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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm retired. I shave every 8 or 10 days???

It clogs those double blade razors up real quick. A couple short strokes and they stop shaving till you get the hairs out of the razor. Aggravating as can be.

Anyway, I bought an old Boker straight razor off e-bay. It came in today. I thought about a new one, but my dad always carried Boker pocket knives and he said the best one were made in Germany and had the word "Solingen" on them. That's what's on the blade of this razor.

I cleaned it up real good. It was sharp enough as it came, to shave the hair right off my arm so I decided to lather up and try to shave my face.

Not so easy. The good news is I got done without shedding a drop of blood (surprised me, I'll tell you that.)

I'm struggling with it (first time) to figure out how to hold it in my hand, what angle to hold the blade at on my face/chin/neck, and how to get places on my face (in front of my ears, under my chin back near/under my ears) that cause my hand to be in the way of seeing the blade placement and angle.

Part of the way through it seemed like the shaving cream was drying up so I washed it off and soaped up but that didn't really work to well either. I washed the soap off and used some more shaving cream and got done.

Splashed some after shave on my face (very little to no burning sensation) and noticed my face isn't real smooth like it would be with the double bladed razor - then I realized I'd shaved with the hair growth/angle instead of against it. I did that because I figured I was less likely to cut myself doing it that way.

I'm not sure if I can sharpen it with my Lansky knife sharpening kit or not. Gotta go dig it out of the garage/bench and see.

Anyone else shave with a straight razor, even if just for fun, now and then?
 

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I do. I would suggest having it professionally done so you can see how a sharp edge is supposed to feel. Then use a strop. There's YouTube videos you can watch on how to do it. I got tired of stropping so I went on Amazon and picked up a Parker straight razor that used disposable blades. It's much easier. Next time you shave wet your face and soap only 1 side and shave.
 

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Ok I will give you the skinny on a straight razor...As per your Father he is correct that the best razors were made in Germany and also England...Wade and Butcher english razors are most likely the best in the world...Watch ebay for them. As for sharpening it is really a intricate process and I dont know if I can type it out for you..Give me a call at 479-841-9191 and I can guide you through the process and dispel some razor myths...By the way a strop does not sharpen the razor, It has two sides one that is rough to take away the burrs after sharpening and the leather side is for pulling the sharp edge back out straight after it has been used.. When you shave the thin sharpened edge will actually fold over making one think the razor is dull when in actuality its not..You need to use the leather to pull it back out and it will cut again.Eventually after all the back and forth folding the sharp edge will break off and need resharpened...Please feel free to call me and I will walk you through all you need to know..And you do not want to sharpen it on a regular stone.
 

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With ever ones help on here I learned to shave with a straight razor. What I found out was I don't see well enough without my glasses on to use the razor properly so to keep from cutting my throat I've gone back to the double blades. I know, I wimped out...USN4
 

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Shave after taking a shower. It'll soften whiskers up quite a bit. The razor probably needs to be honed (they are generally not ready to go out of the box), and then it should be stropped prior to each use.

Shave w/ the grain. Use 2 hands--one to pull skin up and tight, and the other to move the razor. Don't sweat the angle too much--it really doesn't matter. You'll find if you lead with the toe or the heel, it'll go smoother (i.e. don't pull the blade at a 90deg to your face--something a little bit off of square works best).

Don't worry about doing a fantastic job while you're getting the hang of it. It takes a little time. When you get better, you can re-lather and do a second pass across the grain. And if you really want to go to town, do a third pass against the grain (I never bother w/ 3rd).
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeah, I remember (a long time ago) dad telling me to wash first with good hot soapy water to get the wiskers softened up a bit. I didn't really do that, just wiped a hot wet wash cloth around my face. I'll try to remember to do the shower first next time.

While I've not done it with the razor, I've done an edge roll over test with toilet paper on my pocket knives during the sharpening work. If I've got a bit of a rolled over edge it'll pull fibers out of the toilet paper.

I did my best to move the razor straight/level across my face/neck/chin. I figured that was the best way to NOT cut myself. It worked, or I got lucky, but shaving was not "smooth". I'll try angling the blade next time, while keeping the movement straight.

I'll have to find/buy a good leather strop. There may be one at home. I remember one hanging off the clothes hook on the inside of the bathroom door at grandma's house when I was little. I don't think anyone had used it in years (grandpa used those razors that clamped the bladed into the head by turning the end of the handle).

Just something I wanted to try since shaving with a double bladed razor is such a pain with the longer hairs plugging it up so quickly.

Thanks for the info so far. I'll see how it goes.
 
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