Razor Replating: What Are Realistic Expectations?

"Do not let the quest for perfect be the enemy of the good!"  If a razor is already super-nice, a replate may not yield a markedly noticeable difference from its present appearance.

When considering a replate for your razor, always keep in mind that its pre-existing condition means almost everything. 

Removal or reduction of surface blemishes is limited by how much re-surfacing can be accomplished without the risk of negatively affecting the “health” of the razor.  Surface irregularities can only be corrected via the removal of “healthy” metal – down to the level of the damage.  Removing too much material during re-surfacing can affect the geometry of razor parts, can reduce the depth of knurling, can minimize the legibility of stamped lettering – or even affect the structural integrity of a razor.

Deep pitting, scratches, dings, dents and such, however, can’t be totally removed and will likely be seen on a replated razor.  Unfortunately, once the metal is gone – the metal is gone. 

Keep in mind, that plating is very thin.  Plating is measured in microns of thickness.  A micron is 0.001 mm (1/1000th of a millimeter) or 0.00003 inch.   Although plating is multiple microns in thickness, it is far too thin to “fill-in” or hide overt blemishes in the brass.

This means that flaws, which are still visible after the limits of re-surfacing have been reached, will likely be visible beneath the new plating.  Customers may perceive this as a problem with the plating, when in actuality that is far from the truth.  The plating is intact and correct.  The issue is the surface of the underlying brass that is visible beneath the plating.

In summary, plating takes on the appearance of the surface upon which it is deposited.  A razor with challenged surface conditions and significant pre-existing damage is likely to show those flaws after a replate. Think of them as “character marks” - each telling the razor’s story of its past – even though the replated razor is now shiny and beautiful.

Please know that I make every effort to ensure that your razor looks fantastic after being replated, but I am limited by the pre-existing condition of the razor that I receive from a customer. 

Having realistic expectations can help to ensure satisfaction with your replating experience!