Kelly Dallyn - Knifemaker

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I would like to say that I can remember all the knives that I have had in my life time, but I don't. I grew up on a farm in North Eastern Alberta cutting twine, willow, packaging and whatever else that needed cutting on the farm. I always had a knife but they were never of a great quality. The first real knife that I remember was a Buck knock off from China with the brass integral handle, I used it for hunting and daily chores, but it was never a knife that held an edge very long.

I think that the main reason that I started to make knives is what I call the three "N's".
Necessity – the need for a good knife
No money – good knives are more costly and as an apprentice machinist and millwright money was tight
And the biggest reason I started to make knives is that they are: Neat – the challenge of making a knife is something that I couldn't pass up

My knife making adventures began 12 or so years ago and I presently make knives from all types of steel. I forge the knives from carbon steel, or I will make Damascus billets and then produce the knife from the billet. My Damascus building became when I met a man by the name of Bill Fiorini at the college I was teaching at in Calgary. I spent the next two summers visiting his shop in Minnesota and building steel in the morning and knives in the afternoon. I also will make knives from stainless and using the stock removal method. I have spent time in a few makers shops, asking questions and watching their methods. At the beginning of my knife career I spent time with Emile Burcharsky and recently I have been spending quite a bit of time with Thomas Haslinger.

I have field tested my knives myself and I also keep in touch with my customers who are field testing my knives every day. I have many customers that regularly hunt or trap and are using my knives in many different situations and with their input I can decide if everything is satisfactory or if I need to change any aspect of a design. The knives I build are usually my design but I will work the customer to incorporate their ideas and wishes.

I have had a lot of help from other makers and you learn from their styles and methods. I think that every maker is influenced some way or another by other makers, be it through advice or reading about them. I must thank all those who have helped me get this far and those who I constantly pester for how to do tips to further my career. Please check out my links as most of them will be there.

Thank you,

Kelly Dallyn