Monday, August 29, 2011

Of Razors & Leather

Jim of Parkway Rest Stop shared this with me:

[YouTube direct link] (Viewer #325,553)

That's right, run your razor backwards along your arm.

Jim & a lot of the commenters on the video swear by it.

Now, it kinda makes sense, since any serial killer (and I'm a Wisconsin boy, home of some of the best) will tell you that human skin makes just as good a leather as cow skin, so I'm not really surprised that this technique would work.

But it did make me wonder why leather would sharpen steel. I mean, I usually use a stone on my knife.

A good Googling session explained why.

A razor isn't a knife.

The edge of a knife is thick. It gets bent and has to be smoothed out by grinding it flat.

The edge of a razor is thin, and it gets folded. Rubbing it on leather flattens it out like rubbing your hand on a piece of wrinkly aluminum foil.

Or to paraphrase someone on the internet that I didn't bookmark: "you can cut yourself with the edge of a piece of paper. If you fold the paper, you won't be able to cut yourself with the folded edge."

Two other notes on the topic - Jim said that having a hairy arm doesn't affect the usefulness of the technique, and one of the video commenters also suggested running the razor backward along denim blue jeans.

Offhand, I'm thinking any soft, smooth, flat surface would work. Outside surface of a roll of duct tape, maybe?

This matter requires some serious scientific experimentation. Anyone got a bored teenager handy?

[SBA day 10]

1 comment:

  1. Borderline on topic...

    I HATE changing out blades on the x-acto at work. I make a little game out of how long I can make one last. So I take it over to the buffing wheel. A few seconds later it's like new. I can use the same stupid blade daily for months that way.