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Honing my first Straight!

Recently I received a Dovo 6/8 in Tortoise (from the B/S/T; previously honed by Lynn at Straight Razor Place), along with my first hones:

the 5000/8000/Chinese 12K kit from our friend in Poland.

I also have a Barber's Hone, CrOx pasted Balsa, and diamond pasted felt (.25 micron).

The Dovo was quite dull (despite being sold as shave ready), so I decided to see if I could improve the edge. When I started, it wouldn't shave arm hair at all.

I gave it 10 laps on the 5000, 10 laps on the 8000, and about 50 laps on the 12K. I test shaved with it (found it still unsatisfactory), and then I gave it 10 laps on Diamond, followed by 20-30 laps on the CrOx.

It will shave hair, but not as well as my Boker (5/8). It leaves more hair behind on the first pass than is normal, and pulls just a little tiny bit.

So what in your opinion should be my next step for putting a better edge on this?

Back to the 8000?? More laps on the 12K? More work with the CrOx?

Thanks,

John.
 
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Since you do not own a lower grit stone, try 30-50 laps on the 5k(isn't it 4k?).If that does not help you need to go lower than 5k, and make sure the bevel is set right.
 
Since you do not own a lower grit stone, try 30-50 laps on the 5k(isn't it 4k?).

No, it's a 5K stone. This is a budget level set sold on E-Bay through a gentlemen in Poland. It's available for $40 US shipped, so it's a bit easier to swallow than the $100+ of the Norton stones.
 
You aren't spending nearly enough time on the stones. Coming off that 5k should shave arm hair along the whole edge. Off the 8k it should do it more cleanly. Only once you've got a blade that mows arm hair easily should you move on to the China.

Even my fastest, hollowest razors (WonderEdge) take more than 10 passes on each stone. I don't count passes much because it is absolutely dependent on the razor. One takes 25 passes to go from EF to EE, another may take 200. But I'd say a bare starting point to go from 5k to 8k on those stones for a Full Hollow would be 25-30 light passes. Even more important, I doubt you spent nearly enough time on 5k, unless the edge was almost sharp already. Beveling on a 5k, even one that fast takes time. If the edge was completely dull, I'd expect 150+ passes, and that's with declining pressure. I have no experience with Dovo's but based on the reports I've seen, they seem to vary from needing to be beveled to being just past beveling.


Based on your report, I'd try maybe another 50 passes on the 5k, test it on arm hair, then progress to 8k. It will take a few tries to get a feel for the stones and start to learn how to recognize the state of the edge, but you'll get there.

A 5k sharp razor won't miss anything on a WTG pass. I can do WTG shaving with a little tugging off 2-3k. It's only XTG and ATG that actually requires a sharp razor.
 
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You aren't spending nearly enough time on the stones. Coming off that 5k should shave arm hair along the whole edge. Off the 8k it should do it more cleanly. Only once you've got a blade that mows arm hair easily should you move on to the China.

Ian, thanks for the help. While I agree that I likely didn't spend enough time on the hones, even the work I did do has shown a marked improvement to the blade, as it wouldn't shave arm hair at all before. :tongue_sm

I have no experience with Dovo's but based on the reports I've seen, they seem to vary from needing to be beveled to being just past beveling

I should have clarified, this is not the Dovo factory edge I am working with. I purchased the razor (as shave ready) off of the B/S/T. The razor had been previously honed by Lynn Abraham's, and then used a number of times by a newbie straight shaver, prior to being sold on the B/S/T. While it was sold as shave ready, it was far from it. I suspect newbie technique took it's toll on the blade.
 
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You can make the 5K cut faster by raising a slurry. The only advantage of a lower grit stone is speed. If you take your time on the 5K you can get there.
 
I have no experiance to offer here as i have only just started to hone, my first hone was really easy with the stones i have got, the nirwana combo and the same chinese 12k and as i posted i had great results with these stones plus the crox, but the 2nd razor i am working on now is totally different and i found i had to use 4 or 5 times, maybe more, strokes on both my stones to get where i was with my first razor, and still not too happy with it, i think trial and error must come into honing when you first start and i am so happy that i got my first razor honed because if this current razor was my first attempt i would have thrown the stones out with fustration by now :lol:
 
Simple question, did you verify the bevel? I always set the bevel regardless, that way I know it's correct and then I don't waste time going up the ladder to find that it's not right....
 
I'm going to keep an eye on this thread. I got the same stones as you did from that Polish guy (for the price you can't beat it for a starter set) and I just received my King Cutter I won on eBay that I have to hone. I'm a little nervous about popping my honing cherry.
 
I would do a combination of circles and x strokes on the 5k stone until you can easily shave arm hair. Then move on to your other hones.

Chimensch comment about raising a slurry will definately help too.



Ian, thanks for the help. While I agree that I likely didn't spend enough time on the hones, even the work I did do has shown a marked improvement to the blade, as it wouldn't shave arm hair at all before. :tongue_sm



I should have clarified, this is not the Dovo factory edge I am working with. I purchased the razor (as shave ready) off of the B/S/T. The razor had been previously honed by Lynn Abraham's, and then used a number of times by a newbie straight shaver, prior to being sold on the B/S/T. While it was sold as shave ready, it was far from it. I suspect newbie technique took it's toll on the blade.
 
I would do a combination of circles and x strokes on the 5k stone until you can easily shave arm hair. Then move on to your other hones.

Chimensch comment about raising a slurry will definately help too.
Amen to that.

If it have been poorly stropped, there can very much be a need for a complete bevel reset.
It will take time on the 5K, but follow above instructions & you will get there.
It must be very sharp before you leave the 5K (read; shave armhair easily)
 
I'm going to keep an eye on this thread. I got the same stones as you did from that Polish guy (for the price you can't beat it for a starter set) and I just received my King Cutter I won on eBay that I have to hone. I'm a little nervous about popping my honing cherry.

I think you will be happy with the hones. I followed the advice above, and the Dovo is now nicely popping hair; should be a pleasure to shave with.

The progression was as follows:

-Roughly 50 passes on the 5K.
-Roughly 50 passes on the 8K.
-Roughly 70 passes on the 12K.

Worked beautifully. :thumbup1:

My next project is a Gold Dollar, that is nowhere near shave ready, as it has a wide shoulder that needs to be filed down so the blade can lie flat on the hone. It should be fun to play with over the next few days. :w00t:
 
Are you liking these hones? I have read emailed the guy several times asking him the same question and never got a response. So, I didn't buy them. I ask because I read somewhere that the grit is kind of way off, being a lot lower than what is marked.

Sounds like you got them working okay for you though. :thumbup:
 
This is something i've been meaning to ask the forum. How do you know when you have the bevel set correctly? Can this only be determined by a microscope?

Simple question, did you verify the bevel? I always set the bevel regardless, that way I know it's correct and then I don't waste time going up the ladder to find that it's not right....
 
This is something i've been meaning to ask the forum. How do you know when you have the bevel set correctly? Can this only be determined by a microscope?

If the razor shaves arm hair, the bevel is set correctly. Test it at the point, in the middle and at the heel.
 
I think you will be happy with the hones. I followed the advice above, and the Dovo is now nicely popping hair; should be a pleasure to shave with.

The progression was as follows:

-Roughly 50 passes on the 5K.
-Roughly 50 passes on the 8K.
-Roughly 70 passes on the 12K.

Worked beautifully. :thumbup1:

My next project is a Gold Dollar, that is nowhere near shave ready, as it has a wide shoulder that needs to be filed down so the blade can lie flat on the hone. It should be fun to play with over the next few days. :w00t:

Thanks for your progression. Gives me an idea of what to aim for. Will probably give it a try this weekend or next week some time.
 
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