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heal to toe


Well-Known Member
i use black marker on all my blades to make sure the whole edge is hitting the hone i also observe the ripple of water on my hone in front of the cutting edge. On regular blades i find more often than not the marker can be left on the very toe or heal may be one side not the other this to me seems very common and despite were all ways told to keep the razor flat whilst honing i find i have to slightly roll my stroke as most of us no the rolling x i find 45 degree angle does'nt work for me but the rolling x is exallant but can take some practice to get it right i actualy find it quite an easy stroke to perform. i 'm going to try and get hold of a thin coti from bart as they are ideal for warps and smilys.

i also noticed you often see post people saying i have done 200 passes and my blade just won't get sharp at the heal or toe i nuster have same problem untill i discoverd magic marker.

my question is do any of you guys find the same problems and find your selfs honing with a slight roll more often than not? due to heals or toes just not qiute getting there my hones are always flat.
I always have a bit of a rocking motion in my stroke. Barely detectable when honing perfectly straight edges (but I sure know it's there) and a bit more for smiling edges.

The "45 degree stroke" is something I completely do not understand. I can't think of a single physical reason why it should add anything beneficial to honing, and I have not found that in practice either.

On a smiling edge, I do the "swaying" X- stroke, together with a bit of rocking. This is vey helpful on those old wedge-style razors that often have a really strong curve near the heel and the toe.

During the "half stroke"-stage, I often find myself placing the finger above a part that stays behind the get just a bit more localized pressure on that part. It's often the heel, because he leaves the hone first.

Kind regards,
Good post gary, nice to see a honing question in the err stones and Hones section :thumbup:

Same for me, I use a magic marker, what I do if I cant work the entire edge is use a rolling X stroke, BUT concentrate on the blade working the hone on the last 1/2" of the hone, as if I am using the very edge of the stone, but not so extreme, using the edge I can seem to cover all of the blade, and because I am using say a 1/2" strip I find I can catch the toe at the end of the stroke, and linger a little at the start for the heel, I do my say 30 laps then turn the stone around so I dont over work one side.
If that all makes sense?
Never use the 45 degree unless I am going for it with half strokes and I want the entire edge of the blade to contact the Hone, whilst I do a bit of a frantic scrubbing shuffle!!.... lol I dont see how changing which angle the blade sweeps the hone at could affect the cut? maybe its one of them synthetic (Shudder) stone things?? :scared:
Also I sometimes use a slight finger pressure ala "Sir Bart" and often change from an X stroke to more or less a straight one, almost like stropping in reverse, one thing I am glad of as a fairly new comer is how forgiving Coticules can be, I am often surprised by how hard I seem to have to go at it, (relativly speaking of course) but Razors are after all made of carbon steel or stainless steel and not sugar ;)
Sounds like we all find similar thing when i use the rolling x i naturaly hit the hone at a slightsweeping angle with a slight 45 degree angle but i asked this question before and lynn always recomende 45 degree keeping blade flat but the heal and toe still does'nt touch the hone the heal stays on the hone longer thats it. I find hitting the heal on the hone first with a little pressure makes sure it gets sharp and also keeping elbow up makes it easier.
thank you for replys