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Thread: Shaving with straight razor?? Newbie Help

  1. #1

    Shaving with straight razor?? Newbie Help

    Hi

    I think I want to try how to shave with a straight razor, but need some help.

    First off: what kind of equipment do I need?
    Im on a budget here. Where do I buy it? Ebay?

    Does anyone have links to videos how to get started?

  2. #2
    i'm kind of in the same boat... want to get a good basic setup... would love to hear from some of you guys.

    (thanks oivind for starting this thread)

  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by oivind_dahle View Post
    Hi

    I think I want to try how to shave with a straight razor, but need some help.

    First off: what kind of equipment do I need?
    Im on a budget here. Where do I buy it? Ebay?

    Does anyone have links to videos how to get started?
    You must be one hairy lesbain!

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    I absolutely love it. Just started a few weeks ago.

    I have two razors. One from "Straight Razor Design". A nice starter set but pricier, nice razors.

    The other razor I have is from Larry at whippeddog. com: pick up a "sight unseen razor and strop" for 48 bucks and add 10 for another strop because you'll probably nick the first one.

    The razor from Larry will be shave ready and it'll be decent quality.

    Next step is to go to local pharmacy and get a boar brush (omega) and (proraso) soap for about 20 dollars. (there are plenty other soaps and brushes but these are good learners).

    Only other thing to do is order the art of straight razor shaving by Lynn Abrams. (it can be ordered from "Straight Razor Design").

    Total Cost:

    Sight Unseen: 48
    Extra Strop: 10
    Brush and Soap: 20
    DVD: 20

    About 100 dollars for a decent start up kit!

    Edit: Another thing that is recommended is to have at least a two razor rotation when you're learning. I'm sure most of you will learn to hone your own razor -- but until you can actually get a razor shave ready, you'll want another one to shave with... there will be less blood that way .

  5. #5
    Twistington's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kalaeb View Post
    You must be one hairy lesbain!
    Can't you see "his" avatar?


    And for the record : http://www.sadanduseless.com/2011/11/beards/
    [FONT="Microsoft Sans Serif"][I]-"we're gonna make gluten free lasagna"[/I][/FONT]

  6. #6
    WillC's Avatar
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    I've been shaving with nothing else but a Straight for a year or so now. Your off to a good start as you've got lots of hones, (certainly Jon) strops etc. My advice would be to get a good old well known good shaving razor which has been made shave ready, or at the very least has been in recent service, with as even hone wear as possible. I bought several old razors and a brand new Stolligen, The New one is virtually impossible to get a smooth shave with, despite being more than appropriately sharp. Start with something either 5/8 or 6/8, rounded end, flat and easy to hone and go from there. I have since developed a taste for smiling wedge shaped razors, but there is more of a learning curve to getting a smooth shave and honing them.
    Ebay is ok if your on a budget, but look in the classifieds of SRP and getting something tried and tested would be good.
    My best shaving Razors are my 2 Spikusons, not popular for some reason, but mine are just so reliably good and hold the best edge.
    My Kropp, although the bevel will never be too even, its a great shave,
    Gong , (stolligen) Good reliable razor
    My favoirates are my pair of smiling Wedge James Johnsons in cast sheffield steel, they hold the best edge of any Sheffield Raror i've tried and are a pleasure to use, if a bit of a learning curve with a heavy Razor.
    I've made one too, and it shaves pretty good, but its still a working progress Atm.
    Have Fun, its a great way to give yourself some male pampering and still feel manly.

  7. #7
    I think most addicts here will have plenty of stuff needed to shave their face. If you can sharpen a knife to to that absurd, hair popping sharp, and it'll keep that edge, it'll shave. The amazing thing is just how destructive on an edge shaving a face is. I used to shave with my pocket knife(154cm) and it would get noticeably duller by the time I got to my upper lip.

    I am lucky that my father has a nice set of straights he never uses, and I am currently refurbing them. Just me an a pile of C.V. Heljestrands, a Double Duck, and 2 Fritz Bracht Dovos. StraightRazorPlace is a great forum(period) but is a wealth of well-organized information put together by obsessives just like us.

  8. #8
    I would not go to e-bay for a first timer with razors.
    just grab a basic Dovo set up from SRD and then go from there.

    WARNING
    razors are extremely addictive, people develop huge acquisition disorders for razors, strops, stones, brushes, creams/soaps, aftershaves.

    Gear resource for the information is
    http://straightrazorplace.com/forum.php

  9. #9
    as bad as it sounds i would not get one on the cheap from ebay
    at the least get one that was rehabed

    and yes while you have the hones there is a bit diffreent way about making a razor truley ready to shave

    one more thing on at least one razor i have seen "lather well shave well " these are good words to heed as prep can make all the differeence in how smooth the shave goes

    as far as soap i like mamabear and at around 10$ a tub that would take you over a year of daily use to use up

  10. #10
    Senior Member

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    Quote Originally Posted by oivind_dahle View Post
    Hi

    I think I want to try how to shave with a straight razor, but need some help.

    First off: what kind of equipment do I need?
    Im on a budget here. Where do I buy it? Ebay?

    Does anyone have links to videos how to get started?
    Quote Originally Posted by JBroida View Post
    i'm kind of in the same boat... want to get a good basic setup... would love to hear from some of you guys.

    (thanks oivind for starting this thread)
    I've been shaving with a straight since July, so I'm not the most experienced guy here. If I make a misstatement, I invite any of the forum members with more experience to jump in (DwarvenChef, mainaman and Jim, just to name three).

    First, you need what is termed a "shave ready" razor, one that has been honed by someone with excellent skills. Most razors don't come from the factory with a "shave ready" edge. This removes one variable from your learning experience. It also gives you a reference for when your razor starts needing honing several weeks down the line. If you are counting pennies, then a "vintage" razor from Larry of Whipped Dog is a good idea. If you'd rather a new razor, then an entry level Dovo from The Superior Shave, Classic Shaving or Straight Razor Designs is what you're looking for. I'd recommend a round point to start with, as it is more "newbie friendly". A sharp spike point can be hard to keep track of while you are learning and may lead to a nick or cut. Please do not buy your first razor from eBay. I can guarantee you that it will not be "shave ready".

    http://whippeddog.com/
    http://thesuperiorshave.com/
    http://www.classicshaving.com/Home.html
    http://www.straightrazordesigns.com/

    Second, you need a brush and shaving cream or soap. Brushes are made from badger hair, boar bristle or synthetic bristles. Pick any one you like. Badger and synthetic brushes don't require any break in period, while a boar brush will soften over a period of weeks. No need to spend more than $20 - 25 on a brush to start out. Soaps and creams will be according to your preference in fragrance. Proraso is a good cream to start with if you like menthol. Cella is good if you like an almond fragrance. I like Speick, a German brand that has a lavender scent. Not much of the fragrance will stay on your face after you rinse, it just adds to the sensory experience of shaving.

    Third, you need a strop. Most of the strops made for razors are hanging strops, but paddle strops are also available. A 2" or 2.5" wide hanging strop is considered "standard", but a 3" strop is nice because the entire edge of the razor fits on the strop surface and you need not be concerned with moving the razor during the stropping stroke to hit the entire edge. If you have an unloaded leather strop from Dave, it can be pressed into service for razors. Stefan (mainaman) has a great thread on SRP about making paddle strops:

    http://straightrazorplace.com/worksh...-tutorial.html

    Razor, brush, soap/cream and strop. That's all you need to get started.

    Øivind, since you are not in the US, I'd suggest that you take a look at The Superior Shave for your equipment. Jarrod is a shaving enthusiast and reminds me a lot of Jon and JKI. His international shipping charges are clearly marked. I've bought a bunch of stuff from him and never had a problem.

    http://thesuperiorshave.com/

    Jon, since you're in California, you have the opportunity to visit a "brick and mortar" store like Classic Shaving in Palm Springs (http://www.classicshaving.com/themensroom.html).

    I'd suggest that you "lurk" at Badger & Blade and Straight Razor Place to get much more information.

    http://www.badgerandblade.com/
    http://straightrazorplace.com/content/
    “I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.”

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