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Picking a modern SR or two

It's probably safe to say a great finishing stone in the right hands will beat a film edge most if not all the time. The challenge is finding a great finisher and learning how to use it. This becomes less of an issue if you are using the diamond pasted balsa method at the end of your progression. My experience has been that a good "Method" edge is pretty close to a very good natural edge. Different, but good.

I have honed 20 or 21 razors from bevel set to finish on film (8.5x11 sheets cut in thirds) and I still have at least one strip of each grit left untouched. However the bevel setting ranges have definitely worn out quicker and I'm considering buying a stone in the 1k range rather than more film.
It is very common to use film for the progression but set the bevel on stones, so your idea is not just a shot in the dark. You can also use high quality wet/dry sandpaper for setting the bevel, but I suggest experimenting with an expendable razor first, and sticking with a brand that gives you good results. I have gone both ways and prefer my Suehiro, Kuromaku, and Chosera coarse stones over sandpaper and even over film. A stubborn razor can burn through a piece of 12μ or 15μ film and still not have a bevel. Results from 60μ and 30μ films are not always as consistent as the more common grits. Once the bevel is set, film wears pretty slowly. So stones make sense for edge repair and bevel setting, even if you otherwise like film. 1k and 2k red resin type sandpaper is good for the newbie who wants to get his foot in the door cheaply. Sandpaper should be stuck to the plate with a very light spritz of spray adhesive as water doesn't stick it as good as it does film.
 
It is very common to use film for the progression but set the bevel on stones, so your idea is not just a shot in the dark. You can also use high quality wet/dry sandpaper for setting the bevel, but I suggest experimenting with an expendable razor first, and sticking with a brand that gives you good results. I have gone both ways and prefer my Suehiro, Kuromaku, and Chosera coarse stones over sandpaper and even over film. A stubborn razor can burn through a piece of 12μ or 15μ film and still not have a bevel. Results from 60μ and 30μ films are not always as consistent as the more common grits. Once the bevel is set, film wears pretty slowly. So stones make sense for edge repair and bevel setting, even if you otherwise like film. 1k and 2k red resin type sandpaper is good for the newbie who wants to get his foot in the door cheaply. Sandpaper should be stuck to the plate with a very light spritz of spray adhesive as water doesn't stick it as good as it does film.
When I started out I used only 12µ film for bevel setting and yeah, you can burn through that pretty quick. I don't have any 15µ film but I've had really good luck starting on the 30 and even 40µ films depending on the razor. The last one I honed was a troublesome Dahlgren frameback and I killed both a relatively new 30µ film and a worn 12µ getting it where it needed to be. I've kind of shied away from w/d but I have some I could use if the mood strikes me. I think I have one 3rd sheet of 12µ left from my original purchase in June or July, whenever it was.

I could probably justify a 1k or so stone because I could also use it on our cheap western kitchen knives. I'm not much of a knife honer but Mrs. Scandalous has been impressed with the edges I've put on them with 30µ and 12µ film.
 
It is very common to use film for the progression but set the bevel on stones, so your idea is not just a shot in the dark. You can also use high quality wet/dry sandpaper for setting the bevel, but I suggest experimenting with an expendable razor first, and sticking with a brand that gives you good results. I have gone both ways and prefer my Suehiro, Kuromaku, and Chosera coarse stones over sandpaper and even over film. A stubborn razor can burn through a piece of 12μ or 15μ film and still not have a bevel. Results from 60μ and 30μ films are not always as consistent as the more common grits. Once the bevel is set, film wears pretty slowly. So stones make sense for edge repair and bevel setting, even if you otherwise like film. 1k and 2k red resin type sandpaper is good for the newbie who wants to get his foot in the door cheaply. Sandpaper should be stuck to the plate with a very light spritz of spray adhesive as water doesn't stick it as good as it does film.


From what i've read in some of the old posts and comments, using a lapping film isn't hard at all and the same goes for the balsa, but I have to make one first and get my hands on a quality diamond paste of course. Most of my SR ( i've used them around 20 times since i've got them a few years ago) already have a set bavel and can be considered shave ready (thanks to my good friend @steveclarkus ) and from what i've understand, once a good bavel is set, there's no need to reset it and I just have to refresh it and keep it sharp and keen, so I woun't have to worry about that for now.

I have a marble plate for my lapping films and I might try tomorrow to hone some of my more beaten up vintage razors or jump straight on my Gold Dollar 66, which afaik it needs a lot of work. Ive noticed that somehow the Gold Dollar has gotten some slight pitting on it even though i've never used it, since it wasn't shave ready and i've never bothered, but I still find it odd. I guess that can be expected from a 3$ razor.
 
From what i've read in some of the old posts and comments, using a lapping film isn't hard at all and the same goes for the balsa, but I have to make one first and get my hands on a quality diamond paste of course. Most of my SR ( i've used them around 20 times since i've got them a few years ago) already have a set bavel and can be considered shave ready (thanks to my good friend @steveclarkus ) and from what i've understand, once a good bavel is set, there's no need to reset it and I just have to refresh it and keep it sharp and keen, so I woun't have to worry about that for now.

I have a marble plate for my lapping films and I might try tomorrow to hone some of my more beaten up vintage razors or jump straight on my Gold Dollar 66, which afaik it needs a lot of work. Ive noticed that somehow the Gold Dollar has gotten some slight pitting on it even though i've never used it, since it wasn't shave ready and i've never bothered, but I still find it odd. I guess that can be expected from a 3$ razor.
In the same environment with the same level of protection against moisture and humidity, a $300 razor would have the same slight pitting, as a general rule. Motor oil is good for a razor that will be stored for a while. Petroleum jelly for long term storage. The motor oil is free, though, and it is specially formulated to leave a film on steel. Every time you change the oil in your car there is enough dibbles left in the jug to coat approximately 100 razors. Don't worry about toxicity. You wipe it all off before you strop, and you strop before you shave. It is not like you are giving yourself a motor oil injection or something. Let the nattering nabobs of negativity howl in outrage. You do it like you feel it.

@steveclarkus is a Methodeer and knows how to hone a razor. On those that he honed for you, the most you should have to do is to hit the 1μ film or a 12k stone. From there you can run the balsa progression and it will be just as sharp as you got it. You can maintain indefinitely by just stropping on the .1μ balsa, the final stage of the progression, after every shave. It should never need honing again.

Look for seller named diamondtechtools on fleabay and amazon for decent diamond paste. I use his paste all the time. Ted Pella has the best reputation and his paste "might" be better in some way but probably not so much as you would notice.

You won't be making one balsa strop. You will be making three of them. One each for .5u, .25u, and .1u.
 
Yes to balsa strops.
Yes to the Revisor (if you can get it).
Yes to Aust.

And I keep boosting the black grenadille Dovo Carre thumbnotch 6/8 at Royal Shave for under $150. They still haven't sold out. They also have the Dovo La Forme (same blade type) at an even lower price, but those La Forme scales are not for me.
 
....
You won't be making one balsa strop. You will be making three of them. One each for .5u, .25u, and .1u.
Rather than three, I made four balsa strops; 0.5μm, 0.25μm and 2 x 0.1μm. The extra 0.1μm is used for daily maintenance while the other three are used for full pasted balsa strop progressions. I also recommend that you get two tubes of 0.1μm paste as you will go through that at about twice the rate you use the other two sizes and save on shipping.

I hone and fully balsa strop about 20 SR's per year. Each 5g tube of diamond paste looks like lasting me about 5 to 7 years.

I am kuripot (Tagalog). I use 400/1k and 3k grit synthetic for rough work and bevel setting. Then it's onto lapping films before finishing on diamond pasted balsa strops. The synthetics are cheap no-brand Chinese. They do the job but require re-lapping after each bevel set. That is not hard and only takes a few minutes.

My complete honing setup cost me about USD 150 including shipping (diamond paste from USA, stones and film from China, and the rest local). This complete setup gives me consistently great shave-ready edges. For shave comfort, it is important to include short X strokes in your balsa stropping. Without short X strokes, your edges will still be keen and shave ready but probably not quite as comfortable.
 
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The more I look around the Revisor website, the more I want to buy a few more. Lots of great looking razors and the prices are ok. Also, i'm from Europe, so I guess it the shipping shouldn't be a problem. My problem is - should I buy just one, two or more razors. It might not be a good idea to get many razors, since i'm not a dedicated SR shaver yet.
 
The more I look around the Revisor website, the more I want to buy a few more. Lots of great looking razors and the prices are ok. Also, i'm from Europe, so I guess it the shipping shouldn't be a problem. My problem is - should I buy just one, two or more razors. It might not be a good idea to get many razors, since i'm not a dedicated SR shaver yet.
Your dedication will change once you get to about 30 SR shaves, shaving daily. If you don't SR shave daily, it will take you much longer (and many more than 30 SR shaves) to really start enjoying SR shaving and wondering why you didn't start this in your teens.

Best to just buy one or two SR's initially. Revisor will not be out-of-stock any time soon. You can will place bulk orders for SR's later.
 
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Your dedication will change once you get to about 30 SR shaves, shaving daily. If you don't SR shave daily, it will take you much longer to really start enjoying SR shaving and wondering why you didn't start this in your teens.

Best to just buy one or two SR's initially. Revisor will not be out-of-stock any time soon. You can will place bulk orders for SR's later.


Yeah, one or two are more than enough at this point and the Aust can wait a bit as well.
 
One or two is fine. You may want to try some different sizes eventually. I started with 6/8 blades then fell in love with 4/8 and 9/16, 9/16 being my very favorite. I have far too many razors but can’t decide which to part with.


I wanted to add a modern razor to my collection, but it seems like the vintage ones always pull me in the moment, because they feel better made. Sooner or later I will get an Aust, but it's not going to be now. I can get two vintage NOS razors for almost the price of an Aust.
 
For a first SR I recommend to people:
  • Carbon steel blade
  • Half to full-hollow grind
  • Dutch (round) point
  • 5/8 or 6/8 blade size
  • Truly shave-ready
 
For a first SR I recommend to people:
  • Carbon steel blade
  • Half to full-hollow grind
  • Dutch (round) point
  • 5/8 or 6/8 blade size
  • Truly shave-ready


That's exactly what i'm looking for plus shoulderless if I can find one.
 

I have bought A LOT of razors since I bought that one and it remains a keeper.
 

I have bought A LOT of razors since I bought that one and it remains a keeper.

I wanted to get one of those as well, but then I saw the slightly more expensive model that comes with horn scales and decided to grab it instead. The problem is that both models are not available on the Ralf Aust website at the moment.
 
The problem is that both models are not available on the Ralf Aust website at the moment.
Maggards has both and all of the razors I've gotten there have been shave ready. (While *this* Brad may be a chump, *that* Brad knows what he's doing :) )
 
Maggards has both and all of the razors I've gotten there have been shave ready. (While *this* Brad may be a chump, *that* Brad knows what he's doing :) )


I know, but i'm from Europe and now that we have to pay vat for every package no matter the value that comes from non EU countries + the shipping and waiting are going to make that Aust almost as if it's made out of solid gold.

Ever since this new tax law was introduced a few months ago it made most of the purchases from other non EU countries with the hope of finding something cheaper almost pointless, unless it's something that can't be found nowhere else. I've stopped buying things from Aliexpress as well. Gosh I hate the EU......
 
I think that plant is probably Hugo Herkenrath Edelstahlschmiede GmbH (http://www.hugo-herkenrath.de/en/).
That plant probably forges for all the Solingen makers.

Rasoir Sabre France uses those Solingen blanks for some models (e.g. Der Kayser) and also has their own custom 100C6 blanks made by Forges Foréziennes in Noirétable.

Theirs-Issard is said to have special permission for lead quenching of their self-made C135 blanks.
 
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