Law Of the Sharks, Rules, Tips, and Tricks

Discussion in 'Fiddleback Forge Knives' started by Fiddleback, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. Comprehensivist

    Comprehensivist Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Aug 23, 2008
    Quoting Kirkwood: "Hey Phil, you sharked both knives I was interested in by 10 seconds. I hope you flip your bike over and knock your two front teeth out! "

    Hey Kirkwood,

    I crashed my bike and knocked out my two front teeth (actually three) when I was eighteen years old, so you are late again with your suggestion. :yawn:

    The more that I think about it, the more I like Bear71's idea to make fotki private until the after the sale is closed on Fridays. That would make the Friday offerings a surprise to all and realistically all the knives will still sell out just as fast.

    I have one more suggestion related to this (if Andy is interested.) There has already been some "I'll take it" post for knives that were posted on fotki, but did not appear in the Friday ad. Those were probably Blade Show set-asides. Without fotki visibility on Friday, Andy could set aside say 5 knives each week to send to one or more of the dealers. After the ad close on Friday, he could announce that fotki is open and say' "Look for the additional five knives going out to the dealers this week." That would do a few things. 1) It would support the dealers who are running dry on inventory. 2) it would dramatically increase their customer traffic on their sites. 3) It would spread the Friday excitement and opportunities throughout the week.


  2. Joe Duder

    Joe Duder Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 22, 2013
    I think things are just fine the way they are. Let's remember guys and girls, the more "this isn't fair", "I'm a little disappointed" comments that are posted, the more likely things will change for the worse. Have you tried to buy a Randall blade lately? Have you seen how long his waiting list is? I really don't think there is a "fair", "everybody should be able to get a slice of pie" way to do this. The Friday offerings are a great way to possibly get your hands on Andy's blades. Could things be better? Of coarse, but be careful what you wish for, things just might change and in an effort to make things fair, you may just be on a two year waiting list to get a Fiddleback.
  3. xxwjtxx


    Dec 13, 2013
    Exactly; try to by a new Hinderer custom factory direct...most of the time, you have to pay to even get an opportunity to bid on a knife and those slots are first come first serve :eek:! Same applies to Al Franken knucks, Chris Reeve, Randall, Busse, etc... I'm sure Andy & Co. will have new guidance forthcoming to ensure that everyone is clear on the rules of engagement.
  4. thurin

    thurin Wanderer

    Dec 19, 2012
    I've stayed out of this conversation so far, and I'm not really sure I'll add anything to the discussion, but here's my take on it.

    Comparing the Fiddleback Friday process to something like getting a Randall isn't an apples to oranges thing. Getting a Randall is "fair" - sorry Joe :) - in the sense that if I want one, I get on the list. If you want one, you get on the list. Yes, the wait is a long time, but we're both waiting.

    Fiddleback Friday is unique. Your chances of getting a Fiddleback on a Friday seem to be directly proportional to the time you have available to spend on it. How many hours can you spend F5ing the forum. Where fotki comes into play and why I think it keeps being brought up is that it's part of this. Do you have time on Friday to F5 the fotki page to see the pictures and craft the document to cut and paste your purchase based on the picture you see.

    Guys have talked about taking Friday off from work hoping to score a knife. That's amazing. And a testament to how we all feel about our Fiddlebacks.

    Not sure if it's possible, but one change might be to have a set time when things are posted. Or a preview of things that are going to be posted. "Here are the 20 knives that will go live at 4:00PM EDT today" with pics and item numbers. Adventure Sworn does this with their "Buy It Now" sales. We'd still have a bunch of people that don't get knives (there are 20 knives and 100 of us that want them it seems nowadays) and we'd have a lot more duplicate requests as there'd be 20 people posting "I'll take 2014 0314 01 Runt..." within milliseconds of each other. But we'd be starting from the same point.

    I don't know that there's a solution. And I'm happy for Andy as this is a great problem to have. Maybe this all just comes down to having to make the investment if you want it that bad, not only in $$$ but also the time needed to score one.
  5. Joe Duder

    Joe Duder Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 22, 2013
    "Getting a Randall is "fair" - sorry Joe - in the sense that if I want one, I get on the list. If you want one, you get on the list. Yes, the wait is a long time, but we're both waiting. "

    I couldn't agree with you more. I didn't mean to suggest that the Randall way of getting knives is unfair, it absolutely is fair. What I was trying to say is that the more negative comments are posted, the more likely things will head in that direction. Now, maybe some of you are fine with that, I'm not. We are offered about 20 blades a week. That's 80 a month. If you can't score one, it may not be the system's fault. Complaining will most likely change things for the worse IMO.
  6. Kirkwood

    Kirkwood Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    I like where this is headed and will take it as another suggestion to even the playing field. Toasted Fridays... Tipsy Fridays... hmmm... Feelin' Good Fridays!

    I think that's called prospective karma. :D
  7. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    I like that, lets just hope he doesn't get too late of a start on the post...I may be feelin' too good to resist the sexiness of a Scorpion :D
  8. MajorD


    Mar 18, 2007
    Buzzed buying is dangerous! I mean expensive!
  9. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Yeah, figures there would actually be a name for it around here :D
  10. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Oct 19, 2005
    First, I have to admit that I have not read the entire discussion. Please forgive this, my days during softball season are structured by the minute. And, as an aside, I've always been this way about the phone, so please pardon this as well. I have a few things to say about the Fiddleback Fridays, and have copied a few posts from the beginning area there that I think highlight the problem well. First, I'd like you all to know that I can feel the folks that have been around a while getting the squeeze. I'm very uneasy about it. This is the folks that supported me and helped me build this company.

    When I hired Ken I was worried on two fronts. First, can I/we make the knives? We needed to go from 18 to 30 a week and it is no small feat. There is a pace, like someone jogging while having a sandwich around here. This first stress for the most part falls on Ken. He keeps the company up with me, again, no small feat, and the reason I thought I could justify a Ken. Ken is a special craftsman and his levelheadedness offsets my volcanic personality. Second, can I sell the knives? I prayed a lot about this, and still do, thanking God for the pace.

    But the pace is the problem too. I think regulating it is firstly, not going to work, and secondly, going to drive away more customers than it saves. The FF posting is an absolute nightmare to manage and sort out. Folks get angry if I get it wrong too. The thing is that I have had no luck at all implementing any of the ideas you've had below. For weeks now there has been a line in the FF posting about copying the whole description. Ken and I are still having to scroll up to find the # for the red bushfinger. So I am torn on it. The only way to make it 'fair' would be to cancel the Friday Fracas, and just put them for sale on the net, or through the dealers exclusively. I still enjoy the FF's and I think it draws customers just to play in the surf.

    The other option is to get out our economy slider and adjust the price until the demand is tamer. The 10% adjustment last week was a cost based adjustment after three years of price stability. It had nothing to do with demand. This option absolutely terrifies me. I think it would be super touchy, would drive me out of the user market, and would still squeeze out a lot of the old familiar faces. This option is not on the table. I make user knives.

    I like both of these suggestions just to make it easier to manage. BUT then, what is the 'penalty' and who enforces it? I have to do this.

    "Nope, Pal W D$, you don't get shit cuz you didn't follow the rules. Piss off with your hard earned $."

    Now, everyone knows I would never say it that way, but its how it comes back at a guy either way. Take your $ and go. Yikes! Thats a bad option. I already have trouble enforcing rules like the no editing rule, and have lost a customer almost every time. It hurts to loose a customer and I don't feel happy when it happens. As a business owner, you can feel it happen. You know that person has decided to move on.

    Those posts are incredibly hard to decipher. I would like for that to cease as well but again, how am I to accomplish this. Please understand guys that a lot of the new customers are not 'forum' savvy. They don't know your etiquette rules. Quite a few of them are from overseas and are translating as they go. They aren't reading the original post. Some of the new folks are not very good with computers and have no idea how to copy and paste. My dad is one of these. He can't figure out how to sign in so he can see the pictures. I cannot turn away folks because of these kind of handicaps.

    Kirkwood has been around a while guys, before the boom. Thank you for your purchase K, it was good sharking IMO. Please don't copy the pics into the post though. That threw me off real bad.

    My strategies to help with the pace of the sharking are the dealers and the secondary market and Ken the Kindhearted. We made 42 knives last week which was a Fiddleback Forge record. I put 20 on the FF posting, kept 6 back for Blade Show, sold 10 to a dealer, and Ken the Kindhearted quietly moved the remaining knives back of house style. We have absolutely been selling out, and I am so proud of this team, and you, our customers. Thank You all. Then there is the secondary market. Which, I am told has been moving briskly. I've not been checking in on it, but I've noticed folks in the after discussion talking about selling knives to make room for new knives. I hope this is helping y'all get pieces you have wanted as well.

    Again, I don't think it is possible to 'regulate' Fiddleback Fridays into anything it is not. I remember Yangdu having similar issues. I think there is a lot of knives being created this week, and I promise to work out how to increase and improve, as always. I would love it if folks would copy the description and item # of the knife into their post with the phrase, I'll take it. If buying multiples gets out of control, like one guy buying up a batch I will look at some kind of limit. So far the most anyone has bought at once has been 3. I think 3 is acceptable. This enthusiasm feeds 5 families! Its a touchy thing to regulate and I am not quick to tamper with the formula.

    Thank you all for your support. It means the world to us. I promise to continue to make knives until my arms fall off. I promise we will continue to improve the product, and back the warranty, and improve efficiency each week.
  11. xxkcxx

    xxkcxx Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 12, 2013
  12. MajorD


    Mar 18, 2007
    Excellent response Andy. Thank you for taking the time. I know there isn't a single person that wants Fridays to go away and I think I can speak for every member when saying THANK YOU for all of the trouble you go through to sort out the Friday frenzy for all of us. Hopefully from your suggestions the Fridays will become a little easier for you and Ken.
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2014
  13. xxwjtxx


    Dec 13, 2013
    Great guidance -- thanks Andy!
  14. McVeyMac


    Feb 19, 2013
    Thanks to you and Ken for what you guys do Andy, and thank you for taking the time to post this. As one of the new guys, I have not had so much fun in a very long time as I have had on Fridays of late. I am new enough that the pictures alone still confuse me with respect to model (I need to make the flash cards that thurin and I talked about so I get better), so I always have to hunt, copy and past. Then submit, then check, oh crap that one is gone, LMAO, hunt again, copy, past, submit, hit the wrong button, LMAO. And this is all within the first two minutes. I do not know what I would do if this went away. By a long shot, FF has been the best day of the week for me, that is unless I get a chance to visit my new grand baby. It does not trump the new grand baby, but it has been a BLAST! When I carry or use one of my FF knives, I remember the exact sharking experience that I had getting it. And this adds to the pleasure and the pride of ownership. And this is an awesome community as well.
  15. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    Well put Andy. Holy crap, 42? that's pretty amazing in and of itself. You guys really are an amazing team! I so hope I am able to make it to Blade this year to see this years table and talk to Ken. I can just imagine some of the cool pieces that will make the Blade show table!
  16. TrojanTau


    Nov 17, 2012
    Very well put Andy. I'm one of the "new Guys" even though I have been following your work for about 3 years now. I'm just recently in a position to purchase your works of art. I enjoy FBFs and was lucky enough to score a runt which is the one knife I really wanted. My other fiddlebacks have been scored from dealers. I'm looking forward to meeting you at Blade this year.
  17. schmittie

    schmittie Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 28, 2009
    You see? That's how good this little forum is. The man shared his wisdom and opinion on what was a concern to the customers. That says a lot.

    Thanks Mr Roy :)
  18. Skystorm


    Oct 17, 2011
    I think it's great that there are still people who will take time out to address customers concerns, Just another reason to keep buying them.
  19. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Oct 19, 2005
    IMO, it is you all that make this business work.
  20. Tribial


    Sep 11, 2013
    I just read this whole thing. You all rock. It is amazing! It really shows how much we all care about the knives, and the business as a result. I was lucky enough to get a knife I was after last week. However I am lucky I didn't crash my car in the process :) It's still fun. just not when I don't have an internet connection!
    seriously thank all of you for making this place great!

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