dr. Moss's good advice. You will get there, don't be discouraged.

When I first read this last night I thought long about how to respond. Thought I'd come up with something today but Dr. Moss beat me to it and his response is excellent.

There is so much to learn, take your time and ask questions. Learning to hone is you first step. Polishing with pastes is the next step and its easier than the first. Like Dr. Moss said 10 to 20 strokes is all that's needed when polishing with pastes. Honing sets the bevel, polishing finishes the edge.

Best of luck.

Chris

Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Re: Need help!

Post by Southbound » Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm

Hello again,
Thanks for getting back to me! I am definitely here to learn. Actually the last shave before the edge broke down actually shaved very well.When I did the refreshing it brought the edge back to feeling like new. That's what has me puzzled? This may sound crazy but I actually write down the number of shaves on a blade and how well it shaved. I hope I didn't sound arrogant by saying I was overly confident in the way I handled the razor, during and after the shave, because I mess up everyday, and I'm just a fallible human being. Lol I had to have accidentally rolled the edge while stropping

That is how I actually I found the damage before the shave. I did the hht and it failed, so I examined it under good lighting and found the damage. It would barely shave arm hair in those areas of damage, so I definitely wasn't taking that to my face Good thing is I actually have multiple sources for hair in brushes around my household . Another sharpness test I go by the fools pass. If if ain't sharp I won't cut it there. It will pull the hairs out of my skin, and I will have bloody pore holes. I do agree Sir, yes a shave test is what counts. I've read that some of the most ugly scratch patterns are from natural stones, but they shave very very well.

Yes I agree a very high magnification would drive me crazy! Lol You know if you look at something as smooth as the skin on a baby under high enough magnification it would look like a washed out and rutted gravel road. I think I will order me a Belomo 10x loupe. Lol That will be enough for me for now, and keep me sane.

I'm curious on you opinion on how many shaves one should get from a properly maintained straight razor before one has to hone or use pastes? How many do you get before a touch up? So after one shave under a microscope you can see significant damage? So you think I went to far? I was reading up on Alfredo aka Doc226 the other day and he one went way over 120 shaves, without discomfort , and it still passed the hht. I do agree the strop is very important! Infact its a straight razor shavers best friend. When I first started I practiced stropping a lot with a dull razor. The real vintage linen strops I love. I actually have two. IMO, I think that that there is actually something happening to the edge in a positive way with linen and leather . Some say it does nothing, but I disagree. I have actually got to were i strop before my last pass, and I can tell a big difference. Just plain linen does have more of mild abrasiveness to it, because over time you can see black swarf on the white linen, and if you look close enough you can see metal particles in bare leather also. I think there is just enough silicates in leather to realign and polish/burnish our edges.

You probably won't agree with the razors I ordered, but I read if you learn to hone a Gold dallor razor, you can about hone anything. So yeap that's what I ordered, and I plan on doing regrinds on some of the blades. Pushing the hollow grind farther up the blade, making it a full hollow and thinning the spine, so I can get the bevels at around 16.5°. I definitely don't want to practice on my Boker silver steel or my Ralf A. Yes I also use common sense when those individuals who say only do 8-10 on a Naniwa 12k and on a Shapton glass 30k do 1-3. Their is no way one can achieve a 30k edge with only 4 strokes. If that stone is that fast just do a one stone hone bevelset-finish. Lol. These are some heavy hitters in the honing department saying this too! And people are taking it as gospel/cannon.

My stones are Shapton pro 1.5k, 5k, 8k and Naniwa 12k. I haven't prepared them or lapped them for honing yet. I am going to use wet/dry sandpaper on 1/2" thick float glass. I am going to use 220 to get them all flat. I was wandering do I need to put a different surface finish on my higher grit stones? If I finish or dress the surface of the 5-12k with 400 grit paper, will this be to coarsely of a finish for my 8k and 12k stones. I have a question about the correct pressure to use while honing. I've read some say that heavy pressure on a full hollow grind is the exact same pressure you would use when erasing a pencil mark from paper. I have read also that some use torque towards the edge. That don't make sense to me for some reason, because a full to extra hollow will flex on a thumbnail with very little pressure. So why would one want to torque the pressure towards the most fragile part of the razor??

Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Re: Need help!

Post by Southbound » Sat Feb 23, 2019 11:45 pm

EL Alamein wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 7:28 pm
Follow Dr. Moss's good advice. You will get there, don't be discouraged.

When I first read this last night I thought long about how to respond. Thought I'd come up with something today but Dr. Moss beat me to it and his response is excellent.

There is so much to learn, take your time and ask questions. Learning to hone is you first step. Polishing with pastes is the next step and its easier than the first. Like Dr. Moss said 10 to 20 strokes is all that's needed when polishing with pastes. Honing sets the bevel, polishing finishes the edge.

Best of luck.

Chris
Thanks for the the reply! I am here to learn and wide open for your guys expertise.
Thanks,
Mike

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drmoss_ca
Admin
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Re: Need help!

Post by drmoss_ca » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:09 am

Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
Hello again,
Thanks for getting back to me! I am definitely here to learn. Actually the last shave before the edge broke down actually shaved very well.When I did the refreshing it brought the edge back to feeling like new. That's what has me puzzled? This may sound crazy but I actually write down the number of shaves on a blade and how well it shaved. I hope I didn't sound arrogant by saying I was overly confident in the way I handled the razor, during and after the shave, because I mess up everyday, and I'm just a fallible human being. Lol I had to have accidentally rolled the edge while stropping

That is how I actually I found the damage before the shave. I did the hht and it failed, so I examined it under good lighting and found the damage. It would barely shave arm hair in those areas of damage, so I definitely wasn't taking that to my face Good thing is I actually have multiple sources for hair in brushes around my household . Another sharpness test I go by the fools pass. If if ain't sharp I won't cut it there. It will pull the hairs out of my skin, and I will have bloody pore holes. I do agree Sir, yes a shave test is what counts. I've read that some of the most ugly scratch patterns are from natural stones, but they shave very very well.

Yes I agree a very high magnification would drive me crazy! Lol You know if you look at something as smooth as the skin on a baby under high enough magnification it would look like a washed out and rutted gravel road. I think I will order me a Belomo 10x loupe. Lol That will be enough for me for now, and keep me sane.

I'm curious on you opinion on how many shaves one should get from a properly maintained straight razor before one has to hone or use pastes? How many do you get before a touch up? So after one shave under a microscope you can see significant damage? So you think I went to far? I was reading up on Alfredo aka Doc226 the other day and he one went way over 120 shaves, without discomfort , and it still passed the hht. I do agree the strop is very important! Infact its a straight razor shavers best friend. When I first started I practiced stropping a lot with a dull razor. The real vintage linen strops I love. I actually have two. IMO, I think that that there is actually something happening to the edge in a positive way with linen and leather . Some say it does nothing, but I disagree. I have actually got to were i strop before my last pass, and I can tell a big difference. Just plain linen does have more of mild abrasiveness to it, because over time you can see black swarf on the white linen, and if you look close enough you can see metal particles in bare leather also. I think there is just enough silicates in leather to realign and polish/burnish our edges.
If you owned dozens or hundreds of razors, how likely would you be to stick with one alone when all the rest were crying out for some love? So I'm not the best person to ask, but I have once gone 2-3 months with a single blade (it was a Livi). I have never heard of Doc226, but he obviously is a magician of great powers. Remember what I said in the post above?
Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
You probably won't agree with the razors I ordered, but I read if you learn to hone a Gold dallor razor, you can about hone anything. So yeap that's what I ordered, and I plan on doing regrinds on some of the blades. Pushing the hollow grind farther up the blade, making it a full hollow and thinning the spine, so I can get the bevels at around 16.5°. I definitely don't want to practice on my Boker silver steel or my Ralf A. Yes I also use common sense when those individuals who say only do 8-10 on a Naniwa 12k and on a Shapton glass 30k do 1-3. Their is no way one can achieve a 30k edge with only 4 strokes. If that stone is that fast just do a one stone hone bevelset-finish. Lol. These are some heavy hitters in the honing department saying this too! And people are taking it as gospel/cannon.
On the contrary, there are far harder razors to hone. What concerns me is that you have a couple of razors, no honing experience and are already planning custom regrinds! You have been reading too much and doing too little - and I mean that in the kindliest way. It's an easy trap for us aspie types to fall into - the excitement of a new body of knowledge, with all the enthusiasm and obsession that goes along with it. I certainly wouldn't presume to tell you that you must do it this way or that, but long experience with razors, other obsessions and a full spectrum family tells me that you are most likely to achieve lasting success if you pace yourself. Also, don't believe the wild claims made by complete strangers on the internet. What they are full of may not be truth.
Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
My stones are Shapton pro 1.5k, 5k, 8k and Naniwa 12k. I haven't prepared them or lapped them for honing yet. I am going to use wet/dry sandpaper on 1/2" thick float glass. I am going to use 220 to get them all flat. I was wandering do I need to put a different surface finish on my higher grit stones? If I finish or dress the surface of the 5-12k with 400 grit paper, will this be to coarsely of a finish for my 8k and 12k stones. I have a question about the correct pressure to use while honing. I've read some say that heavy pressure on a full hollow grind is the exact same pressure you would use when erasing a pencil mark from paper. I have read also that some use torque towards the edge. That don't make sense to me for some reason, because a full to extra hollow will flex on a thumbnail with very little pressure. So why would one want to torque the pressure towards the most fragile part of the razor??
Perfectly good hones (hones = man made, stones = natural); I have a full set of Shapton Pros and a couple of sets of Naniwas (wore out the first one), although they aren't my first choices these days. You will want to use paste if your finishing hone is a 12k Naniwa. I clean and lap them with a Shapton DGLP as it is quick and convenient. With soft man made composites, the size of lapping compound particles doesn't matter so much as the hone will quickly abrade and the scratches you make on the hone are gone. With some very hard hones - natural stones like Arkansas and some ceramics like Spyderco, it is the lapped scratch pattern that does the honing, and lapping is critical to results.
Honing pressure - let's set a sensible rule and work from there. If you press too lightly, it will take longer to hone the razor but you will get there in the end. If you press too hard, you will deform the blade and achieve absolutely nothing. This is going to be seen most easily with fully hollowed blades with tape on the spine, where it will be easiest to make the upper edge of the bevel ride on the hone rather than the flat of the bevel - just think of the geometry. You can remove most of the metal in a blade without ever getting an edge that way. So let's say our rule should be that you can't use too little. Now you can use more, but just don't go beyond the point at which you deform the blade. How much that is will depend on the kind of steel, its tempering and the stiffness of the grind, so there is no one size fits all answer. What to do? I use what feels right to me and see if the edge is improving on the first stone/hone, and if it doesn't, I have to experiment with less or more. I just tried holding a pencil like the shank of a razor and pressed it on my digital scale as if honing - about 100g. The only time I use heavy pressure is if a razor has a deep ding in the edge and I need to remove quite a lot of metal.

I hope none of what I have written comes across as criticism, as I don't intend it that way. You sound very enthusiastic and that may give you the momentum to stick with this and become really good at it. Really good means you take a perfect shave for granted and don't have to worry, or think too much, about maintaining your razors in that perfect state. I'd hate to see you give up because you read of wild expectations from easy tricks that worked for someone, but will disappoint you. That's why I stress the fun - it should be a pleasure, and the moment you worry about how to do this or that to the extent you aren't having fun and the whole business is a burden is the moment to go and buy a DE. Don't worry if you don't get the results claimed by 'heavy hitters' of whom half are fantasists and the rest optimists. Just do it, enjoy the ride , and you'll find the skills develop as you see the results. I'm happy to advise, to tell you what I do, but I'm not going to tell you in detail what you must do; partly because there are numerous ways to hone a razor, and partly because if you want to be good you must learn, not be spoon fed. And since I'm beginning to sound like a certain shaolin priest, I'd better let the other Chris take over before I call you 'Grasshopper'!
"Je n'ai pas besoin de cette hypothèse."
Pierre-Simon de Laplace

Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Re: Need help!

Post by Southbound » Sun Feb 24, 2019 3:59 pm

drmoss_ca wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:09 am
Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
Hello again,
Thanks for getting back to me! I am definitely here to learn. Actually the last shave before the edge broke down actually shaved very well.When I did the refreshing it brought the edge back to feeling like new. That's what has me puzzled? This may sound crazy but I actually write down the number of shaves on a blade and how well it shaved. I hope I didn't sound arrogant by saying I was overly confident in the way I handled the razor, during and after the shave, because I mess up everyday, and I'm just a fallible human being. Lol I had to have accidentally rolled the edge while stropping

That is how I actually I found the damage before the shave. I did the hht and it failed, so I examined it under good lighting and found the damage. It would barely shave arm hair in those areas of damage, so I definitely wasn't taking that to my face Good thing is I actually have multiple sources for hair in brushes around my household . Another sharpness test I go by the fools pass. If if ain't sharp I won't cut it there. It will pull the hairs out of my skin, and I will have bloody pore holes. I do agree Sir, yes a shave test is what counts. I've read that some of the most ugly scratch patterns are from natural stones, but they shave very very well.

Yes I agree a very high magnification would drive me crazy! Lol You know if you look at something as smooth as the skin on a baby under high enough magnification it would look like a washed out and rutted gravel road. I think I will order me a Belomo 10x loupe. Lol That will be enough for me for now, and keep me sane.

I'm curious on you opinion on how many shaves one should get from a properly maintained straight razor before one has to hone or use pastes? How many do you get before a touch up? So after one shave under a microscope you can see significant damage? So you think I went to far? I was reading up on Alfredo aka Doc226 the other day and he one went way over 120 shaves, without discomfort , and it still passed the hht. I do agree the strop is very important! Infact its a straight razor shavers best friend. When I first started I practiced stropping a lot with a dull razor. The real vintage linen strops I love. I actually have two. IMO, I think that that there is actually something happening to the edge in a positive way with linen and leather . Some say it does nothing, but I disagree. I have actually got to were i strop before my last pass, and I can tell a big difference. Just plain linen does have more of mild abrasiveness to it, because over time you can see black swarf on the white linen, and if you look close enough you can see metal particles in bare leather also. I think there is just enough silicates in leather to realign and polish/burnish our edges.
If you owned dozens or hundreds of razors, how likely would you be to stick with one alone when all the rest were crying out for some love? So I'm not the best person to ask, but I have once gone 2-3 months with a single blade (it was a Livi). I have never heard of Doc226, but he obviously is a magician of great powers. Remember what I said in the post above?
Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
You probably won't agree with the razors I ordered, but I read if you learn to hone a Gold dallor razor, you can about hone anything. So yeap that's what I ordered, and I plan on doing regrinds on some of the blades. Pushing the hollow grind farther up the blade, making it a full hollow and thinning the spine, so I can get the bevels at around 16.5°. I definitely don't want to practice on my Boker silver steel or my Ralf A. Yes I also use common sense when those individuals who say only do 8-10 on a Naniwa 12k and on a Shapton glass 30k do 1-3. Their is no way one can achieve a 30k edge with only 4 strokes. If that stone is that fast just do a one stone hone bevelset-finish. Lol. These are some heavy hitters in the honing department saying this too! And people are taking it as gospel/cannon.
On the contrary, there are far harder razors to hone. What concerns me is that you have a couple of razors, no honing experience and are already planning custom regrinds! You have been reading too much and doing too little - and I mean that in the kindliest way. It's an easy trap for us aspie types to fall into - the excitement of a new body of knowledge, with all the enthusiasm and obsession that goes along with it. I certainly wouldn't presume to tell you that you must do it this way or that, but long experience with razors, other obsessions and a full spectrum family tells me that you are most likely to achieve lasting success if you pace yourself. Also, don't believe the wild claims made by complete strangers on the internet. What they are full of may not be truth.
Southbound wrote:
Sat Feb 23, 2019 9:36 pm
My stones are Shapton pro 1.5k, 5k, 8k and Naniwa 12k. I haven't prepared them or lapped them for honing yet. I am going to use wet/dry sandpaper on 1/2" thick float glass. I am going to use 220 to get them all flat. I was wandering do I need to put a different surface finish on my higher grit stones? If I finish or dress the surface of the 5-12k with 400 grit paper, will this be to coarsely of a finish for my 8k and 12k stones. I have a question about the correct pressure to use while honing. I've read some say that heavy pressure on a full hollow grind is the exact same pressure you would use when erasing a pencil mark from paper. I have read also that some use torque towards the edge. That don't make sense to me for some reason, because a full to extra hollow will flex on a thumbnail with very little pressure. So why would one want to torque the pressure towards the most fragile part of the razor??
Perfectly good hones (hones = man made, stones = natural); I have a full set of Shapton Pros and a couple of sets of Naniwas (wore out the first one), although they aren't my first choices these days. You will want to use paste if your finishing hone is a 12k Naniwa. I clean and lap them with a Shapton DGLP as it is quick and convenient. With soft man made composites, the size of lapping compound particles doesn't matter so much as the hone will quickly abrade and the scratches you make on the hone are gone. With some very hard hones - natural stones like Arkansas and some ceramics like Spyderco, it is the lapped scratch pattern that does the honing, and lapping is critical to results.
Honing pressure - let's set a sensible rule and work from there. If you press too lightly, it will take longer to hone the razor but you will get there in the end. If you press too hard, you will deform the blade and achieve absolutely nothing. This is going to be seen most easily with fully hollowed blades with tape on the spine, where it will be easiest to make the upper edge of the bevel ride on the hone rather than the flat of the bevel - just think of the geometry. You can remove most of the metal in a blade without ever getting an edge that way. So let's say our rule should be that you can't use too little. Now you can use more, but just don't go beyond the point at which you deform the blade. How much that is will depend on the kind of steel, its tempering and the stiffness of the grind, so there is no one size fits all answer. What to do? I use what feels right to me and see if the edge is improving on the first stone/hone, and if it doesn't, I have to experiment with less or more. I just tried holding a pencil like the shank of a razor and pressed it on my digital scale as if honing - about 100g. The only time I use heavy pressure is if a razor has a deep ding in the edge and I need to remove quite a lot of metal.

I hope none of what I have written comes across as criticism, as I don't intend it that way. You sound very enthusiastic and that may give you the momentum to stick with this and become really good at it. Really good means you take a perfect shave for granted and don't have to worry, or think too much, about maintaining your razors in that perfect state. I'd hate to see you give up because you read of wild expectations from easy tricks that worked for someone, but will disappoint you. That's why I stress the fun - it should be a pleasure, and the moment you worry about how to do this or that to the extent you aren't having fun and the whole business is a burden is the moment to go and buy a DE. Don't worry if you don't get the results claimed by 'heavy hitters' of whom half are fantasists and the rest optimists. Just do it, enjoy the ride , and you'll find the skills develop as you see the results. I'm happy to advise, to tell you what I do, but I'm not going to tell you in detail what you must do; partly because there are numerous ways to hone a razor, and partly because if you want to be good you must learn, not be spoon fed. And since I'm beginning to sound like a certain shaolin priest, I'd better let the other Chris take over before I call you 'Grasshopper'!
Thanks for the encouragement! No I dont take it as criticism at all, but I also can handle it. I don't were my feelings on my sleeve. That's part of the learning. I think a fellow needs critiqued to give him drive to do better or more. No I'm not planning on doing regrinds off the bat, but I have the equipment to do it. I'm a fellow that these sharp objects and stones, the passion was sparked by knives first.

Those gold dallors need to be put through a little bit of surgery before honing "If they are not warped" like removing the stabilizers etc.. I also plan on going to antique stores and buying some straights also. I have several De razor. I can't use them they tare my face up. A straight gives me a more comfy shave, and for some reason the ingrowns have come to a almost halt. I don't know what it is but a straight must cut the hair a little different. Well I know it does it cuts it in a sliding motion,
"/ like a guillotine" I appreciate the time you time you put in answering my questions .

brothers
Posts: 20128
Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2008 7:18 am
Location: Oklahoma City USA

Re: Need help!

Post by brothers » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:19 am

Hello Southbound. I like your postings here. Welcome to SMF!
Gary

SOTD 99%: 12 soaps & creams, SilkSmoke synthetic, General by Colonial razors, Kai & Schick, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444 asb

EL Alamein
Posts: 2853
Joined: Thu Jul 13, 2006 7:55 pm

Re: Need help!

Post by EL Alamein » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:18 pm

Great advice so far.

I will say this from all that you have posted it seems like you're drinking from the fire hose of recommendations.

First and foremost get your honing down, worry about everything else later.

Get your hands on the old blades you're pursuing and use them as experimental blades to nail your honing technique. Only you can get the feel-back from the honing process and get comfortable with what works for you. Concentrate on that. Give us feedback on what you're experiencing as you go through that and ask questions. We will help all we can.

Once you get that down we can move forward to higher topics.

Hope that's not too simple and can help.

Chris

Southbound
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2017 2:17 am

Re: Need help!

Post by Southbound » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:59 pm

EL Alamein wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:18 pm
Great advice so far.

I will say this from all that you have posted it seems like you're drinking from the fire hose of recommendations.

First and foremost get your honing down, worry about everything else later.

Get your hands on the old blades you're pursuing and use them as experimental blades to nail your honing technique. Only you can get the feel-back from the honing process and get comfortable with what works for you. Concentrate on that. Give us feedback on what you're experiencing as you go through that and ask questions. We will help all we can.

Once you get that down we can move forward to higher topics.

Hope that's not too simple and can help.

Chris
Crawl, walk, then sprint , and then run. :idea:

brothers
Posts: 20128
Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2008 7:18 am
Location: Oklahoma City USA

Re: Need help!

Post by brothers » Tue Feb 26, 2019 10:52 pm

EL Alamein wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:18 pm

. . . . Great advice so far. . . .First and foremost get your honing down, worry about everything else later.

Chris
This is a learning curve, enjoy the journey!
Gary

SOTD 99%: 12 soaps & creams, SilkSmoke synthetic, General by Colonial razors, Kai & Schick, Superior 70 aftershave splash + menthol + 444 asb

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