You make a great point, Nick. I consider you to be one of the best examples of someone who takes fit and finish to near perfection, which is why I didn't make much of a statement in my first post, outside of an engineer's opinion of the guide drawings . My caveman approach suits my style well and while my previous profession saw tolerances of +/-.0002" I feel somewhat liberated in keeping my micrometer drawer closed these days. That does not mean I don't see the value in what you do.... you rock, buddy!
I saw Page's comment as gentle ribbing.
"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." - Daniel J. Boorstin
"Be careful what you instagoogletweetface." - Woody Harellson
ABS Apprentice Smith
Now that you guys are done monkeying around, what do you think about Felloelter's ideas?
well thought out
I like it a lot, Brian! Great idea. I wish I had a mill so I could try putting together something like that. I may just try and southern engineer it using what I have....
Even the Master Smith test does not allow the judges to use measuring equipment or magnifying glasses, ect. My personal belief is that if looks right, works right and feels right, it is right. Any level of fit and finish beyond that is probably going to be a battle of extremely low diminishing returns.
Bingo. For practical reasons, I follow JM's thought process, but for someone with the skills and desire to push it to the highest levels, it's a matter of personal taste and pride, and the word of mouth of his attention to detail gets around. That's why Nick can ask $1000+ for his blades and still has more potential orders than he could possibly have time to complete vs. me pulling in several hundred per effort.Except when it comes to personal satisfaction and pride.
On retrospect, I don't think my contraption would work well as I envisioned it.
I think you could clamp up with one side higher than the other, and take your plane out of perpendicularity to the blades centerline.
You are certainly entitled to feel that way, but I don't agree at all. My reputation is built on caring about those very small details. And I know that they can and do affect the final product.
Bob Moawad is the author of a few books I own, and in one of them- his words sum up my feelings on this VERY WELL.
"The difference between the bottom and the top, between success and failure, between mediocrity and excellence, is often very small. A single insight is sometimes worth a life's experience. The accumulation of a lot of little things isn't little. So breathe in experience. Remain a lifelong learner. Fine-tune your skills and sweat the details. Constantly be on the look-out for the little differences that can make a big difference." ~Bob Moadwad~
I can fit a guard with a very tight and clean fit. But I know there are things I can do to improve the process and maybe even the final outcome--- and I fully intend on working to improve every aspect of my knife making methods... and cutting guard shoulders is just one of those things.
This link will take you to the tag-along thread where I made the damascus camp knife (above) from START to FINISH...
Ilike this one too
1. Ira Glass
Nobody tells this to people who are beginners. I wish someone had told me.
All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap.
For the first couple of years you make stuff, it's just not that good. It's trying to be good, it has potential, but it's not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you.
A lot of people never get past this phase; they quit.
Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn't have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know that it's normal and the most important thing you can do is DO A LOT OF WORK. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week or month you finish one piece.
It's only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions.
And I took longer to figure out how to do this than ANYONE I'VE EVER MET.
It's gonna take a while. It's NORMAL to take awhile.
You just gotta fight your way through.
I totally understand, but I've got no suggestions - I'm curious to see what you come up with.
No one questions the use of water-jetting a blank for the time savings, greater precision, increased repeatability.
I think that this is similar to that.
Last edited by 12345678910; 04-25-2012 at 02:38 AM.
Weather you are playing to an audience or living alone on an island, if you want to be successful this applies. "The choice is not between success and failure its between choosing risk and striving for greatness or risking nothing and being assured of mediocrity" Keith Ferrazzi.
Posted on the wall behind my workbench.
I actually think that the file guides have several fundamental flaws, alignment with the blade axis, indexing, repeatability, and parallelism are the beginnings of the issues. I am working on a system design that should deliver repeatably dimensioned tang shoulders but due to budget and time issues I am not anywhere near having it finished. File guides are a coarse attempt at a precision fit, they will get you in the ballpark, but the final fitting will still require magnification, focused light and Prussian Blue if you want to get it right, I want to reduce that work to cutting, broaching the guard, and having it fit with a few thousandths clearance right off
lazlo, making the jigs and building new tools is at least half the fun of being a knife maker!!
Anyway, my point is that forging and/or grinding bevels is where real skill starts to be a factor.
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