How to Keep Track of your Custom Orders

How do you keep track of your custom knife orders? What systems exist to make this easy? Here, we’ll share a few examples from the community. All knife makers mentioned here have graciously allowed us to share how they stay organized.

The point of this blog post is not only how others do it—but also to make you feel alright with how you are doing it. As you’ll see on this page, a lot of makers make it work with very simple systems. Remember: if it works, it’s a winner.

3co_knives: Sheets for part list, work steps, checklist

Another way we use at work is to make an order sheet. First you have the part list with everything listed, then the working steps listed individually, and as the last part a checklist for quality control.

In the header you have:

  • Name of customer
  • Knife model /short specs
  • Serial number or number you gave that knife
  • Start datum
  • Finish datum/deadline (if you are doing more than one knife at that moment you want to double/triple the time you need for one knife)
  • Price or where your price is to find (like an exel list name)
  • If there was any payment before

Behind that sheet you have the drawing of the blade if you have one or anything to do with that knife.

@aden_krause: Printed order sheet papers in a folder

“I have order sheet papers that—when I get a new order—I print it out and write down everything.

[Then] I have a folder out in the shop I keep the papers in. I am pretty good at remembering but it’s always good to have something to reference to! They also say the price of the knife and the customer and phone number just so I don’t have to scroll through my phone for an hour!”

@balticblades: Containers for the knife parts and a piece of paper

Paper or wrappings include grit finish.

Best shown with a pic:

@gemini_bespoke_knives: Whiteboards

“4 whiteboards full of scribbles and stressfully vague descriptions … and a lot of email checking” (As a side note, isn’t it amazing how Dean tells a story in one sentence? 💯

@kamon_knives: “Parking Spots” & sheets above

Benjamin Kamon Knives makes plenty of custom knives—and he keeps it organized with “parking slots” for each knife, and the details on a sheet above it.

“Parking spots“ for each knife
And above each knife, the paper with all the details.

See also his IG post here.

@moehring.makes: Book with columns

As orders come in, they get numbered. Details like individual priority, requests are added.

@nedflyknives: Sheet of paper, knife on top

Caden draws the design on a piece of paper, then places all necessary parts on that paper.

@t.n.knives: Custom-built cupboard + paper

@tsak.basementmade90: Excel spreadsheet

He’s got a spreadsheet with name, model, engraving, etc, and he works it down top to bottom.

Thanks so much to everyone who shared!! While it’s a bunch of work getting all this organized, you’re the ones being generous in sharing how you do things. I’m again, and still, amazed. 🙏

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