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Honing the 70HRC Titan Razor

Huh! Very hard Japanese Kitchen knives are often at lower inclusive angles than this.

Are you sure? Japanese kitchen knives, and cooking, are another hobby, and I've never run into a knife with an angle on each side less than 11 degrees. What sort of knife do you have with a lower angle than that?
 
My smile-reduction efforts ought to have reduced the angle, at least a little. I do resist your claim that the steel would not work at 16 degrees inclusive. Not because I have any idea whether you're right or not, but because it seems like that should be a sharpening problem. I'd think it could work, even if the final honing stages were all trailing-edge.



The discomfort was all in the toe, and my thumb could feel just how raspy that was. The middle was fine, comfort-wise. Not awesome, but OK.



The scales have no metal liners, only metal at the toe end (and of course whatever metal is involved in the pivot). They are indeed heavy, though, for whatever reason. Getting used to it seems unlikely. I am willing to try the tape, but I am unclear both what sort of tape would be appropriate, and where it should be applied. I admit I was hoping that your advice would be something like "get a ball peen hammer and learn how to use it," but I am a neophyte in the ways of scales.



No. But I would pretty much never buy a stainless steel razor. I just don't like sharpening or honing stainless steel. This was an exceptional case, because I wanted to match my skills against this improbably-hard razor. Among the carbon steel razors, what would you suggest?

The 208 and the P81 are carbon steel. The 100, 200, and 300 are usually stainless but they can be ordered with carbon steel. The 800 and 900 I think are only in stainless.All the rest are carbon steel, AFAIK.

For the tape, I just use electrical tape. Open the razor straight out and tape around the shank and the pivot end of the scales. It helps a little.
 
There are a few Japanese lasers out there.

Miyabi's comes from factory at around 9 to 10 degrees.
People often thin their Misono's down to 12 degrees or something like 10/15 asymmetrical.
Some users even show off the fact that they can flex the edge by bending the edge on a cutting board (supposed to show both how thin it is, and the quality of the heat-treat). It's actually not a bad test considering straight razor guys also test heat treatment this way.

If you are cutting tofu all day, it's fine.
If you are using it like normal person, and you have to cut anything with a bit of a fight it'll dull he edge too quick or lead to chips. So you end up putting 15-20 degree micro bevel at the end. Most home cooks who get married and get gifted premium kitchen knives as wedding gift use them to cut things like chicken bones and ruin the edge pretty much immediately. This is why premium Western knives come with thicc factory edge, cause they don't trust their customers to baby their knives - with good reason.
 
Japanese knifes are so thin because the techniques used while cooking enable that bevel to survive, and not because the steel has any miracle composition or HT. The miracle is on the hands, not the tool. Don't get me wrong, they are top notch artisans, and do wonders forging...
They apply a microbevel so you don't spend your live on the stones, and it helps the food to relase cleanly.
Mine are average, and when I started they didn't last one one fish cutting session. Even the clumsy board contact was bending that edge beyond return.
It goes to razors, the better I shave, the less maintenance...
 
I have three razors in need of my attention. Two are my favorite kind. One is nice but I'm angry at it. But I am doing nothing with any of them. What am I doing? Trying to get an even bevel on this cursed 70 HRC stainless razor, using every diamond stone I have.

It's going OK, but I never imagined that anything could tolerate so many strokes on a 400 grit diamond stone.
1619828500106.png
 
I'm ready to shave with this blade again tomorrow. Should go better.

I had planned for an all-diamond sequence, but you know what they say about plans. The diamonds were great for this razor, but after I spent some time on a 1 micron diamond stone, I saw a very polished edge, with too much raggedness. So I hit it with my last two JNat finishers.

JNat finishers: there are evil things written on this tang, though perhaps your eyes cannot see them.

Me: Just shut up and do that thing you do where after I scrub for a while, the edge is all even.

It worked, mostly. I am down to a minimum of raggedness, that minimum dictated by the remaining deep scratches from my bearing down on the 400 grit stone. It should be reasonably comfortable still, but I'll probably take this razor through the 0.5-0.25-0.1 sequence some extra times, after shaves, until they calm down. It's hard to remove a bunch of metal with diamonds, without leaving traces.

I am pleased to be able to put this razor into the shaving queue after it has monopolized my honing attention for two weeks. Tonight, I finally honed a razor more to my liking, a nice Iwasaki kamisori that needed a return to the stones.

JNat finishers: You have a good blade, Frodo son of Drogo!

Me: My name is Herrenberg, and my father's name was...

JNat finishers: Shut up, Frodo.
 

Steve56

Ask me about shaving naked!
Onr thing to remember about knife bevel angles is that they are measured differently than razors. Look at any knife sharpening diagram and the bevel angle is to the center line of the blade, while razor bevel angles are measured bevel to bevel. So a 15 degree knife angle would be the same as a 30 degree razor bevel angle. No?
 
I got a really good shave with the blade this time. Excellent, really. To my great surprise, my initial hypothesis that a really hard steel would make for an excellent shave actually paid off. It just took a whole lot more work than I expected.
 
I got a really good shave with the blade this time. Excellent, really. To my great surprise, my initial hypothesis that a really hard steel would make for an excellent shave actually paid off. It just took a whole lot more work than I expected.
I found the same as you. My Titan ACRO T.H.70 SR's didn't take as much work as you put in but they did take a lot more work than my normal high carbon steel SR's. For me, it was well worth the effort. I now get excellent shaves from these SR's and they keep their edge almost forever.

They still get an after-shave stropping on 0.1um diamond pasted hanging balsa.
 
Are you sure? Japanese kitchen knives, and cooking, are another hobby, and I've never run into a knife with an angle on each side less than 11 degrees. What sort of knife do you have with a lower angle than that?
Just measured a friends yanagiba at 15º inclusive yesterday.
 
@Herrenberg how have things been going with your Titan ARCO T.H.70 adventure?

I will have a spare T.H.70 arribing one day. I am thinking of reducing that blade's bevel angle a degree or so to see if the steel will support such an angle for shaving.
 
And now, the final chapter. Went through 100 strokes each on the diamond-pasted balsa sequence (0.5, 0.25, 0.1), which put me here.
View attachment 1259144
...which will do, despite some visible imperfections. So, leather, and, at long last, a shave.

I think I came in to the shave with low expectations. Part of that was the floppy pivot, and the uneven geometry. But also, I had so little fun honing it, compared to the usual, that it seemed natural to stay mad at it all the way through the shave. Turned out that wasn't fair.

It was a good shave, except when I had to use the scratchy toe, or forgot I could use something else. Close, reasonably comfortable beyond the toe, and the rigid metal was not hard to adjust to -- certainly easier than adjusting to the motion freedom of a full hollow. I enjoyed the shave.

So where does this leave me? It leaves me with a razor that I like well enough to want to fix the bevel. I think I'll take the idea suggested above, and stick to diamonds and CBN entirely. I now recall that it can actually be fun to sharpen hard stainless on diamond/CBN, and it seems like the only practical way to even out the bevel, since thousands of strokes on a Shapton Glass 500 did not quite manage it.

Was it worth the price? It was for me, I guess, because I got a good shave, and I also got a useful lesson, a new kind of razor problem to solve, new things to learn. Added together, I got my money's worth. Would I buy the razor, at the price they ask for it, just for the shave? No way. But would I be tempted if they did a 70HRC carbon steel version? Yeah, I would.
Grate work.
I got some friendly advise from someone here regarding my microscope images that worked for me.
Try using a black background under the blade. Try to tone down the microscope light and add one light source you can wary the direction of. This is not about the edge. The dark fields are highly reflective with different lighting.
It just adds one more dimension. This is after a 6 strokes on 0.44 m shapton gs edge. It was just to say something about different lighting and background effects.

1630496066150.jpeg
 
@Herrenberg how have things been going with your Titan ARCO T.H.70 adventure?

Still kind of in progress. I ground the razor down to a 15 degree inclusive angle. I honed it on an all-synthetic sequence, Shapton Glass through 30K. Then I shaved with it, but the edge was uncomfortable and harsh. That reminded me that my most successful sequence with this razor used a mixture of JNats and synthetics, so I used my JNat barber finishing stone to put what I hope is a more comfortable edge on it.

Then I got distracted by other razor projects, so I haven't shaved with that edge. Now I'm in a self-imposed discipline to shave only with my largest razors for the whole month. I suppose this one would qualify by weight, since the scales are so heavy, but that seems like quibbling.
 
Grate work.
I got some friendly advise from someone here regarding my microscope images that worked for me.
Try using a black background under the blade. Try to tone down the microscope light and add one light source you can wary the direction of. This is not about the edge. The dark fields are highly reflective with different lighting.
It just adds one more dimension. This is after a 6 strokes on 0.44 m shapton gs edge. It was just to say something about different lighting and background effects.

View attachment 1320699

Nice! I have a black x-y stage on the way. That should give me the background, as well as additional flexibility. Moving around a razor to look at different parts of the edge is fine at 50x, not so great at 180x.

Regarding the secondary light source, what do people use for this? I've played around with a flashlight in the hand, and it looks very promising, but that doesn't seem like the best solution.
 
Nice! I have a black x-y stage on the way. That should give me the background, as well as additional flexibility. Moving around a razor to look at different parts of the edge is fine at 50x, not so great at 180x.

Regarding the secondary light source, what do people use for this? I've played around with a flashlight in the hand, and it looks very promising, but that doesn't seem like the best solution.
I have a good adjustable led leight in the ceiling and a flash light.
 
Still kind of in progress. I ground the razor down to a 15 degree inclusive angle. I honed it on an all-synthetic sequence, Shapton Glass through 30K. Then I shaved with it, but the edge was uncomfortable and harsh. That reminded me that my most successful sequence with this razor used a mixture of JNats and synthetics, so I used my JNat barber finishing stone to put what I hope is a more comfortable edge on it.

Then I got distracted by other razor projects, so I haven't shaved with that edge. Now I'm in a self-imposed discipline to shave only with my largest razors for the whole month. I suppose this one would qualify by weight, since the scales are so heavy, but that seems like quibbling.

Superhard steels can be pretty sketchy at very tight bevel angles. It's not microchipping or even nanochipping. More like picochipping or femto chipping. I don't know. I just find very very hard steels work nicely with a compound bevel and the final bevel at 17 degrees or even looser. Probably depends a lot on, well, a lot of stuff.

The good thing about a too acute bevel is you can always apply a microbevel with a half dozen laps on your finisher. A too obtuse bevel, there is no fixing it except flawless honing and trying to not make any mistakes.
 
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