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SlowRain
Posts: 27
An update:

I went down to Kaohsiung, in the south of the island, and met up with Tom (aka jendeindustries). He was able to show me first-hand what honing looks like. Not only that, but he gave my stone a good lapping, which it definitely needed. Then Gary gave me a kick in the pants last week, so I decided to give honing another shot. I watched Gary's videos again (guys, we really need more videos!) and went to it.

The most useful techniques I learned from Tom and Gary were to hold the hone in my hand (previously I'd been setting it on the table) and to go fairly lightly (previously I'd been applying too much pressure). I don't really know what I did. I did some half-strokes on slurry; I washed off the slurry, raised another slurry, did some half-strokes and dilutions; I washed off the slurry again and did about 200 x-strokes on water. I stropped it and, lo and behold, it passed the hanging-hair test. Not just passed it, but passed it with flying colors! B) I stropped it a bunch more, and then shaved with it last night. I now know first-hand that passing the hanging-hair test is not the end-all, be-all of honing. :( The razor didn't seem that sharp, and it definitely wasn't smooth. :blush: Nevertheless, I count it as a minor success. Today my face is still a bit itchy and slightly raw, but not too bad. Despite not seeming that sharp, it was kind of average for sharpness. I know I need to do more sharpening on the tip and heel, as the places on my face that I rely on both of those heavily for were either especially raw or else had an above-average amount of whiskers poking through.

So, my next task will be to sharpen up the tip and heel and try to make the whole edge mellower.
2011-11-15 07:25
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Emmanuel Giannoulakis (Emmanuel)
Advisor
From: Greece
Posts: 942
Hi Slow Rain. You don't really need to produce a new slurry during dilucot process. You have to start and finish by the initial slurry adding water from time to time. The slurry will became grey and thinner runing the method.Once you reach the clear water you have to continue half strokes until the edge seems homogeneous.After 50 x strokes on water you have to test the HHT. If surpasses hht2 go to strop.If not ,try on water by half strokes and x strokes. Take your time .More half strokes on water it isn't metal wastage.
Good luck.
Best regards
Emmanuel
Emmanuel Giannoulakis
from Athens Greece
2011-11-15 16:43
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SlowRain
Posts: 27
Thanks, Emmanuel. I had to generate a new slurry as most of it was on the sides of the hone and in my hand. :blush:

I did some more honing last night and shaved this morning. Relatively speaking, the edge was sharper and smoother, but it still wasn't anywhere near mellow. I did mostly x-strokes, which I don't really know why. :confused: I'll try honing again tomorrow night, but I'll focus mainly on half-strokes. The toe has very little sharpness, hardly passing the hanging-hair test, if at all. :-/ I'll pay extra attention to it this time round.
2011-11-16 05:15
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clovis
Posts: 50
As a novice on natural stones, can I ask if there is a problem focussing on x-strokes? Personally I feel more at home with x-strokes than half strokes and don't (yet) have the skill to execute half stokes with any finesse. I practised honing a favourite razor last night on and for the first time got a comfortable shave off my bout (success!) however it was achived on x-strokes.
2011-11-16 11:24
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Emmanuel Giannoulakis (Emmanuel)
Advisor
From: Greece
Posts: 942
My friend ,X strokes is suitable too, personally i could hone a razor using x strokes only running a full dilucot ,but it takes much more time.For a new coticule honer is hard to be sure that the blade touches evenly the hone surface applying x strokes.By half strokes using your index, is much easier to apply the correct pressure and the tangential action.
Best regards
Emmanuel
Emmanuel Giannoulakis
from Athens Greece
2011-11-16 14:03
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clovis
Posts: 50
Thanks for information. It did take 'a while' shall we say but I attributed that the size of the bout which is 40 x 120 (and roughly rectanglar)
2011-11-17 10:46
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SlowRain
Posts: 27
Well, some genuine success this time. I tried half-strokes last week, but my technique just isn't there yet. I couldn't get it to pass the hanging-hair test, no matter what I tried. I went back to x-strokes on water with some pressure, then finishing with very light x-strokes, and the results were much better. The shave was closer and smoother, but still not quite there. Call it a half-ass decent shave. Now I'm going to get one of my Bokers to a similar state before I start playing with my practice razor again.
2011-11-27 11:44