New STR8 Users Declining?

Discussion in 'Straight Razors' started by Spyder, Dec 26, 2018.

  1. Deeter

    Deeter Well-Known Member

    I just watched a YouTube of a guy using a Wicked Edge knife sharpener to hone a straight razor. Any merit to this method???
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  2. Rkep01

    Rkep01 Well-Known Member

    Doubt it. Did he shave with it? Maybe for setting a bevel, but there are cheaper ways of doing that. The stones only go up to 1000 grit. Can you provide the link?
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  3. Deeter

    Deeter Well-Known Member

  4. Chuck Naill

    Chuck Naill Well-Known Member

    I'm sticking with a $30 pack of films and a couple rocks thank you very much.....LOL!!
  5. Primotenore

    Primotenore missed opera tunity

    I’ll pass.
  6. Deeter

    Deeter Well-Known Member

    Very expensive set-up. I'll pass too.
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  7. SevenEighth

    SevenEighth Well-Known Member

    Returning to the original question

    Whilst individual members are helpful, welcoming and provide very good advice, if you look around the different forums and resources (not just at the shave den), the best information seems to be from around the 2010 time frame. The most useful posts on honing, stones, razor types, shaving videos often date from this time. That's not to say that there aren't more recent posts that are great.

    Wikis on different forums are becoming out of date - still relevant mostly, but also contain dated information. It's hard to find a contemporary list of honemeisters as well. Having access to a reliable way to maintain my razors, was what caused me to give up straight shaving for a few years. I can only imagine the challenges facing someone wanting to try it for the first time.

    With the changes going on at Straight Razor Place and no longer running their main forums, the resources are not as accessible as they once were. As a result you often see new straight shavers struggling to find these resources and pick through the advice. They crop up on different forums with questions. As ever - experienced forum members are always helpful in these situations, but for people just searching, it must be hard for them to know which information is still relevant. On another forum there is quite a movement to get new shavers running with lapping film and pasted balsa. This seems to be a successful approach but not for everyone I am aware of 3 or 4 new shavers who have shied away from the approach. In the UK the materials for this approach are harder to get and more expensive than in the US. It doesn't fit everyone's character either. Some would prefer a synthetic or a natural stone and to learn on that.

    I came onto the forums to learn how to hone. Believe or not I have been straight shaving since the 80s and only discovered these resources a couple of years ago!! (But hey - maybe I'm just dumb). Finding good honing information was a challenge at first and I started out making every mistake I could. To this day I still find old useful videos, articles and posts that I wish I had seen starting out.

    I have learnt the most from a few wise heads on THIS forum rather than anywhere else, and some dm conversations here and elsewhere. It's been a struggle but an enjoyable one, due to the friendly, good advice given willingly by generous enthusiasts.

    In order to attract more converts, perhaps we need to go back and look at the starting information, to help these guys get to the good advice more quickly?
  8. Chuck Naill

    Chuck Naill Well-Known Member

    I didn't find it difficult to find the information I needed to produce a shave ready edge. I started in late September 2018. There are more than one way to skin a cat. Just find one you can live with, afford, and practice.

    Using a SR is more than sharp.

    When it comes to anything, some start out all excited and then drop off when they don't get immediate results. A few start out and commit themselves to learning and reach their goal. As an old college librarian once said, "education requires a degree of rigor".
  9. Primotenore

    Primotenore missed opera tunity

    My reply should not be implied as any insult to your excellent response.
    These days, the process of learning---anything---has become little more than a "search engine" and a "cut and paste" exercise. As a professional for more than 30 years, then transitioning into academia for the next ten, I can tell you from experience, that today's student is lazier than ever. (Yes there are exceptions, no need to defend them)
    What the heck did people do when there was no internet, YouTube videos, shaving fora?? They learned either through trial and error or from someone who already knew---that they themselves might very well have learned through trial and error. My straight razor journey has been a mix of both information I have gleaned from experts and, admittedly, some "how-to" videos on YouTube. But mostly through trail and error. Millennials, for the most part, have little patience and demand immediate gratification in every aspect of their lives. It should therefore come as no surprise that straight razor shaving is on the decline. The learning curve is too steep; there are no "throw away" aspects; it takes too much time away from "Snapchat".
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  10. Chuck Naill

    Chuck Naill Well-Known Member

    I couldn't do without YouTube, and am so happy I do not have to depend on trial and error. :happy088:

    I also have a very positive attitude toward my children and grandchildren's generation. I find them and their contemporaries to be hard working and smart. :happy096:

    I also find that having a positive attitude toward others and being willing to encourage, mentor, assistant, teach, and disciple to provide personal joy and fulfillment. :happy069:
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  11. SevenEighth

    SevenEighth Well-Known Member

    Maybe. But we aren't all as capable as you. You might have found it easy. I did not.

    I burnt a lot of time and money before things worked for me . I could afford that and I knew what I was aiming for from the experience of shaving but I can understand how others would be put off.
  12. SevenEighth

    SevenEighth Well-Known Member

    No insult taken - it's an interesting discussion and there is surely truth in what you write.

    You might be right. Although I am often surprised by the focus and commitment of my own children. But, hey, I'm biased on that topic!

    I don't mean to be an apologist for another generation - just trying to understand them a little better.

    I can only speak from the situation in the UK. Educationally, there is a lot less focus on practical skills in comparison to my generation, or my father's. Home ownership is at a very low rate for anyone 35 or below and any that do own their own place probably only have a small flat or apartment. Compare this with my father and his who always had some sort of workshop or garage space even from their twenties in which to work on cars or home improvements. They developed the practical skills and this gave them transferable knowledge and confidence and dexterity. Handling tools on a regular basis makes a big difference.

    The younger generation do not have the space, experience, confidence or common sense developed during activities that you or I would see as commonplace. If they develop the curiosity they could well still be daunted by the task to master several aspects of a seemingly alien skill.
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  13. gssixgun

    gssixgun At this point in time...

    Supporting Vendor

    Almost all the same people are on FB every day helping people that ask, and almost the complete staff of SRP is still on SRP doing the same as always on the forum

    Always remember there are three sides to every story...

    I happen to really like TSD so I tend to hang out at all 3 :D plus anyone that doesn't look at other opinions, never learns anything
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  14. Spyder

    Spyder Well-Known Member

    Although without the founder ....
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  15. SevenEighth

    SevenEighth Well-Known Member

    I apologise - I didn't mean to send this off topic or offend anyone about the value of their efforts here or elsewhere. Let me stress again - the community here has been enormously helpful to me - and continues to be.

    There are great materials and help available - just look at the stickies. And I realise there is a lot of activity in a number of places.

    The point is that it might be a little harder to navigate for a newbie than it once was judging by some of the activity from the 2010 timeframe.
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  16. Chuck Naill

    Chuck Naill Well-Known Member

    I've started to reply to your post several times, but was concerned how it might be taken. Let me just say that I had zero experience sharpening razors in late September. What I did that made me immediately successful was to adopt a proven and repeatable method. Since I knew I was not going to spend a lot of money, I ruled out stones immediately. I also had a member reach out, send me a shave ready SR, and help me obtain the films. I have tried to reciprocate to other new SR users. The non self adhesive $30 pack of films will produce a shave ready edge the first time and is repeatable.

    Sure there are other philosophies and other methods. Sure there might be a better way. Sure there a people who have forgotten more than I will ever know. However, my life is not about shaving and sharping. It's fun to learn to use a SR and hone it myself. It's fun to find a $10 razor and do a light restoration. What is more satisfying is helping others with a straight forward way to hone and maintain their edge so they might experience using a SR effectively and affordably.
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019
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