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Thread: Wax on, wax off?!?

  1. #1
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    Question Wax on, wax off?!?

    OK, I have been experimenting with different honing strokes on a test razor (solingen made) and have found that I get the best results with a circular motion on my final pass on the Norton 8K. Very light, very loose circles, approx. 20 circles per side.

    Granted I haven't been working with straight razors for very long, but I have worked in a tool & die shop for years, so I know my way around hardened steel and super tight tolerances.

    I looked at the edges under 30x magnification and see no chips, and after stropping with a 1-2 micron pasted linen strop the "fin" looks good: smooth n' shiny. I have shaved with it a few times and the edge seems to be doing fine.

    Everywhere I look, people recommend linear strokes when honing, and I was wondering if anybody else has had success with circular passes on the final edge polishing. If not, why not?

  2. #2

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    Usually circular strokes are used on 1K and 4K hones to get nicks out of the edge. For final polishing the circular stroke would be similar to backhoning and would be undoing the work you have done. Thats why overhoned edges are backhoned. However like everything else if you have come up with your own technique and it works for you and your not having problems with uneven or excessive spine wear or uneven bevels then its correct for you.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thebigspendur View Post
    Usually circular strokes are used on 1K and 4K hones to get nicks out of the edge. For final polishing the circular stroke would be similar to backhoning and would be undoing the work you have done. Thats why overhoned edges are backhoned. However like everything else if you have come up with your own technique and it works for you and your not having problems with uneven or excessive spine wear or uneven bevels then its correct for you.
    +1, with the sole exception of japanese straights which I find finish well by using a kind of light rubbing motion for all but the last 10 strokes or so.

  4. #4
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    It is an interesting concept. Might try it and see for myself. Kind of like the newspaper strop, don't knock it until you have tried it.

    Glen
    "...never doubt that a small group of thoughtful people can make a difference, in fact it is the only thing that ever has."

    - Margaret Mead

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thebigspendur View Post
    Usually circular strokes are used on 1K and 4K hones to get nicks out of the edge. For final polishing the circular stroke would be similar to backhoning and would be undoing the work you have done. Thats why overhoned edges are backhoned. However like everything else if you have come up with your own technique and it works for you and your not having problems with uneven or excessive spine wear or uneven bevels then its correct for you.
    I must confess, the concept of "backhoning" doesn't make sense to me. I don't see how that motion could remove the final edge. If anything it would be less destructive than pushing edge first across the abrasive surface of the stone.
    I'm not being argumentative, I just seems odd. I will GIS and see what I can come up with.

  6. #6
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    Start here: http://www.mse.iastate.edu/fileadmin...nifeShExps.pdf for a good introduction to some of the science of edge formation. Also, Leonard Lee's book is an excellent resource.

    Joe
    Death. Inevitable. If death is inevitable, what is left? Style, only style.

  7. #7
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    Well shut my mouth! I see (or rather don't) where I went awry. Sure at approx 30x magnification the edge looks fine. That's were I got into trouble.
    With extensive searching, and that fantastic SEM article that JoePerri posted convinced me that backhoning is pure evil!
    I may have experience with what I had considered tight tolerances:
    on the order of +/- 0.0001 inches

    but with straights, I am really dealing with tolerances
    on the order of +/- 0.000005.

    For perspective that is approx. the diameter of a human red blood cell, give or take a little.

    Thanks for the info, now I can get really excited about honing. AND NO MORE CIRCULAR FINISHING PASSES!
    Last edited by joke1176; 02-21-2008 at 06:11 AM.

  8. #8
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    Thank God!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by AFDavis11 View Post
    Thank God!
    Everybody is a comedian

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