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Thread: Hobbyist/Vendor/Knifemaker Discussion

  1. #41
    Pabloz's Avatar
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    "There is one hobby seller signed up at least."

    Well..... I am that one hobbyist. I went this route for 2 reasons, 1) I wanted to be able to help support the forum financially and through postings, pics, passarounds etc., and 2) If anyone actually wanted to buy something I made I wanted to feel legit. The founders set the terms therefore I can choose to agree to the terms or not. At this point in time I have not posted any WIPs or pics due to my leather knives keeping me very busy, but I did get off 2 beta testers for a local passaround that I will use to contribute something here. Honestly I am still trying to find my way in the Chef knife world and y'all have been a really big part of my sticking to it. I really do have to give Colin a big SHOUT OUT here as he spent a significant amount of time advising me and to Marko who wrote a phenomenal response to a question I had, that I really hope turns into a tutorial!!!! ....that would rock. So, with that, please accept my apologies as I have been more of a taker that a giver at this point since – I’m still learning and expect that it’ll pay off in the near future. I look forward to having a product worthy of presenting to you for consideration and critique as it will be a product that was developed with the help of your input.
    As far as commissions go, they would be much more welcome as the seller knows they have revenue to pay the comish with. Paying the fee in advance is more like a permit/license in that we are granted limited rights and privileges to conduct business. With my license in place I know I can post unlimited WIPs and sell 1 knife per month and have a photo gallery of work. So far I have had my Hobbyist Vendor Permit for 2 months and have sold 0.....NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT.....I just don't have something quality enough to present yet. I kinda wanted to get in and make some sort of commitment that I could grow out.
    If asked which I would prefer commission vs. permit/license I would definitely go commission....but then again my wife and I are OTs....obscene tippers.....if the commission was 5% I would probably pay 10%...if it was 10% I would probably pay 15%.....who knows? If it was a really great deal 30%??? Why not?? If the commission was $2.00 per item and I sold a $500.00 item and sent in $50.00 where's the harm?? I truly believe that most people are honorable and that paying comish on an honor system would work unenforced. When and if I do sell something here at KKF would it be unreasonable to send in an extra "Donation" on top of what has already been paid for permit/licensing....not to me. LET FREE ENTERPRISE RULE. If y'all like my work and want to own it, THANK YOU!!!!! But if I produce something you don't want or need you will make that statement clearly as well.
    And on the topic of shilling, just ‘cause it came up once before, I firmly believe that if someone provides a quality product and/or service it will speak for itself and then those users will talk. If you need to pay someone to toot your horn then you don't have the orchestra of happy, satisfied customers playing behind you.
    OOHHH, also, please remember that Dave has also made the fees payable in installments. This is a big +++ if cashflow is an issue.
    Thank you for taking the time to read my babbling.

    PZ

  2. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by WildBoar View Post
    Due to the 'level' of output by hobbyists, it screams for more then one level of fees. But I agree with many here that a fee will prevent some who produce only a tiny amount of work from posting. And policing things closely enough to determine what level a hobbyist is at would probably reduce Dave M's productivity more then the extra revenue he would get from the hobbyist.

    I could see the following course of action:

    1. If the person has a real knife-related business they should have to be a vendor.

    2. Any member of the KKF can post one WIP per month.

    3. Any member who wants to post more then that should pay an annual hobbyist fee equal to a "Site Supporter", and a small % commision (2%)?

    That way a hobbyist who wants to contribute to KKF plus get some feedback is not out any more $ then many of the regular members already pay to support the site, and if they sell stuff thanks to KKF there is a little more $ back to running the site. It would be an honor system as far as the 2% goes, but good luck selling something nice to a KKF member and not having them eventually post a pic
    Fair points! When I started in the kitchen a few years ago, I was brought in to the kitchen by a few members who said "Drop in, check out what these guys think of your work!" I did, I comissioned a couple pieces, and I paid the hobbyist percentage for every knife I sold over there, religiously, no questions asked. I was allowed to post wips, the guys helped me out with critiques It worked well. I chose to persue this venue, and concentrate 90% of what I make now to be kitchen knives. I would like to say I love it! I love the interaction with everybody, answering both public questions and PM'ed questions.

    Without the "ease into it period" of being considered a hobbyist maker, and not being burdened with a high rate paid by most makers, I likely would have given it up. I am a member of a few forums, but KKF is my "home" forum. I have made many friends here, and continue to do so. I pay the vendor rates happily, because I am in a position where I no longer call myself a hobbiest. Some hobbiests may not be able to, or choose not to become a listed hobbiest, maybe because the rates are to high for them still. I can relate. The commission per sale is a nice idea. It can work, it will likely get stretched/abused. As was said, moderators and even members will need to police/decide when the line is reached, that a casual commissioned persons work crosses the line to full fledged hobbyists, and when hobbyists cross the line to full fledged makers.


    Feel free to visit my website, http://www.rodrigueknives.com
    Email pierre@rodrigueknives.com

  3. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by johndoughy View Post
    I say let pics and wip be had in abundance, sales be done through commissions, and aggressive sellers become vendors, which is up to the mods. A WIP should be either not for sale, or done for a sale that goes through KKF, unless you are a vendor. Any backalley violations of that are never going to be regulated--this IS the internet, after all.
    Great post in general, but ithe part quoted above, I could not agree more with!!!

  4. #44
    Senior Member
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    Yes Eamon I agree with Mr Jone once again. Companies and businesses who understand what you just said are the ones who not only last, but thrive, til the end.

    My snip AJ quoted was only one outcome I listed. That if they continue to advance and take greater interest they will sell more and become a vendor, I would like to think naturally on their own, but if not obviously that is what the Moderators are here for as Eamon states, "Hey friend you are doing great, think it's time you became a full time vendor. We would like to support you in doing that." And of course there are going to be more people who just enjoy it as a hobby and never look to make any real money off of their items they make.

    And again as I have said and Eamon concurs in complete agreement, you can not even give thought to those who would like to take advantage of "back alley" sales and being immoral. That is a personal issue, not an environmental one.

    I have a saying in the kitchen about this,

    "It's hard to find a turd in the sewer, but in a clean toilet it's pretty damn easy"

  5. #45
    This has been a great thread to follow with so many insightful points being made.

    Clearly this isn't an easy cut and dry situation that we have here so all input is appreciated.

    Thanks everyone!

  6. #46

    What can I post?

    Dave,

    I'm a little confused. Given the current discussion, as a contributing member (Dec 2011), what can I post? For the past 20 yrs, I've been a full time blacksmith. Bladesmithing is a new thing for me and I do it more or less for fun. I've probably sold no more than a half dozen knives in all that time.I'm more in tune with improving my blade making skills than selling at this point. Would I like to sell more...sure! This is expensive fun and I'd dearly like to at least break even. Fat chance...
    That being said, this site is awesome as I've learned a lot and the contributors are most giving. So, I'd like to post some work for the feedback. Is that possible?

    John Emmerling

  7. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by j.g.emmerling View Post
    Dave,

    I'm a little confused. Given the current discussion, as a contributing member (Dec 2011), what can I post? For the past 20 yrs, I've been a full time blacksmith. Bladesmithing is a new thing for me and I do it more or less for fun. I've probably sold no more than a half dozen knives in all that time.I'm more in tune with improving my blade making skills than selling at this point. Would I like to sell more...sure! This is expensive fun and I'd dearly like to at least break even. Fat chance...
    That being said, this site is awesome as I've learned a lot and the contributors are most giving. So, I'd like to post some work for the feedback. Is that possible?

    John Emmerling

    Hi John,
    I'd like to say thank you for asking first versus posting and then asking, this is greatly appreciated.

    So to answer your question, if you wish to show the knives that you make and have intent to (or do/have) sell knives then the answer is that you have to look towards the hobbyist/vendor program to do so. See Vendor/Hobbyist Guidelines

    Thanks for giving me a chance to explain.

    Dave

  8. #48
    But if he isn't going to sell them, he's free to post and learn and share away, right? It's the selling part that trips the wire.

  9. #49

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    That's the point I've been trying to make. It's the POTENTIAL to sell that trips the wire. The general attitude by most posters is that hobbyists are vendors in waiting.

    -AJ

  10. #50
    Just to keep everyone in the loop, we're constantly discussing alternatives to our current program and looking to make the site better for everyone. We appreciate all of your input. Thanks

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