Help with honing gear

Discussion in 'General Straight Razor Talk' started by fijiblue, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. So after a number of years shaving with a DE, and quite a few more years practice sharpening an edge I'm looking for a little guidance. On a great number of times i have sharpened steel to a razors edge using nary more than a flat river rock and a leather belt. However, I'd like to take the plunge into straights, and an easier method must exist. What say ye B&B for a bare bones stone and strop combo? I am looking for a good combo of affordability and ease of use. Just last night I took a trusty Benchmade knife to a razor hone using basic kitchen tools, but it took well over an hour. There must be a good quick and affordable way? And something that will serve as dual duty for other cutlery needs. Something that I can grow into rather than outgrow.

    Do I need to shell out the big bucks for a Bi-grit/ dual sided stone with an accompanying english leather strop? Will a natural stone be rough enough to smooth out nicks in a blade?

    My question is more focused on sharpening tools, rather than technique, or blades. But any and all commentary is welcomed.
  2. To start with you just need a shave ready razor and a strop. After that if you want to maintain your razor shave ready then you need a stone that is going to "finish" the edge when needed. There are many options for this. You can get a coticule, a Chinese 12k, a Barbers hone or even a synthetic hone of around 10k.
  3. +1^. i like the c12k for maintaining a shave ready razor. it is affordable easy 2 use and will make a great edge.
  4. Thanks for the advice. The prices on the C12K's are a lot more reasonable than the others I was looking at. I like the Norton combo stones, but they are a bit pricy.
  5. I'll be the first to suggest lapping film, even with its lack of mojo. Delivers fantastic results.
  6. That lapping film seems like pretty interesting stuff. The diamond coated surface looks like it would even work for sharpening ceramic kitchen knives. The only issue I see is that it's all measured in microns instead of grit. Now I just need to find a conversion chart.
  7. If you get the C12 then be sure to lap it. Mine was pretty wavy.

    I prefer lapping film now... but I have the attention span of a squirrel.

    12 5 3 1 (I think) is being sold on B&B

    I got the #2 pack from Bestsharpeningstones. Costs more but the film is backed and a bit sturdier to my estimate. Number 2 pack is 9, 5, 3, 1, .3. However, you can buy quite a bit of the non-backed film for the price of the backed stuff.

    Just rotate the blade through the different sheets to the smallest grit. I used 30 strokes for good blades. 60 strokes for rebuilds. Occasionally had to revisit the sequence but not often. Some prefer to NOT use the .3 micron sheet. I like it.

    My record for one segment of film (cut a sheet into 3 strips/segments) was 52 razors. All needed minor touch-up. However, I then tangled with some blades from hell and my average went way down.
  8. That's some impressive durability for a pretty reasonable price.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2012
  9. Simce you already have a Barbers hone I would get a coticule and then you can do everything from chip removal(With a fair amount of patience and a couple hours possibly) all the way up to a nice smooth shaving edge that you could touch up with either the same coticule or your barbers hone.
    My second opinion would be start with a shave ready straight and buy a Norton 4/8 combo to accompany your barbers hone as the Norton is actually a fairly decent stone to shave from. Should you happen to discover a chip you will need to add some sort of 1k usually starting around $30.

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