Stropping, introduction

Stropping occurs at exact the same angle as honing. Stropping serves to polish the edge and to align the edge microserrations. After weeks to months, stropping will not give perfect results any more. This is the moment for a few strokes on the hone. Stropping should be done before shaving, as was explained earlier.

The hangings strop must be kept under tension. If it sags, the effective stropping angle increases, and the edge will blunt.

The technique is in the opposite direction than honing: always back leading, in order not to cut the strop. The razor must be kept flat on the leather, the pressure must be a little firm. Hold the razor with the thumb on top of the shank, and roll between the fingers without moving the wrist. The stropping route is indicated in the scheme on the right. In the scheme, the razor just finishes the first stroke from the left to the right.

When the razor is freshly honed, it should be finished on the leather only. After that, use the canvas first, then the leather, each time a razor is stropped.