Jun 18, 2014
by JEFF SPRY CBN Feature Writer
Central Oregon is fertile ground for vital mom-and-pop businesses in niche service-oriented areas like shoe repair, locksmiths and ailing electronics. They’re the necessary cogs in the societal wheels that keep our region rolling smoothly.
Never A Dull Moment is a mobile sharpening service based in Bend that brings a glint of finely-honed happiness and sweet sharpened steel to your life. Open your kitchen drawer, bathroom cabinet or tool shed and you’ll most likely find dull, rusting and neglected cutlery and cutting devices that could use some immediate tender loving care.
Owner Jamie “Twig” Branch caters to a multitude of grateful commercial and residential customers who utilize his expertise to replenish the usability to their knives, scissors, clippers and gardening tools.
“I started this business back in 1998 and also did some sharpening back east,” he said. “Like on speed skates, ice skates and hockey skates, and have been living in Bend since 1991. The active lifestyle brought me here. I’m a skier, biker, rafter, boater and now raising kids.”
Branch mostly applies his craft in commercial sharpening for restaurants, hair salons, dog groomers, horsemen, quilters, landscape designers and yard maintenance firms. He has a convenient drop-off service in five locations in Bend, two in Sisters and one in Redmond.
In Bend, it’s Morrow’s Sewing and Vacuum, Stark’s Vacuum, Absolute Horse, QuiltWorks and Hancock Fabrics. For Sisters, the drop-zones are The Stitching Post and Hoyt’s Hardware. In Redmond it’s Redmond Sewing and Vacuum.
“Customers can bring in their kitchen and hunting knives, scissors, clipper blades and yard tools to any of those locations and I swing by and do the work on my designated day.”
Branch gets constant compliments and comments on the whimsical business name and finds it perfectly appropriate.
“I just sold my ‘87 F-350 ambulance that served as the work vehicle and upgraded to a newer Chevy Express van.
One of the fun parts of the business is working with a lot of different kitchens and groomers and meeting different people and seeing their small businesses. It seems to keep me in touch with the community as well. My wife, Mare Schelz, is an artist and we’re really flexible with our schedule. That’s the great Central Oregon lifestyle, to be able to do that as well.”
Never A Dull Moment operates in a specialized field and stresses the importance of keeping your cutting implements in good working order no matter what your field or profession.
“There’s a lot of ways you can dull a knife on counter tops or using a basic sharpening steel improperly,” he explained. “I have a number of different machines in the van, including a professional knife sharpener that sets a consistent bevel and then I finish it off with a ceramic wet stone that hones it to a super-sharp consistency.
“I’m happy with the level of business I’ve built up and appreciate the support of all my clients. And I’m glad to have survived for the last 16 years doing something I love.”
Jamie “Twig” Branch, 541-815-0402