lather on coticule?

jfdupuis

Well-Known Member
Any of you ever tried putting some lather on your coticule? I know some people use lather on their barber hone to give an even finer finish...I was just wondering if the same principle would apply to coticules!

Cheers,

Shave ON

JF
 

pedalpowersailing

Well-Known Member
I have not done this but I know others have, so you may get other comments

But we are all for experimenting - so why noy try it and see what results you get
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
I tried it but prefer just water, the lather makes my hone too slow for me I and i dont see any advantage to it. the edges I get off just water once properly stropped are bang on 9/10 times
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
Sorry just read your OP properly lol, using lather would indeed suggest a finer finish on the edge, however I think most of us would agree that a properly executed finish on a yellow coticule with water is as fine a finish as you will find, end of. :thumbup:
 

Garry

Member
I have used lather on an old coticule bout many many years ago on my much talked about ( on anthor razor forum ) 1800's 4/8 wedge which I spend literally weeks on bringing it up to shave readiness. I had very little experience back then but I thought it did speed the process up somewhat.( hmmmm !!! )
A little more experinced now , I'd need to go back and play just to see if it was an advantage or another fruitless attempt to try and achive a shave readiness wedge.
I've also touched up a couple of razors on a bbw using lather again a few years ago, however using the bbw and lather was recomened to me by another forum member who said this was the prferred method for a lot of shavers who frequent the German forums ...

Once I manage to find some play time I'll go back and experiment and get some findings posted up once agian. it's jogged my curiosity again .
Cheers Garry
 

niftyshaving

New Member
Bart said:
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Cheers,
Bart.
Good article. One thing I have noticed on my coticule when
honing with water only is that with the smallest touch of shaving soap
the swarf seems to lift and wash off. I have never applied 'lather'
only a slightly soapy finger tip. It does change the surface tension.
 

mitchshrader

Well-Known Member
I'll take the mildest of exceptions to the statement that a yellow coticule and water produces the finest edge. It may be USUALLY the case, but if you use top shelf Japanese stones you're likely to modify the opinion. They happen to be more expensive and less agressive, and I've not seen anyone using them specifically for razors..but artisan quality knives that are hardened to Rc 65 *can* be sharpened to 'hairsplitting' sharp. Actually splitting hairs, to show off the edge..

I think that which stone produces the finest edge would depend on the particular stones being compared. In my collection it's a Takashima Karasu (olive stone with black streaks), VERY hard, IMO 10K-12K grit and useful for not much but mirror polishing and ultimate edge refinement. There's no good reason to strop after using it..

And for the record, I strongly prefer Belgians (BBW n' coticules both) for their reliable speed of sharpening, and very reasonable prices. Mirror polishing isn't impossible at 8000ish grit, especially if you have a light hand. Using a finer grit stone with less abrasive components makes it SIMPLE to acquire a mirror edge by TAKING longer. As in, 2-3x as long for similar results, and maybe 5x as long for noticeable improvements. It's difficult for someone used to belgians to make the transition to japanese strictly because of the lower agressiveness, it seems like it takes a LONG time to get results.
 

Paul

Well-Known Member
I've said it before, and I'll say it again here. My coticule edges are as good as anything that I've ever tried including Japanese Natural stones. For the record, I've never received a razor that was as good as what I get at home, and only one has ever come close... If it gets any better than these edges, it's by such a slight degree that my face will likely not be able to tell the difference.
 

Bart

Well-Known Member
mitchshrader said:
I'll take the mildest of exceptions to the statement that a yellow coticule and water produces the finest edge. It may be USUALLY the case, but if you use top shelf Japanese stones you're likely to modify the opinion.
I have used "top shelf" japanese hones. In fact. I own one of the Nakayama quarry. The don't leave anything desired for sharpness. The same counts for a well honed Coticule edge. What one likes best for shaving is a matter of preference, as much (or more) defined by the inherent qualities of the razor than the differences between both types of natural hones.
mitchshrader said:
They happen to be more expensive and less agressive, and I've not seen anyone using them specifically for razors..
Japanese natural hones are a well know and much debated topic among straight razor aficionados. We have a few threads about them, but you should be able to find much more on the major shaving forums.
mitchshrader said:
but artisan quality knives that are hardened to Rc 65 *can* be sharpened to 'hairsplitting' sharp. Actually splitting hairs, to show off the edge..
Splitting a hair with an edge is one of the possible outcomes
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, discussed in the linked article. You'll notice that it rates 2 on a scale of 5 steps of increasing sharpness.
mitchshrader said:
I think that which stone produces the finest edge would depend on the particular stones being compared. In my collection it's a Takashima Karasu (olive stone with black streaks), VERY hard, IMO 10K-12K grit and useful for not much but mirror polishing and ultimate edge refinement. There's no good reason to strop after using it..
I believe you would reconsider that statement about the need for stropping if you would use your honed edges for shaving your beard. I'm not saying this to claim that shaving with a self honed edge entitles to make more claims about sharpening than using other sharpened tools. But shaving does reveal the properties of an edge clearer than any other use, because the assessment is done by feeling the action at the fingertips that hold the razor, the facial skin in contact with the very edge, and the nerves at the hair roots of the whiskers being severed.
I've honed razors on a Naniwa Chosera 10K, on different Nakayma's, on 3M lapping film up to 0.3 micron, and on Coticules. They all stepped at least 2 points up on the HHT-score, after additional stropping on clean leather. I haven't shaved often with an unstropped edge, but enough to be sure the differences would be significant coming off all the aforementioned hones.

Please not that these kind of performance issues relate to shaving. For carving wood, I only stop edges when I use my Tormek sharpening machine, that's equipped with a leather wheel, dressed with diamond compound. It finishes the edge left by its 600 grit Aluminium Oxide wheel. Tools comming off a Coticule or BBW, I never strop at all, as I feel the effect wears off and falls back to the pre-stropping level, after making one or two cuts. (That's not so for shaving).

It's hard translating general sharpening experience to straight razor honing. I had nearly 20 years of sharpening woodworking tools experience when I started honing straight razors. I though it would be easy for me, but that turned out a big mistake.:blush:

I am all for supporting all sharpening disciplines on this forum, but we must be careful not to mix up too many truths of one discipline with the other.

I hope that doesn't come across as overly patronizing, as I'm thrilled to finally see an experienced tool sharpener posting in our cozy Coticule corner. Maybe we should open a separate "Tool sharpening" section in this forum.

Best regards,
Bart.
 

mitchshrader

Well-Known Member
I appreciate and agree entirely that my understanding of straight razor sharpening is nil, nada, not yet. ;) And I would agree again that what works for a knife isn't at all the same thing as what works for an edge applied to ones face. Different intentions and yes indeed that strop is a requirement to remove loose metal and align the edge precisely. Just isn't of any use on a 12" blade, or even a boning knife.

Sharp is a moving target, and besides a microtome, I'm fairly sure razors get farther into sharp territory than any knife. I'm hoping to acquire some tidbits of understanding that I presently lack, so don't be shocked if I reveal my ignorance frequently.

Far as the original question, I'm the wrong guy as previously stated, except for the fact I use a thin dilution of dishwashing soap on all stones. Probably 10-1 or thereabouts, with the exception of small burnishing stones that are used dry. BBW's, Coticules, Finnish, Arkansas, or various Japanese, I've not found any reason to do otherwise. It gives some of the lubricating effect of a slurry from the beginning and in many cases eliminates using the nagura. If it's too viscous, thin it a bit, not difficult. I've gotten much more utility from lesser grit stones since I started, and don't know if it's helping any on the top shelf stones or not. I think it's at least consistent with my habits, so it's easier for me, but objectively? eh..
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
Someone told me that a razors edge is the sharpest blade known to man, and after having inadvertently touched the tip of my nose with mine last night, took 3 goes with the styptic and firm pressure to stem the flow, boy that stung!!.... I think they might be correct. hahaha ouch!
 
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