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Coticule Question

Can't really judge Coticules by visual inspection of the bevel; they leave the worst scratch patterns.. The stones vary, so technique has to vary; they can be straightforward or a bit more mysterious.
Figuring out a coticule out is best done by forgetting labels and approaching each stone as its own thing. Two examples of La Grise can be wildly different, same for any vein. I've owned super hard La Verte and others that were so soft they 'bled' slurry when lapping.
Les Lat Yellow Coticule, for example, there are two layers, then there is the hybrid which is a different type of stone. Hybrids come in myriad flavors; heavily marbled, 'painted', reddish blush, etc. The 'painted' type is very different than the heavily marbled type. The two veins of Yellow Les Lat are notably different, and vary from example to example also.
Best thing to do is to start with a specific honing progression, and making minor adjustments one at a time. Making many adjustments at once creates confusion, there is no way to know which change did what.
I use a modified dulicot approach and make adjustments based on feedback. I've yet to run into a coti I can't shave off of.
Some people count laps, etc, whatever works is what works.
My first coticule whipped up on me pretty good. I was very disappointed in that stone. In hindsight I don't know what was so difficult about it. Maybe just the being so different from the arks that I was accustomed to. I think I spent a couple hours a day for two weeks or so before I was satisfied with the results. Soap and water and a few light edge trailing laps at the end gave me the bump I was looking for in sharpness.
I have several cotis now and they all take me to about the same place. I prefer the harder stones though.
Well, the ebay coticule arrived a couple of days ago. Tried using it a bit yesterday, but killed my edge rather than improving it. So put it down and fixed the edge with an Ark.

Tonight, pulled them out for another try. Being mindful of the advice that each stone is its own thing, put a few strokes on each stone with really wet slurry to develop some feel for the surface on each. The smaller stone on the left is fairly coarse and harder. The one on the right has very fine grit.

So started off on the coarse stone and had a clean bevel that shaved arm hair very crisply fairly quickly.

Made a slightly milky, watery slurry on the fine stone, did some passes, thinned it, and repeated it a few times.

The edge cuts arm hair about 1/4” above the skin. That is not as good as I do with my Arks, but felt like it was pretty good for a second attempt with totally new stones. So, quit at that point. The super hard back side of the stone will have to wait for the future.

Will try the edge in the morning.

After cleaning and flattening, a nice pink hue came out on the stone on the right. The colors are beautiful. Now I can understand why people like to collect these. Have some more on the way to try out.

The are very different to work with than synthetics or Arks, but enjoyable.

Thanks to everyone for the helpful information and advice.


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That's a les lat and most choose these coticules for the super-hard hybrid side, while the yellow side typically can very alot and may or may not be good to finish on. The super-hard hybrid side is consistent in putting the keenest of coticule edges. Mine puts an edge on my razors that blow every other coticule edge I have shaved with, out of the water when it came to sharpness/keenness while still having the characteristic coticule skin-friendliness.
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