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Thread: Benjamin Shepherd in ornate pressed horn scales.

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    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
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    Default Benjamin Shepherd in ornate pressed horn scales.

    This was sort of a test to find the outer limits of what's possible with the setup I talk about in this thread.

    In fact, this was the razor I practiced on before tackling the Roberts.

    Witness the condition of this razor and despair.

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    Looks pretty bad, huh?

    No. It looks really bad.

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    I got this as part of a lot of razors with pressed horn scales. It's something I've come across multiple times, but at some point someone decided it'd be easier to see how nice the pressed horn looked if they dyed the mockshell full black. Except with this one they just dunked the razor intact into a harsh dye with etchant and left it. The end result was that the scales were brittle and the blade... Well, the blade is a detailed topographical map of the Tiamat Sulcus on Jupiter's moon, Ganymede.

    But this is a razor by Benjamin Shepherd, which is pretty actively rare. There's not much known about him and he was only in the biz for about 7 years between 1816 and 1823, when he died.

    The pressed horn was made by Broadwell, a company or person who has left insufficient records of their existence for me to know more than that. This is the second set of scales I've seen with that name on them.

    So after all that... What can be done with this poor old thing?
    Last edited by Voidmonster; 08-12-2017 at 12:57 AM.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    I did a bunch of work on the blade and got it to a point I was surprisingly happy with, which included overzealously creating a new shoulder on the tang (live and learn). I glued that big crack at the pivot of the scales, filled it in with horn dust & CA spackle, sanded it smooth, and went to reassemble it.

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    A great deal of swearing ensued.

    Discouraged, I didn't work on it the rest of the day. But the next day I scrounged through my scale parts collection and found a piece of horn that matched the thickness and was transparent. I set out to make a graft.

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    Using an undercut like that helps with both strength and blending. I pressed a little bit of horn dust between the two parts and glued them.

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    It's a tiny bit crooked, but that doesn't matter, there's still plenty of material to work with.

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    I should perhaps mention at this point that after the last round of sanding on the blade, the 1950's motor on my drill press started smoking. No doubt waaaaay too much steel dust clogged it up. So I had to get a new motor and opted for a sealed farm-duty model from Harbor Freight. Unfortunately, the spindle is bigger than the old motor, so I had to buy a new pulley wheel too. I used the opportunity to tear down most all of the press and clean it up. At some point in the near future I'm gonna do a total teardown, repaint all the parts (very dark candy apple red, because I can), and put it back together again.

    Fun times!
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    No more teasing.









    The washers are SRP user AJKenne's superb replicas.

    The join on the scales isn't everything I want it to be. It opened up very slightly when I repinned the razor, and like a very smart person, I decided rather than risk ruining a perfectly good washer, I'd just fix it in-situ.

    Friends, Romans, countrymen; don't do that.

    It's possible, but it's an enormous pain and the results aren't as good as they'd have been if I'd drilled out the washer and repinned it. It entailed wearing a magnifying visor, using the precision glue nozzle, sanding with a billion different tricks, re-dying, polishing, and then not being particularly happy with the result.

    At the very least, I can't feel the join anymore, whereas before there was a tactile edge.

    Considering where the blade was to begin with, I'm overjoyed with that, however.
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    Absolutely amazing restoration! I never would guess it could turn out that well... How hard was it to hone?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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    Quote Originally Posted by TorreyTorrent View Post
    Absolutely amazing restoration! I never would guess it could turn out that well... How hard was it to hone?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I haven't honed it yet, but I don't expect it to be too difficult. The way I sand down the blade leaves it about as sharp as a decent kitchen knife. I've done this with a couple others which I have honed and they've been problem-free. Easier than some that weren't touched, even!
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    Damn Zak you did an amazing job. How strong is the repair?
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    Wow that doesn't even seem like the same blade! Very impressive thank you for sharing.
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    Nothing is fool proof, to a sufficiently talented fool...

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    Zak, that's a-mazing! Thanks for sharing the info, a fun read as always.

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    What???? Wow???? Holy???? Amazing???? I don't know what to say! Great work!
    What a curse be a dull razor; what a prideful comfort a sharp one

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    Very impressive restoration and a cool write-up too! I'm having a lot of fun here looking at it. Excellent work
    "Go easy"

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