Few questions

Discussion in 'Straight Razors' started by Swampfox, Jan 10, 2021.

  1. Swampfox

    Swampfox Active Member

    I have been using a safety razors for a while now and love them. I just have been considering trying a straight razor. I love vintage razors so if I was to pick one up I would prefer it to be vintage, easy to sharpening, and a good quality that would last a lifetime. I have gathered rounded, and small blades I should look at. Any help with ones I should look at or just get over this urge? Thank you
    Karl G and Keithmax like this.
  2. Enrico

    Enrico Popcorn

    I'm not the one to give you a non bias opinion ..... I personally need no more extra work to get a decent shave. I have no interest in honing a razor ..... I'm lazy.

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  3. Keithmax

    Keithmax Breeds Pet Rocks

    They key is finding a razor that has a good edge on it as well as good geometry so it is easy to maintain. The best source for these razors is the check the BST of the major forums. You likely pick a good vintage razors while getting a delivered with a good edge at a good price.

    For a first times I recommend a 6/8 - 7/8 round tip razor. Too small or too big makes learning to shave a little harder. Avoid sharp tips and heels as the can cut you easily. Jump in, if I can learn to use a straight so can you.
  4. Mr. Oldschool

    Mr. Oldschool Johnny Dangerously

    Hey Swampfox, glad to see you're thinking of taking the plunge. You would be hard pressed to find any of us who shave with straights that would try to dissuade you from it. It is a very rewarding experience. There is a learning curve, and true enough, blade maintenance does take a bit of a time commitment, but for most of us, that's one if the parts we like. Honing and stropping can be very meditative. Shaving with an open blade is a zen like experience for many of us. Because it requires so much concentration, you can easily get lost in what you're doing.

    As far as blades are concerned, it is generally best to learn with a razor of medium size (say 5/8" width) with a rounded point, and most people recommend a moderately hollow grind. My first blade was 6/8 and full hollow with a rounded point. Since then I've picked up a few spike points that I tend to prefer, and a couple wedges. They all have their benefits and drawbacks. Everyone has a different preference for what works best for them. The thrill is in the journey!

    Sent from my LGUS992 using Tapatalk
  5. DaltonGang

    DaltonGang Ol' Itchy Whiskers

    One thing not mentioned is, how much do you want to spend on this new razor? Also, do you want one that is ornate, or just to learn on? You will need to purchase a decent strop, before anything else. That should run $35-$45.
  6. Rkep01

    Rkep01 Well-Known Member

    I agree with all of the replies. One cautionary note, though. Once you start down this path, there is no return. Once you master the art of shaving with a straight razor you will not be satisfied with anything else. Welcome to the club.
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  7. Swampfox

    Swampfox Active Member

    Can I get suggestions on strop, and a high quality vintage razor? Thank y’all
    Edison Carter likes this.
  8. TestDepth

    TestDepth Well-Known Member

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  9. lottenhem

    lottenhem Well-Known Member

    I would suggest a C.V. Heljestrand MK No. 31, easy to maintain a sharp edge. Also razors from Solingen and Sheffield. Aim for a 5/8-6/8” blade. Smaller might be tricky to get sharp (at least my experience)

    Skickat från min iPhone med Tapatalk
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  10. Edison Carter

    Edison Carter Goo-bloomin' Stankster

    Go with an inexpensive strop first. Everybody seems to nick at least one.
    Illinois 127 or 927 were recommended to me. About $45
  11. DaltonGang

    DaltonGang Ol' Itchy Whiskers

    I am a fan of Illinois Strops. Inexpensive, and well made. I still use the Illinois 827 that I started with, for every razor.
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  12. Mr. Oldschool

    Mr. Oldschool Johnny Dangerously

    Poor Man's Strop from Whipped Dog was my goto until I could afford a Rich Man's Strop.

    IIRC, they run about $25. High quality leather, no extras.
    Karl G likes this.
  13. Swampfox

    Swampfox Active Member

    Thank y’all
    Karl G likes this.
  14. Tedolph

    Tedolph Well-Known Member

    You can practice stropping with a fan folded piece of newspaper anchored around a towel bar. Once you can strop without cutting that move to the leather strop.

    Karl G likes this.
  15. PLANofMAN

    PLANofMAN Paperboy

    Article Team
    To add to what others have already said, you will nick your first strop, so it's best to not buy a premium strop.

    The difference between stropping on a minty, well cared for thick Shell Cordovan strop and stropping on a strip of denim you cut from a worn out pair of jeans is minimal, especially for a beginner. Seriously.
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  16. Karl G

    Karl G Well-Known Member

    Most Any round point 5/8 to 6/8ths (or even 7/8ths as @Keithmax suggests) will do. Just don’t buy a Pakistani razor for sure. Most from England, Germany, Japan, Sweden, France, Spain will do - same for the USA although you may find fewer of these to choose from.

    I highly recommend you get it professionally honed even if it says “shave ready.” I prefer @gssixgun and others can add their tried and true favorites for a high quality honing.
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  17. Claude Stewart

    Claude Stewart Well-Known Member

    DO NOT get over this urge!

    I just went through the same thing last fall. I decided to take the plunge and it is wonderful. Takes a a few times to learn the angle and pressure. You may have a few nicks along the way but, it's well worth it.

    Its only been a few months for me now. But now I look forward to shaving. I compare the experience to when women get facials. The hot towel, the pre balm, the good shaving soap. A nice Badger hair brush lathering and applying. Then the smooth shave and cold water rinse. It's just awesome. My only regret is not starting sooner.

    If you do not have the whetstones to hone your blade, 1000 grit if there is no edge. 3000, 8000, 12000 to 15000 grit is what I use, get it done professionally.

    I started with a Dovo 5/8". I believe the 5/8" width is perfect for learning. Less than $100 for the blade. A good brush was 35 and a good soap was 15. A $30.00 strop is great for in-between shaves. Not sure if others do this but, I only lather one section of my shave area at a time. Like right side. then right neck etc. That seems to keep the lather nice and moist and gives me a closer shave. Rinse the blade with cold water and do again if necessary.

    I'm a bit of a "all in at full speed captain" kind of guy. So, I started a collection of old blades and restored them. Double Duck is always catching my eye.

    I hope you discover this great way of shaving.

    Best wishes.
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  18. Spyder

    Spyder Well-Known Member

    Check your messages, I may be able to help you out, but then again, maybe not:cool:
    Karl G likes this.
  19. Trigger

    Trigger Double Jedi Knight

    @Swampfox You probably made your decision as to what straight razor you would be considering.
    I agree with most of the comments that were made.
    I would say start with a 5/8 round point. There are pros and cons on whether to buy vintage or modern razors. You can get a shave ready and inexpensive Gold Dollar from Slash McCoy, Razor Emporium or Anthony Esposito aka The Stallion.
    Karl G likes this.
  20. battle.munky

    battle.munky Has the menthol.munky on his back!

    Always, always, always, shave with at least a towel on...everybody already hit on most of the other stuff ;)
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