KMO, Rants From A Knife Maker's Diary

Hey, I'm Not Alone!

Ok, It's confirmed.  I may be in over my head!  Just spent some time surfing the web and it's amazing how much knife stuff is out there.  Forums, societies, guilds and about anything else you can think of pertaining to knives.  I'm not happy!

It looks like there a two main forums for knife makers.  One is full of guys that mostly make knives.  There are some really smart and talented folks on it.  The other is full of folks that collect knives and a few makers trying to sell to them.  The one that's mostly knife makers has a bunch of guys that are cliquish about the kind of things they like and the people that produce them.  And the site with all the collectors is inhabited by a bunch of self satisfied know-it-alls who have no problem telling you just how stupid you really are.  That's doesn't make me happy!

I will say that the first site with all the makers has a lot of useful information on it.  And questions in the newbie section for aspiring knife makers does receive more help than attacks by other forum members.  But there are a few smart asses that just can't resist trying to make a new guy feel stupid for asking the obvious before doing a search for the information.  I will say, it's a heck of a lot more friendly a place than the other site.  The problem is that the more experienced guys who are mostly members of a Blade Smith Society are too jaded to stoop to helping new guys.  Especially if they are stock removal makers and not forging method makers.  So what you end up with is a bunch of medium to minimally skilled makers helping each other muddle through.  I guess the experienced makers figure it's all been said, so why repeat it.  Occasionally one will chime in to prove how brilliant they are.  And how wrong your method is.  To tell the truth...I think they are not very happy people and want to spread the wealth.  That makes everyone on the forum not very happy!

The forum with all the collectors is interesting to observe, but participation
will get you attacked.  The collectors on the site are the jaded bunch.  They flip from one flavor of the month maker to the next, trashing all others as they go.  They apparently read constantly so they can wax philosophically about the virtues of anodized titanium back springs.  If you don't use the latest and greatest steel to make your knives...well you're an idiot only worthy of harassment.  Even the forum it's self is set up to marginalize casual members.  Unless you pay for membership you only get minimal access to search functions, that sort of thing.  You can usually tell how big a butt head a member will be by the level of his membership and if they are a maker.  If they are Gold Member and it says collector in their bio...look out.  If you're looking for fellowship and a place to commiserate with fellow makers...this site will not make you very happy!

All in all, there is a ton of useful information to be gleaned from the web.  Spend time on the forums.  Search for information.  But before you participate in discussions, ask questions or post your how things go.  Lurk for a good long while.  When you do step up and participate, don't rise to the bait.  Ignore comments from the A holes that will surely arise.  Be the bigger person and let it go.  And
NEVER use you real name or link to your makers web site unless you are already established and in with the "in crowd."  No matter how benign the forum may seem, you will end up...not very happy!

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