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My first hone

rbscebu

Girls call me Makaluod
Another thought on your whetstone scratches. It could also be caused by cross contamination from the previous whetstone(s). You need to be meticulous about cleanliness when honing so that not a single particle (even the invisible ones) from a previous whetstone can get onto the next whetstone. This means that between whetstones, you thoroughly cleaning the blade, your hands and anything else that can lead to cross-contamination.
 
Like any internet forum I've frequented, you're going to get a lot of opinions from a lot of well-meaning folks. It's mathematically impossible to apply all you're told, so as a newcomer you're in the unenviable position of discerning the most useful information, and the information that is most important at the moment. Being new and inexperienced this job description is for a position best left to someone else. (Bad analogy.) I'm not suggesting you're not fit, I'm suggesting that you have information overload and lack the references to prioritize what applies at this moment.

I picked up a straight razor (SR) less than 2 months ago, and thanks "mostly," to the guidance of one person, I was able to make a blade that I'm proud to shave with.

Unfortunately you've already spent boatloads (I was about to also--'cept I was going to get a set of Shapton glass and call it a day.) Luckily someone reached out to me and learned me this: RIGHT NOW, you don't need toys, you need to learn the ropes.

Right now--SLOW DOWN. I think you'd be best served addressing one issue at a time.

We'll talk more, but at the moment, my too sense is to buy you a razor off eBay that has stamped on the metal, "Solingen, Germany, Boker, Wade & Butcher, W.H. Morely & Sons, and there are a few others whose names escape me at the moment. Be patient and you'll get one for less than $20. My Wade & Butcher was single-digit priced, and it's one of my best shavers.

You sound like you have everything you need except for a couple cheap items--(our favorite word). You might consider getting a flat surface like a piece of glass thick enough to endure some downward pressure--sized appropriately to fit in a sink under running water; and a package of wet/dry sandpaper in 400, 600, 800, and 1000 grit. I got the strips, each of the 4 pkg's were $8 a piece.

We'll get you shaving. The first day of battle is full of trepidation for all. You will make it home. We'll see to it. We're here for you.
 
It is coursed by either burrs on the blade or foreign matter getting on the whetstone. If it is affecting the honing result, the scratches can be removed by re-lapping the surface flat.

For re-lapping flat, I prefer to use wet & dry sandpaper in a plat ceramic tile.

Work on one problem at a time. First properly set the bevel. Then and only then worry about refining the edge further and the condition of your whetstones.
I got some 340 and 600 sandpaper on the wau from the gym so I'll find myself some flat surface and try to lap the stones.

I Also need to be more aware of cross-contamination, I didn't think about that at All.
 
Like any internet forum I've frequented, you're going to get a lot of opinions from a lot of well-meaning folks. It's mathematically impossible to apply all you're told, so as a newcomer you're in the unenviable position of discerning the most useful information, and the information that is most important at the moment. Being new and inexperienced this job description is for a position best left to someone else. (Bad analogy.) I'm not suggesting you're not fit, I'm suggesting that you have information overload and lack the references to prioritize what applies at this moment.

I picked up a straight razor (SR) less than 2 months ago, and thanks "mostly," to the guidance of one person, I was able to make a blade that I'm proud to shave with.

Unfortunately you've already spent boatloads (I was about to also--'cept I was going to get a set of Shapton glass and call it a day.) Luckily someone reached out to me and learned me this: RIGHT NOW, you don't need toys, you need to learn the ropes.

Right now--SLOW DOWN. I think you'd be best served addressing one issue at a time.

We'll talk more, but at the moment, my too sense is to buy you a razor off eBay that has stamped on the metal, "Solingen, Germany, Boker, Wade & Butcher, W.H. Morely & Sons, and there are a few others whose names escape me at the moment. Be patient and you'll get one for less than $20. My Wade & Butcher was single-digit priced, and it's one of my best shavers.

You sound like you have everything you need except for a couple cheap items--(our favorite word). You might consider getting a flat surface like a piece of glass thick enough to endure some downward pressure--sized appropriately to fit in a sink under running water; and a package of wet/dry sandpaper in 400, 600, 800, and 1000 grit. I got the strips, each of the 4 pkg's were $8 a piece.

We'll get you shaving. The first day of battle is full of trepidation for all. You will make it home. We'll see to it. We're here for you.
Thank you for your kind words! I didn't expect so much help from the get go but I thrive under loads of information and I have to keep myself busy All the time. No problems there, university thought me how to absorb the most important information quickly.
 
I got some 340 and 600 sandpaper on the wau from the gym so I'll find myself some flat surface and try to lap the stones.

I Also need to be more aware of cross-contamination, I didn't think about that at All.
Just a brief piece of advice/warning:
I recently bought synthetic stones and was warned to lap them flat. I thought, hey they are from a factory they must be mostly flat. Don't want to ruin my new stones so I only lapped them a little bit, it turned out they were not even close to flat. You DO need to mark the stone in several places and keep lapping until the marks disappear, it's painful to watch your stone go down the drain at first. Once you try it on the razor, the difference is immediately noticeable.
 
Just a brief piece of advice/warning:
I recently bought synthetic stones and was warned to lap them flat. I thought, hey they are from a factory they must be mostly flat. Don't want to ruin my new stones so I only lapped them a little bit, it turned out they were not even close to flat. You DO need to mark the stone in several places and keep lapping until the marks disappear, it's painful to watch your stone go down the drain at first. Once you try it on the razor, the difference is immediately noticeable.
I Made a Mesh with a pencil and lapped them until it dissapeared evenly before first use.
 
Sharpie test - 5 laps after about 100 laps on the 1k, still no bevel.

One side seems to be very Nice, the other very Bad.
 

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You are honing the heel on the stabilizer, which is keeping the heel off the stone. You can reshape the heel moving the heel corner away from the stabilizer or pay attention to your stroke and keep off the stabilizer.

Re-ink the bevels. the spine and the stabilizer and do a single stroke. Take photos. Note where the ink is removed.

Now add 2 layers of tape re-ink the bevels and do another single lap. Post photos of the results. You need to establish if the problem is the razor or technique and if tape alone will allow the razor to be honed.

Until you get the stones flat, AND you are positive they are flat, you are wasting steel and time.

Get a diamond plate 300/1000 from Chef Knives to Go $30. Make pencil grid and lap on the 300 side, under running water. When the grid is removed, re mark and lap again, until you can remove the grid in 10 laps or less. Lap under running water or you will rip the diamonds from the diamond plate.

As said the slurry is removing the pencil grid before your stone is flat, that is the problem with those “flattening stones”. Also bevel or round the edges of your stones or they will scratch the bevels and undo any proper honing you may do.

You can lap the stones flat with 220 wet and dry and any flat surface under running water. A diamond plate is cleaner, easier and you will need a diamond plate in the future to maintain your stones. You can use sandpaper, but it is not practical.

Grinding needlessly on stones of unknow flatness, is just wasting steel and may be damaging the razor further. So, stop “honing “until you have a plan.

Doing more of the same thing, expecting a different result is not a plan and never works.

BTW does the guy that “tuned’ your razor, shave with a straight razor?
 
You are honing the heel on the stabilizer, which is keeping the heel off the stone. You can reshape the heel moving the heel corner away from the stabilizer or pay attention to your stroke and keep off the stabilizer.

Re-ink the bevels. the spine and the stabilizer and do a single stroke. Take photos. Note where the ink is removed.

Now add 2 layers of tape re-ink the bevels and do another single lap. Post photos of the results. You need to establish if the problem is the razor or technique and if tape alone will allow the razor to be honed.

Until you get the stones flat, AND you are positive they are flat, you are wasting steel and time.

Get a diamond plate 300/1000 from Chef Knives to Go $30. Make pencil grid and lap on the 300 side, under running water. When the grid is removed, re mark and lap again, until you can remove the grid in 10 laps or less. Lap under running water or you will rip the diamonds from the diamond plate.

As said the slurry is removing the pencil grid before your stone is flat, that is the problem with those “flattening stones”. Also bevel or round the edges of your stones or they will scratch the bevels and undo any proper honing you may do.

You can lap the stones flat with 220 wet and dry and any flat surface under running water. A diamond plate is cleaner, easier and you will need a diamond plate in the future to maintain your stones. You can use sandpaper, but it is not practical.

Grinding needlessly on stones of unknow flatness, is just wasting steel and may be damaging the razor further. So, stop “honing “until you have a plan.

Doing more of the same thing, expecting a different result is not a plan and never works.

BTW does the guy that “tuned’ your razor, shave with a straight razor?
Thanks for the tips, I'm looking for a lapping solution.

The guy has a website with his work showing videos of hanging hair test and so on. On the phone he said he is shaving with a straight. I asked him to hone and strop the razor for me since I wanted to have it perfect. I was able to get a Nice shave from a shavette, but the straight was catching, tugging and very irritating.
 

Slash McCoy

I freehand dog rockets
You are honing the heel on the stabilizer, which is keeping the heel off the stone. You can reshape the heel moving the heel corner away from the stabilizer or pay attention to your stroke and keep off the stabilizer.

Re-ink the bevels. the spine and the stabilizer and do a single stroke. Take photos. Note where the ink is removed.

Now add 2 layers of tape re-ink the bevels and do another single lap. Post photos of the results. You need to establish if the problem is the razor or technique and if tape alone will allow the razor to be honed.

Until you get the stones flat, AND you are positive they are flat, you are wasting steel and time.

Get a diamond plate 300/1000 from Chef Knives to Go $30. Make pencil grid and lap on the 300 side, under running water. When the grid is removed, re mark and lap again, until you can remove the grid in 10 laps or less. Lap under running water or you will rip the diamonds from the diamond plate.

As said the slurry is removing the pencil grid before your stone is flat, that is the problem with those “flattening stones”. Also bevel or round the edges of your stones or they will scratch the bevels and undo any proper honing you may do.

You can lap the stones flat with 220 wet and dry and any flat surface under running water. A diamond plate is cleaner, easier and you will need a diamond plate in the future to maintain your stones. You can use sandpaper, but it is not practical.

Grinding needlessly on stones of unknow flatness, is just wasting steel and may be damaging the razor further. So, stop “honing “until you have a plan.

Doing more of the same thing, expecting a different result is not a plan and never works.

BTW does the guy that “tuned’ your razor, shave with a straight razor?
Agreed, it appears he has been riding the shoulder up on the hone. Tape needs a little thought before using, though. Remember, this is a Titan, and the bevel angle is a bit larger than most razors.
 
I suggest using a synthetic stone with mineral oil to quickly set your bevel, then you can play around with your NATS to finish. Have fun learning along the way.
 

Slash McCoy

I freehand dog rockets
Your two most valuable honing tools are your eyes and your brain. Next most important is your light source and magnification. You must be able to see in great detail what you got, and analyze what you got and what is needed.

Probably the most popular optical aid on this forum is my favorite, the 10x Belomo Triplet loupe. Beware of loupes and microscopes that require you to be in contact or near contact with the edge you are examining! The 10x Belomo stands off a respectable distance and has a very useful depth of field and viewing area. It is a very high quality instrument, definitely the equal of the Bausch & Lomb loupes. The 20x Belomo is NOT twice as good as the 10x. For our purposes it is not even half as good. You want the 10x Belomo. Additionally you might or might not want a small USB microscope for sharing pics as you learn to hone but it is not as essential as for YOU to be able to see YOUR edge. Your light source ideally is a single pinpoint, not a general cheerful glow. The reason for this is what you are looking at is reflections.

Understand what the bevel actually is. It is two planes, both of which stretch to infinity in two dimensions, and are congruent with the bevel facets at the edge and spine, and intersect together to form an edge. It is the bevel facet on each side that is of greatest initial interest. This facet should be extremely flat. As you roll and tilt the razor under your work light, the reflection should flash quickly across or along it. Only a very slight tilt should send that reflection off into never never land. When you tilt or roll the razor more, you might see a new reflection at or very near the edge. That one is your enemy. You want the main facet to extend all the way out to the edge, first of all. This, on both sides. With the edge turned up at the light, there should be no sparkles from the edge, which of course would indicate a poorly formed edge, and the bevel facets not intersecting precisely. When this is the case, even though the bevel facets show a very consistent reflection all the way to the edge, there is still some steel that must be removed. You remove steel from both sides in a controlled manner until there are no sparklies AND the bevel facets are perfectly flat all the way out to the edge.

This level of flatness is extremely difficult to achieve freehand. Sharpen a knife and look at the bevel. Do it without any guides or angle references, just you, knife, and stone. Examine your bevel. It will not be as precisely flat as that of a razor. The reflection from the edge bevel will wander lazily as you roll the knife under your work light. The bevel is slightly convex, due to the imprecision built in to the human hand and senses. Not a bad thing, necessarily, in a knife, but it is a large part of what separates the level of sharpness of a knife and a well honed razor. The spine is what sets and controls the angle to which the razor meets the stone or film. With care, the spine can maintain the angle exactly. Lifting the spine from the stone even briefly can spoil your progress and cause you to back up and start again. On the other hand, remembering that the spine's thickness sets the bevel angle, you want the spine to wear proportionally to the amount of steel worn away from the edge, so that the angle remains more or less constant over the years or decades that the razor is honed and used. You don't want to absolutely prevent wear to the spine, but neither do you want to wear the spine excessively fast, or inconsistently. Luckily, like most Asian razors, the Titan's bevel angle is a bit on the obtuse side, and a little excess steel wasted away from the spine won't hurt anything. It is very likely that you have been a bit heavy handed on the spine. Certainly, it appears that the toe end has caught a lot of extra pressure, probably from running the shoulder of the razor up on the hone. If you think about it for a minute, honing on the shoulder raises the heel end of the razor. With me so far? So the heel is underrepresented on the stone, and the toe is pressed down and emphasized on the stone.

Your local guy may have honed your razor with the spine up off the stone. This puts an artificially obtuse bevel on the edge, and the natural bevel angle is already a bit wide to begin with. If you can shave with a shavette, you should have been able to shave with the freshly honed razor. There is nothing inherent to the razor that would prevent it from shaving after being honed. I have shaved with the same razor. Well, not yours, but the same model. I will vouch for the steel quality, which is not bad at all. Your honing guy screwed up somehow.

Don't worry too much about lap counts while setting the bevel. It is done when it is done. Your job is twofold: (1) to keep going until it is done, and (2) to do no harm. The main thing with objective number two is to keep that shoulder off the hone, and also recognize when you have achieved objective number one. Pressure can be fairly heavy when setting the bevel, particularly in the early heavy lifting stages and when starting with a 1k stone. I am talking about approximately the full weight of your arm. You should ideally be holding the stone in your other hand. Desperate efforts to control the razor with two unskilled hands often ends badly. When you hone in hand, it is amazing how naturally razor and hone find their own alignment. Also yeah you have a lot of steel in that spine that you can afford to lose, but you mustn't get too medieval about it, either. Make sure your pressure is properly balanced between spine and edge. Apply a slight torque to transfer some of that pressure to the edge.

Perhaps you might try honing just one side until you raise a burr on the other side. The burr method is as close to a foolproof method of setting the bevel as there is. When the burr is present on one side, obviously the other side is honed enough for the bevel plane to have crossed over the central plane of the blade. When you hone the second side and the burr is present on the first side, obviously that side is honed enough, too. All that is left is to remove the burr. There are those who will howl with outrage at the "wasted" steel from your $20 razor but meh. Remember this. Once you have set the bevel good and proper, you NEVER have to set it again as long as you own it, unless you cause catastrophic damage to the edge. Anyway, in removing the burr, pressure must be much lighter. Pressure creates a burr. Light pressure removes it. The trick is in the removal of the burr. Myself, I use what I call the hybrid burr method. I raise the burr over most of the edge but not all, and in removing it, I finish bringing the bevel home over the rest of the blade. You will find raising the burr along the entire edge to be more straightforward. It may take hundreds of stroke on one side to raise a full length burr. That's okay. However I suggest stopping every 100 strokes and hitting the other side so you don't end up with a lopsided razor hugely beveled on one side and barely beveled on the other. See the thread: Setting the Bevel with the Burr Method - https://www.badgerandblade.com/forum/threads/setting-the-bevel-with-the-burr-method.516373/

It does absolutely NO GOOD to move up to a finer stone without absolutely being absolutely certain that you have a bevel absolutely properly set. In fact, for that razor I would have started on 320 grit to do the heavy lifting, and after the first hint of a burr progressing up through 600 grit and then 1k grit. The coarser stone removes steel faster. So, it causes harm faster but it can do good faster, too. Your 1k is gonna take a while and that's fine, just don't expect 60 light laps to gitter done. And STAY OFF THAT SHOULDER. Not shouting at you, I just want that to stand out and poke itself into your consciousness.

Whatever you do, don't give up on that razor and start all over on another. Make all your beginner mistakes here, and don't move on until you gitter done or totally destroy it. We have seen a lot of guys go through 4 or 5 perfectly good razors in a process of serial destruction, instead of sticking with one until the lightbulbs all come on and he "gets" it.

Remember, the bevel MUST be set, fully, and no guessing or "ought to be good by now" to it.

As others have pointed out, you have a slightly smiling blade. No biggie. If you hone in hand, the stone will naturally roll and give some love to heel and to toe. Some guys hone a nearly straight edge into a fully straight edge. I recommend you go with what you got, and hone to the smile. However one of the most common mistakes is exaggerating the roll, in a desperate effort to get every micron of heel and toe sharp. This merely accentuates the smile and makes it "worse". That last 1/8" or so does not have do shave. Let me repeat myself. That last 1/8" or so does not have to shave. In fact for a beginner it is better if it does not. You do need the main body of the blade to all catch a good bevel and a good progression from that good bevel.

Read your bevel. Read your edge. Study those sparkles. Work that gray matter, figure out what the blade, the light, and the magnification are telling you. Don't guess. Be deliberate, not random. Address the defects, don't make them worse. You will get this. Everyone else has.
 
Not to hone on, just to do one lap and see if the razor will sit flat on the stone. There are so many bevel angles ground into the spine now it may not sit flat. 2 layers of tape will bridge any unevenness for the test.

He can then grind it flat to repair. It may sit flat if he keeps off the stabilizer, ink on the spine will tell.

I suggest using a synthetic stone with mineral oil”, No, don’t do that.

It is a technique issue, you have all the stones you need. But you still need to ensure your stones are lapped and edges beveled. If you put oil on synthetics, you will not get it out, Naniwia’s do not react well to soap or degreasers.

The OP does not need to “hone quicker”, he needs to slow down. The issues are common new to honers. Some good magnification will help mark your progress. You can buy a lighted 30x loupe for as little as $2. Lots of good honing threads with clear micrographs to show what your bevels should look like at stages in the progression.
 
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Just a curious "bump" to see where the OP is in his journey.
I'm reading about honing quite a lot while looking for some marble or glass. I want to lap the stones with sandpaper but I can't find some flat surface. Diamond lapping plates are expensive and quite hard to get around here.
 
I'm reading about honing quite a lot while looking for some marble or glass. I want to lap the stones with sandpaper but I can't find some flat surface. Diamond lapping plates are expensive and quite hard to get around here.

If you can acquire a section of flooring tile, you might be able to use that as a surface to use in lapping your stones with wet/dry paper.

Best of luck, keep us posted.
 
If you can acquire a section of flooring tile, you might be able to use that as a surface to use in lapping your stones with wet/dry paper.

Best of luck, keep us posted.
I got som tiles from a friend, they are not straight even for my naked eye. They are visibly convex. I should be getting a marble plate this week from another friends. I'll share some thoughts after lapping the stones and trying to set the bevel.
 
I actually want to get both the Dovo Bismarck and the Barbarossa razors. They both have a shoulderless design and the tang is more narrow than the spine. I’ve observed repeated instances in which the heal is not making contact on one side and it’s often a matter of how they’re ground. A shoulderless razor may be worth considering provided there are no warps or twists in the blade.
 
I actually want to get both the Dovo Bismarck and the Barbarossa razors. They both have a shoulderless design and the tang is more narrow than the spine. I’ve observed repeated instances in which the heal is not making contact on one side and it’s often a matter of how they’re ground. A shoulderless razor may be worth considering provided there are no warps or twists in the blade.
The issue of the heel being lifted should be resolved with the help in this thread. Before getting any more razors, I want to get a decent edge on the one I have, even if it takes months.
 
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