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Thread: Linen vs leather

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    Question Linen vs leather

    New straight user here - do I need to use the linen side each time I strop before the leather if I have it? What's the purpose of the linen anyway?

    The beginners guide doesn't say anything about the linen side of the strop to my knowledge.


    Thanks!

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    Senior Member rcavazos1922's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forestsandman View Post
    New straight user here - do I need to use the linen side each time I strop before the leather if I have it? What's the purpose of the linen anyway?

    The beginners guide doesn't say anything about the linen side of the strop to my knowledge.



    Thanks!

    I like to call it the "fabric" side because it comes in different materials like cotton, Genuine Linen, seatbelt etc. It's generally used to clean the gunk off your razor after you shave. I've used the 3 I listed and I like the Genuine Linen the best. Here is what I do, it might be a good starting point for you. After a shave 30 on Linen and 60 on leather. After a shave and I'm in a hurry 10 on linen and 20 on leather. I then will return to the razor when I have time and do 30 linen and 60 leather. If I haven't used the razor in a long time I might do 30 laps on leather only before a shave just for the heck of it. I hope that helps.
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    So I basically use it every time then? That's pretty consistent with what I've seen before, 20 fabric and 40 leather.

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    The Assyrian Obie's Avatar
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    Forestsandman:
    Simply put, the strop does not sharpen the razors. Stones do that. The strop reconstructs the blade, in a way, and prepares it for your shave. The linen or fabric side heats, cleans and agitates the blade, and the leather refines it. Each shaver has his own count of strokes on each component of the strop. As a rule, I do 30 strokes on the canvas and 90 on the leather; sometimes a 30/60 ratio; and sometimes a 25/100. Sometimes I do 200 or so strokes on the leather. Do 200 strokes on leather work better than 60 strokes? I doubt it. I just enjoy stropping. Some gentlemen also strop after the shave to further dry and clean the blade. I do sometimes and sometimes not. When I strop after the shave, it is about 10 on the fabric or canvas and 15 on leather.

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    Senior Moderator JimmyHAD's Avatar
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    I would say that rather than linen versus leather it is more like linen compliments leather. They each perform a positive function. Not everyone uses fabric but I most often do linen before leather, and leather alone after the shave.
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    Sounds good, thanks guys for the clarification! I'll probably strop before and after to keep the blade nice and aligned. I appreciate the help. Theres so much crazyness regarding to everyones methods I'm just trying to distill it all.

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    The Great & Powerful Oz onimaru55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forestsandman View Post
    New straight user here - do I need to use the linen side each time I strop before the leather if I have it? What's the purpose of the linen anyway?

    The beginners guide doesn't say anything about the linen side of the strop to my knowledge.


    Thanks!

    To put it simply, think of the linen as a 'prepolisher' for the leather so yes use it each time.

    If you type ' Linen vs leather' in the little search widow at top right you will get a wealth of threads on the subject.
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    Senior Member rcavazos1922's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forestsandman View Post
    Theres so much crazyness regarding to everyones methods I'm just trying to distill it all.
    Wait till you start honing...that's when it really starts getting crazy!!! Straight razor shaving and maintaining a straight razor is a very personal thing. That's why I like it so much.
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    Yeah I really liked that aspect of DE shaving but now I want to move up to something even more interesting so it's time to roll.

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    Hi, new here from Australia and do you think that Linen is the best option for all type of bedding as well? or the cotton is good?
    Protection!

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