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Old 01-29-2013, 03:53 PM   #1
kuksul08
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How much do you try to learn?

This might seem like kind of a ridiculous question to some, but I've been thinking about it a lot lately. Let's say you're faced with a problem. Whether it's fixing something on your car, configuring some electronics, building a deck, whatever it may be...

Are you one to ask a "professional" and take their word for it, or even not bother to DIY and just ask/pay someone to do it?

Will you go a step further and research what others online (either in articles or on forums) might have to say, so that you get many opinions to choose from?

Or will you do your own research down to the fundamentals of the issue and generate your own conclusions based on that?





A couple examples:
Tightening a critical bolt on your car. You can either trust your mechanic to do it. You can find the torque spec online about what other people are using. Or you can learn about the different grades of bolts, how mechanical joints are designed, and calculate the best torque spec based on that.

Configuring your router. You can leave it at default settings unless something doesn't work right. You can set a password with whatever encryption and maybe some port forwarding for a game or ip camera. Or you can learn about how data encryption, internet protocol, and every other configurable option in the router in order to get the best settings for your use.

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Old 01-29-2013, 03:54 PM   #2
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:55 PM   #3
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depends on:
Free time
bank account
level of difficulty
require permits/inspections
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:56 PM   #4
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I doubt and question everything. Even if you discover that the original source was in fact correct, you put the leg work in and created a deeper understanding yourself.

I do rely on those smarter than me (which is a lot of people) to help direct and springboard me in the right direction.

I feel we truly learn the most from those around us and should station ourselves around smarter, more interesting people.

That is my unselfish gift to all of you by staying on this forum
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:58 PM   #5
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depends on:
Free time
bank account
level of difficulty
require permits/inspections
This. Same order.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:58 PM   #6
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Research first then make the determination if I want to do it or hire someone.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:01 PM   #7
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I doubt and question everything. Even if you discover that the original source was in fact correct, you put the leg work in and created a deeper understanding yourself.

I do rely on those smarter than me (which is a lot of people) to help direct and springboard me in the right direction.

I feel we truly learn the most from those around us and should station ourselves around smarter, more interesting people.

That is my unselfish gift to all of you by staying on this forum
There are a lot of really smart people on this forum. At least, there have been over the years. One of the major features of the E46 I think is actually this forum since it's such an epic resource. Still, after all these years a lot of the information is becoming hearsay.

Good point about the springboard. I usually go straight to a forum, where someone with more knowledge than you can mention a few key words or brand names to start your own research from.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:02 PM   #8
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I love learning. If I'm working on a bicycle, ill learn everything I can. When I got into snowboarding, I tried to learn everything I could down to how the board is made.
When I'm working on my car and I'm replacing a reinforced hose, ill do some research on why it's reinforced and how that's done.
Ill constantly question why things are designed the way they are when I know the design serves a purpose.
I get really into whatever task I'm faced with no matter how lame or advanced it may be.
My favorite thing to do is learn new things. But I love doing it in a working, real world environment rather than a boring, beige, lectured classroom.


My girlfriend is not this way. She doesn't know what makes her car actually move. She doesn't know why a plane flies. She just accepts things as they are. Sometimes I'll ask her why does she not wonder about these things? She just says she does not care, which blows my mind.
I can never just accept something as what it is. I need to know how and why it does what it does. It amazes and annoys me that people can be so incurious.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:10 PM   #9
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:13 PM   #10
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I needed to divide by zero, so I learned all that I could about zero. In the end I came away with nothing.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:02 PM   #11
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everything, I don't pay anyone if i can fix it myself.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:06 PM   #12
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Literally everything. When it comes to cars, houses, etc. why pay someone to do something I know I can learn? I love learning; the more you know the more of an advantage you have against the rest of the world. Knowledge is a tool just like anything else.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:07 PM   #13
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I feel we truly learn the most from those around us and should station ourselves around smarter, more interesting people.
If you're the smartest person in the room then you're in the wrong room. Take as much knowledge from people older and more learned than you, condense it, save it, and use it later. What took them weeks or months to learn you can pick up in a matter of hours or days.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:14 PM   #14
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Literally everything. When it comes to cars, houses, etc. why pay someone to do something I know I can learn? I love learning; the more you know the more of an advantage you have against the rest of the world. Knowledge is a tool just like anything else.
One reason is to look at the opportunity cost of your time. If you make, say, $150 per hour but spend your time learning to do things you could pay someone $20 per hour to do, then you're not maximizing the value of your time. If you truly enjoy doing these things, then that's fine, but you're not maximizing your time and utility by being the end-all-be-all of everything in your life.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:16 PM   #15
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One reason is to look at the opportunity cost of your time. If you make, say, $150 per hour but spend your time learning to do things you could pay someone $20 per hour to do, then you're not maximizing the value of your time. If you truly enjoy doing these things, then that's fine, but you're not maximizing your time and utility by being the end-all-be-all of everything in your life.
If I'm learning something new then it's worth my time, practical or not. I will pay someone to do something that requires an inordinate amount of time or specialty tools though, but that doesn't mean I won't know what they're doing.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:22 PM   #16
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If I'm learning something new then it's worth my time, practical or not. I will pay someone to do something that requires an inordinate amount of time or specialty tools though, but that doesn't mean I won't know what they're doing.
It's sometimes hard to draw the line here. How much over the cost of paying someone are you willing to invest in tools to do the job yourself, especially if it's likely going to be a one-time deal?
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:35 PM   #17
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If I'm learning something new then it's worth my time, practical or not. I will pay someone to do something that requires an inordinate amount of time or specialty tools though, but that doesn't mean I won't know what they're doing.
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It's sometimes hard to draw the line here. How much over the cost of paying someone are you willing to invest in tools to do the job yourself, especially if it's likely going to be a one-time deal?
To each his own. Some people just love to learn for its own sake. There are a lot of things I pay people to do now that I used to do myself, but (for example) when my son gets a little older I will stop paying other people and I will teach him to do them, so that he has the practical skills to decide whether he wants to do them himself during his adult lifetime.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:51 PM   #18
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I try to learn and complete everything myself...very competitive and self-driven here. I don't like others touching my car and things of that nature because I feel if I do it then it's done right and done above and beyond (very anal here about most things). I question a lot of things. I'm very resourceful and do my research. I don't like paying others to do something I could learn myself. I will use anyone and everyone to get a leg up on things I don't quite understand and want to learn. I know who subject matter experts are and I will milk them for all the information they are worth just so I can be competent in something. It's to my own benefit to collaborate with others who are like-minded and have a desire for knowledge. However I am very much a team player and will return the same level of understanding and learning to folks. No one is perfect and will know everything.

Edit: but sometimes I must prioritize like others have said but I will always try to learn a new skill when the time permits.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:54 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kuksul08 View Post
It's sometimes hard to draw the line here. How much over the cost of paying someone are you willing to invest in tools to do the job yourself, especially if it's likely going to be a one-time deal?
I'm pretty much the same way as most of the people on here. We are on here because we love to learn, and the forum is a good resource (and a good way to share what we've learned). However, while I do most things by myself, I obviously don't have time for everything and have to prioritize.

I'll give you an example: I've been rebuilding my car since last August after a crash. A brake line was crushed. I now own a bubble flaring tool and learned how to cut, flare, and bend my own brake lines. I could've paid someone $200-300 to fix it, and I probably spent about $150-160 to buy the tools to fix it. But for that $150-160, I thought it was worth the time I spent to learn a new skill and learn how brake lines are flared.

Now, I just ran into another problem this past weekend. When I was re-installing the diff, somehow one of the threads for the diff mounts got cross-threaded and needed to be drilled out and heli-coiled. My time to work on the car is limited and I want to get it back on the ground by mid-March, so I decided to spend the extra $ to have a shop fix those threads so I wouldn't have to deal with the time it takes to learn how to do it and the $ to do it.

tl;dr: I prioritize based on free time I have and deadlines I want to meet. I don't understand people who are not curious about how things work...
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Old 01-29-2013, 06:15 PM   #20
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I try to learn a lot... but sometimes find myself needlessly waisting my time by doing something myself- that I probably will never do again and am very inefficient at (because I'm learning). Sometimes when I question things (generally) I find that I'm really just being obnoxious and not helping the situation...

On the other hand it is nice to learn new skills and really tear into something I previously knew very little about.

I also try and read a lot and learn from others experience, etc. But I only seem to finish around half of the books that I buy
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