Chad Nell was born in Manti, Utah in 1971. While growing up, he noticed that his father, who was a Master Mechanic, enjoyed the challenge of making beautifully crafted arrowheads from flint gathered in the surrounding hills. Throughout his childhood, Chad developed an intense appreciation for seeing things built from scratch while using one's hands and mind to design and create wonderful treasures.
Chad has always dreamed about making things that embodied precision, functionality and beauty. Luckily, Chad inherited his father’s talent of working with his hands! While pursuing this great desire of working and creating with his hands, Chad was fortunate to gain his custom hand made knives knowledge and skill under legendary knife makers Steve Johnson and John Young. He watched and learned, with great admiration, as those two masters created works of art.
Chad Nell has always had a strong attachment to his roots of Utah. Over the years, he has held various occupations but just wasn't satisfied. His heart and spirit kept pulling him back to creating and making things with his hands. Being an avid outdoors-man, he always enjoyed hunting. While using a "factory" knife when hunting one day, he decided he should contact his Uncle Steve for some help on building his own custom knife, and that's where he got his start!
It's an art that just can't be learned from books and the internet. It requires years of apprenticing with great Masters, experimenting and taking the time to acquire that "feel" of producing a product. Only after years of learning and practicing this art of making something with your hands, will that finished product be a true work of art. Custom Knives are just that - a work of art!
The design of the knife takes on so many characteristics - how does it feel? Is it balanced properly? What type of metal for the blade? What type handle? Is it for show or actual use? How long will it take to make? All of these questions about design and the integrity of the knife itself must be thought of first. The craftsman then has a "look and feel" that the customer wants - Nell Knives.
Transferring that design into the finished product is what makes Chad Nell's knives so special.
Chad considers himself extremely fortunate to have grown up in Central Utah, at the foot of the Manti Lasal Mountains. This is the same area which has produced such world renowned custom knife makers Gil Hibben, Steve Johnson and John Young. Chad is forever indebted to Steve Johnson and John Young for giving him the opportunity to spend time training and working with these two legends, honing his craft and developing his own unique style of handmade custom knives.
Let Nell Knives design, create and be the perfect custom knife maker for you. Chad will consult with you throughout the entire design process, from the raw stainless steel used, type of single edge blade or double edge blade and of course, your custom handle material. Don't leave anything to chance. Get it right the first time.