well, i decided to go ahead and make the leap into straight razor territory with two shaves this weekend.
my razor is a John Primble (Belknap) 1004. the blade is in excellent shape, no nicks or anything.
so i thought... do i sharpen it and risk a cut, or do i leave it unsharpened for practice?
i decided i'd leave it unsharpened. of course, i did strop it before and after each use (i got a sweet antique leather strop in excellent condition).
ok.. so... my first shave (Saturday) was full of trepidation. i was expecting the blade to jump off my hand and cut off my nose. didn't go that way. basically, i managed to shave both sides of my face and my neck from north to south. i did not make a second pass.
it was not a good shave, or even an ok shave, as it left most of my stubble behind. however, no cuts!
ok ... so ... on to today's (Sunday) shave. again, not a great shave, but no blood.
i do find that my fingers tend to hold the razor differently at different times (depending where i am shaving).
i have a few questions (thanks in advance for the info):
1. my plan is to continue with weekend only straight razor shaves for a while. should i sharpen the blade immediately, or should i wait until i am more comfortable?
2. do i have to absolutely hold the razor as indicated: "the index and second fingers on the shank, your thumb under the shank and against the shoulder, the handle raised vertically between your middle and ring fingers, and your ring and pinky fingers resting inside the crescent-shaped tang"??? or can i adjust how i hold the razor as it works best for me?
in other words, is this a technique i nee to learn and perfect because it will make shaving easier in the long run, or can i improvise and do what seems to be working best for me now?
3. i am right handed, and can shave most of my face right handed, but there are difficult spots.
should i switch to left handed use or continue to try and figure out how to do it right-handed only?
thanks in advance!