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  1. #1
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    Angry NOOBY ALMOST READY TO BUY HONES HELP


    My first straight edge arrived a few days ago with a linen/leather strop, shaving mug, soap, and badger brush. I have injoyed the last few shaves, something I have never actually said about shaving before. I have gotten a few red bumps and such.

    Question: Are the red bumps due to the possibility that the razor wasn't sharp enough out of the box? When you purchase a non-pre-honed razor, is it usable out of the box?
    Answere: Most likely due to the new unhoned razor out of the box. Could be due to pressing to hard.

    I think a set of wet stones may help with this initial problem. Opinions? I am only looking to get a very very sharp razor edge currently. Not worrying about repairs at this point. So, I need recommendations. A few sources say that the 4k/8k commbination stone is the best for straight razors. So here is what I "think" I want ideally:

    1k (probably purchased latter)
    4k/8k
    16k
    30k

    Question: Is sharpton or norton better for straight razors? Any comparisions or explainations of differences/opinions is appreciated. Cost is a factor, I'd like to spend less than $150, but achieve a much better than average edge.
    Answere: $150 for four stones is not practical. BBW/Coticule recommendation

    Question about the strop: I have heard "don't put any paste on the linen side", I have also heard "you must put paste on the linen side". Which Is correct?
    Answere: Optional, put paste on linen if you want a higher abrassion. Linen strops come pre impregnated for life.

    Question: Can you use the leather side without treating it with the special paste first, or is paste required?
    Answere: You can use leather strop without oil or conditioner; I suspect it is good practice to use it though.

    Question: If grinding stones are graded by the micron size of the particles, what would the leather and linen sides of a strop be? what about when associated pastes are added? I realize it may be in the 30k-60k range or greater, but I'd like a precise definition.
    Answere: STILL NEEDED

    Question: If I go anywhere in the world to any vendor in the world and ask for a 1k/4k/8k/16k/30k 3" sharpening stone, Is there any chance I will get something that can damage my blade? I ask this because I have looked at Nortons site and these stones appear to be for kitchen knifes and not straight razors. I realize this probably isn't a big deal, I just want to make sure there aren't any other variables to consider when selecting a stone other than width and grain size. What about variables concerning diamond, natural, synthetic, ceramic, color, origin, etc.
    Answere: All you need to specify is the width and grain size to ensure your new stone won't damage your blade. All other options such as dimond vs. stone, natural vs. synthetic, and other specificities are largely focused on facters such as cost, piece of mind, and easy of honing.

    Last edited by gunslingor; 02-09-2009 at 07:36 PM. Reason: As Questions Get Resolved, this is the summary

  2. #2
    Senior Member blabbermouth hi_bud_gl's Avatar
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    Default welcome

    at first welcome to srp.
    you have a lot questions and i will try answer my best.
    Hones you want to spend 150 and buy 4 stones ?Sorry it is not possible i think just shampton 30. around 280$.Now what i will advise to buy that money will be.
    Norton 4/8k. chro 2,you have already strops.
    2 nd.you heart right there is different pastes you will put conditioner or leather side.
    To use chro2 you can use paddle strip. or paddle strop and put any
    paste you like or you can make cheap balsa strop.
    3 rd answer is yes/
    4th you answered 30-60 different opinion\

    Norton 4/8k should be 4000/8000 doesn't matter where you buy except not to get fake norton's
    hope this helps

  3. #3
    Rusty nails sparq's Avatar
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    Default

    Have you considered a natural BBW/Coticule combo as an alternative to synthetic hones? There's one in the classifieds for $140 which I think is a fair price. I have just switched to one and I love it!

    Red bumps: Where did you buy the razor? If it was brand new and not pre-sharpened, it was 100% not shave ready; and/or you used too much pressure. Send it to one of the honemeisters (see their services in classifieds).

    Strop linen: some (if not all) new ones are impregnated for life, no need to paste them. I do not paste mine. Some like them more abrasive and apply pastes. It is a personal preference thing.

    Leather strop: no paste is needed. I rub mine with my palms to make it draw nicely. Some use lather or oil for conditioning.

    You'll hear many different answers here because only strongly opinionated individuals dare to shave with straights! Read the SRP wiki, that will help a lot.

  4. #4
    At this point in time... gssixgun's Avatar
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    Default Moved Thread

    Lets move this to the Newbie forum so you will get more help on all these questions......

    Thanks and welcome to SRP

  5. #5
    I shave with a spoon on a stick. Slartibartfast's Avatar
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    not to threadjack..but what is the BBW. i've been reading and reading and reading today trying to figure that acronym out.

    also, what is the DMT?

    thank..

    and sorry

  6. #6
    Never a dull moment hoglahoo's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by Slartibartfast View Post
    ..but what is the BBW. i've been reading and reading and reading...
    http://straightrazorpalace.com/srpwi...bbreviations#B
    Or Belgian Blue Whetstone

    DMT = Diamond Machining Technology
    Find me on SRP's official chat in ##srp on Freenode. Link is at top of SRP's homepage

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  8. #7
    Rusty nails sparq's Avatar
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    Default

    BBW = Belgian Blue Whestone See Ardennes Coticule - natural sharpening stones from Vielsalm Belgium. - Whetstones

    DMT = American company that produces diamond-based hones DMT Diamond Gives The Edge - Why

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    Slartibartfast (02-09-2009)

  10. #8
    I shave with a spoon on a stick. Slartibartfast's Avatar
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    Thank you! i feel like a weight has been lifted now.

    If you buy one of the combo stones is that the same as a buying bbw & Coticule seperately?

    From my reading today, this seemed like the best bang for my buck to get into honing. Although i'm guessing these are only good if your razor allready has an edge and just needs sharpened?

  11. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by hi_bud_gl View Post
    at first welcome to srp.
    you have a lot questions and i will try answer my best.
    Hones you want to spend 150 and buy 4 stones ?Sorry it is not possible i think just shampton 30. around 280$.Now what i will advise to buy that money will be.
    Norton 4/8k. chro 2,you have already strops.
    2 nd.you heart right there is different pastes you will put conditioner or leather side.
    To use chro2 you can use paddle strip. or paddle strop and put any
    paste you like or you can make cheap balsa strop.
    3 rd answer is yes/
    4th you answered 30-60 different opinion\

    Norton 4/8k should be 4000/8000 doesn't matter where you buy except not to get fake norton's
    hope this helps
    Boy, it sounds like there is some good information there. Unfortunately, I can't seem to understand your English. Note also that I am fairly new and do not know all the slang and acronyms, so please be a little more descriptive. Thanks, this is helping so far.

  12. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunslingor View Post
    Are the red bumps due to the possibility that the razor wasn't sharp enough out of the box?
    Yes, if the razor isn't sharp you end up scraping the skin and using excessive force, causing irritation.
    When you purchase a non-pre-honed razor, is it usable out of the box?
    Maybe, but probably not. If it isn't described as "shave-ready" assume it isn't.
    A few sources say that the 4k/8k commbination stone is the best for straight razors.
    It is a good start. The 4K is coarse enough to set the bevel on a new razor, i.e. ensure the 2 sides of the blade edge meet at a point without a flat spot which would make it blunt. The 8K is fine enough to polish the edge to a reasonably smooth finish.
    Question: Is sharpton or norton better for straight razors?
    I only have the Norton 4/8K. It is a nice stone, the 8K side in particular feels buttery smooth in use which is reassuring. It should, however, be lapped (flattened), meaning you also need to buy the Norton flattening stone or a coarse DMT diamond plate.
    Question about the strop: I have heard "don't put any paste on the linen side", I have also heard "you must put paste on the linen side". Which Is correct?
    Both are correct!
    A plain linen or cotton side is worth having, although some people might do without. The exact purpose is not really a known fact. I'm inclined to believe it removes any loose bits of metal and rust from the blade edge prior to stropping on leather. It is definitely useful for a final drying off of the blade after cleaning it.
    A pasted linen side serves as a final polish after honing, and can be used for quick touch-up sharpening if you feel the blade is losing its edge. Many people report good results with CrO2 paste on a linen strop.
    I recommend keeping a plain linen/cotton strop, and getting an additional one for putting paste on if you want that.
    Can you use the leather side without treating it with the special paste first, or is paste required?
    You can use it without treatment. Applying the "yellow" paste or neatsfoot oil etc can help soften it and improve draw, but you don't have to. Instead, try just rubbing the leather with the palm of your hand as often as is convenient, this will transfer skin oils and do much the same thing.
    If grinding stones are graded by the micron size of the particles, what would the leather and linen sides of a strop be? what about when associated pastes are added? I realize it may be in the 30k-60k range or greater, but I'd like a precise definition.
    Any abrasive effect from a (unpasted) strop is a secondary effect and should only be seen as a bonus. Working out what grit the effect is would be giving it too much importance. A pasted linen strop would be as coarse as the paste you use. I believe CrO2 is about 0.5 micron.
    If I go anywhere in the world to any vendor in the world and ask for a 1k/4k/8k/16k/30k 3" sharpening stone, Is there any chance I will get something that can damage my blade?
    If it is flat and smooth and accurately described it should be safe. If it has chips, bumps or other flaws it could damage the blade. You can avoid most risks by lapping the stone, and at the same time round off the edges and corners. Diamond hones like DMTs can be a bit rough when new and can cause microchips, this can be fixed by breaking them in.

    As for your budget, I'm wondering if these will be good for you:
    Norton 4/8K; Chinese 12K; CrO2 paste on a second linen strop as final polisher.
    Buy a Norton flattening stone if it is in budget, otherwise buy a few sheets of wet and dry sandpaper to do the job.



    EDIT> Also don't think you HAVE to use 3" wide hones. Some of the recent threads I've read on these forums make me think that having a hone that matches the razor's width is not only unnecessary, but undesirable. Especially if the blade is not perfectly straight (and none are perfectly straight!) using a X-pattern stroke on a 2 inch hone can be better.
    Last edited by Rajagra; 02-09-2009 at 07:47 PM.

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