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Thread: High grit synthetics

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    Default High grit synthetics

    I was looking around on the forum but didn't get clear answers to a couple of things I was wondering about.

    I usually hone using Coticules, BBWs, Thuringers and a Naniwa progressions ranging from 1K to 12K

    Reading about high grit synthetics, like 20K or even higher, I really wonder how these compare to the edges from a Thuri/Escher or a Coti.

    The 12K synthetic is a bit too harsh for me to shave off so I go to a natural stone to smooth it out.

    I wondered how a 20K (or higher grit) synthetic would feel compared to a natural finishing stone like an Escher/Thuri finish or even a Coticule.


    And personally what would you prefer to finish your razor on between a high grit synthetic, a Thuri or a Coti or any other hone (I hear good things about jnats) ?

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Only ever used a synthetic progression finishing on a 12K Naniwa followed by 20 laps on a crox sprayed hanging felt strop. I use the hanging strop at the end because I found the 12K edge a bit harsh.

    This is working for me so I have no inclination to try naturals or a higher grit synthetic.

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    Senior Member markbignosekelly's Avatar
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    I have the Gok 20k, after the superstone 10k 10 - 15 laps and im good to go. The keeness and smoothness is spot on, a number of people have stopped using their naturals after getting one. The appeal is they are stupid easy to use and provide consistent great results.

    Are they worth the extra bucks? Thats up to the user to decide.

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    Senior Member Speedster's Avatar
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    Thanks for reassuring me about today's SG20k purchase. I can't wait to try this stone...a baby step beyond my current Naniwa SS 12k.

    Quote Originally Posted by markbignosekelly View Post
    I have the Gok 20k, after the superstone 10k 10 - 15 laps and im good to go. The keeness and smoothness is spot on, a number of people have stopped using their naturals after getting one. The appeal is they are stupid easy to use and provide consistent great results.

    Are they worth the extra bucks? Thats up to the user to decide.
    gssixgun and alpla444 like this.
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    Senior Member markbignosekelly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedster View Post
    Thanks for reassuring me about today's SG20k purchase. I can't wait to try this stone...a baby step beyond my current Naniwa SS 12k.
    Just seen you got one, congratulations. Im sure you'll love it.
    alpla444 and Speedster like this.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Part of me is curious what a 20K Gokumyo or 30K shapton would bring to the table. But my pragmatic side tells me that taking an edge from my Shapton Kuromaku 12K to Crox/CBN/FeOx if I'm up to it is already well beyond the realm reached by those higher grit stones. .5 CrOx is about 30K, the .25 CBN 60K, and the <.1 FeOx probably around 150K. Using a hard strop like Balsa would likely improve keenness along the same lines as a synthetic stone, but I use them on a hanging strop because the goal is comfort not separating the first layer of skin from the ones beneath it.

    My last two shaves were from a blade honed on nothing but a Swaty barber hone. Close/clean/comfortable and perfectly enjoyable. My favorite edge is probably one finished on an Arkansas stone. That's mostly personal bias, I love me some Arkansas stones. But if we're being honest my Welsh slates, and Jnat are comparable with the Cnat hot on their heels. I don't much care for the surgical sharp created by the Shapton and pastes but it was/is impressive. I'm still kind of playing with that experiment though so conclusions have yet to be reached. I haven't fully formed an opinion of my coticule either, still learning the stone.

    At any rate, I find keeping a blade that's been maintained and honed well with a simple run of the mill/nothing special barber hone keeps me grounded. At any given time I can pick that up and compare it to the super keen edge I honed on my Naniwa 12K then stropped up in excess of 120K and remind myself the difference between an edge created by a $20 barber and over $200 of honing equipment is literally minuscule. Perceptible, sure - but only during the shave. At the end of the day it still only took 1 pass and some minor touch up to get the level of shave I desire and 5 hours later my face is no less happy with the shave from the edge created by that barber hone than it would be off any other in my collection.

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    Senior Member Longhaultanker's Avatar
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    The Shapton Glass series is the foundation of my honing. I have both SG 16k & 30k. My favorite finisher is the Arkansas True Hard, Translucent, Hard Black family. Also have 3 Coticules and a Zulu Gray. Love them all, but favorite is Arkansas.
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    Senior Member Steel's Avatar
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    I have tried many edges finished off 12k and a few off 20k. Some were not impressive and harsh but two stood out as superb. Two senior members here. Karlej and Ace. It is definitely not the hone but the person using them.

    After all that my favorite finisher is a Hard Arkansas (black and translucent) but again it is not the hone but the person honing. I have yet to feel anything like my own edges finished on an Arkansas.
    What a curse be a dull razor; what a prideful comfort a sharp one

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    I finish with SG16 and the edge is very smooth, comporable to edges finished on naturals. I had one razor that was finished with a Guk 20k and it was fantastic. For an amatuer honer like me the synthetics are much more consistent and faster.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speedster View Post
    Thanks for reassuring me about today's SG20k purchase. I can't wait to try this stone...a baby step beyond my current Naniwa SS 12k.
    Please give us your review once you've had a chance to experiment. That's where I'm looking to go next after the 12K SS.

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