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Caleb Harris

The "Broke Bladesmith" (resource for beginning bladesmiths)

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I started bladesmithing about 2-3 years ago, making some of the worst knives this forum has ever seen. I didn't have much cash (still don't), and have never had any hands-on teaching, so everything I've learned since was either through youtube, this forum, or my mistakes.

 

This fall I started writing little articles on gathering or making the tools necessary to begin bladesmithing, relaying what I learned over time and what I've heard from other smiths, soon moving into the basic process of making your first knife. Basically, the "Broke Bladesmith" is what I wish I had been told three years ago. I've still got loads to learn, but it's been fun helping other people just starting out.

 

http://www.brokebladesmith.com/

 

 

Oh and apologies to everyone who remembers my older stuff.

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Great looking site, Caleb! Looks like there's a lot of valuable information you have there. It has been a pleasure to see how far you have come over the years, and your persistence is admirable. Don't be ashamed of your early stuff, we all started somewhere, and as long as you learn from the process to improve (which you certainly have been), there is no such thing as bad work!

 

I especially like those old illustrations you have as the title headings for some of the early posts there, great stuff! I'm glad that there is a resource out there now that concisely lays out the answers to all those introductory questions that inevitably arise from beginners and the transition into more in depth information to compliment it. Nice job!

 

John

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Some good info on here, but I'd change the layout a bit to make it look more like several blog posts and less like one big article with multiple parts.

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Some good info on here, but I'd change the layout a bit to make it look more like several blog posts and less like one big article with multiple parts.

Gotcha, thanks

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Caleb:

 

What a great and worthy project! Man, you've obviously put a lot of work into the site. Thanks for taking the time to share your experiences with newbies. And I must disagree with Sam, it reads NOTHING like a pyramid scheme. Not sure what he meant honestly, but Sam has a weird sense of humor (I'm sure he won't mind me saying so).

 

My only bit of advice is that I'd increase the photo to text ratio, and I'd use different size fonts or block quotes to highlight key concepts. Remember how people read a technical document. First they skim it. Then they do a deeper skim, reading the parts that jump out at them. Then, if you've hooked them, they start to read (but almost never in a linear fashion). It's always good to design the text around this reality. I think an excellent example of this is David Boye's "Step-by-step Knifemaking." Check out the photo to text ratio in that book. Also check out the bold text next to photos. It's really a well designed work that draws the reader into a more detailed read.

 

Keep at it!

 

Dave

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Caleb:

 

What a great and worthy project! Man, you've obviously put a lot of work into the site. Thanks for taking the time to share your experiences with newbies. And I must disagree with Sam, it reads NOTHING like a pyramid scheme. Not sure what he meant honestly, but Sam has a weird sense of humor (I'm sure he won't mind me saying so).

 

My only bit of advice is that I'd increase the photo to text ratio, and I'd use different size fonts or block quotes to highlight key concepts. Remember how people read a technical document. First they skim it. Then they do a deeper skim, reading the parts that jump out at them. Then, if you've hooked them, they start to read (but almost never in a linear fashion). It's always good to design the text around this reality. I think an excellent example of this is David Boye's "Step-by-step Knifemaking." Check out the photo to text ratio in that book. Also check out the bold text next to photos. It's really a well designed work that draws the reader into a more detailed read.

 

Keep at it!

 

Dave

Thank you sir! This is a lot of help

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