Kevin Walkey

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Kevin Walkey

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About

Three words to define WalkeyCraft are quality, craft, and family; a perfect trio, with each element contributing to the other.

I come from an exciting family of engineers and fabricators; spanning from Lockheed Martin, to a Disney Imagineer, to a land speed racer designer and driver, to a movie special effects producer. I have continuously been inspired by my family's ability to meld education and innovation.

I have also always had a passion for drawing; be it logos, illustrations, or technical mapping. It seemed obvious to combine my love of drawing with my engineering background and my knowledge of CNC laser programming. This mix jump-started many custom metal projects: key chains, trophies, business signs, license plates, logos, art -- I am always up for a challenge. I had found a way to make my passion my living. Now, thanks to the success of WalkeyCraft, I am able to do what I love to support my wife and our three awesome boys.
On the bottle cap openers:
My friends and I have always used the proverbial term "man card" jokingly with one another -- so much so, that I decided to cut actual "man cards" out as Christmas presents one year. The steel cut, 14 ga cards came complete with a list of manly rules for keeping one's Man Card valid. They were a hit.
Not soon after, I found myself stranded without a bottle opener and resorted to using the edge of my Man Card to remedy the situation. It seemed like an obvious coupling, combining a bottle opener with my Man Card. I made a batch to keep with me at all times and freely handed them out to hand out to anyone I might see doing something Man Card-worthy. The reactions were awesome -- people got so excited over this silly bottle opener that I had made. After a whole lot of testing with my friends and encouragement from card recipients, my bestseller was born.
In December of 2014 I was visiting friends and enjoying drinks at a Hooter's restaurant. In a moment of liquid courage, I slapped down my Man Card in lieu of cash to pay for the bill. When the waitress took the check, she began to laugh; she actually found it so funny she began showing other patrons and her fellow employees and promptly asked where she could purchase one. Unfortunately, at that time I didn't sell them anywhere -- and that's when she told me about Etsy. Obviously, I gave her that Man Card.
At that time my wife had been laid off from her position at American Medical Response due to outsourcing, and I was trying to find additional means to support my family. After doing a little research on Etsy, I started my first account; people have been buying and supporting my work from WalkeyCraft ever since. Etsy has been amazing, enabling me to work a full-time job, allowing my wife to stay home, and saving me from having to seek out a second job.
The absolute best part about WalkeyCraft is that I am able to spend time with my wife and children -- and creating and sending out the cards is a family effort. I laser cut the parts, and my wife and I then pop out the centers of the cut areas (while talking, watching movies together, and helping the boys out with homework), tossing each cut part into a bucket we bring out into the living room. I then use a rotary power hand sander on each card, front and back, to remove any burrs and scratches left by the laser. My wife and I then hand inspect every single card, ensuring that each will be sent out in perfect condition.

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  • Kevin Walkey

    Owner

    I've been playing with lasers for over 17 years and still love it. I started in 2001 (my Senior year of High School) at a fabrication shop engineering and programming CNC laser cutting machines. I'm also married and have 3 amazing boys.

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