Handworks 2017 in Iowa
#61
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
I have been to many different woodworking shows or tradeshows (The Woodworking Shows under different owners, the WIA, the local shows, Lie-Nielsen shows, furniture shows, etc.). What are the key differences between them and Handworks? The location, the organizer and of course some of the vendors and attendees. But they all share something similar: having an educational component, booths selling products or taking orders, keynote speakers or demos (like Graham Blackburn, Paul Sellers, Rob Cosman, Norm Abram, etc.), draws, AND consumerism. But none of those I attended -- organizers, vendors or participants -- were shy from admitting they were sales functions.

We all enjoyed the pictures people shared from the Handworks but my perspective is that it was a sales event like any others that I have been to. Yours -- whether you have attended it or not -- may be different, which I have had no issues with. No one needs to justify their different perspectives. 

A good sales event is a lovely thing to me as a woodworker and consumer, but I won't call it anything else. Period.

Simon
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#62
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
I have enjoyed all three Handworks events and will try to attend any others that come along -- for the very same reason I come to this site.  Camaraderie with other hand tool woodworkers.  Be they shaving in the campground, demonstrating drawknife techniques, rightfully boasting about their wares, or just telling tales of their youth; it's a pleasure to be with kindred spirits and I am always enriched by it.

Woodnet fills the gap between conversations in the flesh. 

Handworks is to solo woodworking what a concert choir performance is to singing in the shower.

It's all good!
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#63
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
My son & I have attended all three(3) Handworks. Each one has been a special day for us. We not only got to spend the day together ... we got to spend it learning and spending time with people of like mind. We both enjoyed the Studley presentations.

As we walked in the rain from building to building he said ... 'Dad ... don't you feel like we just "fit in" with these people?' I agreed with him wholeheartedly.

We went to every vendor ... we listened ... asked questions ... and learned what we could ... and we bought a few things. We saw old friends and made new ones ... we had more than a dozen impromptu conversations with other attendees ...

Yes ... the vendors are there to sell and advertise their wares ... but to my son and I ... it has become a pilgrimage to look forward to spending time with people of like mind... our thanks to Jameel and all the others who make it happen. We are looking forward to 2019.

Red
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#64
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
Hey Red, great seeing you again! This was my third Handworks and even with the bad weather it was a blast. As a vendor we are all passionate SOB's, it's what we do. We all have a passion for what we do, and we like to share. Nothing gives more satisfaction than seeing a light bulb go off in someone's head when I turn them on to a file that makes their work better. When I see then at the next show they have a big s###eatin grin on their face in how the files have helped them with their work. Being able to hang out with like minded people and sharing info is priceless. My Violinmaker friend got me into files and educated me that allowed me this opportunity. Meet Larry Williams 15 years ago at a MWTCA show in St. Louis and just started selling files and he bought all the aluminum files I had and told me he used them in shaping the handles on his planes. Went home and tried it out and was shocked how well they work. Always tell everyone who buys them to thank Larry for sharing the info. It has made me a better woodworker and I made a great friend.

Yes it's a selling event and we trying to make a modest living in what we do. If your looking to get rich this is not the way to go. For me it's been a great ride and all the fabulous people I've met along the way. Grew up on the south side of Chicago in the steel mill community and wanted to be a woodworker. Because of the people I have met threw files, I have held 2 strads, never I my wildest dreams could I have come up with that. Funny how life works out, I am a rich man in the friendships that I have made along this path.

Slav
"More the Knowledge Lesser the Ego, Lesser the Knowledge More the Ego..." -Albert Einstein.
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#65
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
(05-19-2017, 10:34 PM)Slav Jelesijevich Wrote: As usual it was a great day even with bad weather.   Lots of electricity in the air, everyone had smiles on their faces.   Even the wife's  were smiling as the husbands were buying tools, really.

Slav

I concur on the electricity and smiles...but I 'll note that some people buying tools and enjoying the show as woodworkers were women (myself included).

And I hear y'all on locating WIA on a coast – if anyone has a compound available to rent for a reasonable fee (and no union restrictions) with suitable wi-fi, electric, classrooms, etc., I'm all ears! We'd love to do it in a new –perhaps coastal – location for 2018, but we'd need to find a space that's affordable on all fronts (travel, lodging, hall rental, bench-borrowing opportunities...) so as to not have to raise the fee... I'd certainly prefer we it more affordable, not less so.
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#66
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
No one here is trying to say that vendors weren't selling stuff, however I think the point most of us are trying to make is that the atmosphere at this show is very different as compared to other events and the main emphasis is not on selling.

There are no people with headset mounted microphones making noisy presentations and then prevailing people to purchase the show special deal that is valid until 3:00pm that day, which is then extended to the close of the show that day. In other words there are no hard sell tactics and no girls in short shorts and low cut T-shirts working the booths. If any vendor used those tactics at Handworks they would not be asked back and most likely would be reprimanded and asked to cease such activities during the event.

The emphasis is on communicating and offering people a look at stuff that is quite unique, like Dr. Moon's reproduction Studley Tool Chest for example.

Ron
"which plane should I use for this task?......the sharp one"

http://www.breseplane.blogspot.com/
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#67
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
(05-25-2017, 06:18 PM)Handplanesandmore Wrote: It is nothing but just a consumerism event billed romantically as something else. Wait patiently? So will I.

Simon

I don't get your point.  Seriously.  I'm assuming you didn't go (neither did I), but what did you expect it to be?  Or, more appropriately, what do you want it to be?  There were a LOT of vendors at this show that demonstrated their wares.  I don't know of a single event elsewhere in the US where you have an opportunity to handle so many hand tools, ask questions to their makers about how to use them, and compare notes with so many who belong to the community of hand tool users.
Still Learning,

Allan Hill
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#68
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
+1. I know I'll never get to Amana, but it's a unique event, and a good thing for all concerned.
Elvem ipsum etiam vivere
No Evaporust was used on these tools.
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#69
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
(06-04-2017, 05:30 PM)AHill Wrote: I don't get your point.  Seriously.  I'm assuming you didn't go (neither did I), but what did you expect it to be?  Or, more appropriately, what do you want it to be? 

I didn't go; it was too far away. If it were not so far, of course I would have gone.

What did I expect it to be or want it to be? Nothing fancy or unusual; just an event where I could spend time checking out tools -- new or old or buying what would catch my eye and doing things that I usually do at all other shows I have mentioned in my earlier post.  I am a woodworker and also a consumer and so I don't expect anything unusual from any woodworking tool event. Do you?

Anyone who doesn't feel the way I do about this event is free to do so. I have said enough about this topic and so have those who felt moved by the experience and came here to share it. I am not intending to change anyone's mind or opinion about the show and neither will anyone succeed in changing mine. Time to move on.

Simon
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#70
  Re: Handworks 2017 in Iowa by mebert (Anyone attending Han...)
I went with my son and met my BIL there as well.

We really enjoyed the event, I had never been to Amana before nor to an event like this.  It was really neat to see tools that I had only see on web sites before it was also really fun meeting people I had only seen online before as well.  I did buy a few items not as much as I wanted but probably more then I should have.  We both walked away with a six pack from the Millworks brewery, I got the White Ale and he got the root beer.

I stopped and spoke to Slav for a bit, I have never seen so many rasps and files in one place.  I ran into Megan Fitzpatrick wandering around and chatted with her for a minute.  I took a picture of my son and Roy Underhill near the blacksmith shop.  I got a personal tool demonstration from Rob Lee, it worked, I bought the plane.  I spoke with Ron Hock and bought some things from him.  I drooled near the Blue Spruce table and Czezks Edge and Vesper tools.  I had a chat with Patrick Leach and picked up a couple items.  I enjoyed many tool demonstrations such as; Tico Vogt and Ron Brese, Lie Nielson, Bad Axe and By Hand and Eye just to name a few.  My son had a great time making shavings were ever we went, he really enjoyed playing with the Benchcrafted vises.   I saw many many other people and tools but that should give you an idea.   

All in all it was a great time and I would not hesitate to go again.   

Scott Pearson
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