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Thread: Doing the flip

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    Default Doing the flip

    Granted, I am a stropping newbie who still has not fully perfected his technique. But I do have a question. Whenever I flip the razor (rolling on the spine, of course), sometimes I hear a slight slap as the razor contacts the strop. It's not forceful; it's just very light pressure beyond the weight of the blade. I'm not bearing down on the razor. Also, the blade has already begun its lap in the other direction as this occurs.

    Is that light slap degrading my edge? I'm trying to alter my technique so I don't get strop slap after a flip. So far so good as I'm only getting this 40% of the time. But I plan to get it to where I never slap the blade after a flip.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth tcrideshd's Avatar
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    I,m not sure it's hurting , only seeing you do it or you see a degradation in the edge, will tell, but mine tends to do a little slapping and I,m having no issues, but I will say this slow down and it don't slap. Make deliberate slow measured laps, with an easy flip and start the blade moving with the blade coming down softly. In the beginning you need to just perfect the technique before speeding up then you won't hurt your edge. I would rather have a great edge slowly than a bad edge that was fast. Tc
    Last edited by tcrideshd; 02-05-2016 at 03:52 PM.
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    Back in the day when you went to a barber and they stropped the straight you would hear a loud slapping sound as the barber flipped the blade over. It was part of the "show".

    As long as the edge is not contacting the strop as you do the flip no damage will occur. It's only if you are contacting the edge during the slap will you damage the edge.
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    Probably strop leather has something to do with it. My Russian horse hide and my SRD strop both slap. My Illinois 454 doesn't. Watch Lynn's video on refreshing a blade when he strops on a new SRD. You can hear the slap and song of a good stropping.....music to my ears.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth outback's Avatar
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    Yep ... I get a light slap as well. No problems are evident. My spine never leaves the strop ever
    Mike

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    I try not to, but it happens. I'm afraid of nicking my strop from too heavy of a turn.
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    Thanks for the info. Yes it's just a light slap and the spine stays on the strop.

    I guess I am overly concerned. Since I am,a stropping newbie, I found bad techniques at first and hand been working to correct. I did find myself at first slightly lifting the spine. But I think that my stropping at first probably degraded the edge. Putting it under a 15x loupe does not really show any evidence of a rolled edge. I can shave a patch of my forearm BBS but it just doesn't hav the oomph to get the chin hairs down to DFS. It drags a lot there. And I am paying close attention to my angle.

    So I suspect the first few stroppings may have left me with a less than desirable edge. I am just trying to get better do some extra laps on both the webbing and leather in hopes of correcting the edge without having to go to the CRoX or to use my free honing coupon so soon. In short, I know it's not the razor but rather it's me.FWIW.

    So i am pretty much just trying to get advice on anything I perceive to be improper technique so I can learn from it. I realize,its something to learn and this is part of said improvement. And I'm more than willing to take the time to learn.

    BTW, I'm doing about 40 laps on the strop in about 1 minute and it is a SRD English bridle leather

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    Senior Member blabbermouth 10Pups's Avatar
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    Forget the laps per minute and just work on style . Double your lap count and if the razor is still working on everything but your chin do 2 things. 100 or 200 laps and stretch the skin on your chin more if you can. The chin is a tough spot for most of us and personally I spend more time on that than the rest of my face. I don't know how comfortable you are with your blade technique yet but trying different angles and directions will help get those chinny chin chin hairs :<0)
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    It isn't hard to degrade the edge while you learn. As your technique improves, your edge will last longer. The chin is a difficult area to master. Give it time and 100 odd shaves and you will have it well sorted.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10Pups View Post
    Forget the laps per minute and just work on style . Double your lap count and if the razor is still working on everything but your chin do 2 things. 100 or 200 laps and stretch the skin on your chin more if you can. The chin is a tough spot for most of us and personally I spend more time on that than the rest of my face. I don't know how comfortable you are with your blade technique yet but trying different angles and directions will help get those chinny chin chin hairs :<0)
    Quote Originally Posted by Grazor View Post
    It isn't hard to degrade the edge while you learn. As your technique improves, your edge will last longer. The chin is a difficult area to master. Give it time and 100 odd shaves and you will have it well sorted.
    The 40 laps per minute was a suggestion from the stropping section of the SRP library. In it, they mentioned about going too slow. Now the last couple strop sessions seemed to be quite good. Getting what I think is good draw and contact on the leather as it seemed to have a good solid sound to it.

    I've done the pin test as well and felt no catching so this tends to rule out the rolled edge.

    I'm quite comfortable to try different angles as I am graduating from the shavette.

    My first pass on the cheeks are fairly smooth as mentioned before. On the chin, it hardly takes off any hair. It just drags and pulls. On the second pass (XTG) on a few sections of my right cheek, it does the same thing as I have some really funky grain directions there. I got a major case of razor burn in a couple areas because I was too bullheaded to stop and finish that section with my shavette. :P But as I said, I can cut my arm hair with ease yet cannot cut the coarse stubble on my face and chin. It is almost as if the edge is not rolled but rather ever so slightly rounded...like a ball point pen. Of course, my description may be off. But see the image I posted and take note of the right edge vs the left edge.

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    Anyway, it's good to know that the slap is not going to degrade my edge since it is a light slap. I think I am getting this stropping thing down and I don't want to undo my progress. But I am willing to take the time to master stropping, shaving angle, etc. If I can master the shavette, I can master the straight.

    PS: It has been said that the straight is the manual transmission of shaving. I look at it this way. The shavette is the passenger car/pickup truck manual transmission of the shaving world. The straight is the semi tractor trailer unsynchronized manual transmission of the shaving world. And I have never touched the latter!
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