Jay Fisher - World Class Knifemaker

Quality Without Compromise

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Knife Maker's Mark for Jay Fisher Knives

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"Hooded Warrior" (Shadow Line) obverse side view in 440C high chromium stainless steel blade, 304 stainless steel bolsters, black G10 fiberglass/epoxy composite handle, locking kydex, anodized aluminum, stainless steel sheath
"Hooded Warrior"

Purchasing Your Custom Knife

Custom Handmade Knives

This page is only for custom knife purchases. If you're interested in finished knives that I have currently available in my inventory, please click here for purchase details on finished knives.

If you're at this page then you've probably decided generalities or specifics on the fine knife you want. I've included information on this page to make the transaction simple, easy, and fast.

Over half my work is custom: made just as the knife client wants. Please remember that I only take a limited amount of custom orders every year, as demand is high, and I don't want to make my clients wait an inordinately long time.

Think about it:

You haven't found what you are looking for. They can't make it; you can't make it.
That's why you're here.

Don't worry about using the wrong word or phrase if you contact me about a knife project. I'm expected to know these knife definitions and terms, not you; I fly the plane, you just tell me your origin and destination.


What's the most important thing a client can do?

The most important thing is to keep me informed of your address, telephone number, or email changes!

If you are an existing client waiting on a knife and have changed your address, telephone number, email or other contact information, you must let me know! Otherwise, when I've completed your project and I can't reach you, I'll have to sell your project to the public! Please, please, keep me updated or you will lose your deposit and the ability to purchase your knife order!

How does this work?
$200 deposit, balance due on completion
  • You decide on the type of knife and features and accessories you want.
  • Through email or conversation, I give you a quote on a project detailing the knife.
  • If you agree to the quote, you pay a non-refundable $200.00 deposit per knife.
  • I put your project in my lineup, and you wait. I work up the design, and start building your knife or knives.
  • You wait.
  • Okay, I have a long order list, so you patiently wait some more.
  • You keep tabs on your knife progress on my "Jay, where's my knife?" page on this website. And you wait.
  • Why is this taking so long? See a special page here for the reasons.
  • I email you when your knife is finished, and you pay the balance and shipping.
  • I send you your beautiful custom handmade knife or knives!

For more related details, please look at my Knife Sales Policy page here.

What about custom knife designs?
  • A non-refundable $200.00 deposit per knife is required to start work on your knife. The deposit goes toward the cost of your finished knife or knives. This design fee is also your standard non-refundable deposit.
  • You may choose from over 450 knife designs and patterns here, and you can mix and match handles and blades and specify sizes.
  • You may submit your own ideas or design, and have me work with you to make the design workable
  • If you have a very large or elaborate project, I may require a non-refundable deposit of up to half of the total cost of the project in advance. Of course, the deposit goes toward the cost of your finished project.

My money: how much and when?

Simply put, on most custom knives, I require a non-refundable $200.00 deposit per knife. After we have agreed on the knife I am to make for you, the deposit is used to purchase blade steel, handle material, and some of the expendables that will be used to build your knife. It also compensates me slightly for the initial investment of time to start your project.

For new custom knife designs, the non-refundable $200.00 design fee is required to pay for all my work on a new design for you. The design fee goes toward the cost of your knife. Read the details about the design fee here.

The only thing I ask is that when your knife is finished, please be ready to pay the balance so I can ship it to you right away. I realize that some people like to pay on a knife over time, but with so many knife orders in production, this would translate into an accounting nightmare for me. The easiest and most proven method I've used for over 30 years is the low deposit, and balance due on completion process. The waiting period also gives you, my client, the time to save up for the balance.

For more related details, please look at my Knife Sales Policy page here.

What if I want to pay more, sooner?

I get asked this question frequently, and I do not accept early payments on most custom knife orders. Large, elaborate projects that require a substantial investment in materials and supplies are an exception. The reasons I don't accept early payments are many.

  • The unthinkable: If something were to happen to me, I would not want to leave my family with a huge accounting nightmare to settle, as well as substantial debt to return.
  • I like to keep my accounting simple. I don't want to have to use complicated spreadsheets and record keeping to account for every dime of a client's money. I don't have enough time to make knives, much less run numbers and keep account records.
  • In our country, we are taxed on income we make. Accepting large payments early requires me being taxed on money that I haven't made yet! Not a wise business practice.
  • If something happens to the client or the order is canceled, a modest return is easier to swallow than a substantial one.
  • The low deposit and balance due on completion allows clients to plan for, save, and set aside their final payment.
  • Paying early is sometimes seen as a method to move a project up in the queue faster. That's not fair to those who've been waiting, so I don't do it.
  • If I am asked to hold a client's money or property, just as with holding a finished knife or materials and supplies owned by the client, I am now responsible for securing, protecting, and insuring his property against theft, fire, flood, or any of the unthinkable disasters both manmade and acts of God (think identity theft). In essence, if I am holding a client's money, I am doing the same job as a bank that is insured by the federal government. But there is no federally insured policy for knifemakers that will cover this, so it puts all of the risk on me, an individual knife maker. I am not a bank.
  • There are more reasons, here's a link on my Business of Knifemaking page. Thanks for understanding.

By the way, this method of custom knife order and purchase has worked very well for me and for my clients for over 30 years!

What payment methods do you accept?

Please remember that the choice of how to pay for a knife order is my responsibility, and therefore my decision as to what type of payment I can accept. There are many factors that come into play, and not all methods can be used to pay for all types of purchases from every location. I reserve the right to choose what type of payment I accept. Thanks for understanding.

  • Money order: Upon completion, your knife order is shipped the same day that your money order clears my bank, which may take a few days.
  • Cashier's check: You need to send it USPS FedEx, or UPS, signature confirmation for security purposes. Your completed knife order is shipped the same day the cashier's check is received.
  • Cash: Yes, I do accept United States currency. You need to send it USPS FedEx, or UPS, signature confirmation for security purposes. Your completed knife order is shipped the same day the payment is received.
  • Personal check: I accept personal checks, but my bank may take a few days for the check to clear. The completed knife is shipped the same day the check is cleared.
  • Western Union Transfers: This is a good way to directly wire money. A fee is charged by Western Union. Click here to find a location, worldwide. Western Union can also be used to wire money directly into my account, please email me for routing information.
  • Wires (or Wire Transfers): I accept both domestic and international bank to bank wires (also called wire transfers). Domestic wires are usually verified in 24 hours, international wires take 3-5 business days. Contact me for routing numbers and account details. You'll incur an additional $15.00 fee for this service; that is what the bank charges me for an incoming transfer. This is a very fast, secure way to pay for an order.
  • Direct Bank Transfer Wells Fargo and USAA: If you have an account with Wells Fargo or USAA, you can directly transfer the payment right into my account. This may be the fastest, easiest way to pay for your knife. Daily limits are $1000. Contact me for account and routing number information.
  •  MasterCard or Visa:
    Beginning in March of 2017, I've stopped taking credit cards for payments. The reason for this is because for over two years, not one client has used a credit card to pay for their purchase. It makes no sense for me to pay for a merchant account when none of my clients are using it. Clearly, direct wire transfer and checks are my client's preferred way of paying for their purchases, and they may well be using a credit card online through their bank to complete a wire transfer. I believe that in the future, wire transfer will be the main way that money and payments are made.
  • Payments or Layaways: Sorry, I don't accept time payments (or layaway) for knives. I expect you to have the balance due before the knife is delivered. You can make arrangements with your credit card company, bank, credit union, or lending institution to pay the balance completely.
  • For your records and information, payments are made to:
    Jay Fisher
    1405 Edwards
    Clovis, NM 88101

What about orders outside the United States?

Please remember that the choice of how to pay for a knife order is my responsibility, and therefore my decision as to what type of payment I can accept. There are many factors that come into play, and not all methods can be used to pay for all types of purchases from every location. I reserve the right to choose what type of payment I accept. Thanks for understanding.

I accept these international methods of payment:

  • International wire transfers: Bank to bank transfers: contact me for routing numbers. You will incur a fee for this service, which varies from bank to bank. Make the transfers in US Dollars at the time of the transfer. In my experience, this has proven to be the fastest, surest way to pay for a knife project.
  • Western Union Wires: Contact me for my location details or look up the nearest location at Western Union's website here. You will incur a modest fee for this transaction, it is a good way to pay for your knife. Make the wires in US Dollars. Western Union can also be used to wire money directly into my account, please email me for routing information.
  • Credit cards: Due to international limitations, I do not accept payments by credit card.
  • Money orders: Sorry, I can not accept money orders that originate outside the United States of America.
  • Shipping charges and methods: I now ship FedEx to all locations. Shipping by FedEx is tracked and delivery is guaranteed. Read about my shipping on a special page here.

Obviously, the client is responsible for paying his own country's taxes, duties, and fees. These vary by country. Also important is to know if your country restricts or controls imports of knives, as I can not ship knives or all types of knives to every country.

What happens if I can't pay for my knife order?

Payment is due when services are rendered.

You'll see this sign in just about every business, and this business is no different. When the knife is completed, payment is due. If it's a custom order, it's likely that the client has had years to prepare for the payment, and (unlike other knife makers) the client can check up on the progress of his project daily on the "Where's My Knife, Jay?" page at the queue.

When I inform the client that his custom knife or project is complete, the client has 10 business days to pay the balance, or the knife is offered to the public or other interested buyers.

  • I do not accept installments or layaways. If you've paid your deposit I expect you to have the balance due when the knife is finished. You can make arrangements with your credit card company, or bank, credit union, or lending institution to pay the balance completely; I am not a bank. Then the knife is shipped to you as soon as it's paid for.
  • If you've decided you don't want or can't pay for the knife, then you've forfeited your deposit, and I'll put your knife for sale on my website. I will probably put it up for sale on the site for more than we contracted for, as the knives typically appreciate in value while in the queue!.
  • I understand that things happen, and I also have to protect my work and investment of time and materials. I complete my responsibility of the project and sale, and I expect the client to do the same. It's that simple, and it's worked great for over 30 years.

For more related details, please look at my Knife Sales Policy page here.

What if I want to postpone my order?

The only thing I ask is that when the knife or project is completed, that the client be ready to pay for it. Unfortunately, things happen, the economy is tough, or you've had a problem and you still want the knife, but you can't get pay for the balance... yet. There is no other company that will take a custom order and then hold onto the product indefinitely to wait for the client to complete the purchase. It's not reasonable to ask that of a knife maker, either.

Once in a while, but thankfully, not often, I get asked to postpone an order, or hold on to it because the client does not have the money to complete the purchase due to special or unforeseen circumstances in his life. Though I understand that bad things happen, I've done my best to complete the knife order, and spent a great deal of money and time to complete the knife, holding up my end of the contract based on a very low down payment. If the person who ordered it can not pay for it, I still need to recover my investment. Imagine, in your own job, if you've done the work and your boss tells you you'll have to wait to get paid, perhaps indefinitely. Ouch!

I reserve the right to accept or refuse the postponement of any custom knife order and also the balance due of the knife order payment. If a postponement is accepted, it can not exceed one calendar year from the time of the original order, or the order must be re-quoted.

This protects me from creating knives that are quoted at prices that are many years old, since the actual knife creation is made in the current year. For instance, asking a maker to postpone for an inordinately long time is like asking an automobile manufacturer to sell you this year's model car at 2015 prices, and that is unreasonable. If the quote is not agreed upon, the deposit is forfeited or applied to another project at my discretion.

Sometimes, if a knife is still in the very early stages of creation, it may be possible to reset it to the recent time of the queue as little effort has been spent yet on the job. But this only works for knives that are early in production, and the choice to reset the project in the queue is at my discretion and on an individual basis. Like my client, I work for a living, and have to get paid for my effort, and I may need to sell the knife to the public to pay my bills and support my family.

Spreading out multiple knives over years

Occasionally, I have clients that wish to spread out their order of multiple knives. For instance, a chef may want to order a knife every two years until he has his toolkit filled, but wants to know in advance what all of them will cost. It is not reasonable to quote for a large group of knives and then have to work with that quote 5, 8, or 10 years later. Inevitably, everything goes up in expenses and costs of a knife, accessories, and even electricity that runs the shop. It is unreasonable to be locked into a quote that is many years old. That's like buying a current year model car, and 5 year old car prices, and it's just not fair. Multiple knives that are not to be made at the same time must be individually quoted.

Thanks for understanding.

What about this long waiting period?

My waiting period is shorter than some makers, and longer than others. Please click here for a detailed description of why. It also depends on your knife. Because of my popularity, there is a large demand for my custom work, so a waiting period is expected. I know of makers who may put you on a seven to ten year wait! Orders can get hectic, so, you may have to wait a bit. It will be worth it, I guarantee it. Read more about waiting and see who you'd be waiting with and why on my "Where's my knife, Jay?" page here.

What if you can't wait? Sometimes a deployment is the reason for this, and the best I can offer is to have a knife client look over the Works in Production list, and keep an eye on my Tactical Knives for Sale page, as for each custom order I make one knife that I offer to the public. They don't last long on the "for sale" pages, so it may help to keep an eye on those pages weekly.

What if I want to add to, upgrade, or change my order?

During the course of a project's construction, or during the wait in the queue, a client might wish to add to, upgrade, or change an order. I reserve the right to accept or deny any changes in any order, and that includes additions to a project.

There are reasons I have to do this:

  • Artistic preferences: If a project is underway, near completion, or complete, it has been created around an underlying artistic concept, which I have carefully considered. Adding to that concept may overwhelm the piece, adding more to it, confusing the idea, and, in essence, gilding the lily. Gilding the lily means over-decorating, over-embellishing, and overworking a piece of art that is already beautiful enough. Sometimes, doing so will simply destroy its beauty as the simple becomes the complicated. You can understand this when you see knives in display cabinets in big cities, that are essentially plain, simple, or even factory knives with diamonds, rubies, emeralds, and complex gold inlay and engraving covering them over. There are jewelry stores and outlets that request this type of gaudy crust and at some point, it just becomes tasteless; like plaster cherubs painted with gold spray paint. As an artist, I reserve the right to say when enough is, indeed, enough.
  • Time constraints: If you have commissioned a project from me, please understand that I have many, perhaps a hundred or more projects in the works. These are allocated time and schedule, and adding to an existing project sets everyone else's projects back. Considering that emergencies, equipment failures, injury, and mistakes happen in any artist's studio, the projects can be easily set back further. All of this time comes from other client's projects, and they wait while additional or different work is being done. Please remember that in sole authorship works, all the work is done by my hands alone, and all offhand.
  • Money and expense: All projects for custom orders are quoted, usually years in advance. In the time while a project is waiting in the queue, the knife is appreciating. It's not unusual for a knife value to double while in the queue; many investing clients are counting on this! So when additional services, parts, or upgrades are requested, it's usually not economically feasible to charge today's rate for a quote that is four years old. If I charge today's prices for the work, a client can feel it's too much; if I charge years old prices for today's work, I short my business in expenses, materials and supplies, and time.
  • Client's Situation: Once in a while, a client will ask to change his order. Sometimes, an upgrade is requested, sometimes, a downgrade. This is almost always because of the financial situation of the client. A financial situation has changed, for better or for worse, and the client wants that to be reflected on his order. If this is requested, it means an entirely new quote. The reasons are several, and include time spent on the project, planning and materials, supplies and expenses, design and workup. Continually changing an order is unreasonable and time consuming, so a firm, fixed quote has to be established.

This doesn't mean that I always refuse to upgrade, add to, or further projects, but it's not something I usually do. Any additional work would have to be quoted and the current rate, and would have to go back into the queue to be completed. For instance, at the time of this writing, I've got one of my older knives that is being upgraded with my engraving. The client is paying more than twice what he paid for the knife, just for the engraving!

Are there other fees or costs?

The shipping charge is extra, and it's based on the size, weight, value, and delivery method. I ship FedEx, and each shipping charge is calculated on an individual basis. See my knife shipping page here.

Is the knife guaranteed?

I guarantee my workmanship for my lifetime, for as long as I'm physically able. While I cannot guarantee refunds for elaborate custom projects, I will do my best to make sure you're satisfied. Over 2000 knife purchases over 40 years (about 30 years full time) and all positive feedback proves I'm doing something right! You're in good company as a patron and client, with some of the most demanding knife collectors and users in the world. They are all very happy with their purchase, and my fine collector's custom knives appreciate yearly.

For more related details, please look at my Knife Sales Policy page here.

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