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Professional sharpening or self sharpening?

Greetings all. I recently bought a 1896 kampfe star lather catcher that uses old wedge blades. Its lovely but I can't shave with it as the blades need a good honing. I was wondering if anyone would recommend someone who can do it professionally or if its best to do it myself? Either way i expect until I have a little more cash I'll have to stick to my loathed electric shaver.
 
I'm a fan of learning to do things myself. Once you gain the skill necessary, you can keep a fine edge on the blade without waiting for it while it is sent out and returned.

Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
 
I'm a fan of learning to do things myself. Once you gain the skill necessary, you can keep a fine edge on the blade without waiting for it while it is sent out and returned.

Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
My worry ruining a blade. I only have three wedges for my lather catcher. Either way at the minute I can't do either due to cost. But it's good to gather information for when I can
 
I have honed my wedge blades myself using my regular honing stones and lapping films. It is hard to ruin those old blades, unless you use a DMT with a heavy hand like I did with my last blade, but it really doesn't take much time and effort. Use one layer of electrical tape cut about an inch longer than the width of the blade so when you fold it over the spine, you have tabs at the end to help you hold the blade when you hone it. Use the stropper that came with your Kampfe for when you strop the blade before and after each use. The Kampfe blades are regular carbon steel and so will give good results. Just don't think about getting a Wilkinson Empire because those wedge blades are about the size of an injector blade and made of very hard steel and so are a real PITA to hone.
 
I have honed my wedge blades myself using my regular honing stones and lapping films. It is hard to ruin those old blades, unless you use a DMT with a heavy hand like I did with my last blade, but it really doesn't take much time and effort. Use one layer of electrical tape cut about an inch longer than the width of the blade so when you fold it over the spine, you have tabs at the end to help you hold the blade when you hone it. Use the stropper that came with your Kampfe for when you strop the blade before and after each use. The Kampfe blades are regular carbon steel and so will give good results. Just don't think about getting a Wilkinson Empire because those wedge blades are about the size of an injector blade and made of very hard steel and so are a real PITA to hone.

Can you recommend a decent inexpensive honing stone?
 
I use lapping film. It is a way to get a great edge without spending a bunch of money on stones and I think the learning curve is a little easier. Lapping film is a few dollars per sheet and you can work on a tile from Home Depot.

(Okay, I cheat and use DMT's to set a rough bevel. However, it can all be done on film if the blade isn't in too rough shape.)

Here is a thread discussing it:

Lapping film, try it.

I would suggest having at least one blade honed by someone who knows what they are doing. This will give you a baseline with which to compare your own efforts.
 
I have honed my wedge blades myself using my regular honing stones and lapping films. It is hard to ruin those old blades, unless you use a DMT with a heavy hand like I did with my last blade, but it really doesn't take much time and effort. Use one layer of electrical tape cut about an inch longer than the width of the blade so when you fold it over the spine, you have tabs at the end to help you hold the blade when you hone it. Use the stropper that came with your Kampfe for when you strop the blade before and after each use. The Kampfe blades are regular carbon steel and so will give good results. Just don't think about getting a Wilkinson Empire because those wedge blades are about the size of an injector blade and made of very hard steel and so are a real PITA to hone.

Have you tried any of the old honing handles that were apparently relatively common back when? Scotts and Stag were makers and they look like they could have helped keep the blade square to the stone to prevent rounding corners on blades which from what I see was too common on the old wedge blades. I have picked up a couple and figured to try practicing using carbon steel Gem blades including some thick ones that are still made.
 

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I have seen those (at least the Stag). I wondered if they really worked. I am believing that they could also be used for stropping. Just move the blade in the opposite direction. I will seriously look for one now.
 
Here is a 4 roller Stag that opens quite wide. Press the rollers together, top and bottom, to open the jaws. Seems to take a wedge blade fine per my preliminary try. No idea how rare this one is. The single roller Stag does not have manual jaw opening so blades are slid in from the side against spring pressure on the jaws. I got a Henckels wedge blade in the jaws but it tends to slip backwards so would need a spacer behind the top edge to prevent it moving in the jaws. As a hobbyist machinist a can do for me. The Scotts will take a Henckels wedge blade too but again it slips back in the jaws without some blocking spacer behind the blade based on my test fitting.

That handle cleaned up decently and the rest is in good shape with all rollers spinning freely.

Stag-4-2.jpg Stag-4-1.jpg
 
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Anyone know if the straight razor specialist also does wedge blades? Their price isn't extravagant and sounds like a thorough service. I've emailed but nothing yet.
 
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