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So I have been shaving with a straight for about a month. But already my strop has a few minor nicks from my getting used to it. So i wanted to ask When should I replace it? Also is it bad to go over the nicks with my razor? Will I hurt the edge by doing so?

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Unless you just want a new strop you can probably fix it. Light sanding with high grit sandpaper or a nail file and then rub it with something smooth made of glass (a bottle works well) to polish it. This is assuming that it's of decent quality and not a $10 strop

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wingdo likes this post
I tried the file and glass it did the job well thank you. My strop is not the most premium but I think its ok. It came with my a.p Donovan razor my wife got me as a gift. It has definitely gotten me into straights. Looking forward to learning more.

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Good. There's nothing wrong with inexpensive strops mind you. I only mentioned that as it might just be easier to get another $10 if that's what you had. Hell, I've stropped on a belt before in a pinch lol

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Lol a belt cool.

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The Dude Abides
Keep using and fixing that strop until you go some time without nicking it. Then you can look for a replacement. Nicks and scratches are no big deal as long as they are "in" the leather and not coming up to hit the blade.

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Elevator likes this post

Careful, man, there's a beverage here! - The Dude
Thanx wingdo good to know. yeah I was afraid those nicks were going to hurt my blade. But I've been repairing it how overlord suggested and focusing on my technique so I don't continue to nick it.

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If your strop is in the $59 plus range repair is probably in order unless your rich.  Strops with nicks and repair marks are your history with straights.  Generally you can remember the nick and smile at the experience.  Mine is long in the tooth, but I did it, owning it and wouldn't trade it.

On a separate but related note, I did see a guy on YouTube strop one of those autostrop razors and cut his strop in half.  Dear lord I couldn't stop laughing!  So....if you cut your strop in half, get a new one.

Castro Valley,CA
If you put a deeper cut into a strop, you can glue it back down using contact cement. Follow the directions as it's a little different then regular glue. After the cut is bound back together roll the strop out with a bottle or a rolling pin. The contact cement will form a strong bond that remains flexible.
As has already been said: keep the strop.

I second Wingdo's suggestion to not replace the strop until you stop nicking it. Also, pay attention to your edge; it may already be dulling. If you've nicked the strop a few times, you've already damaged your edge. It may be shaveavble with, but it is probably not in tip-top shape.

Look up Lynn Abrams' stropping video on YouTube. It gives some great tips on stropping technique. Prime among them is the admonition to not focus on speed. I don't use all his tips, but they're something to consider as you work out the technique that works for you.
- Yohann

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