This is the reason I decided to give up the craft.

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I hardly ever go over 240 grit on the grinder....for blades, I find that I can hand sand from 240 to 600 more evenly and cleanly than I could ever grind with a 400 grit belt. I sometimes even do 80 grit, then draw file, then hand sand. I dont think it slows me down at all. If I convex ground, however, id prolly be taking everything way up in grits on the grinder. I usually have problems with grind lines wandering with a tiny bit of misplaced pressure on the finer grits, which for me un-does the benefits gained by avoiding hand sanding to those same grits.
 

Mark Williams

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Michael , Knifemaking is not your problem and you know it. You need to snap the hell out of the depressive BS and get into manic mode and stay there !!!

Self doubt is your problem and you have NO reason for it.

You and Bruce Evans were my heros when I first came to this forum.

You've done great work in the past and you CAN do it again.

Snap outta the damned funk and get on with life.

I've battled the same feeling , so I know of what I speak.

I dont mean to sound so cruel, but you can get a grip on this.

Get out in the shop and make a huge knife and do it rustic and crude, but finish it. You will feel much better :)

p.s All of what I wrote is Tough Love for ya Brother:D
 
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May 12, 2003
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Dude,

These guys are right...

I quit a while back...but am slowly getting back at it....

Hang in...take a break if you need to...

Let it rest in your mind a while...

The love...and the reasons to do it...will come back...and then it will be time to start fresh....

GOt no more philosophy than that...

Good luck...

Shane
 
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Sep 26, 1999
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Michael,I understand wanting to throw in the towel somedays,am trying to get outta my funky state of mind myself.I know if I ground the way people say I am supposed to I would never grind another blade as it wouldnt turn out,so I stay with my right hand pull only and do the best I can.Heck we started making knives because we loved it went full time so we could work at something we loved now what we love is getting to us but we cant just quit because the love is still there when we are gone from it (Dang almost sounds like I am talking about a woman,hehehe).Time we both just quit worrying about being perfect and just do our best and have fun again.Like I was told once,when you get in this mood find the thing that really made you love knifemaking (for me it was forging) then go do that for a little while and the rest will come back.It works !!!!

Dang Mark,I need you to kick me in the rear sometimes also :D

I have been in a depressed state for almost 2 years now and not getting much done,still full time but broke is me:eek:

Didnt know I was anybodys Hero..Makes me Blush...:eek:

Michael give me a shout or email me your number and we can discuss the good old days and then look to the future if ya want,or we can just BS...

Bruce
 
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One thing I'd like to add Michael
I'm as critical as you or should say was, when it comes to anything.
I do my own carpenter work because I know I can do it better than the local joker..
I've made my own foundation/basement for my house, because I'm cheap :D
and know I can do a cement floor better than the local joker, ask me why I know this?
hell I want to make my own replacement teeth I have the stuff to do it right now

all these guys here want to do a better job and the only thing that will keep you back is you.

a carpenter knows every mistake he's made and hopes the customer knows less than he knows about it. if you don't worry about it you get sloppy like the local joker carpenter,, your customer is buying your soul that you put into your knife not just the knife,

there is more than one way to skin a cat, just be happy doing it.. pressure will kill that bug, don't be your own worse enemy.

you have the know how, you've done it
but you're freaking yourself out of it..look close at the work put into any hand made today , yes some is great almost to the tee and a lot of it is done with many many hours of experience . it take time to get there.

my wife is the type, that if she can't do it right the first time she won't try it again..that's sad to limit herself that way.

I want to prove I can do something and when I can do it I lose interest in it, so for me I need to keep things
interesting..
oh well enough said,,other than a new little saying
in your own eyes..
if you feel you can't make a knife, you will prove it by quitting on yourself.
 

Danbo

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Now you know why nobody has ever seen anything bigger than a small hunter or a neck knife from me. All of those little knives started out as big honkin bowies! :)


Hope ya decide to come back and give it another try. :thumbup:
 
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Dec 3, 2002
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HEY DAN. let's here a little more on the teeth, partial or full plate?

I got three I need to replace. I'm thinking some mosiac pins in em too. :D
 

Mark Williams

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Bruce Evans said:
Dang Mark,I need you to kick me in the rear sometimes also :D

I have been in a depressed state for almost 2 years now and not getting much done,still full time but broke is me:eek:

Didnt know I was anybodys Hero..Makes me Blush...:eek:


Bruce

Bruce , the work you were doing when I first came onboard here, and Michaels were just amazing to me. I know you had to do what was needed to keep things right for the family, but I was hoping to see some great stuff again from you when you started back fulltime.

Where are the knives?:confused:

Havent see you post anything in ages. I know you do great work. I have one of your knives , remember.

Now get your butt out in the shop and show us the magic:mad:

How's that? :D

Anybody else need some tough love :)
 
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Sweany said:
HEY DAN. let's here a little more on the teeth, partial or full plate?

I got three I need to replace. I'm thinking some mosiac pins in em too. :D
partial ...in several places :D I do some taxidermy work, so I can practice on little critters, the wife is next :eek: then me :D
of corse you could take the wifes place:D , she'd give it up I'm sure :( :)
 
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someone once told me that the enemy of good is better. Seems to fit perfectly for this situation.
 
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Sep 9, 2005
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So happy to see that so many of you great knifemakers suffer from the same fears that regular folks do. Also great to see that you sometimes need to resort to the old way of doing things. Back to basics. I have found the file to be a lot less inclined to stuff things up. Sometimes things just happen too fast with an abrasive belt moving at 60km/hour.
You are not immortal men without failings after all.:D :D
Thanks for opening up guys, it makes the novices feel a lot more hopeful.

Get back at it Michael, judging from your posts in the past you clearly love this monster. ;)

Mike
 
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miden said:
So happy to see that so many of you great knifemakers suffer from the same fears that regular folks do. .........................

Mike

The whole time I was making knives, there wasn't one that I didn't get anxiety over when stepping up to the grinder.:eek:

I don't know why, as I've only ruined two knives that I remember. It's just the thought that it might happen I guess(The 'what if', feeling).

I did find that if I got mad that I was procrastinating because of the anxiety problem, I quit worrying about ruining the blade and just quit caring(turned it into the 'so what if', feeling).

Just went for broke and did my best work then. I found that I could grind an amazing amount of blades in a very short time when in that state of mind.
 
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I think that knifemakers are artists, and artists suffer... :(

Maybe you could just take a little break from grinding and just forge things, or go with a scandi edge? Pretty doesn't cut any better anyway.
 
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Mar 29, 2002
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L6, I once emailed you for support and you gave it in SPADES. Do not feel pregnant about your Glock upon your head. I too; not a Glock, but the same as. Your posession with perfection is not a deficit. It is a true attribute. I love you as a person Michael and I KNOW from how you helped me you are a real man MIchael. Thank you for helping me when I was down for the count.

Roger
-----
 
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Sep 27, 2004
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I would also advocate buying about 6 feet of some 10XX stock. Higgy traded me about 12 feet of 1095 at the hammerin last fall, and having that much stock around, grinding is always stress free. Plus, keep remembering that the most youre working with at that point is about 5$ in steel....if you screw it up, hack it off, rough it out, heat treat it and at very least you can work on your HT and full test that blade to destruction....that way, you lose nothing and gain knowledge. Grinding kinda just "stuck" for me at one point....recently i moved up and have done some bigger 15" knives, and nothing helps grinding skill except grinding. People always say try grinding wood or other materials for practice....but I say if you can afford the 5$, a 12" hunk of 1095 will teach you lots more....theres no mystery to it....its just developing memory in your hands as they move across the belt.....
 
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Mike Hull said:
The whole time I was making knives, there wasn't one that I didn't get anxiety over when stepping up to the grinder.:eek:

I don't know why, as I've only ruined two knives that I remember. It's just the thought that it might happen I guess(The 'what if', feeling).

I did find that if I got mad that I was procrastinating because of the anxiety problem, I quit worrying about ruining the blade and just quit caring(turned it into the 'so what if', feeling).

Just went for broke and did my best work then. I found that I could grind an amazing amount of blades in a very short time when in that state of mind.
thanks for that mike, so true..procrastinating because of the anxiety
I still suffer from that..
I've messed up one knife that I could not make into something useable.that I remember, that's not to say all my knives came out the way I wanted them.

not saying an intended bowie turned out to be a pen knife but turned into a new modle knife..
"procrastinating because of the anxiety" that is the word for it for sure,
and I called it ,got no funk today:( :)
I guess summed up
it proves you have the drive and ability to do well and you know you can, but being afraid of failure has a big efect if you let it.. that's me..:thumbup:
 
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One time that forced me into a break was when I hade a knife literally done, sold, money received, box set aside, papers printed....I decided to give it one last quick buff befor boxing it up.....you can prbably predict this one, but buffer grabbed it, threw it into the concrete floor mangling a corner of one bolster, into the buffer base, taking a huge chunk out of the cutting edge about 1/2 way down, and the knife ended up skidding across the floor, scratching both sides and the filework along the spine. Total lost cause.

When it happened, I was happy to still have all my fingers, but I walked out of the shop and didnt go back for a while....didnt want to see the damage after hearing what it sounded like....

A 95% done knife is for me, the most anxiety riddled point. Ive marked up enough hand rubbed ricassos after putting scales on to know its nearly impossible to fix them....
 
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Michael I have a couple of observations from this thread. First, look how many people really care about you! I didn't read every reply as carefully as I should have but still a couple of general threads stand out.

Nobody's perfect. That's kind of standard for the human condition, we all screw up, and we pretty much screw up most everything we try - if perfection is our yardstick. As far as I'm concerned, requiring perfection in our work is an imperfection in its own right. There's only one perfect Being, trying to be like Him is kind of an insult, isn't it? We do the best we can. (I'm not suggesting "good enough" is good enough, only that we should not require godlike results from imperfect selves.)

And notice how no one here is willing to accept the fact you've quit? ;) You always have had the desire to build fine knives and if you can trust me, you still do. Just give yourself a break, and don't assume you're done. Some day you may very well find yourself with an idea you cannot put aside. You'll be back at the grinder before you realize what happened.

I've been out of the swing for months with no real drive to make a knife. But I still think of myself as a knifemaker because that's what I do, even when I'm not actually doing it. I'll be back.

I hope you will too. Good luck brother, we're all on your side.
 
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ddavelarsen said:
....................................
I've been out of the swing for months with no real drive to make a knife. But I still think of myself as a knifemaker because that's what I do, even when I'm not actually doing it. I'll be back.

.................................


That's because you've fallen under the spell of the evil one.
She's taken your will and your drive.

Come back to the light on the "right" side to save your soul, before it's too late(election time).:eek:;)
 
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L6

I know how you feel, going thru the depression thing too. The last few years I'm lucky to make 4 or 5 knives, used to make about 20 knives a year(part timer). I've gotten into other hobbies,fishing,trap shooting,Sass,taking college classes, something to take my mind off knife making. I enjoy knife making but have trouble getting motivated to even go to the shop sometimes. I still have all my equipment, even buy more sometimes to get me back into the groove. And the grinding, I used to have trouble getting the plunge to match to match up, then i had my contact wheel tru up and found out that was my problem, but now I have to worry about 2" low marks. But being part time gives me the opportunely to do this. I try to make the next knife better then the first, I'm harder on mine self, I fine something thats not perfect when others can't see it. Take some time off enjoy your self. It wiil help.
 
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