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Thread: Nylon stropping

  1. #1
    Member brandaves's Avatar
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    Default Nylon stropping

    I'm fairly new to straight razor shaving and am admittedly still trying to figure a lot of things out. That being said I had been having a lot of trouble with my stropping routine. The leather side of my strop has seen its fair share of nics and despite refinishing and trying again I still find that stropping on the leather is frustrating. Lately I have taken to stropping strictly on the nylon side of my strop without touching the leather at all...mostly just to alleviate my own frustration. Anyway, is there any problem with this? I mean I'm sure I'll get back to trying my hand at the leather again soon, but for now the nylon is doing the trick. I just want to ensure I'm not doing anything that will damage the blade or decrease the longevity of my cutting edge. Any thoughts?

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    illegitimum non carborundum Utopian's Avatar
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    Leather is better for re-aligning your edge. Why are you able to strop on nylon and not on leather? What is different about your stroke on one relative to the other?

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    Forum mogwai thebigspendur's Avatar
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    Yep leather is better and should always be your final stropping media. Nylon is good as the secondary strop media.
    Every day without fail one should consider himself as dead-Tsunetomo

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    You will not damage the edge, but a lot depends on the weave and your technique. Fine weave will produce a fine edge, as good as leather and possibly better, for a new stropper. Nylon is very forgiving, you can even stop edge forward without the edge catching the strop, or damaging the edge, not recommended as a technique.

    It can take some time to perfect the stropping technique, and as much as a year to get to the point where, the new stropper is actually improving the edge.

    As a new stropper starts, the goal is to clean and polish the blade without damaging the edge and the strop.

    As oneís technique progresses you begin to improve the edge and maintain it, to where it will last 2-3 months.

    And a year or so later, after 3-400 stropping sessions, the technique is better perfected, stropping is improving the polish of an edge, the shaves are better/keener/smoother and edges lasting much longer, because of the improvement on technique and pressure.

    Once you have mastered the stropping technique, leather will produce a much finer edge and different types and qualities of leather will produce different levels of polish.

    So a nylon strop for the new stropper is a great way to learn and will produce as good an edge as leather, without the danger of cutting the strop or damaging the edge.

    I recommend all new stroppers use nylon exclusively, for the first month or two then, transition to leather. If you are nicking or cutting your nylon strop, your technique, needs a lot more work.

    Nylon is also an excellent medium for pasting. You can pick up a yard of nylon strapping from any Yardage Store for a couple dollars.

    To strop properly do not use excess pressure, just enough to keep the razor flat on the strop, the strop does not need to be excessively taught, go slow, stop then flip and return. The razorís spine never leaves the strop.

    If you are cutting your strop you are not stopping before you flip. Cutting the strop or lifting the spine will damage your edge.

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    Senior Member dinnermint's Avatar
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    This technique helped me from nicking strops, can't find where I read it. First off, do everything at a snails pace.

    1. Start stopping away from you. Make short stroke. 6"
    2. At the end of the stroke lift the EDGE off and continue on spine for 2"
    3. Stop!
    4. Flip razor over slowly. Watch lynn abrams stropping videos and watch his FINGERS. They're the most important to stropping.
    5. Repeat towards you. Short stroke and exaggerated edge off.

    Hope this helps

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    Member brandaves's Avatar
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    Thanks guys! I appreciate the feedback. I need to patch up my leather (light sanding, oil, etc.) before going back to it...I'm happy to know that my nylon stropping routine is just fine for the time being.

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    Another good way to practice is cut a few sheets of newspaper into a strop sized pieces use a clip from any stationary store to hold a few layers of paper together then hang the clip from a hook like you would your leather strop. Use another clip at the bottom of the strop to hold. (in the UK we call the style of clip a bulldog clip, or at least I do). Practice stropping until your not cutting the paper. When you get confident remove a layer of the newspaper and repeat until your paper strop is just 1 sheet thick. Once you can strop on a single sheet like this then your usually good to go without cutting.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Printed newspaper makes an excellent strop, I like the paper strop idea for new stroppers. The abrasives in the ink give a fine polish to the edge.

    You do not need a lot of pressure or speed to strop properly. Try gluing your nicks with rubber cement instead of sanding.

  9. The Following User Says Thank You to Euclid440 For This Useful Post:

    jdc0501 (10-16-2016)

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    I was gonna make a threat on this, great information!

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