Need a little help guys

Discussion in 'Straight Razors' started by Jordan Smith, Jan 21, 2018.

  1. Jordan Smith

    Jordan Smith Member

    So this is my first full shave with a straight- two passes. I bought an old Boker and honed it myself. Mistakes were made for sure. I have pretty sever razor burn. My razor simply isn’t sharp enough but I honed it for hours. I reset the bevel, sharpened, failed, reset bevel again, and sharpened a second time. Where can I learn to hone? The videos aren’t cutting it for me
    Keithmax, Billyfergie and alpla444 like this.
  2. alpla444

    alpla444 That's sweet!

    Have you lapped your hones flat?

    A lot depends on the razor as well, when I started I had 3 razors I could not get any sharp, I ended up changing my hones and things went well from there (I had Norton hones) but they was a bit thirsty for me in the lower grit range, ( I went with Naniwa and they are more splash and go)

    If its not getting sharp after about 10 mins something is wrong.

    Have you tried the magic marker? (use permanent marker on the bevel) run it across the hone and it will give you an idea what and where you are hitting on the hone,) (you may need to do rolling x strokes etc....)

    Do you have a jewellers loupe? its really good to see what you are doing with your honing and they are cheap.

    also when you run the razor across the hone, do you make sure the spine stays on the hone? I have shown a few people how to hone in the past and that is one thing I have noticed a few times, when the spine is lifted off the bevel will hit he stone first.

    I am in the UK so not local to you, but I am guessing there is or will be some one much nearer.

    I did get to be what I consider competent at honing from watching the videos, but it does take time .
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  3. Jordan Smith

    Jordan Smith Member

    Hey great tips, thanks a lot! And yes I lapped my stones. I suppose I’ll reset the bevel again with your marker test, and then resharpen it. Could you elaborate on it a bit more?
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  4. alpla444

    alpla444 That's sweet!

    Well you will see with the marker what part gets worn away and what does not.
    A loupe is very handy to see as and when you need to move up in the hones.

    What hones do you have?

    Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
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  5. Spyder

    Spyder Well-Known Member

    I don’t know that you have the knowledge to tell of the issue is with the blade or your technique. It takes weeks to learn how to shave with a straight that is professionally honed. When starting out people get cut, scratches, and razor burn, due to no fault of the edge.
  6. Heljestrand23

    Heljestrand23 Well-Known Member

    Your bevel is the most important part of your edge. Don’t waste your time polishing on further stones unless you are absolutely certain your bevel is set and set all the way across the blade from heel to toe. Do you know how to test if your bevel is set?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  7. Jordan Smith

    Jordan Smith Member

    Thanks for the feedback gents, I use norton 220/1000 and a 4/8 with a lapping stone. And yes maybe my technique is off, but since I honed it myself I guess I assumed it was that. And to test my bevel I did the thumb nail test and also used a light reflection trig I saw somewhere. The reflection of a bright light can show burs and imperfections. At least that’s what the video said. And also I think it’s not sharp enough because honestly it didnt really pass the shave test with comfort and ease. I kind of had to tug it a bit
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  8. Heljestrand23

    Heljestrand23 Well-Known Member

    Would you mind posting a picture of the razor?

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  9. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    Best Advice I Can Offer..Send it Out to Get it Honed..A Vintage Boker takes a Definitive Sharp Edge from the 1 K Bevel Hone..I Can Shave with them from the 1 K Stone..There is a Huge Learning Curve Honing SRs & Shaving with them for that Matter..:happy088:

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  10. Jordan Smith

    Jordan Smith Member


    Attached Files:

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  11. david of central florida

    david of central florida Rhubarb Rubber

    My best advice, I'm sorry if its not very helpful, is to buy a shave ready razor from gemstar or whipped dog.
    It's easier to learn to shave, then to hone.
    The problem is you can't identity sharp. Your probably getting close then dulling your blade before you use it.
    Get a sight unseen (not pretty, but works), feel what works. Strop it after use (and before the second shave). Learn this, then you can compare.
    It's difficult to learn both skills at once. Like building a car without ever driven before.
  12. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    Difficult to Make an Accurate Assessment of that Bevel..Photo & Light & Stuff..But..It has a Fair Bit of Hone Wear on the Spine..Its Been Honed without Tape at Some Point..By Lookin at that Razor..Bearing in Mind I Aint Got it in the Hand..I Would Probably Fill in the Worst off the Hone Wear on the Spine with One Layer of Tape & Use a Further Layer of Tape on Top Along the Complete Length of the Spine..;)

    A Razor with that Amount of Hone Wear on the Spine will Alter the Geometry of the Blade & the Bevel Area..The Method I Mentioned Should Help to Pull it Back in to the Factory Geometry..Or..There About..:happy088:

  13. PickledNorthern

    PickledNorthern Fabulous, the unicorn

    All I can say is that a guy’s first straight should be honed by a TRUSTWORTHY guy, just to set a benchmark. If you don’t know what it should feel like, how do you know if it’s you or the razor? I have been doing this for a year or so now, and I still turn out some razors that are un- shaveable, and have to start over.
  14. gssixgun

    gssixgun At this point in time...

    Supporting Vendor
    How about I get that shaving for you Marine

    Fire me a PM you cover shipping I will take care of the honing

    Once it is dialed in correctly it will be much easier for you to maintain it and learn to hone at the same time..

    Hint: Anytime I read the words "I honed it for hours" I know there is an issue :) let's see if I can't get it sorted
  15. TestDepth

    TestDepth Well-Known Member

    Great offer!:signs021:
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  16. wchnu

    wchnu Duck Season!

    @Jordan Smith I would take Glen up on this. He dressed up a couple of straits for me. Trying to hone a razor you do not know how to use is kinda funky. Start with learning to shave with a sharp razor then you can learn another skill.
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  17. alpla444

    alpla444 That's sweet!

    Take Glen up on the offer, ask him to finish on a Naniwa 12k hone for you, as if you was to buy one of those stones they are a great finisher and not expensive for a finisher,

    The razor looks good, The heel looks to be a slight issue as it looks like it need to be re-profiled as its been honed on, (very common on vintage hollow grounds)
    gssixgun, Keithmax, TestDepth and 2 others like this.

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