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

Joined
Aug 20, 1999
Messages
7,687
L6, I aint a knifemaker, but I am an artist.
I have to say..."You think too much!"
Enjoy the doing, the results will come.
If you do from a result oriented point of view, you'll always be your own worst critic and never pleased.

In art school we had a life drawing class.
One girl just couldn't get her drawing started. The professor, after gently prodding her, finally became exasperated.
He hollared "Don't be intimidated by the blank page!"
and tossed her pad on the floor and stepped on it. Leaving a big shoe print on the 18x24 white sheet.
"There! It's not blank anymore. Draw!"

Don't let yourself be intimidated by a piece of steel.
Do have fun.
Don't think too much.
It's fun, not work.
Have fun :D
 
Joined
Dec 4, 2001
Messages
3,824
I know the feelings your talking about. Sometimes you just got to take a break. Sometimes 5 minits, sometimes 5 years.

A lot of times I hesitate to start a new project, but once started it becomes an obsession.
 
Joined
Sep 27, 2004
Messages
3,039
Ebbtide said:
Don't let yourself be intimidated by a piece of steel.

Best advice!

I always tell myself that. Recently, ive adapted a much more open policy for working with steel. I have been working in 1095 for a few months and I know its drit cheap and i have fully realized that fact....a 15" blade that ive worked on for hours and hours is still a 5$ piece of steel....and you know what? I had fun grinding and polishing it....thats not work! So why am I so scared to grind that false edge? The sooner I started thinking about what I wanted to do and less about how badly I'd screw it up, the less I started making mistakes. I think 99% of my mistakes occur at the end of a knife, when I am worried about mistakes. Notice that you never drop a 1/2 ground piece of steel on the shop floor, but as soon as you start babyhands carrying that 99% done knife, its already halfway on the way down?

This applies to everything. I used to do quite a bit of technical freeriding on mountain bikes, racing etc....you can watch a confident rider plow through a 30 foot rock garden at 30mph and say "man, that takes practice, he could kill himself"....youll then see someone who is a little bit scared hit that same area at 20mph to minimize the damage if they fall. They are thinking about falling. They are looking at the rocks they dont want to hit, and when they hit a bump, they instictually hit the brakes and a second later, they are smeared all over the mountain. Meanwhile, the pro racer didnt even slow down, certainly didnt hit the brakes, and is around the corner. The more you think about things, the worse you do them....imho
 
Joined
Nov 24, 2005
Messages
60
I know my problem is being critical as well. I'm practically just starting and I still havent finished my first knife that probably won't cut warm butter, and I look at you big makers knives and I'm like I'll never be like that. Several time I've wanted to stop before I really started but I know that I just need the practice, experience, and most of all help. I need time to figure out for myself what works and dosent. I guess what I'm saying is we all have our doubts (at least those who posted here:) ) and down times but theres all these dudes here who will give advice and speak out for ya which is pretty cool. Lol, sorry for the preachin but I do wanna be a preacher when all my facial hair fills in.

Logan
 
Joined
Nov 5, 2003
Messages
212
i am sorry to hear that anybody could get so fed up making knives. i am dying to get started. family and time constraints have been holding me back. (although ;someone recently told ,me excuses are lies we tell our-self) if you are serious i truly am sorry. i have been lurking here for quite a while and everyone seems so friendly and helpful. good luck and god bless you .i hope you find something rewarding to do . in the meantime if you are getting out PLEASE let some of us newbies get a chance at some used equiptment.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2006
Messages
2,280
You need to check and find a knife maker in your area and see if he would be willing to teach you the basics of knifemaking. Start out with smaller knives and work your way up to the larger ones. The more you practice the better you will get in learning the process. All of us out here in the land of knives have done that more than once. So do not yet discouraged it happens to all of us. Pray for God help and go out there with that in mind. God bless and hang in there you will make it.

Barkes Knife Shop :thumbup:
http://my.hsonline.net/wizard/knifeshop.htm
1.812.526.6390
 
Joined
Mar 7, 2003
Messages
4,270
Barkes Knife Shop said:
You need to check and find a knife maker in your area and see if he would be willing to teach you the basics of knifemaking. Start out with smaller knives and work your way up to the larger ones. The more you practice the better you will get in learning the process. All of us out here in the land of knives have done that more than once. So do not yet discouraged it happens to all of us. Pray for God help and go out there with that in mind. God bless and hang in there you will make it.

Barkes Knife Shop :thumbup:
http://my.hsonline.net/wizard/knifeshop.htm
1.812.526.6390

I would suggest you search the forum and look at the quality of Mike's work. L6 has been a leading knifemaker on this forum for a long time, and if he needs to learn the basics, most of the rest of us are hopeless amatuer wanna bes who should just quit.
 
Joined
Jun 25, 2001
Messages
8,474
I was going to say something earler to but didn't,, but I will say
there are more reasons to stop making knives other than not being able to make knives.
with Mike I think, believed it would get much easyer, but this is just my take on it.
to some it's a labor of love and to others it's just labor
and a whole host of stuff in between .
 
Joined
Mar 28, 2004
Messages
297
I've only made one knife in my life during a course in someone else's shop using their equipment. I am just now getting my shop set up so that I can start trying to make knives on my own. I took the course two years ago and since then I've classified myself as a wanna-be knifemaker as all I've done is read this forum, research and read books (which has definitely helped!). Now I have the basic set up with hand tools, bench grinder (no belt grinder) one-brick forge and temper oven and a bi-directional lap wheel on the way.

I also really needed a buffer but couldn't afford to buy one. So, with the help of all the people and info on this forum I rigged up my own (I have pics, they're just at home) - and I mean I have very limited mechanical ability but it turned out great using an 8" bench grinder, some pulleys, some pillow blocks and steel rod :)

So anyways, after about 2 years of learning and setting up and wanting - I still haven't completed a knife on my own. I'm close though. But as I go I make mistakes and then have to figure out what tools I have that I can use to fix said mistake. Or I come on this forum. Half the fun to me is researching new info, ideas and trying to figure out how I can accomplish something. When I do finally finish my first knife, I know it will have flaws. I'm picky as hell but I'm ok with that. Mistakes have to be made in order to learn how not to do things - at least for me anyways. There are so many variables in knifemaking that it's impossible to have steps laid out that will work 100% of the time for all knives. It's trial and error and experience and mistakes are what I'm hoping will make me a "real" knifemaker in the years to come. My first knives may not be the prettiest but I'll learn the most from them and friends and family may get some interesting presents.

Sorry for the long windest post and I hope I didn't hijack the thread. Just kinda a big long explanation and thanks to how much this site has helped me in learning and getting started.:thumbup: :D

Al
 
Top