I spent most of yesterday evening with my minstrel in the Barrow Downs. I found a spot far away from the entrance where there was a decent number of barghests, and got both the first barghest-killer title, and a couple of clean barghest tails for my guardian smith. This also turned out to be profitable, I had less than 10 silver repair cost but got over 60 silver in loot. This repair-cost reducing patch really improved things, at least as long as you don't die. XP for killing level 15ish barghests at my level 19 are low, but I made good XP and loot from completing the Bone Man quest with the help of some strangers.
While I didn't have time to level my guardian, he is still level 13, I got all the clean barghest tails that my minstrel collected, plus some from the auction house, and started making master armor. Using every last tail I had I just managed to make a complete set of master level 15 heavy armor, with really awesome stats for that level. Now I'm looking forward to hitting level 15 this weekend and being able to wear the stuff. I don't know if this sort of armor would be possible to make without a higher level alt, or worth making it if you only had one character. I'll outgrow it quickly. But with several alts the situation changes. Crafted armor doesn't bind when equipped, so having a set of the best possible level 15 armor available means that I'll be able to use this same set on every heavy armor wearing alt I'll make.
Making alts in LotRO is generally a good idea, especially if you are crafting. So looking at the materials and recipes I tend to find, I noticed that I could use a scholar alt. And I am kind of interested in the captain class, because I always find the human pet banner bearer running behind them so silly, and wonder whether those are useful. So I made a captain, a human, because that is the only race that can play that class.
Being a bit lazy and in a hurry, I started a silly experiment: I tried to get him through the newbie zone doing just the "introduction" quest line, and none of the side-quests. Interesting experiment, which ended up in total failure and me deleting my captain and making a new one. If you only do the main quest line you only have level 4 for the final quest instance to leave the newbie zone, and no good weapon or equipment. So I died three times in the instance, was unable to kill the signature level 5 boss at the end, and gave up. First character ever that wouldn't even the "the Wary" title for reaching level 5 without dieing, so I preferred to start over.