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squeezyjohn

Well-Known Member
I've done lots of practice on razors in the past week just trying to get the muscle memory right - but I've moved on to trying to set a bevel and then finish with both methods - of the two methods, dilucot seems like a nicer thing as it doesn't require tape and from the finishes I have been getting they seem smoother.

Only trouble is - I can only seem to get a good edge on some parts of the blade! Generally the end furthest from the scales doesn't seem to shave at all (about 1cm) and then the rest of the blade is really good. I am really concentrating on getting good contact on the whole length of the blade and it seems to be happening, however I can tell when finishing on water that the edge isn't good at the toe as it just pushes the water along rather than cutting underneath it. I suppose my stone is quite narrow at 3cm and I might need to keep practicing that skill to maintain a good even pressure throughout, but it feels like I'm doing it right.

Another thing - I can't work out this HHT thing at all. My hair on most of my body is really fine and I assume that's harder to get a high score on the HHT. When you talk about thicker hairs, are you talking about the hairs which must not be mentioned? :scared: :blush: - I have been checking on arm hair and that seems to be a good judge of what is going to give a nice shave.

Sorry for all the questions - it's becoming a bit of an obsession!

Cheers

Squeezy
 

jfdupuis

Well-Known Member
I also have very fine hair so I know that if I can get a silent HHT or close to that, then my shave will be very nice. If you can get a violin off the coticule with water then try to strop a few passes on the linen to see if it bumps it up. If that doesn't work then I would go back and do 50 super super light passes on water or on lather then try again. I find that if I get a violin off water then an additional 50 super light passes usually does the trick for me.
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
Yep, those hairs.

You will love a narrow hone one it is mastered. Nothing says you can't just concentrate on the toe area by itself. I would suggest circles as they are a bit easier to do keeping the blade flat on the stone. You can get great results with circles right of the stone as you can with X strokes. Just don't do all that many on one side, maybe five. Once you get it it will just feel right. If hone width is really an issue, you can also angle the blade across the stone and do smaller circles. It really is that easy if your strokes are consistent.

Another technique you might try if you haven't already, is marking the edge, and maybe the spine also, with a "sharpie" to see where you are contacting the edge. It might not be your technique, but a warped blade. Another reason for a narrow hone. If it is warped, you will have to learn to do a rolling X stroke on that part. I do that stroke as a matter of course to form a faint smile on all my edges.

As for the water running up the edge, you might try just the smalled amount of dish soap or a drop of coffee as this reduced surface tension and allows the liquid to run up the edge more uniformly. I know you are getting undercutting in spots, but this will make it easier.

I would also suggest (here we go again) you clean the edge carefully before trying a HHT and also give it 3 or 7 light strops on your jeans or a linen before testing. This cleans the edge and removes any burr that might be present. I use more pressure than most, so this is essential for me.

You are at that stage where the smallest bump in technique will give you perfect results. You are about to get your "aha" moment, I'm sure. Please don't tell Bart I was talking about intermediate stropping. Yours truly, Denny
 

BlacknTan

Well-Known Member
Squeezy... We must be brothers!

I too have had trouble with the HHT, and for the same reasons. I've also looked to other bodily areas, and have posted about it here.
I also have very fine hair... Wisps that the slightest breath will blow off the edge, and my wife's is even a bit finer. I've taken measurements of all this and it can be found in an older post of mine.. I won't bore everyone with it all again.
As with all things, practice and familiarity with your stone(s) and the tests themselves will gradually reveal all the answers to the most esoteric questions we have. Luckily, I have two recalcitrant Setters here, who now run for cover when they perceive me looking to harvest hairs for testing!:O
Lately, I suppose my edges have been becoming a wee bit keener, my tactile usage with my own head hairs on the HHT has improved and the secrets of the world have begun to unfold for me, so I assume I've been doing something right, and no need to harvest hairs from those other places anymore.. Although I sometimes still do just to hear the very satisfying audible "Pop!" from a hair of twice the diameter"

All good things come to those who wait... and practice.

Best of luck...
 

BlueDun

Well-Known Member
DJKELLY said:
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Again somebody who said Jehova. STONE HIM !!! :lol: :lol:

Apart from that Denny has given you some good advise there. If you got a problem zone there's nothing wrong with concentrating on that zone. Put your finger right on that spot and apply gentle pressure.
I know those toes are somtimes hard to come by. I tackle them by doing some extra strokes with just the tip of the blade. If that does not help then I do rolling strokes and lift the blade ever sooo slightly at the end of the strokes.
Keep practicing, you're not that far away!

Cheers
BlueDun
 

RicTic

Well-Known Member
DJKELLY said:
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I do this too, but on the palm of my hand (just below little finger). Blasphemy!!!
Please don't shout at me Bart. :blush:
I know I'm fooling myself with the HHT test, but I only use the intermediate palm strop as an indication to where I'm at with the edge.
If it won't fell the hair straight off the hone I'll give a half dozen passes on my palm, then test again.
If that passes I know I'm not far off. If it fails, I do more half strokes on water to catch up.
I'm never happy till the hair cuts straight from the hone though.
Still looking forward to day that hair falls silently at the first attempt.

@ squeezy I had the same problem getting the toe to match the rest of the edge. Now it's the other way around! :/
It all changed after reading a bit of advice posted on this forum (it may have come from Bart? *unsure)
The idea was to just 'think' about where you want the extra pressure to be while you're doing the strokes.
Worked for me.
 

squeezyjohn

Well-Known Member
DJKELLY said:
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And Bart keeps a little pot of them in his bathroom with paint at one end and neatly trimmed? Each to their own I suppose :rolleyes:

Seriously - thanks for all the help and encouragement. I'm well aware that it's early days and to be honest, with my previous sharpening experience and general cack-handedness I'm amazed at the results this week. It's a testament to this site that one can learn so much at a distance.

Cheers

Squeezy
 

squeezyjohn

Well-Known Member
Actually looking at it my Revisor may have a slight smile which would explain a lot - it's this model:
db_PICT0035.jpg


I will try and bear that in mind
 

pinklather

Well-Known Member
Squeezy, That's a beautiful razor, and answers my yet to be asked question about the condition of the blade/spine. Older blades with several people having honed them, can have uneven edge and SPINE wear that creates problem spots on the edge. I'm not yet skilled with the cotis, so I can't help on the stone related parts of the issue. Technique suggestions have been so good I can't add to them either. I strongly suspect Denny is right - that you're within minutes of breakthrough.

I have similar issues that have led me to pay far less attention to HHT. That may need to change with the cotis. I've had spectacular response from HHT from stones and edges that were not pleasing to shave with, and lousy response to HHT from edges that were a pure joy. What makes me stay open to the role of HHT with the coti is the input from Ralphy, Bart, and others about keen and smooth staying together as the edge progresses. This would make the coti the only stone I have where I would care about HHT. Fine head hair for me is .0018" thick (measured w/ 1" micrometer several times, several hairs. Chest/belly hair is much thicker at .0033. When I used the c12k for finishing. I would check with belly fur first. When it lopped the fine head hair, I thought I was done. Yet the keenness never felt that good on the face. I will return to HHT testing, 'cause I have great respect for the guys that say it's important w/ a coti.
 

BlueDun

Well-Known Member
Gentlemen,
Regarding the respective relevance of the HHT, may I add a link to some thoughts that I had a while ago:
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Cheers
BlueDun
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
squeezyjohn said:
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No I keep a lock of hairs in small box. No end is marked. I simply turn the hair over when I suspect I' holding it at the root.

I don't share Dennis' talent for mockery, so you'll have to do with the boring and awfully longwinded essence:

I check my finished edges right after honing, before any stropping. Dennis checks his after some fabric stropping. I've tried his approach. It makes a difference for me. Only with about half of the razors I hone, my HHT checks out good enough to continue with stropping. In the other half of the cases, I need to do additional finishing work, sometimes that takes 30seconds, occasionally it take me longer than the entire honing so far. I can strop on my jeans, and save me the trouble. Dennis is right: it does help the HHT. The razor will certainly be good to shave. But that isn't good enough for me. I know it will be better when I pass a HHT-3 without any stropping.
Nonetheless, you won't hear me say that Dennis is wrong. Just that he reads the HHT at a different point, and that it calls for a different interpretation of the results.
I don't mind about that, never did. Just let he record show that I would expect higher scores to be satisfied with the HHT-test after 7 laps on jeans than before. But since the hair itself has an influence too, and anyone who wishes to rely on the HHT as a marker for honing success on a Coticule needs to correlate his hair source to his test shaving results, it doesn't matter much whether you follow Dennis approach or mine. As long as you realize there is a difference and don't end up cheating yourself.
As long as Dennis keeps sharing his (otherwise valid) approach, without making the above distinction, I will continue to make it on occasion. Apologies to those who have read it more than once. But we have mostly new members asking these questions.

Kind regards,
Bart
 

squeezyjohn

Well-Known Member
I'm sorry Bart - I didn't mean to come here mocking you. It was where the hair comes from that I was joking about.

I understand your reasoning about the HHT as a good indicator of edge keenness and I appreciate the good science of using a consistent hair source for as fair a test as you can get. My problem was that even though I have had some very very good edges (sorry that should be portion of an edge!) I haven't even been able to get any hair on my body to score HHT1 (except the hairs that should not be mentioned!)

My problem as a beginner is that I don't know whether that is because my edges are not keen enough or my naturally fine hair I am testing with is too fine to ever register on the HHT scale without laser technology. I'm afraid that is probably something you will not be able to help me with!

Cheers

Squeezy
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
squeezyjohn said:
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Try test shaving, for almost a year I used my naturally blond wifes fine hair for the HHT, I rarely got a good HHT before stropping, however I learnt to read my HHT results, and understand how they indicated the shave would be, if I could come off the stone with a loud violin, the shaves after stropping were always great.

As said many times, its important to learn how to correlate your test results with the shave quality they indicate, if you really really cant manage that without resulting to using pubic hair, I suggest a trip to a hair salon or barber, they will look at you like you have a fetish, but you should leave with a good hair sample that you can use to teach yourself the HHT.

Best regards
Ralfson (Dr)
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
squeezyjohn said:
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No no, you don't need to apologize. I don't mind being being teased a bit, I only meant that I'm not good at wise cracks, and wanted to prevent that you would read my very serious reply as me being opposed to Dennis' healthy sense of humor.

squeezyjohn said:
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As a matter of fact, we decided among the associates today, that Gary is going to collect a supply of freshly washed, nice, thick hair that works perfect for the HHT. We will test the hair, describe how it performs at which levels during sharpening, and offer small packages to the members at the price of postage (We're going to put one supply in the US and another in Europe to keep the postage down). People with a perfect hair for the HHT will find this funny, but I believe several members will appreciate the effort.

Kind regards,
Bart
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
On another note, I am not talking about stopping edge refinent when I strop on my jeans. There is usually quite a bit more finishing to do from that point with much lighter pressure just as Bart does. I just like to see empirical evidence of progress toward truly sharp. I also check HHT after the linen for the same kick. There is no real need for that either.

Bart, mockery carries a bit of negative connation and I am sure you took no offense, as certainly none was intended.
Your pal, Denny
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
I think, that - however unlikely - there is still more chance on Ralfson getting his swim pants line done at Garry's barbershop than on Miss Bullocks bikini line. :D
 
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