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Thread: First restoration, a John Primble «Blue Grass»

  1. #1
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    Smile First restoration, a John Primble «Blue Grass»

    Hi! I restored my first straight razor this Christmas, an ebay bought John Primble «Blue Grass». This forum and the wiki-pages were indispensable at all stages of the restoration, and I registered and posted this to show my appreciation to the community here.

    The razor started out with broken scales, rust, patina and dirt everywhere – the usual, as I've come to understand. My goal wasn't to make a showpiece, but rather to breathe some much needed life into the tool so that it can once again return to duty. Prior to purchasing this razor I bought a splendid Geo. Worthington, but it desperately needed a friend.

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    From what I can tell, the razor is from sometime after 18901, sold by W.B. Belknap Hardware and made by H. Boker. I'm not intimately familiar with grinds, but I appears to be hollow ground. There was limited and even hone wear, so I imagine that the blade has several decades of usage left in it. The off-putting part about the blade was that the tang was asymmetrical and tapered only on one side. This made the fitting process more complicated than necessary, and the blade was ultimately not one hundred percent centered.

    There is probably not much I can tell you about the actual restoration. The blade I just polished using normal chrome polish. I probably should have sanded it down first, but I didn't want to ruin the etching so I skipped that part. I might go back later and put a proper polish on it if I find that it rusts easily. I made a set of scales from some ipe I had laying around, and a wedge from osage orange. Both woods are quite dense, and hard to work by hand, but elbow grease goes a long way. I'll probably get some powertools before doing another one. I shaped the scales using a farrier's rasp and by sanding, and finished it by sealing the surface with CA, sanding it more and, finally, buffing it with some white compound. As I said, the advice from the stickied restoration threads2 were invaluable, and in general things went smooth.

    CA sealed ipe takes a great polish – it if weren't for the weight and stiffness of the scales you'd think it was plastic. The osage orange provides a nice contrasts to the ipe, but it'll probably darken with age. Polished ipe is surprisingly interesting. The pictures doesn't really do it justice, but there's some nice subtle movement there.

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    I honed it today and took it for a spin. It shaves great! Thanks everybody!


    1. John Primble help with opinion and info on razor
    2. Welcome to the Workshop: How do I / Where do I / What do I / answers are here

  2. #2
    Senior Member tintin's Avatar
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    very nice job. looks like you've been at it for years!

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    A job well done and the scales look terrific for fit, finish and peening.

    Bob
    After listening to someone talk ever wonder who ties their shoe laces?

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    Always Thinkun walleyeman's Avatar
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    Very well done! I like that you just polished the blade!! You have left the character intact! The blade is a short story when the resto is minimal!
    Scales superb!!

    Ray

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    Senior Member MattCB's Avatar
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    That's a great looking blade. Well done!
    The older I get the more I realize how little I actually know.

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    Senior Member tiddle's Avatar
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    excellent job for your first.
    Mastering implies there is nothing more for you to learn of something... I prefer proficient enough to not totally screw it up.

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    Senior Member mycarver's Avatar
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    Very nice work. Ironically I just got one in for honing. Hadn't seen one before and now here are two of them.
    Unfortunately the etch and gold wash on this one is a little tired but there.

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    Senior Member traps38's Avatar
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    Can't believe that's your first.

    Gorgeous,just gorgeous.

    Congrats.
    *****HAVE A GREAT SHAVE*****

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    Thank you all for the kind words! It's clear from browsing these parts of the forum that I still have much to learn. SRP appears to be pretty much soaked in craftsmanship.

    Still, bringing this ol' fella back to life really gave me a taste for this.

  10. #10
    lz6
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    Senior Moderator lz6's Avatar
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    Nice job. And you are right there is a lot to learn here. Bringing these older discarded straights back to life is a mission for many of our members. Welcome.
    Bob

    "God is a Havana smoker. I have seen his gray clouds" Gainsburg

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