What does it take?

The Junk Drawer is for those Off Topical discussions where we can ask questions of the community that we feel might have the ability to help out.

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seal killer
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Postby seal killer » Thu Aug 20, 2009 10:11 am

Bryce and All--

One must be careful with "yardsticks." Relying on the inherent generalities of a yardstick will lean one from their rational powers and to their own intuition. (toastydeath: I think Kant would like that!)

Kant's thinking concerning moral dilemmas has been demonstrated a few times in this short exchange. (I suppose Kant's thinking is demonstrated just about every time anyone HAS a thought!)

But, here's the deal: In education, we look for educators, not machinists. In the machinist's world, we look for machinists, not educators. This view demonstrates common sense and will work the vast majority of the time.

It does not preclude finding either in the other field. It is merely rare to do so.

All of us can cite atypical examples all day long. Statistically, they are irrelevant.

What a neat thing to discuss among gentlemen on a machinist's forum!

--Bill
ps This is what I know about Kant other than trying to avoid studying his thoughts in school: Once, I had to proof and edit a thesis concerning moral dilemmas. The guy that wrote it was not a native English speaker. There was Kant-thought in it. My conclusions were as follows: Kant was a very smart man. Much of our society may be analyzed using his thinking. He was far smarter than me. I think I would have liked him. (The guy got his doctorate, too.)

I DEFINITELY would not have wanted to live next door to him!
You are what you write.

toastydeath
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Postby toastydeath » Thu Aug 20, 2009 2:01 pm

gmann109 wrote:So, T.D., you apparently believe that machine work cannot be learned by study. According to you, one must have worked as a machinist to have any understanding of the trade.


I am not saying this, and I wish you'd stop setting me up as a strawman, intentionally or unintentionally. I am not making the statement you seem to think I am, and it's frustrating to try and talk to someone who attributes things to a person they haven't said or implied.

Please re-read what I said until you understand it, or refrain from commenting on my statements.

gmann109
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Postby gmann109 » Thu Aug 20, 2009 5:42 pm

toastydeath wrote:
gmann109 wrote:So, T.D., you apparently believe that machine work cannot be learned by study. According to you, one must have worked as a machinist to have any understanding of the trade.


I am not saying this, and I wish you'd stop setting me up as a strawman, intentionally or unintentionally. I am not making the statement you seem to think I am, and it's frustrating to try and talk to someone who attributes things to a person they haven't said or implied.

Please re-read what I said until you understand it, or refrain from commenting on my statements.


I'll happily reread your statements, again. I'm only trying to get you to quit generalizing.

toastydeath
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Postby toastydeath » Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:15 pm

I'm sorry to everyone on-topic for starting to hijack this thread - I'll bow out in a post or two if this doesn't clear up.

gmann109 wrote:I'll happily reread your statements, again. I'm only trying to get you to quit generalizing.


The whole point of my posts thus far had two, and only two points:

First, that there is information inherent in any specific activity that is obtainable in no other way - that production machining has experience to it that is not obtainable in any way other than production machining; and that home shop machining has information inherent to it that is equally unavailable any other way. Thus, both activities have things inherent to them you will not learn unless you participate. This is not a biased statement towards one or the other; it simply points out something I felt was being missed but seems obvious. It is not a statement of machining overall, that you cannot learn it without doing some magical sequence of steps.

Second, I was pointing out the flaws in making generalizations (the tiger woods example), so your goal was accomplished before you ever replied. Except again, that I don't think you either read or understood my argument, so now you're accusing me of generalizing because you didn't understand that it was a tirade AGAINST generalization.

This is why I'm making the claim you don't understand what I'm saying - every time you reply, it seems as though you are directly replying to me, yet none of the content in your replies make any coherent reference to anything I've written. Even now, in your most recent reply, it is clear you're responding to me, but it's as though you didn't understand anything contained in my posts.

Did you mistake my critique of the limits of generalization for generalizing itself?

Where is the disconnect? Is something worded poorly that I could describe better? You are accusing me of things where the whole purpose of my writing anything was to explain the limits therein. Is the context of some statement so ambiguous that you're taking it in itself?

gmann109
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Postby gmann109 » Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:29 pm

toastydeath wrote:I'm sorry to everyone on-topic for starting to hijack this thread - I'll bow out in a post or two if this doesn't clear up.

gmann109 wrote:I'll happily reread your statements, again. I'm only trying to get you to quit generalizing.


The whole point of my posts thus far had two, and only two points:

First, that there is information inherent in any specific activity that is obtainable in no other way - that production machining has experience to it that is not obtainable in any way other than production machining; and that home shop machining has information inherent to it that is equally unavailable any other way. Thus, both activities have things inherent to them you will not learn unless you participate. This is not a biased statement towards one or the other; it simply points out something I felt was being missed but seems obvious. It is not a statement of machining overall, that you cannot learn it without doing some magical sequence of steps.

Second, I was pointing out the flaws in making generalizations (the tiger woods example), so your goal was accomplished before you ever replied. Except again, that I don't think you either read or understood my argument, so now you're accusing me of generalizing because you didn't understand that it was a tirade AGAINST generalization.

This is why I'm making the claim you don't understand what I'm saying - every time you reply, it seems as though you are directly replying to me, yet none of the content in your replies make any coherent reference to anything I've written. Even now, in your most recent reply, it is clear you're responding to me, but it's as though you didn't understand anything contained in my posts.

Did you mistake my critique of the limits of generalization for generalizing itself?

Where is the disconnect? Is something worded poorly that I could describe better? You are accusing me of things where the whole purpose of my writing anything was to explain the limits therein. Is the context of some statement so ambiguous that you're taking it in itself?


I guess that's the problem I'm having. You're making an argument about machine shop experience versus home shop experience in a thread that started out about mill vises.

It's not important whether or not I understand you. It literally makes no difference to me. For the record, I understand your point. I just don't think it relates to me or anything that I do. You say that machine shop experience can only be gotten in a machine shop and HSM experience can only be gotten at home. OK, Now what?

You can have the last word but I think it should relate specifically to mill vises regarding the OP's original thought.

toastydeath
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Postby toastydeath » Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:44 pm

gmann109 wrote:You say that machine shop experience can only be gotten in a machine shop and HSM experience can only be gotten at home. OK, Now what?


If you really think I mean this, still, after all the attempts at clarification I've made, I have nothing else to say. I can't force you to understand a point you don't want to understand.

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Jose Rivera
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Postby Jose Rivera » Thu Aug 20, 2009 6:57 pm

This thread is going way out of subject which is sharing information.

It had turned into a two person argument that is leading us nowhere.

I ask to please cool it off or this thread would have to be locked.

Thanks!
There are no problems, only solutions.
--------------
Retired journeyman machinist and 3D CAD mechanical designer - hobbyist - grandpa

gmann109
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Postby gmann109 » Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:01 pm

Jose Rivera wrote:This thread is going way out of subject which is sharing information.

It had turned into a two person argument that is leading us nowhere.

I ask to please cool it off or this thread would have to be locked.

Thanks!


Excellent point.I certainly agree. :D

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seal killer
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Postby seal killer » Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:56 pm

All--

Hi-jacking threads is an honored tradition that occurs on every forum. It is the nature of open-ended dialogue.

Don't sweat it.

I have hi-jacked my own threads many times. Who cares? The point on these forums concerns dialog leading to learning and as long as forum rules and decorum are observed, hi-jacking a thread is rather insignificant, although it can be a little irritating to the creator. However, on this forum, the creator can easily bring the thread back to his topic by simply posting again.

--Bill
ps I was forced to think about Kant. This is good, because I Can't do it, otherwise.
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BryceGTX
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Postby BryceGTX » Fri Aug 21, 2009 7:51 pm

seal killer wrote:Bryce and All--
But, here's the deal: In education, we look for educators, not machinists. In the machinist's world, we look for machinists, not educators.


Hi Bill... after your earlier post, you had me worried about you opinion of the value of educators. This has restored my confidence.. This is the reason I picked Tiger's instructor.

Probably a good step one can make upon entering home machining is to take a few machinists courses.

It seems to me that such courses are structured as a logical progression of steps whose goal is to teach you. Trying to get the same information from a forum requires you sift through thousands of posts organized in a hodge-podge fashion.

The goal of an instructor is to teach you.. Even if he cannot make an excellent part on a lathe.. he knows what it takes to make an excellent part.
Bryce

Harold_V
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Postby Harold_V » Fri Aug 21, 2009 8:18 pm

BryceGTX wrote:Hi Bill... after your earlier post, you had me worried about you opinion of the value of educators. This has restored my confidence.. This is the reason I picked Tiger's instructor.

The goal of an instructor is to teach you.. Even if he cannot make an excellent part on a lathe.. he knows what it takes to make an excellent part.

I'm pleased to see you throw that comment in. It's pretty simple. If Tiger's instructor had the skills necessary to play the game, he'd be winning tournaments instead of teaching. Knowing how a function must be carried out does not necessarily translate into one having the ability to perform properly. If that were not the case, anyone could read a textbook on playing the piano, and become an instant piano player. You and I both know that simply is not the case. Why would it be any different for a machinist, or any skilled trade?

I've said it time and again, and I'm going to say it now. Machinists are not created by reading books or taking classes. They are developed on the job! Anyone that doesn't think so has obviously spent no time in the trade. It's obvious to me, having worked with hundreds of people that knew the routines, but often couldn't produce acceptable parts reliably, without supervision, in a timely fashion. (that's what sorts the wannabe's from the machinists). You simply can't get that from reading books. It comes with experience, which is why elderly machinists used to be held in the highest of regard. Today, with the attitude of making money being far more important than doing the job correctly, that is no longer the case, much to my chagrin. My experience in building my shop and house indicate to me the problem is wide spread, clear across the spectrum of trades. Rarely does one encounter a skilled craftsman these days.

Harold

gmann109
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Postby gmann109 » Fri Aug 21, 2009 9:31 pm

Harold_V wrote:
BryceGTX wrote:Hi Bill... after your earlier post, you had me worried about you opinion of the value of educators. This has restored my confidence.. This is the reason I picked Tiger's instructor.

The goal of an instructor is to teach you.. Even if he cannot make an excellent part on a lathe.. he knows what it takes to make an excellent part.

I'm pleased to see you throw that comment in. It's pretty simple. If Tiger's instructor had the skills necessary to play the game, he'd be winning tournaments instead of teaching. Knowing how a function must be carried out does not necessarily translate into one having the ability to perform properly. If that were not the case, anyone could read a textbook on playing the piano, and become an instant piano player. You and I both know that simply is not the case. Why would it be any different for a machinist, or any skilled trade?

I've said it time and again, and I'm going to say it now. Machinists are not created by reading books or taking classes. They are developed on the job! Anyone that doesn't think so has obviously spent no time in the trade. It's obvious to me, having worked with hundreds of people that knew the routines, but often couldn't produce acceptable parts reliably, without supervision, in a timely fashion. (that's what sorts the wannabe's from the machinists). You simply can't get that from reading books. It comes with experience, which is why elderly machinists used to be held in the highest of regard. Today, with the attitude of making money being far more important than doing the job correctly, that is no longer the case, much to my chagrin. My experience in building my shop and house indicate to me the problem is wide spread, clear across the spectrum of trades. Rarely does one encounter a skilled craftsman these days.

Harold


Hi Harold, interesting points you make!

It is pretty much in line with other similar opinions I've heard here and elsewhere - basically that it's necessary to have on the job experience in machine work, to become truly proficient as a machinist. I hope I'm summing it up correctly. If not you may rephrase it.

To make it even more complex, the apprentice system is in poor condition in this country. When unions were strong, they needed williing workers to come in and do the menial tasks, all with the uinderstanding that they would eventually learn all of the complex operations that are found in a traditional machine shop, nearly 100% manual at that time. If all went well, in a few years they would proudly take the title of journeyman machinist. These now are the elderly machinists to whom you refer, many of whom I've met and dealt with in my career and for whom I have only the highest respect..

You are certainly correct that they are a dying breed. men who could calculate things in their head and come up with a proper solution to complex mechanical and machining issues.

Given that this it true, what does this mean to the aspiring home shop machinist who perhaps works a day job as a truck driver or an accountant to support his family and will likely never work on the job as a machinist? Will it forever be a limiting factor for their capabilities. Will they always be a few thousandths off, to put it in the vernacular?

Remember, even though filled with desire to build things from metal, many of these people have little to no practical experience. Even if they wanted to get such a job, minus any experience, they would be lmited to only the most menial of tasks - cleaning parts and machines, handling materials, making deliveries. It could be years of low-paying work before they would ever get a job to do on their own.

And yet aother issue just came to me while I was pondering this matter - the issue of CNC machining work which unlike "Hands-on" manual machining of the older machinists might be called "Hands-off" where the computer and servo or stepper motor machining center, perhaps even robotically loaded, performs all of the operations from a chunk of billet metal to a finished part.

While the good machinist's theory is behind the activity as a background, there is a totally different interection between the machine operator (they often call them machine operators now rather than machinists) and his CNC center. Rather than using a micrometer or depth gauge, codes are inserted into a computer memory to perform the needed operation. Nice results but hardly the forum for learning the hands-on work to which you refer as formerly learned in a traditional machine shop setting.

So, really, I'm agreeing with you, but my question is, what then shall the HSM people do given that they will, in all likelihood, never be able to obtain the experience to which you have referred?

Thanks for listening. Remember, we are discussing, not arguing. LOL. :D


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