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Strops and how to use them...

Strops and how to use them...

 What's up, everybody? I'm Brad, and today we're talking strops and how to use them.

I'm really excited for our video today. Before we go over everything you need to know about strops, and even a surprise field trip at the end of the video outside of the studio, let's go over the three example strops that I have here today. This is a three-inch synthetic practice strop. You have your hook on the end, with fabric on the other side. This is good for beginners because they can buy this and learn on it without risking cutting a real leather strop. Remember, instead of buying a practice strop, you can also buy a practice razor that has a blunt edge, and then you can learn on a real leather strop without damaging it as well.

This is a leather strop from Classic Shaving. You have your hook on that end with D rings on the other. This is a double strop which means it has a second nylon strop on the bottom in addition to the leather one. This is a box strop, four 2 inch strops. You have two rough sides of leather. One side of tanned leather for fine stropping and one side of premium leather for finish stropping. This strop also comes with a razor storage which is a very cool feature.

So what is stropping? Stropping polishes the edge of the blade and realigns it at the correct angle for effective shaving. A strop is a necessary purchase if you wish to keep your razor sharp. I cannot stress how important it is to keep your strop tight and not let it bend while stropping. You should strop your razor approximately 40 times before you shave. You can re-strop afterwards if you choose to. Here's a couple things to remember while stropping.

After hanging your strop on the hook, always keep it pulled tight, never let it bend. Always move the razor towards the back of the blade, never the cutting edge. When you reach the end of the strop, roll the blade over the back of the razor and push it back towards the hook. During the whole stropping process, the back of the blade should never leave the belt, always roll it over.

Now, let's take a quick trip outside of the studio to see some high level stropping in action. Notice how the spine of the razor never leaves the strop. When you get to the end of the strop, you roll it over the spine and push away from the cutting edge.

All right, that was pretty fun, right? I had fun. Anyway, last thing I'm going to talk about today are a couple compounds you can add to your strop to help you get even closer to that perfect shave and two tips on strop maintenance.

All right, first two things you should know about, chromium oxide and iron oxide. These are honing compounds that can be used on leather, wood or synthetic strops. They add a very precise abrasive to your strop that helps you get an even more perfect shave. Next thing, you do not want your strop to crack. Don't keep it in a drawer or ever fold it up when not in use. Keep it hanging up I suggest in your closet. Next thing, get yourself a strop conditioner or paste. You can use a clean 100% cotton cloth, take some paste out, apply it to your strop in circular motions covering the whole entire strop. After 15 minutes, take another clean cloth, a different cloth and wipe off the paste. This is going to help you so much in preventing cracks from your leather strop.

All right, that's it for today. I hope you learned something about stropping. I know that I did. Pick up a practice strop and learn on one of these guys before you damage a very, very nice one. Thanks guys, I'll see you next time.

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