I don't like the idea of a separate forum, like you said, new people wouldn't get the info they were looking for from other experienced people. What I don't like is the member level being based on post counts. There are 14 year olds with a season of mowing two neighbors lawns for $10 a week who are a higher level than a guy running a 2million+ operation with multiple crews and 40 years experience. If LS required you to show proof of your time in the industry and size of your business, then put that in place of your member level it would lead to more credibility for the posts.
Why do people not respect us as they do other tradesmen? Because every Tom, Dick, and Harry doesn't think he can be a plumber or electrician!