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Hello all... SR newbie... what have I got myself into? (also, advice needed)

Hello all,

I somehow became interested in the idea of shaving with a straight razor in the past month or so, and have since fallen a long way down the wet shaving rabbit hole. I bought a vintage straight and a cheap leather strop, and despite not even being able to shave with it properly, I've become slightly obsessed... 😂

I've now read 100s of pages on this forum (thankyou all for your contributions), watched too many youtube vids and started looking at eBay for vintage shaving gear. I've also purchased lapping film, an acrylic honing block and some gold dollar razors so I can practice The Method. Not sure if I've found a new hobby, religion or some combination of the two 😂

OK, onto a description of my first shave:
  • On my first shave I was able to shave my cheeks and some of my neck area, but couldn’t remove any hair around sideburns areas. It seemed to me that the point end of the blade wasn’t cutting properly. I had to finish off with my old disposable, so not a great start!
  • I did a hanging hair test and confirmed that the heel end of the blade is sharp and will cut a hanging hair, but the point end (about a third or half of the edge at the point end) wouldn’t cut a hanging hair.
  • I think either the straight wasn't actually shave ready, or (more likely) I ruined the edge with incorrect stropping technique (I think I've since corrected my technique).
  • While this wasn't ideal entry into wet shaving, it has taken me down the path of learning about honing etc which I find very interesting and I'm keen to try my hand at.

And now my newbie questions:
  • If an edge doesn't pass the HHT, will any amount of stropping on leather bring it back, or does it need to be honed?

No it needs rehoning it would seem.

  • Does anyone know of a honemeister in Western Australia? I know there are some on the east coast, but would like to go local if I can.

I know of one in Sydney somewhere and another in Brisbane. I have a fraternal brother in FNQ who is in this forum and also hones.
  • While I'm getting my SR back to shave-readiness, I was thinking of practicing shave technique with a cheap shavette that I have. Is this a good idea, or am I going to pick up bad technique?

Sounds good, but with some caveats. Use Feather Artist Club. Shaving using a shavette and a DE blade is nasty. Go for the Dorco blades as these are very forgiving. The Feathers and Kais will take half your face unless you really know what you are doing. Think of a vertical learning curve.

As for shaving with a cut throat, it will take a while then you will suddenly nail it, or so I found. You just need to persist. Took me four shaves to feel comfortable with a naked blade on my face, Then around shave sixteen I nailed it. Mind you I have been doing three pass shaves since I started with CT razors.

You're welcome!!
 
Welcome to B&B. When you get a chance head over to the Hall of Fame and tell us a little about yourself.
 
Same boat as you, just i can shave now with shavette without a problem. If you use a shavette, use an artist club shavette with a feather proguard blade or Kai protouch one. These will protect you till you master the angle. I can get very satisfying shaves with one of these blades using a light touch. It comes with practice every day till it becomes natural to you.

I am learning that a straight razor needs one fundamental key, patience always.
 
Have fun, go slow, learn along the way, and oh have fun. I still sometimes finish my SR with a DE if time is critical or to just change up things up with my very limited kit. Cheers and happy shaves.
 

steveclarkus

Goose Poop Connoisseur
Thanks all for the warm welcome and advice

Some follow ups...

Thanks to @Mastropiero, @PintoPlain, @rbscebu, @Tomo etc for the advice re: HHT, stropping, honers in Australia etc. I think I'll perhaps send my vintage SR to DC Blades, and have a go at honing on a Gold Dollar with an aim to get good enough to do it myself next time.

@rbscebu I have read the instructions, but have forgotten most of it 😂. I will read again before my next shave.

@Legion, a pic of my SR is below. Curtin and Clark Cutlery.

View attachment 1455434

And an update: today I shaved with the shavette. Not too bad, a couple of nicks and a bit of irritation around my neck (I think blade angle too high), but overall I'm calling it a success. Will keep going with the shavette and looking forward to trying with a proper SR soon.

Thanks again to all.
Very nice looking razor and in my favorite size too!
 
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