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First rescale... Slate

After a few attempts at cleaning and polishing, I decided to have a go at scales. I saw an old piece of slate that has been kicking around and thought, why not? Several things came to mind, the most worriesome being stressors at the pivot point. Then I saw this nice Torrey on eBay and noticed there was not a lot of taper on the tang. Perfect!

I rough cut it on a scroll saw and shaped and smoothed with a HF belt sander. Split it with the saw and sanded through the progression, finishing with a Dremel and automotive cutting compund. I've gotta' say, I'm psyched about the final product for my first shot at it!

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After a few attempts at cleaning and polishing, I decided to have a go at scales. I saw an old piece of slate that has been kicking around and thought, why not? Several things came to mind, the most worriesome being stressors at the pivot point. Then I saw this nice Torrey on eBay and noticed there was not a lot of taper on the tang. Perfect!

I rough cut it on a scroll saw and shaped and smoothed with a HF belt sander. Split it with the saw and sanded through the progression, finishing with a Dremel and automotive cutting compund. I've gotta' say, I'm psyched about the final product for my first shot at it!

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That looks so very clean! I love those scales and slate to boot what type of slate if I may ask? Great job!!!
 
That looks so very clean! I love those scales and slate to boot what type of slate if I may ask? Great job!!!
Why thank you, Sir! I wish I could tell you what kind of slate it is. It's from a piece a friend gave me to make a door for my brick oven. I would bet it's from northern NY or Vermont, if that means anything. The last picture is the piece I hacked them from.
 
Wow, slate scales. How does the weight compare when shaving as opposed to plastic or wood? I have a razor with aluminum scales and the difference is significant. Is there any risk of wear on the blade when folding things up? If they're from Vermont slate country, it might be fun to use the rest of the stone for touch-ups with the same razor.
 
Wow, slate scales. How does the weight compare when shaving as opposed to plastic or wood? I have a razor with aluminum scales and the difference is significant. Is there any risk of wear on the blade when folding things up? If they're from Vermont slate country, it might be fun to use the rest of the stone for touch-ups with the same razor.
The weight seems noticeable, but not too bad. The razor weighs in at 48 grams, compared to 45 for the (albeit slightly larger, but very hollow) Sheffield in plastic. I just "honed" it last night and will give it a try tonight.

I used thrush washers and the blade is centered so well that I think the only real contact is when fully closed where the spine rests on the scales. Hopefully excessive wear will not be a problem.

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The original scales. Should have weighed it!

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Why thank you, Sir! I wish I could tell you what kind of slate it is. It's from a piece a friend gave me to make a door for my brick oven. I would bet it's from northern NY or Vermont, if that means anything. The last picture is the piece I hacked them from.
I was just curious and also curious as to the weight of them but all of those questions have been asked! So my next question is this how the heck did you cut it!?
 
I was just curious and also curious as to the weight of them but all of those questions have been asked! So my next question is this how the heck did you cut it!?
I cut it with what I would call a cheap scroll saw with a ceramic-cutting blade. More like a jigsaw mounted under a table. It was easy enough to cut the shape, but a little trying to split it into two scales! The major shaping I did with the infamous $60 Harbor Freight belt sander. Did the bigger removal where the belt goes over the front roller, where it will really knock it down. Just Sharpied a line, did the bottom (concave) section by the roller then rocked it on the flat part of the belt for the top line. I actually knocked out a second set in about 15 minutes, to that point. Took some sanding on the cut sides to get it flat and smooth, though. Next time I would cut them an inch or 2 long, clamp them down at the excess and get after them with a handheld belt sander.
 
I cut it with what I would call a cheap scroll saw with a ceramic-cutting blade. More like a jigsaw mounted under a table. It was easy enough to cut the shape, but a little trying to split it into two scales! The major shaping I did with the infamous $60 Harbor Freight belt sander. Did the bigger removal where the belt goes over the front roller, where it will really knock it down. Just Sharpied a line, did the bottom (concave) section by the roller then rocked it on the flat part of the belt for the top line. I actually knocked out a second set in about 15 minutes, to that point. Took some sanding on the cut sides to get it flat and smooth, though. Next time I would cut them an inch or 2 long, clamp them down at the excess and get after them with a handheld belt sander.
Hell yea !! No fancy tools involved love it man!
Impressive.

I hope they work really well. Maybe this will start a trend.

Happy shaves,

Jim
If it don't start a trend it should!! They look great don't they!
 
Beautiful scales! I can't imagine how difficult it would be to cut something like that on a scroll saw.
Yeah, right? As I learned on the second pair, the sander is your friend! You need a deft touch as you approach the line, but it really chews through it if you want.
 
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