Dilucot success... sort of

Dovofan

Well-Known Member
Hey everybody.

I just finished my first edge on my coticule, from dull to (pretty) sharp.
After I dulled the razor on a glass jar, I set the bevel with milky slurry, doing halfstrokes and small circles until the razor could shave arm hair at any point on the blade. Then I ended up doing the Dilucot procedure, because the bevel setting stage was already done with tape attached to the spine, in order to prevent unnecesarry hone wear. I used normal x-strokes during the dilution phase, 15 per each set, before diluting some more. In the end I made 50 laps on clean water. Then 60 laps on linen and 60 on leather.
The result? Much better than I expected. I haven`t shaved wih the razor yet, but with my girlfriends` hair (which is pretty thin) I managed to get a HHT 4 on the entire blade, and depending on the holding point of the strand of hair, even HHT 5.
I am very excited right now, it`s my first razor that I`ve done from dull to sharp. Hopefully more and better will come :D

I would like to thank everybody for your great advice, it was really very helpful!

PS: this new emoticon :sleep: is just so funny :lol:

Happy shaving!!

Best regards,
Alex
 

Paul

Well-Known Member
Congratulations on the success. Your HHT results would certainly point towards a delightful shave. I hope it's excellent :)
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
Well done! Sounds like it will shave quite well.

Thanks for posting and kind regards,
Bart.
 

Dovofan

Well-Known Member
Thanks guys! That really means a lot to me coming from you!

Persistent and stubborn as I am (that is something that seems to be running in the family :blink: ), I had to do it all over again, just to see if I could get the same results...

I think my interpretation of the HHT test I made yesterday was a little overestimated, as the shave I got today was not that good. I mean, it was smooth (read waay smoother than any of those crappy DE blades), but the ATG pass was difficult, I had to abandon this step because I was afraid for my skin... the razor just stopped wherever I would try to go ATG... I figured it must have not been that sharp in the first place.

So today: with Ella Fitzgerald in the background, I dulled yesterdays` razor with one downstroke on my porcelain coffee cup. I raised a milky slurry and followed the Dilucot procedure. Actually, raising of the slurry on my stone was a little harder than I would have expected, this La Grosse Jaune releases the garnets very slow. That means that probably yesterday, the slurry wasn`t consistent enough. Safe to say, today I managed to get that milky slurry and started the Dilucot.
I diluted the slurry in 20 sets of 15 halfstrokes per each side of the bevel, after the razor could shave arm hair well at all levels. In the end, I rinsed 3/4 of the coticule, did another 2 sets of 20 halfstrokes per each side, than rinsed the coticule and razor under tap, and then did 30 normal X-strokes, with no pressure.

The result coming from the coticule only wasn`t great, in fact it was a loud violin. Needless to say that you guys were right. After 100 laps on clean leather (because I don`t have a good linen/fabric side on my strop, I`ll have to get another), the HHT stepped up to 4 points. :w00t: That was very exciting, knowing I can repeat the results, and it wasn`t just begginers` luck. However, the very toe and the very heel were a HHT 3, probably because my X-stroke isn`t very consistent yet, resulting in a lack of polish during the final stages (with water only) of the Dilucot. Still, I`m very happy with the result, considering I`ve been at this for less than 1 month.
Hopefully my technique will improve in time?!...:-/

If anybody has any suggestions on how to make my stroke more "uniform" :p, I can`t wait!

Till then, happy shaving! :sleep:

PS. Sorry for the long and boring post!

Best regards,
Alex
 

Paul

Well-Known Member
Perfect practice makes perfect is my advice for a more consistent stroke. Work at doing it right a lot, and the stroke will improve. Congrats on the early successes... keep working :thumbup:
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
Alex,

You're doing great. I always say that this thing is like learning how to ride a bike. Metaphorically, you just drove your first 50 meter without ending in the ditch. That's a great accomplishment. Practice makes perfect.
My best advice is to occasionally reread an articles in the sharpening academy. There will always be details that peak your interests and somehow make more sense than the previous time you read them. It's not easy to get every petty detail right. A edge with a slightly lacking tip and/or heel is quite normal in the beginning. Going back to a very thin slurry is often a remedy. Start the dilution immediately and put your "halfstroking finger" on top of the affected spot.

Another important tip: if you can get the edge to play violin, right off the Coticule, getting it to pop hairs is only a matter of trying various finishing variations.
Personally, when finishing I always do 50-something laps on water as a no-brainer. Then I test with the HHT. Everything less than a "violin" I consider "not quite there", and that requires reaching back into a thin slurry. But if I get the "violin", I know that if I keep at it, I'll eventually get the edge to sever hanging hairs. So I might do 1 rub with the slurry stone, add water and do 30 laps. I check again. Something will have changed, maybe the violin plays louder, maybe some parts of the edge start to catch & pop. Next, I might add 2 sets of halfstrokes on plain water, followed by another 30 X-strokes. HHT again. On the rare occasion the edge is still not quite there, I might get up to get my shaving brush and paint lather on the Coticule before doing another 50 strokes. I check again, with half of the previous hair, that's just lying there. Whatever works. If it shows a promise, I will usually repeat something a second time. Maybe some of these variations only serve the purpose to keep me going. Often I find the edge at the very first HHT, sometimes it takes more perseverance. But I am confident that I can get there, letting go is not an option.

Kind regards,
Bart.
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
Bart said:
Personally, when finishing I always do 50-something laps on water as a no-brainer. Then I test with the HHT. Everything less than a "violin" I consider "not quite there", and that requires reaching back into a thin slurry. But if I get the "violin", I know that if I keep at it, I'll eventually get the edge to sever hanging hairs. So I might do 1 rub with the slurry stone, add water and do 30 laps. I check again. Something will have changed, maybe the violin plays louder, maybe some parts of the edge start to catch & pop. Next, I might add 2 sets of halfstrokes on plain water, followed by another 30 X-strokes. HHT again. On the rare occasion the edge is still not quite there, I might get up to get my shaving brush and paint lather on the Coticule before doing another 50 strokes. I check again, with half of the previous hair, that's just lying there. Whatever works. If it shows a promise, I will usually repeat something a second time. Maybe some of these variations only serve the purpose to keep me going. Often I find the edge at the very first HHT, sometimes it takes more perseverance. But I am confident that I can get there, letting go is not an option.

Kind regards,
Bart.
There is no way that you could know how helpful this information was to me a while back, I don't recall where I first received this advice, whether it was directed at me or someone else (Although I suspect it was the latter)
This was at a time when I was happy with my honing, but had fallen slightly back a little, oh yes that happens, and it happens a lot early on...lol
either way the one "catch line" that I still hear in my head today is "I check again, with half of the previous hair, that's just lying there" everytime I pick up a half cut of hair....lol

Thank you my friend, and I am sorry for the diversion of sorts, I couldnt let such good advice pass by without acknowledgement

Best regards
Ralfson (Dr)
 

Dovofan

Well-Known Member
Thanks for the great advice guys. I`ll be sure to re-read this post and apply the principles next time when I will hone the razor. For now, it seems that a good session of stropping (100 or so laps) on clean leather did the trick, the HHT increased to 4 on the heel and toe as well. I though I`d give it a try to have some feedback andd fell what this HHT4 blade feels round my cheek. So I had just shaved, it was very nice, was able to do an ATG pass without very much effort (still some very little pulling), and the result... well I have to say that it`s probably the best shave I ever had... until now. The edge was indeed very smooth, nothing compared to my shi**y shavette! Bwhahaha :sleep:

I`ll keep you posted on any new experiences with my coticule... hopefully successful ones

Best regards,
Alex
 
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