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just got my first (few) straight razor, need some info.

Discussion in 'Razors, Scissors, & Personal Grooming' started by fast14riot, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. fast14riot

    fast14riot Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 27, 2010
    Well I just picked up a few straight razors from a local antique dealer who also is a knife nut. I asked him if he had any that were in need of work because I wanted to try restoring and rescaling. He brought out a couple boxes with maybe 30 razors and let me pick through. I found a plastic handled Case with a chipped blade, a Dixon (Dixie maybe, I can't remember for sure) with warped scales and a H. Boker with home made scales done poorly. The Boker is the one I am interested in first. It is a 5/8 and marked "damascus" over "magnetic steel" with the boker trees on either side, all etched on the blade. Tang stamp is a sideways tree with "H. Boker" over "Germany." I haven't been able to date this one or figure out why it is marked damascus. It looks like a single steel. Was that a tradename of a certain brand of steel?

    Because this is worthless without pics, here you go...

    The Boker is the top one in the group pic.


    Here is the blade etching and tang stamp



    Just for fun, here is what I plan on using for the new scales, bamboo flooring scraps 3/4" thick. Enough to cut it book matched.


    If you have any info about this razor that would be cool. Also I have checked out SRP.com and didn't find any info about this specific razor.

  2. markksr


    Mar 15, 2007
    I've seen a lot of straights marked "Damascus" that are not Damascus steel as I understand it.

    Why do they do this? I have no clue...

    But, curiously enough, most razors marked "Magnetic Steel" are actually magnetized.
  3. fast14riot

    fast14riot Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 27, 2010
    Strange, I haven't checked it to see if it is actually magnetized or not. I don't understand why they would be, to keep stones/strops from loading with steel particles maybe?

    I figure this is a decent blade to try my hand at restoring, even if it just sits on the shelf in my collection of knives. For $5 I think it was worth it. I paid $20 for all three. Maybe someday I will attempt at shaving with it or another one.

  4. Gollnick

    Gollnick Musical Director

    Mar 22, 1999
    Damascus in this case means layered. The layers are likely all the same steel, but it is a layered process.
  5. jacketch


    Dec 18, 2003
    Nice find. All three look to be good candidates for restoration.
  6. dalee100


    Mar 15, 2008

    Nice score! You should have fun refurbishing these. I suspect the damascus thing was often a marketing gimmick. Because damascus blades tend to have a legendary reputation of being the sharpest of the sharp. It's always nice to associate yourself with the best, even if you are not yourself.

    I wonder if the Magnetic Steel on the Boker is a brag about being a true carbon steel blade. Or a reference to magnetic conditioning of the edge that was a popular idea back in the day. A quick google reveals a number of patents for such devices. I have seen a couple devices advertised just a few months ago. I have no idea if such things work or not.

  7. fast14riot

    fast14riot Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 27, 2010
    I thought I would include this over here. I got this response from Stacy over in the shoptalk sub-forum, I asked about the "damascus" etching on this blade.


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