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Thread: Shaving Set for the Cheap Shaver

  1. #1
    Junior Member DrRazorKC's Avatar
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    Feb 2013
    Kansas City Area
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    Default Shaving Set for the Cheap Shaver

    Hey guys,

    Me, being a cheap guy myself, have figured out how you can build you own shaving kit without spending the boo-koo bucks that most of the others do.

    STEP1: The Razor
    Try getting yourself a razor that is not entirely cheap, because that is what you will get, and try to buy a medium priced razor. I bought a DOVO SOLINGEN 5/8 Carbon Steel(same steel that you get in the more expensive razor) off Amazon for only $94.00. This is a fairly good price for a razor of that condition.
    STEP2: The Strop
    The strop that I use is a FROMM strop (23 x 2.5 in) that I got from a flea market, Leather side and canvas side. Try shopping around, internet and local flea markets are perfect for finding lost treasures. I spent only $8.00 for this strop and it works great. I am not saying that you will find the same deal, but you may find one for $20-$30. A lot better than spending $90-$150 for a same quality strop that does the same thing.
    STEP3: The Cup/Brush/Cream
    This is where the cheapness actually shows. I use a Gillette brush that I got at Wal-Mart for only $5.00. Not as soft as the fur brushes that you get, but it's a lot cheaper and it works the same. The "cup" that I use is actually the cap off the shaving cream. Which brings me to the next point. Shaving soap is what most of the top guns use. For new guns like us using cream is cheaper ($5.00 for cream v. soap for $24.00). This combo works great for the cup, brush, and cream/soap.
    STEP4: Maintenance
    By maintenance I mean the face and the razor. There is one thing you guys will need and that is some essential oil for your blade. Carbon steel is optimal for shaving, but it also carbonizes. Keep your razor oiled with essential oils between shaves to prevent carbonizing. The oil I use is from Wal-Mart called "Shave Secret" face oil. Don't use it on your face, but the blade, 3 drops should do. Facial maintenance is the next issue. After shaving, especially for new guys, it can get irritating because the blade is directly touching the face. Any brand face balm or aftershave (without alcohol) will suffice. You don't have to buy a $30.00 face oil/cream to authenticate the feel when a $6.00 bottle of balm works the same.

    I hope that these tips help out the local or international shaver trying to get into the world of straight razors. I could have used these when I started but I couldn't find any, but I put these out for any new guys.

    Have fun shaving!!


  2. #2
    Vitandi syslight's Avatar
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    Jan 2007
    Scharie County, NY USA
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    Welcome to SRP!
    there are many paths one can take, the cheapest is not always the best however a lot can be said for keeping the cost down.

    you could have gotten the same razor or even the 6/8 model professionally honed, for less at several vendors, some include a certificate for the next honing.

    used strops are are fine if you can find one that is not dried out, cracked or heavily nicked already... but the from and illinios strops are nice and can be found new.

    Not all soaps are that expensive.... most are rather cheap, face lathering eliminates the need for a mug altogether. and there van de hagen brush and mug for around $10.

    carbon steel oxidizes and if the razor is properly dried it will last for decades without needed any oil at all.

    for your face plain witch hazel is under 2 dollars and then some of the wife's lotion and you are good to go.

    i hope that helps you with your journey there is no reason to spend yourself into poverty but shopping wisely is advised.

    Last edited by syslight; 02-13-2013 at 09:21 PM.
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    Be just and fear not.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Houston, TX
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    What syslight said.

    Also if you're in a pinch for a strop, I've used an old leather guitar strap that seemed to work just fine until I got my real strop. You can pick them up at any music store for between $5-15.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Mcbladescar's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    Tillsonburg, Ont
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    That sounds like a pretty nice starter kit to me
    I started with Grandpa's old King Cutter (heirloom)
    A strop I made from saddle leather from a local amish harness maker.
    A drug store no name "boar" brush
    A cake of Williams Mug Soap
    A small ceramic flower pot for a bowl.
    Drug store witchazel and
    My dads old Belgian Coticle

    Still got the razor,brush,bowl and strop
    still use em
    Still Shavin' (got a few more blades now though )

  5. #5
    Senior Member ccase39's Avatar
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    Nov 2012
    Slidell, La
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    I might add that you can get a Dovo 6/8 Best Quality for considerably cheaper that comes professionally honed free from SRD and other similar sites. I have one from Amazon and it was not professionally honed so you would have to spend an extra 20 bucks to get it professionally honed. Buying from the classifieds here or from a site that sells pro honed vintage razors is another option to keep it cheap. You can also make a strop easy enough from scrap leather from an upholstery shop. Even cheaper still is a home made paddle strop with felt. Really interesting idea about the cup. Never thought of that and will have to try it. Only problem is that I threw all my canned stuff away. May find something of the like to use when I travel.

  6. #6
    "Hey! Captain Kirk is the man...!" suits123's Avatar
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    Dec 2012
    Midland, MI
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    I agree with the above. The most important thing is you got something you are satisfied with. But, SRD had a 5/8 dovo for 79.99 and a 6/8 for 84.99 brand new and hones by what many consider the number 1 honer. Again with SRD you can get their shaving soap for 7.99. Which will shave much much better than canned shaving cream. Just something to think about if you look for a new razor or you determine you would like to try very good shaving soap.

    "If you have one bag of stones you don't have three." -JPC

  7. #7
    Member MrBlimp's Avatar
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    Dec 2012
    New York, Sometimes L.I. sometimes Catskills
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    On one of the trips to my cabin when I frist went back to a wet shave I forgot a few items and replaced them on the cheap:

    I didn't bring a strop, so I made one out of a piece of balsa wood covered in a few layers of newspaper. I used regular Scotch tape to hold the paper together and tightly wrapped. It worked just fine.

    I also didn't bring a shaving mug, so I used one of those newer style large coffee mugs instead (I did bring a brush and puck but in a pinch I have shaved with bar soap - you need something like a Dove soap).
    Last edited by MrBlimp; 02-14-2013 at 04:06 PM.

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