Just got my first straight

Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:52 am

Hi Gents (and maybe Ladies too?)

I just got my first straight Razor! Got it for R195 on BoB. It's going to be a bit of a restoration project.

It is a Kropp (German-ground, British-made). Here is the listing http://www.bidorbuy.co.za/item/251567555/Kropp_cut_throat_razor_Loose_pieces.html.

The rust actually does not look half as bad as in the pictures. And the edge is still very keen. I was able to slice through paper with barely any feedback. Didn't touch the hairs on my hand, though. Got a bit of razor burn hahahaha

However, I was not expecting the tang to be so light. (what does one call the metal part in its entirety?) I mean seriously light! Like a few grams (I would estimate under 10g. No scale to check.). Is this normal?

Will document restoration project when it begins!
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:57 am

Also, I see cleaning compounds mentioned a lot with restoration. Supposedly less invasive than using equipment/sandpaper. Anyone know if Brasso would be OK to start with?

Thereafter some fine grit sandpaper and I will try some polishing compound and my dremel polishing bits for the more stubborn stuff.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby RiverValleyTrading » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:03 pm

Hi there Tarn,

That's an intersting project you have begun there. The best perosn to speak to ShaveHavenSA. he will be able to steer you in the right direction.

The blade width does seem fairly narrow, I think it has lost a bit of size over years of honing and use. Let us know how it goes, and be careful with the edge.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby Thug » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:07 pm

Congratulations on your addition.

The best way to remove rust and tarnish is through wet/dry sanding and polishing.



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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 12:12 pm

Thanks RVT and Thug for the feedback.

Interestingly I see very little wear on the blade. Although this is the first straight I have ever handled. But I would expect to see some abrasion as has been shown in other pictures. On this blade, besides rust and discoloration, the metal is still perfect.

I will take some good before pics when I get home. Then start working towards the after.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby BLES » Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:17 pm

Congrats on your first straight. :clap:

I'm no expert on the subject but I would rather have spent my R195 on something like this if I were into straights....

http://www.bidorbuy.co.za/item/257730810/Kropp_cut_throat_razor_Small_chip_on_blade.html

None the less, nice December holiday project to tackle. Enjoy. ;)
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:35 pm

BLES wrote:Congrats on your first straight. :clap:

I'm no expert on the subject but I would rather have spent my R195 on something like this if I were into straights....

http://www.bidorbuy.co.za/item/257730810/Kropp_cut_throat_razor_Small_chip_on_blade.html

None the less, nice December holiday project to tackle. Enjoy. ;)


That's practically the same blade. Although a bit older as far as I understand. Both were ground in Hamburg. But mine has Made in Sheffield stamped on it as well (supposedly this was some law that required it. Circa 1897.).

My blade has no chips at all. I rushed home on my lunch break and it cleaned up goooooood. Went from 400 grit to 1000 grit paper. Gonna get some 1200 for that final polish. There is some mottling on the metal but it is smooth. No pitting (if I have the right idea of what a pit is) as it was only a little surface rust.

I almost think this thing was never used. The metal is perfectly shiny and unabraded where the rust was not visible.

Gave it a bit of a hone on a whetstone I had lying around and ran it over my leather belt a few times and I was able to make a dent in some stubble! Now just to figure out the truly correct way of honing and stropping and I think I have a goodie on my hands.

Also just have to repin and fix the one scale. Already have an Idea what I'm gonna do.

So ya. More of a "let's see if /I can do this/this works" exercise. But turning out for the best. :)
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby deepsouth » Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:39 pm

There's a 12 part YouTube video on straight restoration, very informative! I use autosol to polish, but didn't try with my project, straight to 400grit wet hand sanding... Am there still though, need to go 600,800,1000 and then greaseless compounds on the Dremel (heat is a thing)

New scales and only then bevel / hone / strop shave. Long term project, I already have a second one to tackle :-)

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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 2:46 pm

deepsouth wrote:There's a 12 part YouTube video on straight restoration, very informative! I use autosol to polish, but didn't try with my project, straight to 400grit wet hand sanding... Am there still though, need to go 600,800,1000 and then greaseless compounds on the Dremel (heat is a thing)

New scales and only then bevel / hone / strop shave. Long term project, I already have a second one to tackle :-)

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Will check it out! thanks! Wait. Is water paper supposed to be wetted before use? I figured that was just a name. I had been using it dry hahaha.

But this stuff was so powdery I could probably have polished it off with a cloth and some elbow grease. All in all took me 5 mins to get it shiny again.

Minor abrasion from the paper. But sure I can polish that out. Will look up that autosol maybe. Did find out that brasso is not recommended.

I think this could be a fun hobby. Even profitable maybe. But I got this one coz Kropp is supposedly really good. And I wanted a straight. And it was cheap. Not really looking to make bucks. Although maybe if my new obsession funded itself... :thumbup:
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Wed Dec 07, 2016 3:06 pm

deepsouth wrote:There's a 12 part YouTube video on straight restoration, very informative! I use autosol to polish, but didn't try with my project, straight to 400grit wet hand sanding... Am there still though, need to go 600,800,1000 and then greaseless compounds on the Dremel (heat is a thing)

New scales and only then bevel / hone / strop shave. Long term project, I already have a second one to tackle :-)

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What dremel do you have btw? I had a 3000 but got stolen shortly after I bought it. Loved that thing. Still have all the fittings though. So considering getting another one.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby deepsouth » Wed Dec 07, 2016 5:41 pm

The 3000 here, was going get the 4200, but for what I use it for its fine.

I actually sand inside a tub of water, no mess and enough lubricant. I picked up the compounds from builders tool craft I think, just be sure to check the grit / color assignment. A glass of water to periodically cool the steel is recommended.

Those sanding marks buff out easily. I have access to a Laser cutter for the scales, pins, washers and copper rod from a hobby shop.

Sharpening is a whole new ball game too.

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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby JHBBlade » Thu Dec 08, 2016 8:08 pm

Aha!
Another straight shaver is born!

Good luck with your project.

Don't be disheartened if at first you don't succeed. I've learnt with one or two blades I've worked on that if a blade has a problem it may take a LOT of work to fix. The steel is hard.

For example I've just aquired a Bengal blade with a small chip. It is a small chip, say 1mm, but I tell you what it's going to take some serious time to hone it back to a clean edge!

If you do use power tools keep a wet cloth on the back of the blade to avoid building up heat that may temper the steel into softness. I'd guess anything over 120C is too hot.

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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Fri Dec 09, 2016 9:27 am

JHBBlade wrote:Aha!
Another straight shaver is born!

Good luck with your project.

Don't be disheartened if at first you don't succeed. I've learnt with one or two blades I've worked on that if a blade has a problem it may take a LOT of work to fix. The steel is hard.

For example I've just aquired a Bengal blade with a small chip. It is a small chip, say 1mm, but I tell you what it's going to take some serious time to hone it back to a clean edge!

If you do use power tools keep a wet cloth on the back of the blade to avoid building up heat that may temper the steel into softness. I'd guess anything over 120C is too hot.

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Thank you for the tips! Actually, this one has been a real luck. I have managed to get a really good shine on this one. Absolutely no pitting or chips. There is some slight discoloration blooming where the rust sat. But it is minor.

Other than the few scratches imparted by my restoration efforts - there is no hone wear or even wear of any kind on this blade. I almost wonder if it was merely used for intimidation as the tang is worn a little from much opening and closing. So maybe it belonged to a gangster, who never shaved. LOL

Here are some before and after pics. http://imgur.com/a/Ef4rZ Didn't take enough before pics. Was too excited to get started haha.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby thetarn » Fri Dec 09, 2016 9:31 am

I tried 'honing' on a whetstone I have. No idea what the grit is. But works well enough for my kitchen knives. I then also used my leather belt, with and without some grinding compound.

Managed to get the blade feeling somewhat dangerous. It can begrudgingly scrape some stubble off. But is not pleasant! Nowhere near shave ready. Think I may need to send it away for that.
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby deepsouth » Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:45 am

Looking good !

Pitting is if the rust sits deep in the steel, you can do bit of sanding to get it out, but the metal will likely have a pock mark where the rust used to be. Technically it can be removed, but you'd lose some steel to get the blade even.
Take a peek here (thank JHBBlade for the find https://scienceofsharp.wordpress.com )
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Re: Just got my first straight

Postby RiverValleyTrading » Fri Dec 09, 2016 11:32 am

Nice work there Tarn. Looking shiny! :thumbup: :drool:
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