Straight Razors - Do not use a Pasted Strop!

At ARC, we get a lot of straight razors sent for honing (sharpening) and more comprehensive restoration.

Recently, a relatively new German-made Dovo was sent for honing.  The owner stated in a note that he's been using a pasted Strop to keep the blade sharp, but it wasn't working any longer.

So, what is 'pasted stropping'?  Well, normal stropping is simply using a leather strap or paddle strop to dry and 'stretch' the blade edge before or after shaving.  A Pasted Strop is where an abrasive paste is applied to the surface of the strop in order to actually sharpen the blade edge, in place of professional honing.

Pasted stropping, in our opinion, is not recommended as, over a period of time (not long), the blade will actually start to get thinner in width towards the tip.  This is caused by more pressure being applied nearest the users hand (the tang end of the razor), it's quite impossible to get the pressure even along the blade, using this method.

We've seen extreme examples where a blade is around 5 to 8mm narrower towards the razor's tip, but even with this relatively new blade, it can be seen that the thinning has already started.

This thinning ruins the razor over time and it's just not worth it.  Once professionally honed, a razor should stay sharp for many months, so just use a dry leather strop and then either learn to hone yourself, or send it for professional honing.


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