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Thread: Some thoughts on how wedges were honed in the day...

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    At this point in time... gssixgun's Avatar
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    Default Some thoughts on how wedges were honed in the day...

    First lets define a wedge, as any heavy bladed 1/4 hollow or less old razor....

    I have been doing my fair share of these as of late and have noticed some things, and wanted to see if anyone else has come to the same or other conclusions...

    Almost, every one has to have a huge re-bevel set to what we (SRP) consider shave ready... The original bevels are much much smaller and steeper... This has led me to some therories...
    I think when the original bevel were done, the cutler used a cheater strip of metal, something like a faux frameback to set the steep bevel and that the edges were then sharpened on a pasted loom style strop set slightly looser then what we consider optimal.... This would explain the small, steep, rounded, bevel that I am finding on these razors.... what do you guys think?????
    Last edited by gssixgun; 12-19-2008 at 07:09 PM.

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    I saw this in the "New Threads" windows, just recently:

    Some thoughts on how wedges were honed in the day...
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    I have done a few. They always took a bit of extra bevel correction work.
    For what it's worth, I have seen the owner of a Belgian store, that sells traditional cutlery, straight, DE's and other shaving gear, hone up a razor on a couple of occasions. He hones a while on a big coticule, whithout much testing (he relies on how the water runs up the blade). After that he goes to a pasted paddle strop, with red Dovo paste. He tries to shave a hair, and if he's not pleased, he loosens the strop a bit...
    I can imagine that he needs to loosen the strop each time he hones a wedge, and more if he hones it again. But I don't think that faux frameback honing (I have thinking about this for honing my kitchen knives) was the standard way to hone a (near) wedge.

    Just some thoughts,

    Bart.

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    Senior Member kevint's Avatar
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    or could it just be they were sharpened like a knife? Then continually touched up on a pasted strop.

    It is surprising how quickly information can be lost sometimes. It was not that long ago.

    Have you ever seen anything that looks like the spine cover?

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    I see a lot of spine wear on those old wedges. Maybe the bevels are just rounded through age and corrosion? Heavy pasted strop usage?

    I also remember having seen some old hones on ebay that were seriously dished out in the middle. maybe such a curved hone would explain a steeper bevel angle
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    Hmmmm good point Lee I have seen those too

    I haven't ever seen one Kevin except for the detachable blade razors, that's what made me think of it..

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    I have no idea. All I know is that the ones I have honed have taken awhile. I always assumed that it was as Lee said, just age, corrosion and knocking around for 150 years.
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    I speculate that the hardness of the spine is less than the hardness of the edge. Therefore the wear on the spine from honing would be greater than the wear on the edge This would make the angle if the bevel shallower with each honing session and with each session the bevel would get wider.

    It is time to take some old razors to Mike Blues workshop for some HRC testing. I think there will be a substantial difference in HRC of the spine and edge.

    Just my two cents,
    Last edited by randydance062449; 12-20-2008 at 04:33 AM.
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    Oops! Got off track there.

    Ya, I think they used a slack strop or loom and probably a dished sharpening stone or they raised the spine off the hone. They did whatever was required to get an edge that they could shave wth. The few old timers that I have spoken with have razors with noticeable hone wear on the spine and most did not feel all that sharp.
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    The biggest problem I have seen in the old wedges is the extreme wear on the spines. This flattening and many times uneven and different flattening (from either grinding or honing) on both sides is what I believe causes the larger bevels on these razors. When I hone one that is in really good shape (when/if you can find one in great condition), the honing doesn't cause any wear near as much bevel wear and the bevel remains relatively small.

    When honing these, unfortunately, there is the need to bring the steel down to a level where the entire bevel will hit the stone and this even causes more wear.

    Lynn

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