Originally starting in 2018 as just a hobby, Shed Knives was started by 3 friends making knives on Saturday mornings. At the time, they didn't have a name, logo, or any solid designs but it was simply just for fun. The very first knife made by Shed Knives was actually not a knife, but it was "katana" or sword made from a piece of steel found in the local woods, wood from a scrap pallet as the handle scales, brass coat hanger for the pins, and a strand of leather to go over the handle.
(Sam Malinky - Left, Jack Billings - Right, the first time the forge had ever been started)
As they started to perfect their craft, the team of friends began getting noticed by friends and family for their new passion. As time went on in 2018, the 3 friends started trading knives for bigger and better machines to build the "Shed Knives Shop." To create the knives, the friends needed a forge. The original forge was made from a a big aluminum bucket, clay from the local river, a coffee can on the inside to keep everything contained, a hair dryer, and a metal tube connecting the forge to the hair dryer. The forge was created for $4.98 with only the vent tube needing to be bought.
(Production process of the 2018 Sheepsfoot)
A Journey Into Business:
The 3 friends started making and selling their first knives which were named the 2019 Sheepsfoot, US Tanto, Drop point, and Wharncliffe. The friends started selling at scouting events, to friends, family, and whoever else wanted one. It is said that 37 knives were sold that year but it cannot be confirmed. Sometime in early 2019, Jack Billings was the only one remaining in the company (Ben, Sam, and Jack still see each other on a regular basis) only because interests change and so do schedules. Through this time, Jack found new team members and was able to continue producing knives and fulfilling orders.
2019 Shed Knives Team (From left to right, Daniel Camp, Jack Billings, Isaiah Daniels, Dylan Callaway)
The Year of Excellence:
After understanding the basics of business in 2019, the start of 2020 was clearly defined with a product release. Shortly after, new team members were hired and the team was bigger and even more ready to grow the company. Jack Billings, now CEO & Founder, was out to find the best method to get knives into the hands of many people across America. That method? Selling to stores. Although less than 10 stores bought, the team had companies across the east coast buying new 2020 knives which helped grow the company even more. Also, Shed Knives Racing was created by sponsoring a dirt track team that ran in the "Little Lincolns" in southern DE.
Shed Knives sponsored car (From left to right, Jack Billings, Dean Calhoun)
One of those new knives was the 2020 Skur. Jack was in the shop making a US Tanto when he sanded too much off the finger groove. This caused a big swooping gap where the small cut-out should be. Jack saw opportunity. Experimenting with this new design, it was now called the Skur, which is Norwegian for "Shed." The name was decided between Jack and a friend of his in Norway. The 2020 Skur has been our No. 1, most bought knife since the release.
With 2020 at a close, the team sold 101 knives exactly.
2020 Shed Knives Team, (From left to right, Jadon Culp, Daniel Camp, Jack Billings, Elvis Chillel-Perez, Sam Malinky)
Passion Meets Precision:
Jack knew there was a way to improve, so the team did just that. Improving the designs, shop layout, and business structure, the team continued to improve and strive to be the best knife company in the world. Although the team is still distant from achieving this far-fetched goal, Shed Knives continues to surpass expectations. Now selling from the east coast to the mid-west with much higher quality production and materials, Shed Knives is rapidly growing and expanding.
TJ Henry on Victory Lane at Bridgeport Speedway with Shed Knives
The Future of Shed Knives:
With rapid growth over the past several years in business, the team is planning on attending Blade Show 2022 in Atlanta, GA to make a large entrance into the knife market. Jack Billings runs Shed Knives, just not how the thousands of small knife makers run theirs, but based off of the strategies companies like Amazon, Alibaba, Porsche, and Ferrari run theirs. The team is bringing strategies from well known companies that are worth billions into a market not known for rapid acceleration & change. The growing team plans to continue this acceleration with the help of large franchises, distributors, and retailers from all across the USA and with businesses across the globe.
A Message From CEO & Founder, Jack Billings
Dear Shed Knives Family,
Welcome to Shed Knives! Or if you've been here before, welcome back! I want to thank you for your support with Shed Knives and staying connected with us. It takes many customers, big and small, to make a business successful for the long term and you play an important role in that long term success. My goal for Shed Knives is to provide the customer with a quality product that allows them to engage in outdoor activities without questioning their equipment so they can focus on the task at hand and just enjoy the outdoors! I've kept all Shed Knives products made in the USA because I want to support American businesses and keep the citizens of our country employed, especially through the tough times of covid restrictions, lockdowns, and foreign shipping delays.
For my vendors, my goal is to provide a source to connect with the end customer through a product that is 100% USA Made and is made entirely with USA materials. I want your customers to have that "American Pride" when they carry an S.K. knife because they know where it's made, what it's from, and the American companies it supports. Each vendor, distributor, wholesaler, and drop shipper plays a major role in the success & brand image of Shed Knives and I thank you for taking on the role to expand the reach of S.K. knives.
For my future customers, I want you to know that the best customer service and customer experience of Shed Knives is a priority for me to provide each client that surfs the Shed Knives site. It is my goal to make you feel Shed Knives is a brand you can come to rely on for high quality knives to excel in the outdoors for years to come. I thank you for your consideration in Shed knives and if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out anytime firstname.lastname@example.org
A note about covid:
Many other knife brands have had material delays, sometimes taking 6 months for delivery, which has impacted so many stores and customers. Shed Knives has not, let me repeat, has not been delayed due to materials during the entire pandemic because Shed Knives sources ALL materials through USA vendors...and I plan to keep it that way.
Thank you all for your support and let's continue to succeed in the outdoors,
W. Jack Billings
CEO & Founder, Shed Knives and Shed Knives Racing