Roger Hatt

Roger Hatt

Roger, who lives near Enderby, BC, tells the story of going on whitetail deer hunting trip with his brother, Pat, and some friends and returning determined to make a knife.

The story goes something like this …. At the end of a day of hunting they were sitting around the campfire and Pat told Roger he was a rookie because he was the only guy there who didn’t have a custom knife. One of the guys showed his collection of custom hunting knives. Roger was very impressed and choose one but when he found out it was $450.00 he said “I can make my own knife”. The guys laughed but that fueled Roger’s determination. He got home and went straignt to the library and got a Readers Digest book on how to make a knife. He found an old file, annealed and filed it, then made an elk horn handle (he still has that knife).  He made several knives from old files, springs, and any steel he could find.  He never thought he would sell a knife until a neighbor dropped in and wanted to buy one. Roger thought “maybe this is something” … that was 30 years ago in 1994.

He transformed his woodworking shop with a $1,800 grinder purchase that he replicated and made two more grinders for $84.00 each.  He sold most of his woodworking tools and bought a lathe, drill press, sanders, and a used Heat Treat oven. Over the years Roger created a fully equipped shop that enables Roger to make knives fast. When his wife, Diane, needed a folding knife for a gift the next day, Roger had it ready in 5 ½ hours.  Diane is his #1 fan and his best critic.  She provides constructive input on all of his knives.

In 2000 Roger left his career of building log homes and joined his brother in a logging operation. Unfortunately two years later Roger’s right arm was injured by a falling tree.   It took him most of the year to recover and during that time he decided to become a fulltime knifemaker.

Roger has a “builder’s eye” for design and does not use blue prints instead he draws out the design on the steel and starts to grind.  He has a natural ability for grinding blades and adapts as he goes along. One of the main things he likes about knifemaking is the endless opportunity to learn new skills. For example he didn’t make Kitchen knives because he was uncomfortable with flat/convex grind and then taking it to 400 grit hand sand. But when COVID hit many people started cooking and kitchen knives were in demand, then Roger started making these knives.

He learned folding knives from Frank Niro. Frank was a longtime folding knifemaker and when he saw Roger’s hunting knives he offered to teach Roger folding knives.  They learned from each other. Roger feels that learning knifemaking skills is a social event. For example, knifemaker Jim Clow invited Roger and four other knifemakers to join him at his home and learn to make Damascus. They stayed for a week and came away with lifelong skills and many happy memories.

Roger makes hunters, folders, daggers, bowies and various miniatures of each and a full range of kitchen cutlery.  His knives have sold all over the world.  He and Diane have attended many trade shows in the past but now they attend three shows every year including Kamloops Gun and Knife show and Wataskiwin Metal Arts Show both of which are key shows for the Western Canada Knife Association (WCKA).  They are founding members of the WCKA and very active members. Diane is the Membership Chair.  They attend these shows to see other knifemakers who have become their friends over the years.  Roger said “one of the best things about knifemaking is the people who have become friends and their willingness to share their knowledge”.

Roger’s steel preferences are:  RWL 34 Stainless, CPM 154, M4, W2, O-1 for hunting knives and daggers.  He likes AEB-L for most kitchen knives. Handle materials he likes mammoth ivory, mother of pearl, and stabilized wood.

Roger’s advice to new knifemakers is: “Never be happy with what you’ve done. Your next knife will be better. Be a sponge and absorb all the information you can.  Keep learning from your mistakes. Be a risk taker; if you don’t push yourself you will never get better. ”

Check out Roger’s knives at:

If you are interested in the Western Canada Knife Association see the website at
Contact Diane for a membership at: 250 838 6649.


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