The Makers

Who we are and what we do

Gavin Coleman

As well as being the founder of Ironside Edge Works, Gavin has also designed the majority of the models we currently make. He has also been a self defence and combative practitioner for many years. With a background in Krav Maga he has worked as a full time instructor and has taught both civilian and law enforcement clients. In 2016 Gavin began working with his long time friend and mentor Schalk Holloway on an edge and point explorative system called The Maul. This is also where his knife making journey began. 

This experience of exploring and fine tuning the skills needed to survive a worst case scenario with an edge and point weapon not only spawned a book co-authored by Schalk and Gavin which has gone on to receive critical acclaim, but it also provided much needed insight into knives with the express purpose of being used defensively. Incidentally, the book is worth a read. Check out The Maul: Preparing for the Chaos of Close Combatives on Amazon. 

Gavin has gone on to make custom knives for many notable patrons including Craig Douglas. He is still a keen practitioner of self defence and combatives, but no longer teaches.


Elijah-Robert Wessels

Elijah began working with Gavin part-time in 2019 just after finishing high school in a year spent dedicated to his martial arts training. After a tumultuous apprenticeship through 2020 and the Covid-19 Lockdowns, Elijah officially became a Junior Knifemaker at Ironside Edge Works and has grown into an integral part of what we do. 

Though young, Elijah has a wealth of experience in Martial Arts. He is a 3rd Dan JKA practitioner who has represented South Africa at international competition. Since working with Gavin he has also been involved in learning The Maul and self defence practice, applying his traditional arts to the latter, he has developed some of his own unique insights. 

Elijah has designed his own knives including the Enenra and Makara, and is now a primary Knifemaker.