I'm sorry to announce that Mr. Butch Vallotton has passed at the age of 77.
This was posted by his Son Rainy on his facebook page.
BUTCH VALLOTTON PASSES AWAY
Butch Vallotton, long-time maker and designer of custom auto and other folding knives, passed away earlier today. He was 77.
Rainy, Butch’s son and also a knifemaker, posted the following this morning on his Facebook page:
“My Dad has been in this knife business for 40+ years and he touched a great many good people. Some he helped by phone, some he was hands on help and others he took under his wing.
“He is my Dad, my father, my hero, my mentor and my friend. He taught me to walk, to talk and to fish. He taught me to drive a stick in his Toyota 4x4 truck. He taught me to love and how to be a food father and a better dad to not only my kids but to many, many other kids that needed a dad.
“He was a good man, a great dad and a caring human.”
Butch specialized in double-action autos and converting manual folders into autos. He was noted especially for folding knives with unusual and creative opening mechanisms.
He sold his first knife in 1981, started making knives full time in 1984 and made his first auto in 1987. His assisted-knife technology is in use by Gerber and he worked with Spyderco and Microtech designing the Chameleon Double Action. He also designed knives for the old GATCO/Timberline.
Two of his designs won BLADE Magazine Knife-Of-The-Year® Awards: the Timberline/Buch Vallotton Discovery for Best Buy Of The Year in 2000 and the Spyderco Vallotton Sub-Hilt Folder for Imported Knife Of The Year® in 2011.
According to the Vallotton Custom Knives web site, Butch was the first folder maker to use a blade thumb stud as a stop pin for the knife’s lock. The Spyderco Vallotton Sub-Hilt honors this innovation and is reportedly the only Spyderco knife to feature both a thumb stud and the company’s familiar round opening hole in the blade.
Butch is the patriarch of a three-generational knifemaking family that includes his son Rainy and Rainy’s son, Brandon.
As these words were written, memorial services had not yet been announced.
Butch and I go back decades and I really learned a lot from him. We are honored to have been able to make some of his designs and we do have a new one that he gave to Eric.
It sounds like Mr Vallotton advanced the state of the art of knives at Gerber, Spyderco, Microtech, GATCO and Blade. He has left him imprint on the world and will be missed.
Spyderco Collection: Military (S110V), Bob Lum Darn Dao(CPM-154), Yojimbo 2 (1 in S30V & 2 in 20CV), Sustain(20CV), Native 5(Maxamet), Jumpmaster 2(H1), Province(4V). SHORT LIST: CF Shaman(S90V), Lum Tanto, Native Chief(?), Street Beat (4V at 60+ HRC).
From my brief time with the Sub-hilt, the design showed a very distinct design sense and significant attention to detail. The knife world will miss him!
EDC Rotation: PITS, Shaman, CF S90v Shaman, Ikuchi, Amalgam, CruCarta Shaman, Lil Native, Sage 5 LW, Ouroboros, 4V Shaman, Watu Always in Pocket: Hawkbill Dragonfly 2 H1 Special and Sentimental: Southard, Smallfly G10, Squarehead LW, Calendar Para 3 LW, 40th Anniversary Native Would like to own again: Sheepsfoot Caribbean Wishlist: CQI Kapara, Tanto PM2, Shaman Sprints!
Butch Vallotton, you will be missed. I hope your life was full of happiness and joy. While this is nothing in comparison to the loss your family must be feeling, you're also a great loss to the knife world. Thank you for your work, and rest in peace.
I used to collect a lot of knives... I still do, but i used to too.
I read Rainy's post just after he posted it.
It's always incredibly sad to lose a parent or dear one, and in this case it echoes all the way through the knife community. I never met the man himself, but i have talked to Rainy, and got the impression he so eloquently posted when his dad passed.
I was very sad to hear, also for having lost two of the people who were closest to me, my uncle and mom recently.
My condolences go out to Butch's family and friends. May he rest in peace!
"Life is fragile - we should take better care of each other, and ourselves - every day!"
//Eva Mott R.I.P.
Prototype Butch Valloton double action folder with right handed linerlock from 1993.
Prototype for a series of year knives for Soldier of Fortune magazine.
Length opened: 25,3 cm
Length closed: 13,8 cm
Blade length: 11,3 cm
Blade thickness: 3,92 mm
Steelt: probably O1
Handle material: black canvas Micarta on steel liners, with titanium spring.
Weight: 237 gram