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Thread: Linen & Leather or Just Leather

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    Senior Member Jnatcat's Avatar
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    Default Linen & Leather or Just Leather

    If my quest to gain more knowledge on the final steps chasing that killer edge i am trying to understand the full benefits of linen and or cotton use prior to using leather, I know on the post shave it dries the blade and from my limited research the pre-leather component offers some abrasive quality that is similar to a high grit hone.

    When i first started using a straight I was doing 50/100 on linen and leather on both the pre and post shave then I stated trimming back to 25/50 then i skipped the linen all together then i went back to 25/25 and now I have been hearing that doing more on linen than leather has a bigger benefit so where does one draw the line and what determines stroke count or is all that subjective just like "Shave Ready"

    Currently my process is 50 leather only on the pre shave then 10/10 linen/leather post and shave have been good so curious as to what others say, I did hone a blade this a.m and did 50/25 linen/leather after the hones and the edge seems a tad keener on the HHT but we all know the shave is really all that matters not the HHT results.
    "A Honer's adage "Hone-Shave-Repeat"

    ~William~

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    I use Theirs Issard strop paste from The Art of Shaving on the canvas. Strop canvas first and finish on leather. I find it helps maintain the edge and even improves it a little.
    Wightman likes this.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth tcrideshd's Avatar
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    I once tried not to use the linen, I went back to it., I could tell the difference in my edge. some may not care but I did. the best I can understand is the linen provides a good clean up on your edge, and alignment before going to the leather for the final burnish . yes it does a great job of cleaning the edge after the shave, but it still does the same thing before, oxidation starts at the microscopic level.

    also its very good between stones in your progression to clean and line up the edge. I know plenty of guys who don't because their not convinced it makes a difference, my experiment on my blades proved for "me" that linen is good to use, now I do use natural flax linen only and my stropping is spot on, cause no matter what you do it on if your stropping is not up to par, every lap is not really helping Tc
    Ever wonder why you never see a motorcycle in front of a Shrinks office? ,,,,, then you have never ridden one "

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    Senior Member Jnatcat's Avatar
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    The blade I did today I did not strop between progressions but will try that next time, as far as the shave today after doing the 50/25 on linen/leather the shave was very smooth but can't say any smoother that 25/25 that i had tested but maybe a little better that just leather alone, i have figured out that one can do all the HHT testing in the world but in the end all the matter is how smooth and close the shave is and how long the edge can be maintained with proper care so maybe i need to revisit using linen each time on the pre and post shave, all my strops have natural flax linen so i can't compare the edge to anything else, i do have my Kanayama cotton but just don't care for it.
    "A Honer's adage "Hone-Shave-Repeat"

    ~William~

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    Senior Member blabbermouth Dieseld's Avatar
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    I use an SRD Premium cotton, then my suede then my Kanayama 90.
    I go 50/75/100+ and it does make a difference if I don't use the cotton first.
    The shave seems, in my opinion, to be much smoother with the higher number of laps. Especially on the final leather.
    YMMV
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    Senior Member Chugach68's Avatar
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    I use both every time
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    Senior Member xiaotuzi's Avatar
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    Both works well for me too.
    "Go easy"

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    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Everyone has a different idea when it comes to stropping. I believe that TC is correct when he says linen aligns the edge and leather burnishes it.

    Me, I strop on a Crox sprayed felt hanging strop, wipe the blade clean and finish on English linen and leather. Recently I have upped the strokes on linen to 40 strokes and leather to 80-100 strokes. I also do about 10 strokes on English linen post shave to ensure a dry edge.

    You have to experiment to see what works for you.

    Bob
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    Forum mogwai thebigspendur's Avatar
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    If you only knew how many discussions we have had here concerning linen or not.

    Those who use it (I'm one of them) swear by it and those who don't, well, they just don't.

    You just have to believe.

    Try it and see what happens and then you can join one of the two sides.
    Every day without fail one should consider himself as dead-Tsunetomo

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    Senior Member Jnatcat's Avatar
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    I think I will do an unofficial test and try linen/leather for a week and then just leather and compare the shaves because in the end the shave is all that matters, in my tiny mind I am thinking the linen has an abrasive quality and will help keep the edge going longer.
    "A Honer's adage "Hone-Shave-Repeat"

    ~William~

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