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Coticule Unicot honing without tape

I have struggled to get consistent results with a full honing going from bevel set to final edge using coticules. The unicot edge seems to work fine, but i do not want to give up almost one degree on my bevel angle. I have had some good edges from doing a full dilution, but i am not able do it consistently.
I have no problems using the coticule as a finisher after a synthetic 6-8 k stone, but they feel different then a "pure" coticule edge.
That was my starting point. I have one coticule that cuts well, but i struggle to finish with it. Part of the stone also seems to be a little brittle, but cuts well. It has been used for knifes lately, but i have better options for that use. So i decided to cut of the "bad" part and make one narrow hone (25 x 130) for bevel setting and one to start the finish on (50 x 130). The narrow stone was given a curve over the short distance, like a honing rod. By varying the angle of attack to the stone it is possible to change the effective bevel angle, which depends on your approach to the stone.
The bevel was reset with slurry on the narrow stone and finished on the flat wider stone. The flat stone will then only need to work on a smaller part of the bevel, like adding tape. I like to hone holding the stone in one hand. I do not think i would manage to hone on a narrow hone on the bench.
The edge was finished on an LV with water.
You introduce allot of new variables with this approach. You are working on a much smaller contact point, and care must be taken to hit the heel and toe to avoid creating a frown. The curved hone can also be much wider.
If you can master your dilucot honing, there is probably nothing for you here. I just found it interesting.
The edge was dulled by pulling it over the corner of a stone two times. It was brought back in only a few minutes on the narrow curved stone, and finished under running water.
The edge was not any better then what i have had before with some luck, but i removed the slurry dilution variable out, so it is easy to repeat.
The razor (Ralf Aust) also had the typical solingen bent spine.
This has nothing do with the convex stone:)
You can affect the bevel angle by a few degrees, which might not be good, but it is quite straight forward to calculate the approximate angle off attach you need to affect the bevel angle by e.g one degree. You do not want to overdue it and create a fat/tall bevel.

For coticule honing gods this probably seems a little more complicated then it needs to be.

More details can be added for anyone who is interested.
I was at least able to get a good edge with this stone this way.



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Hey, do whatever works for ya. I've never really found coti's all that difficult. I don't set a bevel on my coticules but if the edge is dull and there is already a bevel set then I can do one stone honing using the dilucot method. If the bevel is gone I use the 1K Chosera
 
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Tape is an essential part of the Unicot method. Really, without the compound bevel, it isn't really unicot. But you can go Dilucot. Unicot works well with most wedges and some very thin hollowgrounds, but for most razors the DIlucot method seems to work better, at least for me. If you read up on Dilucot and follow the Dilucot method exactly, you will get a rather decent shaving edge, maybe not super sharp, but quite comfortable.
 
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Tape is an essential part of the Unicot method. Really, without the compound bevel, it isn't really unicot. But you can go Dilucot. Unicot works well with most wedges and some very thin hollowgrounds, but for most razors the DIlucot method seems to work better, at least for me. If you read up on Dilucot and follow the Dilucot method exactly, you will get a rather decent shaving edge, maybe not super sharp, but quite comfortable.
The point was that you create a compound edge with this method while at the same time end up with the normal bevel angle you create on the flat stone.
The normal dilution process is much more fun. On some stone bridging the gap between the slurry and water only can be difficult with some stones.
 
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Actually, if the spine and edge are parallel and straight, the heel lead angle does not change the bevel angle.
That is correct if the stone is flat, but when the stone is curved over the short axis this changes the angle.
This is what you end up with. Again no tape have been used here. When the length of the contact point on the edge and the contact point on the spine gets longer, the angle changes.

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When the length of the contact point on the edge and the contact point on the spine gets longer, the angle changes.
No.

Picture a straight edge, to simulate the contact on the cylindrical hone, and a full wedge. The straight edge will stay in full contact with the face of the wedge regardless of the angle. The angle of the plane is unchanged.
 
That is correct if the stone is flat, but when the stone is curved over the short axis this changes the angle.
This is what you end up with. Again no tape have been used here. When the length of the contact point on the edge and the contact point on the spine gets longer, the angle changes.

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Apples and oranges. Non-flat hones have been tirelessly or maybe tiresomely debunked both here and on the other leading forum and when you don't even have flat stones, you can basically forget about any sort of consistency and control. But, I will butt out of this one. I am doing nobody any good here.
 
No.

Picture a straight edge, to simulate the contact on the cylindrical hone, and a full wedge. The straight edge will stay in full contact with the face of the wedge regardless of the angle. The angle of the plane is unchanged.
Just do a test and see for your self. Use a honing rod. Hone with an angle of say 45 deg relative to the rod. Do a few strokes on a finisher and loupe in a loop. I have done it for you, but if you do not trust me, just try it for your self. You will see that you will indeed have a difference in the bevel angle. Seeing is believing. Even better, see for your self:)
Light pressure was used here, so the result is not from to much pressure on the honing rod.
The test will take you five minutes on a junk razor.
This is in a nutshell the concept with the curved narrow coticule. It does not even need to be narrow.
I am not suggesting anyone use a diamond honing rod:)

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Just do a test and see for your self. Use a honing rod. Hone with an angle of say 45 deg relative to the rod. Do a few strokes on a finisher and look in a loupe. I have done it for you, but if you do not trust me, just try it for your self. You will see that you will indeed have a difference in the bevel angle. Seeing is believing. Even better, see for your self:)
Light pressure was used here, so the result is not from to much pressure on the honing rod.
The test will take you five minutes on a junk razor.
This is in a nutshell the concept with the curved narrow coticule. It does not even need to be narrow.
I am not suggesting anyone use a diamond honing rod:)

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Just some corrections:)
 
I find that only a rare breed of Coticule to be really optimal for bevel setting. But often these may lack a bit as a finisher. I have one that behaves in a frighteningly similar way to a 1K synthetic when lapped at 400#. I can finish on it but I have bring the surface up to 1200# and continue beyond that with either very fine w/d sandpaper or a slurry stone. Then it becomes plausible if I manage my pressure and incorporate some spine-leading work. All these things should still play into your efforts in regards to standard flat honing and/or convex honing in an attempt to create a compound bevel.
 
I find that only a rare breed of Coticule to be really optimal for bevel setting. But often these may lack a bit as a finisher. I have one that behaves in a frighteningly similar way to a 1K synthetic when lapped at 400#. I can finish on it but I have bring the surface up to 1200# and continue beyond that with either very fine w/d sandpaper or a slurry stone. Then it becomes plausible if I manage my pressure and incorporate some spine-leading work. All these things should still play into your efforts in regards to standard flat honing and/or convex honing in an attempt to create a compound bevel.
The coticule i used in my first post is quite similar to what you describe. The part of the stone that was the most grainy was cut off and used as a bevel setter. The "better" part of the hone was used next with water only. It is a strange stone, because if you stay to long with water the edge starts to degrade, and you see some deeper scratches.
The surface prep really makes a difference with this stone. My softer LV is much easier to use, but tend to auto slurry.
I prefer stone that are around 50 mm wide.
 
The coticule i used in my first post is quite similar to what you describe. The part of the stone that was the most grainy was cut off and used as a bevel setter. The "better" part of the hone was used next with water only. It is a strange stone, because if you stay to long with water the edge starts to degrade, and you see some deeper scratches.
The surface prep really makes a difference with this stone. My softer LV is much easier to use, but tend to auto slurry.
I prefer stone that are around 50 mm wide.
Yeah if I do a full Coticule edge the bevel looks pretty rough even if they wind up shaving really nice. I’ve never been able to come up with a pure stone edge that didn’t look a little chaotic under magnification.
 
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No.

Picture a straight edge, to simulate the contact on the cylindrical hone, and a full wedge. The straight edge will stay in full contact with the face of the wedge regardless of the angle. The angle of the plane is unchanged.
your reference to the straight edge will be a really simple way to explain what is going on. This is a strong argument to avoid using any stone that is not as flat as possible. This is also a reason why imperfection in the stone and the razor will have an adverse effect on the cutting edge. Even a slight dished stone can give you issues,
if you are not aware what is going on, especially if the stone is convex.
This is also a reason why honing a warped blade can be difficult. Or why if you hone into the stabiliser, you end up honing in a warp.

If you put a straight edge flat on e.g a honing rod and angle the straight edge on the honing rod, the angle does not change.
If you then put on a spine at one side of the straight edge, like a frame back razor. You grind in the angle, which is determined by the spine thickness and and the width of the straight edge. Then you lay the frame back on the honing rod and change the skew angle. Nothing happens to the angle, but now you are supporting the bevel at the shoulder, not the entire bevel. This is important. Now when you start to remove steel you will grind in a more shallow angle.
This is the same thing that happens with a guided sharpening system, like the Edge pro. If you picture the contact point on the spine as the edge pro pivot point.
If you clamp in a straight edge in an edge pro system, you will not have the same angle along the hole edge. That is part of the reason i do not like these systems.

Here is an example of the affect you get if you use an skew angle when you approach the stone using an 7/8" razor.
This can also be seen if you use a loupe. I am surprised that this have not been part of the discussion regarding odd shaped stones. It is in my opium one of the main reason anyone new to honing should stay away from odd shaped stones.
But it can be a tool for someone who want to jump deeper into the rabbit hole:)

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This is a strong argument to avoid using any stone that is not as flat as possible. This is also a reason why imperfection in the stone and the razor will have an adverse effect on the cutting edge. Even a slight dished stone can give you issues,

It always tickles me when people preach this and then someone with a lot of experience picks up a 200 year old coticule that is anything but flat and perfect with all of its nicks and scratches and hones a nicer edge than the preacher :)

Flat is great. But don’t over emphasize it. It is more about contact and how that occurs. Anything proud of the hone or anything that catches a razor and you can feel, yes absolutely. But anything lower than the hone and you can’t feel means nothing. Slight dishing, convexing etc - it doesn’t necessarily matter if you learn how to do it.
 
It always tickles me when people preach this and then someone with a lot of experience picks up a 200 year old coticule that is anything but flat and perfect with all of its nicks and scratches and hones a nicer edge than the preacher :)

Flat is great. But don’t over emphasize it. It is more about contact and how that occurs. Anything proud of the hone or anything that catches a razor and you can feel, yes absolutely. But anything lower than the hone and you can’t feel means nothing. Slight dishing, convexing etc - it doesn’t necessarily matter if you learn how to do it.
Yes i agree. When you get a warped and bent blade the conditions of your stone is just one factor.
I have a coticule under my sink i use for a couple of blades. This one is not lapped every time, and it does not make a big, if any difference in the result. But if you can alter/affect your bevel angle by over two degrees you will start to have issues.
This was in no way the intention of my original post.
Make it simple is usually a good approach, but sometimes these differences can be interesting to someone.
 
I've never found a double micro bevel to be all that wonderful in the sharpness dept. When dealing with Kataba, like - say a Deba, the microbevel is only on one side. Some people will go for two sides but it's been proven that doing so reduces cutting efficacy, so one microbevel is all that is called for.
Thing is, with a razor, that sort of geometry is isn't good for two handed shaving use.
I think the double-microbevel Unicot became popular because so many were struggling with the idiotic dulicot 'rules' the poobahs were spewing. By adding tape to get a microbevel they were able to get past the common fails during dulicot. Most of those struggles were probably due to under-honing or trying to hone with school-paste-thick slurry. The know-it-alls kept trying to force everyone to follow a rule-set instead of learning how to sense/learn edge development on a case-by-case basis.
 
I've never found a double micro bevel to be all that wonderful in the sharpness dept. When dealing with Kataba, like - say a Deba, the microbevel is only on one side. Some people will go for two sides but it's been proven that doing so reduces cutting efficacy, so one microbevel is all that is called for.
Thing is, with a razor, that sort of geometry is isn't good for two handed shaving use.
I think the double-microbevel Unicot became popular because so many were struggling with the idiotic dulicot 'rules' the poobahs were spewing. By adding tape to get a microbevel they were able to get past the common fails during dulicot. Most of those struggles were probably due to under-honing or trying to hone with school-paste-thick slurry. The know-it-alls kept trying to force everyone to follow a rule-set instead of learning how to sense/learn edge development on a case-by-case basis.
Thank you for your constructive feedback.
I have only tried to describe one approach, with one difficult stone and added some observations i had along the way. I i have tried to avoid saying anything about my edges. The end result and my ability to hone may not be so relevant or important.
You are probably right. An micro bevel may not be something to strive for. There is one difference, if you compare this type of micro bevel to a regular micro bevel created with tape, you will have a more obtuse angle if you use tape (i do not use tape).
If the Deba you are referring to is sharpened the same way, i.e. by preserving the geometry of the bevel and creating a micro bevel, then it is interesting that the cutting efficiency did not improve.
I an not sure how they tested this. What did they cut? If a human hair is 80-100 microns, you effectively only cut with a tiny part of the bevel. What happens past the 80-100 microns might not be important, but interesting to discuss.

In general if someone tells me something i need to understand what is going on, on a practical level and on a theoretical level. Then i can get back to that someone and say you are absolutely correct. I believe you understand where i am coming from based on the youtube content you have offered. Tank you for sharing your experience.

For me the most interesting and surprising observation i saw from this was the liability i had to deal with if i altered the shape of the stone in only one axis. It was not so obvious to me, and maybe someone else can take something from this. Maybe the title of the post is a bit misleading with that in mind.


A side note.

Back in 2013, the National Centre for Biotechnology Information in the United Kingdom made a worrying claim. The explosion of social media use across, at that time, predominantly younger generations, had led to a study concluding that the average human attention span had dropped from 12 seconds in the year 2000, to just 8 seconds in 2013.

Fast forward to 2021. It seems like a lot of responses from some people in different threads are based on reading only snippets of information and giving an opinion ( i am not refering to you gamma).
I am starting to think that this type of social media platform is not suitable for every type of discussion.
This applies to me as well with regards to how i respond in different threads. I need to remind my self some times.


How many made it to the end:)
 
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After several hundred honings and sharpenings things should become clearer. Honing or sharpening the same edge 60, 70, 80 different times in different ways can bring an understanding that is greater than the sum of technobabble so prevalent on the internet. It's easy to determine which edges are sharper, 'testing' pales in comparison to actual use. Just using an edge over and over and over again shows all. My own Deba and Usuba for example, have been sharpened sooo many times. The Deba has been sharpened so much the Urasuki needs to be reground. For certain, a single microbevel is superior to a double microbevel. Same for Kamisori, and many Scandi blades I've done. While useable, doubles are not favorable. Of course, one needs to learn how to nail that microbevel freehand though. So, a poorly done single microbevel will be less efficient than even a 1/2 way decent double microbevel. Many people miss this fact because they never achieve the skill to 'nail' the edge the right way. Fun fact, many cooks will often create double microbevels on a Deba because it is 'easier' than making a good single microbevel.

What I posted in my earlier comment, was more ruminating than it was 'feedback'. I have a rather extensive practical 'hands on' investment in making edges, so topics like this have been daily thought fodder for quite some time.
Early on I figured out that in order to learn, I have to observe objectively and avoid confirmation bias. Best way to learn, is by doing. Unicot, or any micro-bevel approach (there have been many) has always yielded functional yet less than satisfactory edges. I found that out before I learned about advanced sharpening techniques, esp single bevel cutlery, from masters.
Unicot was developed, it seems, to help people overcome the 'difficulty' of honing with the Dulicot method. If I had any point, it would be this; if people didn't try to make honing into some sort of mystical science, or something with their own 'signature' on it, the Dulicot method would not have seemed to be so difficult. It's just honing, it's not hard, it's fairly simple actually, and anyone can do it.
 
In regards to your 1st post my thoughts are simply that not all Coticules yield the same edge regardless of honing skills. My very best can get sharp enough to demand that I’m not asleep at the wheel while shaving. Now the stones that stop a little short of this level of keenness requires a completely different skill set during the shave. I have to use a very carefully executed scything motion but believe me, one false move and…
You get the idea. But if I can pull off that style of shaving the end results can still be stellar.
 
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