Here is an updated photo (800-900x) of my translucent black honed edge after 10 shaves. Just maintained on clean linen and leather. It does not seem like my hanging strop degrages the apex that much. I really like these Ark edges.I'm continuing my week with the Ark and as mentioned earlier, I still have the impression, that my surface preparation is not yet fully completed but I wanted to check if there is any noticable improvement after all the work I put in since my first test on Monday.
So again, I prepared my test razor with a full 1k to 12k Naniwa Progression and ran it on the Ark (currently lapped at 1k WD paper and broken in with a kitchen knive).
- I still have some loose particles apparently coming off the surface that create deep scratch marks on the bevel and a clearly visible degradation from 12k finish (see image blow)
- The 12k edge is crumbling away (see also image)
- I still get a rather rough, rambling feedback running the razor over the surface as soon as I apply a tiny bit of torque
- Overall there is no improvement over the 12k edge neither in shaving performance nor edge finish, but a clear degradation.
This is how the edge looked like, after the Ark+lots of stropping. The nice & even polishing from the 12k Naniwa is gone & overlayed by deep scratches from the ark.
View attachment 1375465
The edge looked terrible after coming directly from the Ark. With a good amount of stropping however, I was able to improve it to the point, that I had enough courage to try to shave with it
The shave however was not rough at all. Actually, it was surprisingly smooth (no blood, no irritation not even Feedback from the aftershave), but also not especially clean and close with some trouble to cut trough my 2 day stubble around the chin. I was also shaving extra careful because I was expecting a rough ride. Overall the shave was acceptable, but a clear step below the 12k finish from before using the Ark. I still think it must be possible to improve the results.
Today the SIC powder arrived and I will continue lapping/finishing the Ark with it.