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Thread: Smiling Blades

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    STF
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    Default Smiling Blades

    I have seen plenty of smilers for sale here and on other sites like the bay but they have all been vintage (I have 2).

    Were/are smilers made deliberately or accidentally by honing?

    I haven't actually seen brand new purposely manufactured smilers (except for custom jobs) but maybe I am just looking in the wrong places

    As an aside, I have read that a lot of people like them. I think I actually prefer straight blades. Every time I use a smiler I seem to end up with red scratches on the side if my neck. No blood but scratched enough so the marks last a couple of days.

    Steve
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    Senior Member blabbermouth bluesman7's Avatar
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    As far as vintage smilers go, I think that you can mostly look at the spine to see if it was purposely made to smile. If the spine smiles the grind probably always smiled.

    I have no proof, but I posit that the move away from smiling razors coincides with the adoption of the double wheel grinders being used to mass produce full hollow razors. The double wheel grinders do not lend themselves to producing smiling blades.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bluesman7 View Post
    As far as vintage smilers go, I think that you can mostly look at the spine to see if it was purposely made to smile. If the spine smiles the grind probably always smiled.

    I have no proof, but I posit that the move away from smiling razors coincides with the adoption of the double wheel grinders being used to mass produce full hollow razors. The double wheel grinders do not lend themselves to producing smiling blades.
    I just looked at your website. Some gorgeous razors, I need to start doing the lottery so I can win it and buy more razors

    Steve
    My friend told me that I am delusional.

    I nearly fell off my Unicorn!

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Doubt the style of grind, smiling or straight has anything to do with cutting yourself. If anything, a smiler would be less likely to cut you, as it is an automatic scything cut of the beard.

    It is either shaving technique or more likely a chipped or rolled edge. It can take a bit of technique to properly strop a smiling razor, depending on the amount of “smile.

    Yup, easier/faster/cheaper to grind a straight edge

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    Senior Member blabbermouth bluesman7's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention that when razors were being hand forged, a smile is a much more natural shape to forge.
    See my razors at bluesmanblades.com

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    Senior Member blabbermouth outback's Avatar
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    Shave the lather, not the face... Probably techniques.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Euclid440 View Post
    Doubt the style of grind, smiling or straight has anything to do with cutting yourself. If anything, a smiler would be less likely to cut you, as it is an automatic scything cut of the beard.

    It is either shaving technique or more likely a chipped or rolled edge. It can take a bit of technique to properly strop a smiling razor, depending on the amount of ôsmile.

    Yup, easier/faster/cheaper to grind a straight edge
    You're right of course. I used one again an hour ago, mostly because I wanted an excuse to try out my new Rocky Mountain after shave balm and beard oil

    Anyway, I used it again and concentrated on how I was shaving.

    It seems I tend to use the toe end most of the time because I can put it where I want it without the rest of the blade being in the way which seems to be the case if I use the centre.

    I probably do the same with a straight blade to so I guess I better watch that.

    So because I use the toe to shave I scratch myself, simple and pretty stupid really.

    Incidentally, I got a jewellers loupe today ( 30x 60 x) and used it on all my blades to try it out. I don't think any of them are rolled but the edges are huge! Or that could be the loupe

    Steve
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    Quote Originally Posted by outback View Post
    Shave the lather, not the face... Probably techniques.
    Hi Mike, you're right. It is my technique.

    I think I have it figured out now.

    Steve
    My friend told me that I am delusional.

    I nearly fell off my Unicorn!

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    boz
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    Quote Originally Posted by Euclid440 View Post
    Doubt the style of grind, smiling or straight has anything to do with cutting yourself. If anything, a smiler would be less likely to cut you, as it is an automatic scything cut of the beard.

    It is either shaving technique or more likely a chipped or rolled edge. It can take a bit of technique to properly strop a smiling razor, depending on the amount of “smile.

    Yup, easier/faster/cheaper to grind a straight edge

    Is stropping a smiler different than a straight blade?
    A healthy skepticism of both old and new ideas is essential to learning.

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    Gatling-Gun Jerry Gasman's Avatar
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    IMO, as long as you are stropping with a sideways motion (x) and not straight up and down it will be fine.
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    Jerry...

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