The "what is" and " how to" thread for the Rolls Razor

Discussion in 'Safety Razors' started by gregindallas, Mar 10, 2011.

  1. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    On the topic of honing, how many people are honing outside the case on traditional straight razor stones?

    After a solid progression in grits, I'm finding I get a keener edge on a Rolls blade from a Naniwa 12K than a Zulu Grey. Straights are the opposite, with the Zulu producing a buttery sharp edge.


    Hi,
    Having looked at 3 or 4 YouTube vids and reading several reports of getting an edge using water stones.
    It seems that one of the big issues apart from the actual sharpening grit size is do you use any insulation tape on the blade to get the bevel edge angle ?
    some say1 piece others 2 and still others none, no tape ?
    I wonder what you use, If any ?
    Now that I have graduated from the university of social hearsay I decided on an experiment
    I marked an old blade with a sharpie on the bevel and the heal and ran it over both the in case hone and strop and both times the red marking was either gone or certainly going the same rate.
    Leaving me to think that If I wanted after any out of case sharpening to be able use the case for maintenance then it's no tape, or am I running before I can walk with my thinking
    also with all tapes not being equal in thickness so how do you put a figure on that?
    Also two professional sharpeners said because of the fiddly nature they charge more for sharpening a rolls blade and another non pro said if he charged he would also especially after cutting his fingers on the blade.
    Gra
     
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  2. pisces_0

    pisces_0 Well-Known Member

    I believe @Billyfergie is in the UK and may be able to provide some guidance on honing Rolls blades in your area.
     
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  3. pisces_0

    pisces_0 Well-Known Member

    Paralysis by analysis. No need to make it more complicated than it needs to be.

    One layer of 3M Super 33 tape and I hone away.
     
  4. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    I personally don't use tape on the spine, I remove the guard and hone on lapping film, starting at 40 micron (if the edge is particularly bad) and progressing to 0.5 microns, apply virtually no pressure to the blade, I find that this followed by stropping using the Rolls system strop treated with Dovo red strop paste give a very good edge which give me very close, comfortable shaves, it might be the right or wrong way, but it works for me!
    I've noticed from most, if not all of the Rolls blades I have (over 20) exhibit some signs of spine wear, compared to the one unused example I have and I presume that this wear is a result of honing and stropping in the Rolls case by previous owners, so I again presume that during normal stropping / honing operations the spine contacts the hone or strop, I realise that this observation goes against the usual one that during operation of the Rolls system there is a slight gap between the blade spine and the surface of the hone or strop,

    Steve
     
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  5. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    Hi Steve, Yes I agree, as my marker pen on the spine was rubbing off on normal in case honing / stroping so it must be touching,
    But as you say it's all about what works best for you and keeps you shaving with it. Factors to consider are your in case strop and hone condition and thickness, my latest Viscount I've just picked up on inspection has a hone almost bursting out of its lid, So I took it out and it's a new hone but has a thick removable warning card still attached pushing the hone up and the strop is a cork one and looks to me to be mega thin, perhaps the previous owner was trying to compensate ha ha

    Ok so some tape and some don't.
    What do they say you pay you money and take your chances and I guess it was never an issue before as you just picked up a new blade from rolls.

    I did see one video clip where the guy had long tape on the spine sticking out about 2" either side forming a handle either side he said making it easier to turn the blade over as he had received several cuts! Looked more difficult to me
    Gra
     
  6. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    The very last Viscounts had a cork strop, I have a new old stock one, the boxed razor pouch set with the faux crocodile leather pouch with spare blade and the strop on that is cork,

    Steve
     
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  7. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    I have never shaved with or had anything to do with straight razors, though I have my dads old one somewhere, the rolls is the closest I've ever come.
    The cork strop fitted in the Viscount surprised me, I'm aware of leather and even material strops my father used them but a strop made of cork?
    Does it really make for a good strop? or was using it a possible cost cutting exercise by rolls ?
    Gra
     
  8. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    Thanks for this I will see if I can get hold of him,

    You obviously have the stones to do the job, do you find it easy / ok task to do, easy is not the right word but I guess it's not a total rocket science job?
    Steve_Keyte uses lapping film which is by no means such big a lay out like getting a Naniwa 12k or even a Zulu Grey etc. I ask this as I'm thinking of getting some lapping film and jumping in and having a go myself
    Gra
     
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  9. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    My main reason for going down the lapping route was that for the small number of blades to sharpen and the limited use stones would get, I decided to go down the lapping film route and to be honest I've been happy with the results achieved, as I've said previously I can achieve a very sharp blade with very little effort using the films.

    Steve
     
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  10. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I have Honed Hundreds of Rolls Blades and Other SE Blades & Hundreds & Hundreds of SRS....You USE ONE LAYER of Tape with a Rolls Blade & that Keeps its Comparable with the Rolls Factory Set Up & Rolls System..If You Want One Honed PM Me...The More You Bugger about with them the More You will F them Up...99% of Honing Issues are on the 1 K Bevel Hone...;)

    The Rollls Honing Pad is 12 K...99% of these Blades Need Honed from Scratch..:happy088:

    Billy..:chores016:
     
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  11. pisces_0

    pisces_0 Well-Known Member

    Norton 1K, 4K & 8K, finished on a Naniwa 12K yields me a wicked sharp edge. Not overly complicated, just takes some practice and muscle memory.

    Had a wonderfully smooth shave this morning with one, in fact. :happy088:

    Both statements are spot-on.

    I can easily tell when I've shorted my time on the 1K hone (Rolls or SR). The edge just never comes around, no matter how much time I put into the higher grits. Set that bevel properly.

    And I still haven't discovered that fabled factory-fresh blade that only needs a bit of stropping. All the blades I've brought in have been layered in old soap and crud, requiring a thorough cleaning and bevel-to-finishing hone.

    Once done, though, there's GREAT satisfaction in the shave you get from a restored Rolls.
     
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  12. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    So more really great information guys I really do appreciate it, my knowledge is increasing daily.
    I have to ask this, but once the work has been done the bevil is properly set and all honed up and now the blade is up and running as it should be and used say every day, how long on average would you expect it last before it needs to be out of case re done as above?
    ((Taking into account everyone's beard is different and that all the as required daily stroping and occasional in case honing is being done )) just a rough estimate.
    Gra
     
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  13. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

     
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  14. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    The Original Blades Back in the Day Came Shave Ready from the Factory...They Can ALMOST be Maintained Indefinitely with the Rolls Honing & Stropping Pad when Properly Honed...:happy088:

    Billy..:chores016:
     
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  15. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    PM Me if You Want it Honed...I Will Put a Superb Edge on it...Finished on a 12 K Naniwa Super Stone...After a Naniwa Progression...:happy088:

    Billy..:chores016:
     
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  16. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member


    With luck I have done that
    Gra
     
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  17. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    Ok I've had some time on my hands today and even though It's dangerous...I've been thinking
    These Rolls must be fairly efficient at their job.
    I must say here that I'm not a straight razor user but I've seen SR chaps stropping to and fro on a fairly long piece of leather, but these rolls units have a leather strop about 6" long and when you look at it a load of that is not used in the process.
    Ok so I know you can end up going e click clack crazy :shocked003:stropping on the rolls but the distance of travel where the blade is actually stropping is only about 4"-4.5" per cycle if you are lucky with the right pressure and angle thrown in!!
    To be fair it's such an amazing bit of kit.
    Gra
     
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  18. Billyfergie

    Billyfergie The Scottish Ninja

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Thats Bang On...I Dont Use the Rolls System to Strop My Blade..I Strop it Using the Method Above with Taped Wings on a Flat Strop....I get a Longer Stroke & Lighter...I Hone My Own Rolls Blade to 16 K On My Escher Thuri Natural Stone & its a Far Smoother Shaving Edge...Does Away with the Need to Hone it to 12 K for the Rolls System...:eek:

    If you Want to Strop it Like Me then I Can Finish Youre Blade to 16 K On My Escher Thuri Natural Stone Above...Takes it to Another Level..Trust Me...:rofl:

    Billy...:chores016:.
     
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  19. Jabez 58

    Jabez 58 Member

    I have a question as I own 4 rolls razor Viscounts,
    2 I picked up of e bay UK, 1 Hungerford and 1 South Wales all at different times and over a wide area but on every one of them the S button opens the Hone door and the H opens the Strop? I am I missing something regarding the H&S ?! I would have thought the Chances of all four being altered by previous owners is fairly slim? Or is it ? Any other Viscount owners out there with the same or does anyone know just what the H&S buttons really mean ?
    Gra
     
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  20. Steve_Keyte

    Steve_Keyte Member

    I've checked the eight (!) Viscounts I have and they're all as you describe, my thoughts are that you depress the 'S' button to expose the strop (i.e. the 'S' button releases the hone lid) and likewise, you depress the 'H' button to expose the hone (the 'H' button releases the strop lid).
    It might seem a bit counter intuitive but it makes sense if you think about it,

    Steve
     
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