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  1. #1
    I used Nakayamas for my house mainaman's Avatar
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    Default A few starting questions

    Hi all,
    I am interested in getting into the straight razor shaving.
    I read most of the stickies, but I still would like to ask a few questions.

    First the omnipresent question; what is a good razor brand that does not break the bank. I am looking for hollow ground, carbon mainly blade.

    About sharpening: I own a bunch of Japanese knives so I have polishing stones highest being Naniwa 10k SS, however I see some people talk about 12k stones, is going so high really necessary?

    Strops: I read that strop should be not loaded with abrasives, however I use CrO on my knife strop that is ~30k grit, is this acceptable or really the srop should be not loaded at all?

    Thanks a lot for your help in advance.

  2. #2
    Super Shaver xman's Avatar
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    Smile Welcome, mainaman

    Asking what a good starting razor is is a bit like asking what makes a good meal. There are plenty of correct answers. I suggest you look in the Classifieds for an affordable razor that the seller announces is shave ready and go with it. Chances are 99% certain that you will find what you need.

    10k should be high enough. Some finish with 8k.

    You can use a "loaded" or as we say a pasted strop as part of your honing routine, but daily stropping should be done on plain leather to prepare the edge for shaving.

    Get started and a lot of these initial questions will become self evident paving the way for even more fun. You seem to have more experience than I did with sharpening when I started so you shouldn't fare any worse than I did and I think I did pretty well.

    X

  3. #3
    Senior Moderator JimmyHAD's Avatar
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    Default

    Welcome to SRP. A good HC starter razor if you go for a new one is here. It is a pro honed Dovo and you can get it in black or white scales for the same money. You could also go to the classifieds and buy a vintage razor. Just be sure that it is specified as shave ready unless you feel confident in your honing.

    IMO a 10k Naniwa is plenty for a finisher. I like the 3,5, and 8 for general use and anything higher is icing on the cake AFAIC.

    I like a strop with no added abrasive on leather or linen. I also have a felt hanger with 0.5 diamond spray and a paddle strop with diamond pastes and chrom ox. Just my preference. Others will no doubt be along to express theirs.
    Last edited by JimmyHAD; 08-03-2009 at 03:49 AM.
    Be careful how you treat people on your way up, you may meet them again on your way back down.

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    mainaman (08-03-2009)

  5. #4
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    Talking

    welcome to SRP, check out the classifieds here and go on ebay be very watchful and check the wiki here for some of the brands to stay away from. i have found most german made sr are good, but there are some on sites that are cheap copies. make real sure of the razor you buy on ebay. i myself have several but my favorite is a dovo perlex which can be bought new. i also have a three inch latigo strop. i use a norton 4000/8000k water hone. you may also want to buy lynn abrams dvd on here. it is filled with info you will need in the future such as honing and stropping...good luck, hope this helps

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    mainaman (08-03-2009)

  7. #5
    I used Nakayamas for my house mainaman's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks , for the advice guys.
    I wonder whats the difference in price of Dovo razors due to? I assume thay all are made with the same steel so is it the finish and scale material only?
    Also Dovo is carbon steel only, or there are stainless ones too?
    One thing I was not able to determine so far is which dimention of the blade does 5/8" refer to, height of the blade?
    Thanks
    Last edited by mainaman; 08-03-2009 at 04:32 AM.

  8. #6
    Senior Moderator JimmyHAD's Avatar
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    Default

    The width of the blade from the top of the spine to the bottom of the cutting edge is referred to in eighths or an inch. So a 5/8.6/8,7/8 and so forth.

    Dovo does make stainless blades as well. AFAIK the steel will be the same in HC of SS and the price deferential will be due to ginger bread like gold wash, fancy scales etc. I could be wrong about all of the steels being the same.
    Be careful how you treat people on your way up, you may meet them again on your way back down.

  9. #7
    I used Nakayamas for my house mainaman's Avatar
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    Can anyone tell me the min strop requirement to maintain razors? My understanding is a not loaded strop , but is there anything else that is a standard thing to use?
    Also how do I break in a new strop, any special treatment?
    Thanks

  10. #8
    Super Shaver xman's Avatar
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    Default

    Red latigo seems to be preferred around here, but there are other good options too. If a (usually cow hide) strop needs conditioning any good leather conditioner should do. If it's warped there are methods to correct that. Most good strops will come ready to use. Again though, conditioner is optional.

  11. #9
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mainaman View Post
    Can anyone tell me the min strop requirement to maintain razors? My understanding is a not loaded strop , but is there anything else that is a standard thing to use?
    Welcome to SRP. You might find SRP's Beginners Guide (also available as a PDF) useful. Here are some excerpts.
    Beginner's guide to straight razor shaving - Straight Razor Place WikiThe following items are considered optional, but useful, additions to the basic equipment.


    Quote Originally Posted by mainaman View Post
    Also how do I break in a new strop, any special treatment?
    Strop treatment and repair - Straight Razor Place Wiki
    There is no point in breaking in a strop that has already been broken in or doesn't need to be.
    Good luck, and do keep us posted on your progress.

    Regards,
    Robin

  12. #10
    Senior Member khaos's Avatar
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    Default

    From what we have determined based on particle size, the Naniwa 8k is finer than the Norton 8k, which people shave off of. So if you have a Naniwa 10k you're set. (Maybe not, you may WANT better, but you don't NEED better) AFAIK the Dovo's are NOT all the same steel, but very similar. Check the tang, it'll say if its not their basic carbon steel. I think the Ebony's are silver steel (silberstahl) which is basically carbon steel with slight other trace elements, but basically the same. The stainlesses are stainless. And I think they might have one sheffield steel, could be wrong. If it doesn't state anything on the tang I think the consensus is they're the same.

    IMHO the best bang for your buck is find a vintage shaver, and even if its not shave ready, some members will do it for free, and even if no one does it for free, $15 is not much. YES, it is a LOT for me, a college student, but a $40 vintage shaver + $15/$20 honing = $55-60 which is much less than a Dovo. (well, about the same as the entry one, but you can get a better than entry vintage blade)

    If you're looking on the cheap, check out ruprazor.com. Kenrup (a member here) sells what he calls the Philly- a basic entry level strop that is pasted with CrO on one side for $20.

    OTOH, you could go with one of the new Illinois strops, but they aren't as nice as any of the artisan strops (artisan meaning not only Artisan TM's brand, but hand crafted, so SRD, TM, RupRazor, etc)

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