what hone to get

tazzbaby

Member
hi guys i have been straight razor shaving for a while now and am looking to get some help on what would be the best stone to get to keep my razor sharp so i dnt have to send it away to get done thanks
 

wdwrx

Well-Known Member
Good morning, and welcome to Coticule.be!:thumbup:

The fact that you've found your way to this quiet little corner of the intertubes tells me you might already know your answer...

There is a common tendancy for guys on the forums (not this one) to recommend starting with synthetics... I say "pshaww!" The only hone you need to maintain and even do light bevel repair to a razor is a coticule. Save your money, and start with a nice 175x40 mm or so (you can even go smaller if money's tight) coti, read up on the Sharpening Academy and I'd bet you could have a shaving razor inside a few hours practice.

Cheers,
-Chris
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tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
First of all welcome to Coticule.be :thumbup:

Ok a simple question with a not so simple answer

I believe it all depends on exactly what you are trying to achieve? are you just looking to touch up regular shaving razors.or do you intend to take things a little further and completely hone your own razors? also have you any desire to actually repair razors e.g. remove damage from edge etc.

In the case of regular touch ups, there are a myriad of hones that are up to the job, high grit synthetics 12000 and up, vintage barbers hones, and of course a lot of dfferent naturals, Eschers, Thuringians, Charnley Forests, are among some of the better known, although they do tend to command high prices, and of course the Belgium Coticule will also do the job very well.

For complete honing IMHO you will need either a progression of increasingly higher grit synthetics, in 1000 through to 12000 and higher grits, the Norton and Shapton series are considered very good, or of course the Coticule can be used with increasingly diluted slurry as well, this will take you from setting the bevel through to a finished edge, and lets not forget the Jnats and various other naturals that can all have a place in a progressive honing method

And for more major work you may benefit from a lower grit rated synthetic as well, the DMT range come in quite low grit ratings although I personally dont like to go lower than 400 grit, from there your 1000 grit synthetic or Coticule with slurry can take over.

Of course this list is far from all inclusive, and many people favour different stones for many different reasons

I hope this helps? and good luck on your journey

Regards
Ralfson (Dr)
 

tazzbaby

Member
hi guys thanks for the info.its just to do touch up and keep them sharp so i dont need to send it to get honed and maintain my edge my self
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
I see, in that case my 2nd paragraph applies, of course I favour the Coticule, but its not the only stone thats up to that job, you may also want to consider that once you have the experience of doing your own touch ups, you migt find that you wish to do a little more.

Regards
Ralfson (Dr)
 

tazzbaby

Member
i have a 12k whet stone i got of ebay not sure the make would this do for keeping my razors sharp and what would be the best number of laps to do
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
A 12k is perfectly capable of maintaining your razors. I suggest you learn how to test the edges you make and then find out for yourself what your particular hone will do. In the learning academy are several wonderful articles about honing techniques and sharpness tests. One thing I found (and everyone is tired of hearing) is that you need to clean the edge right off the stone with water and absorbant cloth/paper and then clean the microscopic edge with a few (5) strops on just about any surface from you jeans to a dedicated linen strop. The sharpness tests then will be accurate. Welcome, Denny
 

tat2Ralfy

Well-Known Member
I have a 12k and to be honest I dont like the shaves off it, my coticule edges are both sharper and smoother, however everyone is a little different, so it might be just the ticket for you.

I would suggest on a slightly dulling razor, you give it 60 light x strokes on water, then strop 60/60 on canvas and clean leather, dont be afraid of doing more strokes on the stone if you have to, will experience you will be able to tell when the edge has maxed out on the stone.

Best Regards
Ralfson (Dr)
 

danjared

Well-Known Member
Do you have pictures of the 12k stone? Someone might recognize it and be able to offer better advice on using it.
 

RicTic

Well-Known Member
tat2Ralfy said:
I have a 12k and to be honest I dont like the shaves off it, my coticule edges are both sharper and smoother, however everyone is a little different, so it might be just the ticket for you.
I started out with Naniwa's including the 12K, but I too prefer the smooth edge off a coticule any day of the week.
The question I have; Is there a higher grit hone capable of giving a smoother shave than a coticule?
 

Paul

Well-Known Member
The best answer to this is get whatever hone you want. The only thing that matters is that you learn how to use it...
 

Smythe

Well-Known Member
Lots of good advice so far...

A Touch-Up... If you simply want to keep your razor sharp... or when it gets a little dull from normal use...

Almost any Coticule, and an average of about 30 or 60 or 100 laps on water or light slurry will get your razor sharp again.

A barber hone will do the same job (give or take a few laps), but you will need to be careful you don't cause a wire edge.

There are other hones out there that will also do the job as mentioned in previous posts... you will look for what they call “finisher”.

You may also Touch-Up your razor on the hone every few shaves (less laps than mentioned above) for example 5 to 10 laps every two weeks, and your razor may never get dull for a loooong time.

When touching-up take your time... there is no rush... don’t press the blade too hard… and make sure the blade is always flat on the hone and ensure all parts of the edge (Heel, Middle and Point) contact the hone during the stroke (you may have to “rock” the blade if you have a curved edge blade).

Hope this helps.
 

mikromicke

Active Member
The first hones I got for my straight razors was a set of Arkansas stones (a fine and a translucent). They were cheap compared to most of the synthetic stones, would last forever and were natural stones. After using them for maybe half a year now I'm going to give a coticule a try. The arkansas stones are capable of putting a mirror polish, sharp edge on your razor but it takes forever. The last time I honed my razor on them I dulled it first and I spend probably 4-5 h of continuous honing to get that razor anywhere close to passing a HHT again. After a couple of stropping passes and more time on the translucent stone the razor now pops hairs easily, probably a 4 on the HHT scale, but the work involved in getting there was just too much for me.
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
mikromicke said:
The first hones I got for my straight razors was a set of Arkansas stones (a fine and a translucent). They were cheap compared to most of the synthetic stones, would last forever and were natural stones. After using them for maybe half a year now I'm going to give a coticule a try. The arkansas stones are capable of putting a mirror polish, sharp edge on your razor but it takes forever. The last time I honed my razor on them I dulled it first and I spend probably 4-5 h of continuous honing to get that razor anywhere close to passing a HHT again. After a couple of stropping passes and more time on the translucent stone the razor now pops hairs easily, probably a 4 on the HHT scale, but the work involved in getting there was just too much for me.
The only Arkansas fine stone I have seems to develop excessive draw. I haven't needed it since I have other stones I prefer, but the extra draw makes me feel like the delicate edge would be "pulled under" during the stroke. I have not really given it a fair chance, but have not had good results with it. I wonder if there is a slurry solution to five hours of honing. Too much for me! YT, Denny
 

Smythe

Well-Known Member
DJKELLY said:
mikromicke said:
The first hones I got for my straight razors was a set of Arkansas stones (a fine and a translucent). They were cheap compared to most of the synthetic stones, would last forever and were natural stones. After using them for maybe half a year now I'm going to give a coticule a try. The arkansas stones are capable of putting a mirror polish, sharp edge on your razor but it takes forever. The last time I honed my razor on them I dulled it first and I spend probably 4-5 h of continuous honing to get that razor anywhere close to passing a HHT again. After a couple of stropping passes and more time on the translucent stone the razor now pops hairs easily, probably a 4 on the HHT scale, but the work involved in getting there was just too much for me.
The only Arkansas fine stone I have seems to develop excessive draw. I haven't needed it since I have other stones I prefer, but the extra draw makes me feel like the delicate edge would be "pulled under" during the stroke. I have not really given it a fair chance, but have not had good results with it. I wonder if there is a slurry solution to five hours of honing. Too much for me! YT, Denny
Get a fine Silicon Carbide "pocket hone" and use it to raise slurry on that Arkansas (hard work, but all that much)...
You may find it works similar to it's Japanese cousin.
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
I am not surprised at your reply, Cedric. Would a diamond plate do the same thing as the silicon carbide, or is the pocket hone now the honing medium ala the Jnats and their slurry stones. I have not used the Japanese naturals. Thanks, Denny
 

Smythe

Well-Known Member
Yes, diamond plate would work… anything with an abrasive harder than the Arkansas to get slurry going. But be aware of issues with Diamond hones and slurry... the nickel plating (the binder) that holds the diamonds in place can be worn away by the slurry... and then the diamonds will simply fall off the hone and into the slurry, so don't over do it... use a course diamond hone as they are less likely to lose diamonds.

Not sure if folks are using SIC pocket hones as slurry stones, but I have been using them for quite some time and they work just fine.
Contrary to popular belief, Silicon Carbide hone will not deposit harmful particles into the slurry… unless you are unlucky enough to have a “soft” SIC stone.
 

mikromicke

Active Member
Interesting idea. I did think about something similar a while back but thought it would be too difficult considering how hard the stones are. Now that I have a coticule to use instead I'm all up for trying at least :)
 

DJKELLY

Well-Known Member
Smythe said:
Yes, diamond plate would work… anything with an abrasive harder than the Arkansas to get slurry going. But be aware of issues with Diamond hones and slurry... the nickel plating (the binder) that holds the diamonds in place can be worn away by the slurry... and then the diamonds will simply fall off the hone and into the slurry, so don't over do it... use a course diamond hone as they are less likely to lose diamonds.

Not sure if folks are using SIC pocket hones as slurry stones, but I have been using them for quite some time and they work just fine.
Contrary to popular belief, Silicon Carbide hone will not deposit harmful particles into the slurry… unless you are unlucky enough to have a “soft” SIC stone.
I actually have the silicone carbide..I know, I know, big surprise. Maybe the stone will now not be useless outside the pistol building shop. Thanks, C. I love this place. YT, Denny
 
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