The comments you speak of often come from people searching for a single answer when in fact there often is none but many multiple ways of doing things. Call me crazy, but suggesting someone get out and try something that might have a bit of "black magic" to it is about the best advice you can often give IMHO. Example = Ive read many books on auto bodywork along with watching both videos and live professionals in the shop. I could get descriptions all day long, yet until I started actually hammering on tin I only learned single processes and not how to tie them together.
Regarding suggesting using the search tool, I think that is often to encourage people to read and research, in addition to limiting the number of pointless repetitive threads. I cant count the number of people I personally know who have wanted me to teach them to operate machine tools, but know very few who actually have due to their unwillingness to put in the necessary reading time. Could I take the time to teach them every little thing including precision measurement, fixturing, and machine operations? Yup. But why should I have to? Ive never known a teacher that was required to teach you 100% of the material, the impetus is on you to read on your own, learn, and do the necessary homework. Expecting anything else is just plain ridiculous.
I too think this forum is rather well behaved. I am a member of several that arent half as civil or understanding/tolerant of others.
"I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."