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Thread: First Honing Attempt

  1. #1
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    Default First Honing Attempt

    I wanted to share my experience honing my first razor and hopefully get some guidance.

    Stones I'm using:
    DMT 325
    Chosera 1000
    Naniwa SS 5000/8000/12000

    I purchased two GD for practice, one carbon steel and one stainless steel. I am currently working on the carbon steel.

    Progression 1 - No tape

    All water stones were flattened on the DMT diamond plate first. I then began to set the bevel on the 1K and found that the heal was not sharpened like the rest of the razor edge from the factory. I found myself applying pressure to he heel to try to get it like the rest of the blade. I went through my progression finishing on the 12K. The razor was hair popping sharp from the middle to the tip but not middle to heal. After examination, the blade had a slight smile to it. I guess when I was working on the heal on the 1K it took more metal and changed the blade geometry. It was also observed that when making my X strokes, the water was not being swept from the entire width of the blade, only a line where the smile was contacting the stone. An AHA moment!

    Progression 2 - 1 layer electrical tape

    The razor went on the DMT 325 to straighten the smile. I put sharpie on the edge and worked it till the marker was gone tip to heal and the blade was straight. Back to the 1K, circles and X strokes with pressure, more at the beginning than the end. Now the water is completely gone as the razor moves across the stone. I did circles and X strokes on the 5K, then a pyramid 5K/8K, 5/5; 4/4; 3/3; 1/5; 1/5. Again, more pressure on the edge at the start than end. Now tree topping hair! Pyramid similar to previous with 8K/12k. I lost the clean sweep of water from the stone. Unsure what happened. Not tree topping hair any longer. Will back up tomorrow to 5K and try again.

    I have to say, just like sharpening a knife, this is very relaxing and I am enjoying the hell out of it!

    Apologies for the lengthy post and thanks for your insights!
    sloanwinters likes this.

  2. #2
    Senior Member blabbermouth Gasman's Avatar
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    A smile is nice when shaving but can be a challenge when honing. The rolling X stroke is needed. The Gold Dollar has issues at the heal and the double stablizer needs work to be able to get it honed correctly. You can google it. Plus the spine is thick and with tape it makes the bevel at a larger angle. But your just practicing so I'd use tape to cut down on sping ware for sure.

    Sounds like your getting a good start. Just remember that the count of laps on the stone is good for starting to learn but the feel and sound is what counts the most, not the count. Be sure your checking and replacing your tape often and using a good tape. When the tapes starts to ware thinner its changing your angle and can cause the water to not undercut. Keep it up and in a couple months you will be getting a good idea of whats really going on when honing.

    Keep at it and good luck!
    Jerry...

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    Robini (10-14-2017)

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    Spent ALL day, on and off, working on the GD. Trial and error and error and error. Then I found Glen's tap and wobble test. Yep, there was wobble. I taped the edge and worked the spine on the DMT 325. Wobble gone. Blended the edge and then onto the water stones again. I paid great attention to both sides of the entire blade confirming that it was grabbing a nail and popping hair end to end on each stone. I also examined both sides under magnification to confirm uniform scratches. Just finished shaving with it! Great shave! A bit of neck irritation which could be my inexperienced edge and/or a few more than normal touch ups ATG. Either way, a success!

    Question,

    The Chosera 1k has the feel of a very fine abrasive. Lots of tactile and audible feedback. The SS 5/8/12K have a plastic feel. Not much tactile feedback and nothing audible. Also, the metal swarf seems to become embedded in the SS stones and each time I flatten them it seems to take longer than I would expect after watching several youtube videos. Is this normal for the SS stones?

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    i started honing with the same stones but have since added a SS 3k and love it. really helped bridge the 1-5 gap. ive heard many speak highly of the 2k as well but i went w/ the 3.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth Gasman's Avatar
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    Swarf does like to setle in those stones. I use them myself. Just a couple finger rubs on the stone durring honing brings then up off the stone. Its just the nature of those stones. Never honed on a spine before. Hope you didnt damage it too badly to get thing straight. Although it was a GD so no big loss. I wouldnt recommend donig it to a vintage razor.
    Jerry...

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    Robini (10-15-2017)

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    That's interesting. I could not get the black swarf out of the stones without lapping or using a small slurry stone. At first I thought it had to do with the black electrical tape. I removed it and still the same thing.

    The 8K, yellow, took the most lapping to get back to clean/flat.

  9. #7
    Senior Member blabbermouth Gasman's Avatar
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    Im still pretty new at this myself so hopefully someone else will chime in. But normally i just make sure the stone is wet and rub my fingers on it to lift the impacted stuff in the stone.
    Jerry...

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