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Thread: The usual hone questions from a rookie honer

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    The Great & Powerful Oz onimaru55's Avatar
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    Always check the SRP Library.
    Hone Lapping 101 - Straight Razor Place Library

    Another alternative to the DMT 325 is the Atoma 1200 diamond plate. Use the sandpaper for heavy lifting e.g. first flattening then move to the Atoma. The 1200 will be plenty for everyday lapping on everything 4k & up & will be closer to the flatness of a DGLP Shapton plate than some of the DMT's I've used.
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    Alright I figured out what the Samurai stone is. It's actually a japanese King waterstone. From what I've gathered these tend to be slower cutting stones but very nice stones nonetheless. It just says Samurai on the box so thats what I assumed it was. Thanks again for all of the links and advice guys!
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    The Great & Powerful Oz onimaru55's Avatar
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    King stones are ok for razors & great for Jp. Knives. 800 to 4k is a bit of a leap tho for razors.
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    Member shakinjake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    Would the consensus be that the DMT 8" 325 would be my best bet for a lapping plate? Are there any others out there you all would recommend?

    ~~~I've been using a DMT Duo-Sharp 8" 350/600 for 3 years and it's handled all of my lapping plate needs nicely


    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    And as for finishers, would you guys say natural or synthetic? I'm leaning towards a thuringian or the Naniwa 12k or maybe even a coticule haha so many options! Your thoughts?

    ~~~since you have a Norton 8K, you probably ought to consider learning how to shave off that till you get it down pat in wood. This is coming from someone who has never shaved off a Norton 8 k but know many that have, and most concure, that it is a good edge to learn to hone and shave with

    That said, you asked for opinions. I hone and shave using natural stones. I also use my naturals stones for touch ups. I prefer this edge to shave with. Not long ago, a good friend sent me a blade (one of mine) that he honed using a full synthetic progression, finishing with the then (may still be) popular Suehiro 20 K. It was a very sharp edge, but something was missing. Actually, he did up two of my blades that I sent him finishing with the 20 K Suehiro. Many like this edge. Admittedly though, I prefer natural stone edges to shave with

    I shave more often off coticule edges though I have a J-Nat I like to use and a yellow green thurringian



    I like the thurri edge, on particular razors, and not all. I've found some blades for me like certain stones and do best with a particular stone, and why I like to use multiple natural stones

    This is only my opinion but since you have just been given some synthetic hones...if I were you, I'd stick with those and learn how to use them before branching off using different finishers. So many here claim they get a nice shaving edge with a Norton 8 K...why not try and emulate their efforts, since you already have the Norton 8K? Just a thought, and once you get proficient with the Norton 8K, then perhaps try a higher grit syn stone, say something like the 12 K CHUG. Lots of shavers here say they are getting nice edges from this stone. Watch the for sale ads and pick one up that someone has used and they say it has worked for them, but I would learn that 8K first, since you already have it...that's my 2 cents



    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    Also going to get some CrOx paste for my strop and the one question I have is do you put it on the back or the leather or back of the fabric?


    ~~~I've used Cr0x to finish off some film edges when I was experimenting with them (so I have syn honed=:-) I preferred stropping on pasted linen (hanging) over Cr0x pasted balsa. I tried Cr0x on leather...preferred hanging linen, when finishing off the syn edge. I never cared to use a Cr0x strop after the few coticule edges I tried it with...seemed to defeat the coti edge, and not improve it one lick. In my experience, going to Cr0x from coticule is a waste of time as I felt the Cr0x negated the coti edge, now that said, many have used Cr0x stropping to increase their perceived level of sharpness after coticule, and I suppose if that is what you want to do, be it far from me to tell you not to, but lightly stropping (10 or less laps) on a hanging linen strop pasted with Cr0x after coticule, you're ruining the coti edge, in that the Cr0x changes the coti edge, and not for the better IMO. I think those that struggle to get a better coti edge would benefit from spending more time with the coticule to learn how to get to the next level, rather than look for a fix from .5 Cr0x, but that's only my opinion



    Best,


    Jake
    Reddick Fla.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shakinjake View Post
    ~~~since you have a Norton 8K, you probably ought to consider learning how to shave off that till you get it down pat in wood. This is coming from someone who has never shaved off a Norton 8 k but know many that have, and most concure, that it is a good edge to learn to hone and shave with
    Thanks for the response! I like the idea of natural stones but have a long ways to go before even considering getting one. My original plan was to use the two stones I have 'til I feel like theres nothing more I can do on them, and then move on to new territory or stick with them if they work well enough for me. The thought of natural stones is more of a temptation than anything right now because I received a razor from TheSuperiorShave that was honed on a coticule and I can say it felt very good on my face haha. My face may still be somewhat of a rookie when it comes to feeling small changes like that but I could tell it felt very "natural."

    Quote Originally Posted by shakinjake View Post
    I prefer this edge to shave with. Not long ago, a good friend sent me a blade (one of mine) that he honed using a full synthetic progression, finishing with the then (may still be) popular Suehiro 20 K. It was a very sharp edge, but something was missing. Actually, he did up two of my blades that I sent him finishing with the 20 K Suehiro. Many like this edge. Admittedly though, I prefer natural stone edges to shave with
    What would you say makes you like the edge off of a natural stone like a coticule or thurry or J-Nat more so than the edge off a synthetic stone? I know everyone has different opinions just like to hear the reasoning behind them sometimes is all.

    Sam

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    Member shakinjake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    Thanks for the response!



    ~~~con mucho gusto!




    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    I like the idea of natural stones but have a long ways to go before even considering getting one. My original plan was to use the two stones I have 'til I feel like theres nothing more I can do on them, and then move on to new territory or stick with them if they work well enough for me.

    ~~~your plan is sound, you have a set of stones that will deliver a good sharp edge, best to start there before making other hone buying decisions


    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    The thought of natural stones is more of a temptation than anything right now because I received a razor from TheSuperiorShave that was honed on a coticule and I can say it felt very good on my face haha.


    ~~~once bitten twice shy=:-)



    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    My face may still be somewhat of a rookie when it comes to feeling small changes like that but I could tell it felt very "natural."

    ~~~well then, it looks like the chink in the wall is there



    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    What would you say makes you like the edge off of a natural stone like a coticule or thurry or J-Nat more so than the edge off a synthetic stone? I know everyone has different opinions just like to hear the reasoning behind them sometimes is all.

    Sam



    ~~~Speaking strictly for myself, I just prefer the way my face feels while shaving with an edge that came off a coticule in particular, other natural stone edges in general. I started, learned to hone using coticule. I've always liked the edge, the way it feels while shaving. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. the other side of that coin is, the best you know is the best you've shaven with, so I've shaved with other edges, some I crafted for myself, others did for me

    I was interested in lapping film hearing of others trying it, so I gave it a whirl, firstly using a $5 piece of bull nose marble tile as the substrate for the film



    then buying a slab of granite (lapping plate) from woodcraft when they were shipping to your door for $32.50



    I used a sheet of damp copy paper under the 12 K film sheet before finishing it off on a Cr0x hanging linen



    I liked those edges, they were sharp but not as face friendly (IMO) as any of my coti edges

    I think a lot of it for me is preference. I prefer the way coti shaves me. that's not to say it's the be all end all edge for most anyone. it isn't, but it is what I prefer

    I'm a bit of a n00b when it comes to J-Nats. I've had my J-Nat I think for several years but only recently learned how to get what I would call very good edges off it. I learned the technique I now use (w/the j-nat) from someone else and believe it or not, I'm using it pretty much how I would hone using coticule...basically a dilucot style of honing except I'm generating slurry using a 600 dmt credit card and using only that slurry, no other nagura, just tomo nagura generated from the mother hone, start to finish, refreshing several times (the slurry). I'm really liking these edges, and on a variety of razors

    FWIW I sent this/my jnat hone and one of my razors to the friend that showed me how he was honing using j-nats, and I flipped when I got the edge back. It never worked that way for me when I used it, so it was about technique. The several razors I've done on that hone since I've finished with misty slurry

    About my limited experience with thurris, besides the y/g thurri I have, I also have a dark blue thurri. I've gone to each of them after crafting an edge with coticule first. The thurri hone for me changes the coti edge. I don't feel I have enough time in with the two thurris I've used/own to say much of anything definitive about them, other than I have enjoyed the edges yet I prefer the feel of coticule hands down

    I was working with the y/g thurri not long ago with one razor in particular, a vintage Bismarck. I'd put my best coti edge on the blade then go to the y/g thurri raising slurry from the underside using my Duo-Sharp DMT then transferring that slurry to the top of the hone. Skim milk consistency?...maybe a little heavier but not much, keeping it wet, very light pressure, mostly very light X strokes. Enough to erase the character of the preceding stone. I liked the edge very much. It was glass like. Not dead at all as it still felt like a natural stone edge

    I've found with this particular thurri...you have to bring your best edge to it. It wont tune up a dull edge. It's a polisher. Now when that edge fell off, bringing it back to that thurri for some more laps and it was golden again, on a misty + slurry which seems to act like a lubricant. running laps on that stone on straight water didn't work for me. Now it's been so long since I've used my dark blue thurri...I've forgot how it works, how to use it=:-) I remember using it but I don't recall the results specifically. I should have kept and used a diary of sorts, a log book of the edges I've tried. Never got around to it though. All the notes I am quoting here are from memory

    Did I answer your question? I don't think one particular method of honing will please everyone. there are many that use syn stones then keep the edge up using pasted strops between honings, or they may very well keep the edge going for an indefinite period using a pasted strop. Eventually the bevels will need to be flattened again as the fin will round. Because I like the feel of a stone edge to shave with, I use the same stone hone for the touch up, but those that like to use pasted strops...they've found the combo of pastes that work for them

    I tried mixing .5 poly diamond with .5 Cr0x. Felt too rough for me. Same with a blade I got from a vendor that used a strop pasted with TI paste (poly diamond)...way too rough for me, but I can shave off a hanging linen strop that was Cr0x pasted, though I prefer to then go to plain linen then leather before shaving

    I bought a tube of TI paste once. Put some on the rough side of a leather strop. If I'm not mistaken, Thiers once (maybe they still do) recommended touching up their singing blades using their paste, to pick up a fallen edge. Put a little life into it. To each his own but I don't care for diamond edges

    Another j-nat user I know likes to take his j-nat edges to CBN, sprayed on fine sanded balsa, using two different grades going from one to another. he wants that little extra kick. he sent me 4 different CBN pasted balsa strops. it will take an already sharp edge up to another level. I didn't care for it enough to keep using it. In fact it tweaked the edge enough I had to be careful how much pressure I was using while shaving otherwise I'd slice my skin. We're not supposed to use any pressure while shaving though you know we use a little, but with a wickedly polished edge, you have to be on your toes while shaving. I didn't care for that exp. some do. It's a large nation


    Best,


    Jake
    Reddick Fla.

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    Thanks for all the info jake! I actually have that exact piece of granite pretty sure it's from woodworking as well. I think as I move along I might end up getting a coticule everyone seems to really like them and the edges you can create with them not just you. Now it's to the Wikis for me to brush up on all the basics so I don't destroy my blade first try! good news is I still have my free honing coupon from SRD so they should be able to help me out if it gets too bad!

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    Member shakinjake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    I think as I move along I might end up getting a coticule everyone seems to really like them and the edges you can create with them not just you.


    ~~~not trying to talk you out of a coticule for your first natural stone acquisition but you may want to also consider getting a J-Nat. there are some stones offered on the forum classified section from time to time that should interest you in thinking about a Japanese natural. I say that as it seems from the threads I've perused that more new natural stone honers (those new to natural hones) seem to pick up learning how to get a good edge quickly with a J-Nat...at least that is what I've come to believe. My exp. didn't mirror that but I tend to over think these things and in retrospect, after using a J-Nat the few times as of late...I can see why some learn it easier *& faster* than a coticule, and the edges from a J-Nat are quite good. That said, I've only experienced edges from 5 different J-Nats yet all were quite satisfying

    I don't mean to throw a monkey wrench into this decision making process for you, rather I see it as helping you expand your natural hone choices



    Quote Originally Posted by chapman View Post
    Now it's to the Wikis for me to brush up on all the basics so I don't destroy my blade first try!


    ~~~you might want to think about buying a few blades from the wild to use for practice honing, just to keep the wear to blades while learning this craft to others than your finest straight razors, thinking you have a few newer straight razors that you'd like to keep as is. that was my strategy and I recommend it though if you limit the purchase price to lessor amounts, you will undoubtedly acquire blades that need a little more than a good honing to shave with and test your honing skills

    What I looked for when buying straight razors, and the majority of the ones I bought were from ebay, I would only consider blades with even wear along the edge, omitting from consideration those that had obvious toe and or heel wear. I also looked for razors with sound handles (schales) though every once in awhile a razor I won in an auction wasn't represented accurately so I ended up with a few in need of new schales

    If you choose wisely you can obtain some nice straights for little dinero that may only need some light metal & schale cleaning. There are downsides to going the ebay route. For one, it can be time consuming perusing auctions. I don't travel much so looking for blades at antique emporiums were limited for me, making ebay my best option. Another downside to using ebay to buy razors...it can be addictive, but I think I have quenched my hunger after 3 years into this hobby. I'll look for and bid on razors once in a great while but it has to be something that catches my eye


    Best,


    Jake
    Reddick Fla.

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    aka shooter74743 ScottGoodman's Avatar
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    DMT8C or Atoma are good lapping plates. I have had a couple DMT's, but have heard great things about the Atoma from guys I respect. Stay synthetic on your finisher and the Naniwa would make a good finisher for anyone. Coticules are all over the place on "grit" and few are even 8K. I am personally not a big fan of any paste or spray, so I will say no comment.
    Northeastern Texas & Southeastern Oklahoma Mentor/Helper...PM me if I can assist you.
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