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Thread: Advice needed

  1. #11
    Senior Member PaulFLUS's Avatar
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    Preface: I AM NOT A HONEMEISTER. JUST A GUY WHO MANAGES TO MAINTAIN HIS OWN.

    Ditto what steel said. I guess I was too dumb to know what not to do. It probably would have been easier if I had my dad show me when he was doing it (he had a sharpening business when I was a kid) but I was young, dumb and full of...vinegar. I had to learn the hard way from a lot of mistakes...but now I'm hijacking.

    You have to know at least what a dull razor is which it sounds like you do. You probably don't have the right stones to acheive what you want. Norton makes a good kit that is about $150 US with 2 double sided hones, 220/1k, 4k/8k and a leveling stone. That covers a lot of ground fairly cheaply.
    Dave (rolodave) is right though. It is a LOT easier to start with one that already has a decent bevel and edge and learn to maintain then hone, then bevel set backwards from there. Maybe that is why I didn't screw up more than I did. My heirloom from my Dad (rip Dad) was nearly shave ready when I got it and his barber hones. Muddled through refreshing then learned more, blah, blah, blah... You get the picture.
    I always suggest the 4k/8k pyramid progression (these other guys are probably rolling their eyes now) which you can find in the library, because it was where things really went from messing with this and that to a method which had consistent results without fail. Definitely watch gssixgun's videos because that will teach you a LOT about technique in stroke, pressure, angles etc. After that, whatever progression or method you use will be a lot more successful. But first you are going to need some hones. My suggestion is to start with synthetic (man-made) rather than quarried (natural) stones because they are easier to learn and you have a better grip on the grit range. Good luck and don't give up. Also, you are well advised to start with a razor that is not an heirloom or fancy expensive one. If you need junkers to practice with I'll be glad to send you a couple.
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    As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. PR 27:17

  2. #12
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    Rezdog youíre close Iím in the west of Ireland though originally from the uk. Iím quite competent at sharpening knives ect I can get the bevel freehand but this is my first razor in a way simpler than my hunting knives not having any curves but Iíve reached the limit of my oil stone itís not fine enough to finish the edge ready for the strop so it looks like Iíll get a 3000, 8000 and a 12000 going by what people have said here; will the 12000 be fine enough that itíll just need a few strokes on the strop. Iím also thinking of trying slate for sharpening Iíve a piece of blue bangor here but Iíll try it with a old knife first!

  3. #13
    Senior Member blabbermouth RezDog's Avatar
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    Everyone has their own favourite technique. But I think the majority use a 1K grit synthetic to establish the initial apex, and then refine from there. If you are home shopping anyway you should be able to get good mileage out of a 1K. Once you get to 8K you can get a very comfortable shave, and with the 12K or very fine natural finisher Is really as far as you want to go. The key to it all is the establishing that perfect apex.
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  4. #14
    Senior Member PaulFLUS's Avatar
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    12k is definitely fine enough. You may need some steps in between though. Again, not a honemeister. The grits you mentioned ought to cover that but not knowing what your oil stone is it's hard to say if you'll need anything else. I had trouble at one point getting a new (to me) razor shave ready but it was because I didn't have a course enough stone not because I didn't have a fine enough one. If you don't get the bevel set right the finishing is mute. Bevel set is normally done on a 1k. I'll always preface that I'm not an expert on honing but I feel quite sure you'll hear the same thing from others in this case.
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    As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. PR 27:17

  5. #15
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    I think 8K is fine enough for learning, and a 12K shouldn't come until later. When I started actually honing (vice maintaining the edge I already had), I wasted a lot of time on finishers. When I finally went through the 8K challenge thread, one of the best lessons was if you can't get a suitable shave off an 8K you shouldn't go any further. 12K and beyond just refine.

    In fact, a cheap barber's hone is probably the best place to start once the blade is sharp.

    Later I learned not all 8Ks are equal. My Naniwa 8K was a huge upgrade over the Norton.
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  6. #16
    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivonpaul View Post
    Rezdog you’re close I’m in the west of Ireland though originally from the uk. I’m quite competent at sharpening knives ect I can get the bevel freehand but this is my first razor in a way simpler than my hunting knives not having any curves but I’ve reached the limit of my oil stone it’s not fine enough to finish the edge ready for the strop so it looks like I’ll get a 3000, 8000 and a 12000 going by what people have said here; will the 12000 be fine enough that it’ll just need a few strokes on the strop. I’m also thinking of trying slate for sharpening I’ve a piece of blue bangor here but I’ll try it with a old knife first!
    A little puzzled "getting the bevel freehand" after saying you are competent sharpening knives. Are you honing the razor with the spine on the hone, as it should be, or raised off the hone as when sharpening a knife. If it is the latter you are off to a wrong start.


    A 1K Naniwa hone is a heavy lifter for honing razors. It will quickly reset a bevel in a blade that has chips, rust into the bevel area and so on.

    If your blade has no major damage and just needs a bevel reset, the 3K Naniwa will do that and not leave as course scratch marks/striations on the bevel.

    After a proper bevel has been set you are just refining the edge and bevel up through the finer grit hones by removing the scratch marks/striations from the bevel which in turn makes the set bevel less toothy. A toothy bevel makes for an uncomfortable shave.

    Looks to me like a 3K, 8K and 12K Naniwa would work as it is the progression I use with the 1K Naniwa left for resurrecting the really bad blades. I would stay with synthetic hones as opposed to natural hones as you know with synthetics what grit you are working with while naturals are a guessing game as to the grit rating. Just makes things easier.

    The key thing is that the bevel is set in the first place. If it is not set then all you are doing by going up the progression is polishing a turd as they used to say in the military.

    Bob
    Life is a terminal illness in the end

  7. #17
    Senior Member PaulFLUS's Avatar
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    Good point Bob. I didn't even really think about what "free hand" might mean. NEVER, EVER, NEVER lift the spine off the stone. Especially while you're learning tape the spine with at least one layer of electrical tape. for the present discussion just leave it at one. There are times when you use two but that's further down the road. Otherwise you'll wind up with a fancy butter knife. I always tape the spine anyway just to preserve it from hone wear.
    Sometimes you just need to treat your honing like the hockey player jargon: "go back to basics," "simplify your game," "finish your fore checks,"...well maybe not that last one but you get what I'm saying.
    rolodave likes this.
    As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. PR 27:17

  8. #18
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    Bobh yes I am putting the spine to the stone and referring to freehand for knifes which is what I’m used to sharpening mainly including double bevels; interesting that 8000 should get it shave ready; thank you to everyone for all the advice I’ll get some new stones really looking forward to getting this razor usable
    rolodave, Cangooner and BobH like this.

  9. #19
    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivonpaul View Post
    Bobh yes I am putting the spine to the stone and referring to freehand for knifes which is what I’m used to sharpening mainly including double bevels; interesting that 8000 should get it shave ready; thank you to everyone for all the advice I’ll get some new stones really looking forward to getting this razor usable
    Thanks for the clarification. I just wanted to make sure you had the spine on the hone. Good luck in getting the razor to shave ready when you get your hones in. I think you will enjoy the process as it is similar sharpening a knife but different enough to hold your interest.

    Bob
    Life is a terminal illness in the end

  10. #20
    Senior Member PaulFLUS's Avatar
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    I sort of think of it this way. If you consider sharpening akin to science knife sharpening would be akin to biology where razor sharpening would be akin to vertebrate zoology
    rolodave likes this.
    As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. PR 27:17

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