Originally Posted by Old Fool
Brian, you are so correct about this topic.
I have never been through any type body and fender training so I can't comment on it specifically but my experience elsewhere applies just the same.
I worked in the trades all my adult life.
30 Years in an aluminium rolling mill as a millwright, a welder, and a pipefitter, then the following 10 years since in the construction trades as a pipe fitter.
What I have observed over the last 40 years are there are 2 basic types of journeyman.
The first is the person who went through all the training, learned the theory about and how to do things they were trained in class or on the job.
The second type is the person who had the same training or not, learned a lot about it on the job , and has a natural aptitude to do the craft.
I call the second type a natural,although they could be a hack or an artist about their work. They have the "knack" .
People admire an artist that can draw a beautiful picture, me included. They say that person just has the natural ability.
People admire the Olympic athlete and their ability to perform at the highest level of their event.
Again it is mentioned they are just a natural.
The same thing applies to the trades, some can just grasp it in their head, almost be able to see through a steel case and diagnose a gear box or such, or take a set of blue prints and see the built structure before ground is broke, or equipment is assembled.
While experience does play a part, the natural ability will always elevate the Craftsman.
Another observation I have made is a person that excels in their field is almost always anal .
Thanks for reading my rambling thoughts
Yep, it's like my 15 year old son who just picked up one of my guitars about two weeks ago and started playing it. He plays melodies all over the neck, he plays melodies to a song he doesn't even remember the name of, and we have to go to youtube to figure it out. But here he is playing the melody. The other night in minutes, he grabbed a plastic piece of crap Ukulele we brought back from Hawaii with one broken string and he tuned the strings to what ever he wanted and was playing a Metallica solo on it! He is a "natural", where as I simply beat chords on the guitar, he is a natural guitarist musician.
I watch a shop full of guys at work and the differences between them are amazing. One was an apprentice when he came to the shop having been in the business for only a couple of years, just about everything he did as far as real collision work, replacing body panels and frame rails and stuff like that, he did for the first time after he came here. He is amazing, he beats the rest of the shop in efficiency by a TON. He blows everyone away including me when I was on the line. He hardly ever breaks anything, he hardly ever has a come back, he is simply amazing. Then there is another guy who has been doing this for many years, almost 20 at this shop alone. He is the slowest in the shop and breaks things every single day, can't take off the most simple moulding without breaking it. I can see him working from my desk and have watched him do the damnedest stuff. The other day he was taking off a bed moulding off the top of bed side of a Ford truck using a long clip tool simply prying it off, pry POP, pry POP, breaking most every one of the retainers and worse yet bending the panel up where the retainers hold the edge of a square hole, bending it up a quarter inch, no kidding! Then denting it an inch from the hole with the bottom of the clip tool. I walked over and said "why don't you use a long needle nose plier? He said he didn't have one! He has $10K in tool boxes, no kidding, one was $8500 and recently he bought a roll around cart like box for $950 yet he doesn't have a long needle nose plier in one of those boxes? I went and grabbed one from my box and removed the rest of the moulding very easily with zero damage to the moulding or bed side. He has ZERO passion,just does it every day fighting thru everything he does. It is fascinating really, he is working much harder at the job because he has put no effort into learning, thus he puts much more effort into "just doing it".
There is another guy who's father taught him the trade and he will make ANYTHING straight. When it goes over to the paint shop, it is DONE. Often the other guys will go back and forth between the paint and bodyshop correcting things.
It is so interesting seeing the differences out in front of you like a movie, yep, passion can make up for a lot. So even if you aren't a "Natural" you can force yourself to be passionate about the subject and get much better. But without the passion, the guy who isn't a natural is going no where baby.