What's new
  • Guest
    As per our long standing policy of not permitting medical advice on the forum - all threads concerning the Coronavirus will be locked.
    For more info on the coronavirus please see the link below:
    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/summary.html

Rollin' wit da Rolls! A honing solution.

Well, I had a small welding job to take to a guy who does all the machining and welding for my liveaboard sailboat. (I bought a crank online for handcranking the engine, but it was too short to clear a frame and I needed it lengthened so I could use it.) I had just been messing around improvising hones for the Rolls razor, and my mind went back to the blade I recently honed out of the case. I had thought, as many have, that a purpose-made honing handle would make honing and stropping the blade of a Rolls outside the case a viable alternative to using the case. Okay, since I had to go to the welding shop anyhow, I disassembled my most beat-up Rolls for the little spike that the blade mounts on for honing. The part of the spindle where this thing rides is exactly 3/16" and I thought I would take a drift punch to the guy and have him TIG the spike to the punch. After consultation, he said stainless would be better, since the spike piece is nickel plated. So he is going to go through his junkpiles for some round stock to make me a handle for my Rolls spike, and if all goes well, tomorrow I will test my custom built Rolls razor honing and stropping handle. If it works out, there will be pics.
 
Well, I had a small welding job to take to a guy who does all the machining and welding for my liveaboard sailboat. (I bought a crank online for handcranking the engine, but it was too short to clear a frame and I needed it lengthened so I could use it.) I had just been messing around improvising hones for the Rolls razor, and my mind went back to the blade I recently honed out of the case. I had thought, as many have, that a purpose-made honing handle would make honing and stropping the blade of a Rolls outside the case a viable alternative to using the case. Okay, since I had to go to the welding shop anyhow, I disassembled my most beat-up Rolls for the little spike that the blade mounts on for honing. The part of the spindle where this thing rides is exactly 3/16" and I thought I would take a drift punch to the guy and have him TIG the spike to the punch. After consultation, he said stainless would be better, since the spike piece is nickel plated. So he is going to go through his junkpiles for some round stock to make me a handle for my Rolls spike, and if all goes well, tomorrow I will test my custom built Rolls razor honing and stropping handle. If it works out, there will be pics.
Your signature line is highly appropriate, I'd say! :laugh: Have fun hot-rodding your Rolls!
 
Well, it works. First pic is the improvised tool. You can see that the round part that bears on the spindle is exactly the same size as the screwdriver, 3/16". The orientation is naturally correct, too. Second pic shows the blade attached. You can pop the guard off easily enough, or just leave it on. The 3rd pic shows the blade being pushed across the hone by the tool, which in my humbleness I will henceforth call, the SlashTool. In the 4th pic I am stropping. There is no spring detent stabilizy thingie but it would be simple enough to just include the one from the Rolls case. As shown, in uber simplistificatified prototype form, the blade fits loosely and could fall off if it were allowed to rotate 90 degrees. Reminds me of the guy goes to see his doctor. "Doc, it hurts when I do this". Doc says, "Well then, don't do that." Same thing applies to not letting the blade rotate and fall off the stud of the SlashTool. So now you have a use for those old Rolls carcasses, or at least one part of them.
$IMG_0023.jpg
$IMG_0025.jpg
$IMG_0028.jpg
$IMG_0030.jpg
 
Nice work. The one I have was my Father's so it's special to me, but I'm not a honer. Honing holds no interest for me, it's just an annoyance so I can straight razor shave. I've given up on repairing and using the built in Rolls Razor hone and strop, I am pretty sure they weren't very efficient even when new. I've tried to hand-hold the blade and hone it on a barber's hone but haven't had much luck doing this. Your method looks like a great idea, it would be worth buying a parts razor on the cheap just for the spike.
 
I have replaced the hone with a piece of plastic with 2000 grit wet/dry paper glued to it. The paper doesn't have to go completely edge-to-edge so it is possible to peel old paper off (depending on the adhesive used) and stick another piece on without removing the plastic base from the lid. Plastic used came from a clipboard bought at walgreens. The strop can be replaced easily enough with a piece cut from an old hanging strop. Now that I am honing with lapping film, I think if I ever do the hone fix again, I will use 3u lapping film instead of 2000 grit paper. 2000 grit will do the job but isn't ideal at all.

No, the Rolls is not and was not particularly efficient. The stroke is very short. The pressure cannot easily be varied. The case was heavy, the shaving handle a bit small and light. BUT... it was and still is pretty cool. Self contained, self sufficient. The razor is in the case. The case is the hone. The case is the strop. The blade is forever. Only thing missing is a mug and brush.

Rolls razors in no particular condition on the bay go for as little as five bucks. There are probably members here who would pif their old junkers with busted hones or pitted or chipped blades. Cheap screwdrivers are, well, in a word, cheap. I like to think I have started something here. You know, I also tried honing a Rolls blade in hand, and the shave was pretty decent. I will hone this one on film and see how it shaves off .3u next time I do a batch of straights. I bet it will be pretty sweet.
 
Couldn't one take that whole thing and weld it to the screwdriver head?
Seems that would solve the problem of the blade being loose.

By 'whole thing', I mean that roller thingy that the pin is on.
 
Couldn't one take that whole thing and weld it to the screwdriver head?
Seems that would solve the problem of the blade being loose.

By 'whole thing', I mean that roller thingy that the pin is on.
I wanted only the edge and spine of the blade touching the hone. With the whole spindle involved, the springy detent collar would have been bearing on the hone. Plus the spindle core is brass. Soft brass. Possibly you could braze the spike to the brass core, without the steel sleeve or the detent, and then braze a handle of some sort onto the end, but that will be someone else's experiment. Maybe yours!
 
I wanted only the edge and spine of the blade touching the hone. With the whole spindle involved, the springy detent collar would have been bearing on the hone. Plus the spindle core is brass. Soft brass.
Well, brass aside, what would be the difference if it was bearing on the hone? Is that not how it works in the Rolls? Wouldn't that ensure the correct bevel?
 
Well, brass aside, what would be the difference if it was bearing on the hone? Is that not how it works in the Rolls? Wouldn't that ensure the correct bevel?
No, in the Rolls case, the spindle is turned by a gear rack as the stropping handle is worked, and the spindle passes over the hone or strop without touching. If it did touch, it would score up the hone or strop. The bevel angle with the spine of the blade on a hone will give a bevel angle somewhat smaller than case honing, but still well within normal ranges for a straight razor. I will use the spine of the blade to set the bevel.
 
Top Bottom