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Thread: Ken Timms Loses His Mind

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    1,772

    Default Ken Timms Loses His Mind

    It's truly a sad day for ukers everywhere. Esteemed luthier, Ken Timms is suffering a severe bout of paranoia, or some such pathological disorder, over a perceived lack of perfection in his production. The poor man cannot sleep and is driven to distraction over such matters as a bridge off center to the extent that it is not visible to the naked eye as well as a dovetail neck joint that would exhibit a microscopic gap were it ever to be seen (he knows it's there). Those who are familiar with Ken's commitment to his craft understand the inclination to correct any "defect" that might in the future tarnish his reputation, however one might reasonably be concerned over some more extreme manifestations of this disorder. Ken recently sawed in half one of his instruments and has threatened to burn others that do not meet his extraordinarily high standards for perfection.

    This writer suggests that anyone interested in a Ken Timms ukulele purchase it immediately, as few of these instruments are likely to be available until Ken is properly treated and he gets some rest.

    -Nit Picker

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Mandeville, Louisiana
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    Default

    Hello "Nit",

    Being half a builder myself, I'll admit that at first read, I took this seriously! There's no such thing as a perfect instrument, and agonizing over little imperfections is something every builder does. At first, I really thought "Poor Ken" had gone over the edge.

    It was only when I got to the part about sawing in half and burning that it started to sink in. Builders just redo (minor) stuff until we can live with the little imperfections - maiming or burning those wonderful woods really would be a sign of madness!
    Dirk Wormhoudt



    website: http://www.southcoastukes.com

    email: sales@southcoastukes.com

  3. #3
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    Jul 2010
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    I've begun building ukuleles myself, and despite the fact that I have a good teacher and I'm generally a good student, the imperfections I create are not minor, i.e., they are obvious. I beat myself up about them, even after they are corrected, then assuage my insecurities by pledging to make the next one better. This thread is intended as a tongue-in-cheek testimonial to Ken and the other builders on this forum who serve as inspiration. One thing I really appreciate about Ken is his sense of humor, particularly as evidenced by the pics he posted of the "asymmetrical" ukulele and the birdhouse conversions.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Wales, UK
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    If you have any self respect as a builder you are constantly in a state of 'losing your mind' over things no-one else will see

  5. #5
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    Mar 2009
    Location
    Stockton on Tees..North East UK.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete Howlett View Post
    If you have any self respect as a builder you are constantly in a state of 'losing your mind' over things no-one else will see
    Quite right..E'r are you going to explain this one Pete it's one of my favourites.

  6. #6
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    Aug 2008
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    Can't remember but it weren't right

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timbuck View Post
    Quite right..E'r are you going to explain this one Pete it's one of my favourites.
    Quite obviously, humidity is a constant concern. It is important to have your instrument well ventilated. Further, one can never have enough sound ports.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Lewistown, PA
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    36

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    On a related note, my father was in the aircraft restoration business. I once saw him take a knife to a finished part because of a tiny run in the paint. I couldn't even see it, but it bothered him that much. When I say finished, I mean covered and painted with 15 coats of dope, wet sanded and ready to bolt on.

    Perfectionism is a double edge sword, but it really can help you build a reputation of quality.

    Erik

  9. #9
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    Aug 2008
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    Wales, UK
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    You're right - it's about reputation.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Stockton on Tees..North East UK.
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    When I was with a team of inspectors in Engineering, and we found a component out of specification..we had 3 choices .. 1, Scrap and replace it.. 2, Rectify it..or 3, go for a concession (tell the customer you boobed and ask if it will be still OK).. the "Shop Floor Manager" would usually prefer us to do nothing and hope it will be not noticed...But! we were supposed to be there to stop that sort of thing...some battles we won and others were lost

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