Posted: May 3, 2015 in Uncategorized
Check out the changes and updates to my web sites.
I will be at the Blade Art booth at the 2015 Blade Show.
BLADE Show is taking place at the Cobb Galleria Centre June 5 – 7, 2015.
Cobb Galleria Centre
2 Galleria Pkwy SE
Atlanta, GA 30339
Posted: October 1, 2014 in Uncategorized
This in in response from my friend across the pond, John Taylor. Making throwing knives only for a living can be a risky proposition if you need to feed a family and pay bills. Even the owner of Tru Balance Knife Company kept his business as a part time venture, but was able to produce more by outsourcing a lot of the steps required to manufacture a quality throwing knife. I do everything myself except the heat treating which would not be cost effective due to the amount of knives that I produce.
That being said, add in days where you have to do family stuff or a slight illness or work related injuries like pulling a back muscle etc can set you back for a couple of weeks with no income coming in. Making knives in general is risky business unless you have been fortunate to build up a customer base over the years and have the ability to add to that customer base. I have been very blessed that I have been able to do so for over thirty years and for ten years on a full time basis. I was able to weather the storm of the bad economy because we live pretty simple to begin with. We sacrifice having nice cars, trucks and a lot of the luxuries to be able to do this. I will always make throwing knives because I have a passion for making them and I enjoy seeing new as well as a seasoned knife throwers using my knives with great results.
I have also been fortunate to become friends with some of the finest knife makers in the country and some who live out of the country. I have been able to learn how to make different types of knives as well as learn new techniques. I can make more money making those types of knives.
I am working on a way to balance my passion with what helps pays the bills and will allow us to prepare a little more for some sort of retirement for my wife. I will probably continue to make knives as long as I am physically able, but I want my wife to be able to retire one day and not have to continue to work into her seventies like a lot of people have to do. Another plus is my wife is a great worker and will probably help me in the shop as long as she is able. She has a great eye for detail and is one of my biggest critics and supporters. We would work together well as a team.
Anyway, back to your question regarding what I am going to be working on. I have orders that would stretch out over a couple of years for folders and fixed blades. I want to be able to manage my time to work on certain knives during regular hours and work on throwing knives maybe at the end of my work day.
In a perfect world without sickness and distractions, this would work, but we do not live in a perfect world and I’ll have to manage my time more effectively to be able to do what I need to accomplish this. So, here are a few pics of different knives that I will be spending more time on in addition to making throwing knives. I’m doing this now, but not enough. I have some very cool stuff going on behind the scenes that I hope to be able to share soon, so stay tuned.
Raider 4.0 folder and Transition folder
Posted: August 31, 2014 in Uncategorized
After a lot of careful thought, I have implemented a new price structure for my throwing knives. so, effective immediately the new prices are in effect.
Due to the flood of cheap imports and other knives available at half the cost of my knives, I can no longer compete with these lesser priced knives. Everything from the cost of the steel from the mill, shipping to my laser cutter and then to my shop has gone up in price.
I then have to perform a couple of process’ and then send them off to a commercial heat treating facility and back to my shop. None of this is inexpensive for the amount of knives that I make each year.
I also go thru at least four different grits of grinding belts and then the final polish on the buffer to achieve the standards that I set for my knives to insure that my customers get the best product that I am able to offer.
With the proliferation of cheap throwers flooding the market, the custom knife market is not that large to absorb the influx of these knives.
I refuse to cut corners just to compete. My knives are guaranteed for life and have stood the test of time and I try to let them speak for themselves.
I hope that my current customers and future customers feel that my knives are worth the few extra dollars.
Posted: January 20, 2014 in Uncategorized
I think these have may been some confusion when I first opened my order books.
I have had all kinds of request for different style of folders that are not in my line up.
I want to take the time to tell you which folders are going to be in my main line up for 2014.
First of all, I have my basic Raider 4.0 folder. I believe that I have 12 of these cut out with the texture and they are a regular manual opener with a thumb stud. When these are done, their will likely be no more.
The next will be my Transition model. I have approximately 10 of these with the 3-D milling and texture. When these are done, there will likely be no more and if the demand is there, I will bring them back at a slightly higher cost as these have a lot of machining in them.
The final piece will be my West Wind folder. I have approximately 10 -15 of these available and then depending on the demand, I will likely redesign this model into a flipper design.
The two main stay pieces of my line for the foreseeable future will be the flat scale Transition flipper and the new Raider 4.0 flipper. I WILL NOT be offering any customizations to my basic models on orders anytime soon. If I do, they will be incorporated into each knife in the lineup.
Any one of a kind pieces or special runs will only be available on my various forums, websites or at shows.
These will be my standard models that I will build my new line of folders upon. I have some new models in the works, but I can not give any information on them as things change very rapidly. Notice of any new models offered will be available on my USN forums, Bladeforums, Facebook and my website. The photos of the flat scale Transition and the other models except for the new Raider 4.0 flipper can be seen on my website http://www.brantonknives.com. If these are not what you are looking for, feel free to e mail me at email@example.com and I will remove your name from the order books. If any of these knives are of interest to you, feel free to e mail me to be added to the list. I will Re-open the books for a short period of time so that you can have your name placed in the books.
Posted: December 25, 2013 in Uncategorized
I know that my knife making has been shaky at best over the past few years. Trying to make the many different styles of knives to satisfy my many long time customers as well as my new ones can be rough at times. With my two bad knees, I have had to slow down quite a bit and I will be attempting to chart a new course in my knife making for 2014 that will work out best for me and my customers.
I have a couple of cool knife related projects that I have been blessed to be part of scheduled for 2014. Each will be a milestone in my career and hopefully a couple more feathers in my knife cap.
This will be in addition to my restructuring plans for Branton Knives.
As I have mentioned before, I am at a point in my career where I have to work at a slower pace and try to maximize my time and productivity in the shop. The first phase that I hope to have finished right after the first of the year is to finish the orders that I did not complete in time for Christmas. I will be back to work on December 26, 2013 to begin this process.
After that, I have enough folder parts on hand to begin filling a few back ordered folders and begin on a new batch. I will open up the order books for folders for a brief period of time after Christmas. Let me know if you would like to be on that list. I am only going to accept six months of work and then I will shut it down. I really want to put my head into building some of the finest folders available and need to work smart and hard to accomplish this.
I will also be working on some presentation grade fixed blade boot knives and fighters that will be built on spec after I fill a few orders that are long overdue. These will show up on my USN knife forum, Facebook page and my Blog as well as major knife shows like The Blade Super Show in Atlanta, Georgia in June and The Gathering (G-6) in Las Vegas, Nevada on Labor Day weekend.
My whole line of throwing knives will be available from now on under my Tru-Balance Knife Company EAST brand. Both websites should have major updates by January 1st, 2014.
My line of throwing knives will always be available at all times when I have the blades in stock ready to finish.
I have also been building a few bluegrass and folk instruments over the past couple of years and plan on building a few more in the evenings as a way to wind down from the day.
As you can see, I am not slowing down that much, but refocusing my energy on fewer models to help streamline my operation to be more efficient.
In closing, I want to thank each and everyone one of you who have purchased my knives and paid me complements over the years. This is one of the reasons that I am able to continue to make knives. I often have people thank me for making them that special knife. I say to them, do not thank me, I thank you for letting me have the pleasure of making you a knife. I am humbled that people will take their hard earned money and buy my products. To all of my friends and customers, thank you for your support. I could not have done it without you.
Posted: December 24, 2013 in Uncategorized
This will supplement my web site so that I can keep my customers up to date on the latest news at Branton Knives.