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  1. #11
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    I can get a fantastic shave from either a straight or DE, they both deliver the goods in that department. However, shaving with a straight is just so much more enjoyable, plus it connects you to the past in ways few other activities can. If a "perception" of safety is a concern, along with time (a lack thereof) then perhaps a DE would be a better option.

    BTW - straights really aren't as dangerous as some people make them out to be, they just require due respect and attention.

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  3. #12
    Predictably Unpredictiable Mvcrash's Avatar
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    I use a DE when I have less time. I do find a better shave that always seems to last longer with the Str8. I also agree that with the str8, it is the "Me" time I seem to enjoy also.

    Enjoy the day.
    “Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.”
    Albert Einstein

  4. #13
    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Default On the fence . . .

    Hello, remingtonmarlin:

    The straight razor is not for everyone.

    To master the art and craft of it demands patience, tenacity and, yes, taste for adventure. It's not something you can force upon yourself; rather, you have to want it badly enough to embrace it.

    For me, the straight razor is not just a shave. It's a ritual of preparation, stropping, shaving and, finally, slapping my Hollywood face with a fragrant aftershave. That's how I start my day — every day. I would not have it any other way. My daily ritual takes about an hour or so. It's my time, in my shave den, where I am king and citizen.

    Yet some days I prefer to use my double edge razor, especially when short on time. Sometimes I just feel like using the double edge. I'm sure my straight razors understand — to me they are living instruments. On such occasions my morning ritual is the same except for the tool I use to give myself a shave.

    I have 25 straight razors and five double edge in my modest collection. I enjoy each for what it is. Both types of razors give me a good shave — my 5 O' Clock shadow usually shows up at 10 O' Clock at night.

    Since you have found the perfect shave with the double edge, why not stop right there? Be satisfied with what you have. Yet, since the straight razor still floats in your thoughts, you will always wonder why you did not give it a try. I suggest, therefore, to give it a good try — but only if you want to.

    When the day comes that to feel the straight razor is not for you, at least you will walk away satisfied that, yes, you did give it a try. On the other hand, you might decide you do like the straight razor after all and that you want to rotate it with your double edge. Imagine how much richer your morning shaving experience will be.

    You will never know until you try it.

    Either way, you are welcome here at Straight Razor Place.

    Regards,

    Obie

  5. #14
    Member remingtonmarlin's Avatar
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    WOW. Thank you for all the replies. My mind has been corrected by those great responses.

    I have tried the two vintage I bought off ebay on my face followed suggestions in Wiki for beginners. The first one is good. I tried it again after stropping when I woke up this morning, those started to pull and wont shave.

    I figure that my stropping (with no class and skill) might have damaged the edge. Is this a good time to start hone my blades? on which stone?

    I have Chinese 12k water stone, Naniwa(?) superstone 1k, 5k, and 10k.
    Or I may just try to strop the edge with some DOVO red paste on a leather?

    Thank you very much.

  6. #15
    Senior Member str8fencer's Avatar
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    Welcome to SRP, remingtonmarlin.

    First, I must commend you for the energy and effort that you clearly put into this. You are diving right in from the start, and there is much to learn. Face preparation, lather building, stropping, the actual shaving, and honing. You are not making it easy on yourself Just remember this when you are judging the quality of your first shaves.

    It might very well be your stropping technique that has dulled the blade. Stropping, particularily on a pasted strop, certainly has the potential to ruin a sharp blade. This applies doubly to honing. If at all possible, try to get a razor sharpened by one of our honemeisters, and keep that tucked away as a reference for when you are wondering if your knives are sharp. But yes, if your razor is starting to pull, a small treatment with a pasted strop or a barber's hone is the first go-to to mend the problem.

    Generally, if your knife has been properly set up, you would want to start with the mildest possible treatment - that would be a strop or a barber's hone. If it needs a honing, try with the 12k. Read all you can in the wiki, and remember it is very easy to ruin the sharpeness if you don't know how to sharpen. If at all possible, send your shavers out and get a cheap razor to practice honing on. If not, and you decide to do your own honing, don't get disheartened if your razors decide to act up and pull a bit in the beginning. Remember it takes practice.

    I recognize a lot of my own personality in your description, I am also a dive-in kinda guy and started much like you - with everything. Knowing this, I did not judge my shaves much in the beginning, at all. I only tried to get a shave that looked presentable, and let the quality and comfort come as they would, in their own time. I also did my won honing right from the start, (I did buy one to hold as a reference) and this had a funny side effect: I was having trouble deciding which razor was my favourite, until it dawned on me - my favourite would always be the one I honed last, as my honing skills picked up

    Best of luck!
    Last edited by str8fencer; 03-06-2011 at 09:43 AM.

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  8. #16
    Member remingtonmarlin's Avatar
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    Hi, str8fencer
    Thank for those advices. I think we do have some in common in terms of
    habits of doing certain things. For example, I did order one DOVO from SRD for reference, and one Gold Dollar from star shaving for honing practices. However, both of those are still on the way.
    I will keep trying for sure as shaving with a shiny blade is much cooler than
    using a little "ugly" disposable DE.

  9. #17
    Junior Member Lynam's Avatar
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    Default straight vs. DE

    Wow, interesting thread, especially the timing of it. I have been using straight razors for a few weeks now. Going pretty well now, had a few days that I looked like I lost a knife fight but things have continued to improve and less loss of blood now (although I joked that the bloodletting was helping me with my weight loss).

    The "old time" shaving though triggered some childhood memories, mainly of my father and his gold DE gillette. I purchased a Gillette super speed on eBay, and tried it out with some blades from the local supermarket ... I was amazed how smooth and easy the shave was! I have had nearly as comfortable a shave with a straight, and with more practice I feel I will achieve this quality shave routinely with the straights. It opened a door though, and I will certainly be using the DE occasionally.

    I wouldn't sell your hones, etc. as yet though, as I don't see it as an either or, at least depending on the reasons you were attracted to straight razors in the 1st place. For me it was partially dissatisfaction with the multi-blade razors popular today, and the waste, and cost associated with them. I have also found the shaving experience is different with a straight, which is a plus that I did not forsee. Another unintended benefit is that there is just something neat about using a razor that was used 80 or 100 years ago (if you go the vintage route).

    Best of luck wherever you end up, in any case (DE or straight, or both) you have journeyed across the tracks.

  10. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by remingtonmarlin View Post
    Hi, I just had my first DE shave (not exactly the first one, but this time, I
    got it right with Merkur 12C long handle open comb+Feather, with proper face preparations).

    Finally, I had that "buttery" feeling when the blade sliding through my skin.
    Everything sticking out just melted away.

    This has put me in a awkward position since I am not sure anymore I should
    even start to learn the straight razor if a DE can provide such a
    close shave with much less demand for skills. I have ordered a bunch of honing stones and
    strops and bl
    Any input would be welcome.
    ades. Haha

    Coming at this shaving experience from the world of woodworking, i've found a certain gratification from knowing that i honed or stropped a piece of steel to a point where it will do its job well. Honing chisels and handplane blades was my first skill that i mastered. Planing off a translucent, paper thin ribbon of wood was a magical experience. I started using straights that i bought from ebay: all vintage blades. I've made good progress with the honing and stropping process but sometimes wonder if my edges are up to snuff in comparison with a new, professionally prepared razor. I enjoy the challenge and get a real sense of accomplishment when i shave with a straight and it just glides through my whiskers. Like Billy Crystal said in the film Analyze This: "it's a process". hee hee. With all that said, the DE experience is perfectly valid and good luck with your shaving experience.

  11. #19
    Let's talk Horsehair newb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by remingtonmarlin View Post

    This has put me in a awkward position since I am not sure anymore I should
    even start to learn the straight razor if a DE can provide such a
    close shave with much less demand for skills.

    I have ordered a bunch of honing stones and
    strops and blades.

    Any input would be welcome.
    I read once that it's a lot to undertake to learn to hone, strop, and shave with a str8 all at one time. It sounds like you've already jumped in.. You could always perfect your d/e technique while your learn stropping and honing. Good Luck to you.

  12. #20
    Well Shaved Gentleman... jhenry's Avatar
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    thebigspendur is absolutely correct. A DE razor shave will certainly deliver a superior shave when compared to a multi-blade razor. If you think that's a good shave, though, compare it to a straight razor shave--once you have mastered the technique.

    Beleive me, there is a difference. My straight razor shaves are not only close and smooth, but tend to last longer, for example.
    "Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter." Mark Twain

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