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Paulo Balzano

Discussion in 'FEEDBACK: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly!' started by Heineken, May 16, 2017.

  1. JohnWE


    Dec 7, 2013
    He probably should have paid the rent at his old shop...
    palonej likes this.
  2. brancron

    brancron Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 14, 2011
  3. Heineken


    Mar 23, 2012
    The story as I understand it is Zodiaceng on IG was his "business partner" and now that he kicked balzano to the curb I don't think balzano can make knives. He can't run a CNC machine or grind blades so not sure how he is going to make knives. Unless you out source the work to China or some other manufacturer
  4. couch


    Sep 20, 2009
    I was NEVER business partners with paulo ever. He never paid me for mars work and I had nothing to do with his kickstarter. Originally he was going to pay me to make them like I did his FOU parts but after seeing those sit on his bench for over a year untouched after I finished the parts, seeing him constantly lie to his customers, blow all his money from his kickstarter on everything but his kickstarter products, and interfering with my clients on multiple occasions making it seem like he was my business partner in order to take the work away from me, I had enough and was done with him entirely. I refused to work on anything for him again and he had a tantrum.

    He ended up making threats to my property management company after he demanded to be put on my lease after I told him it was time for him to move on and find his own shop. Management issued him and his now business partner Robert Voso from Vosofferyn (who are both now Vosano Industrial LLC as far as I'm aware) a 15 day notice to vacate the unit due to his threats, multiple complaints from neighbors and after finding out he was sleeping in the unit after being told multiple times not to. He and a bobby refused to leave, paulo made more threats apparently to management and they ultimately refused to resign the lease with me because of his actions which was up on March 31. I moved out before the lease was up to avoid any notice or evictions on my name however he and Voso refused to leave. They were served with a 30 day notice, didn't leave and then served with an eviction. That was why they finally got their own shop in LA where they both live.

    I haven't seen or spoken to either of them since March. As of March 31 paulo still didn't have material for his kickstarter even though he told everyone they were finished in December but then suddenly needed laser and sharpening. Now over six months later he's decided to tell everyone he paid me to do the work and I never did which is complete bullshit.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2017
    steff27, neal70, OilMan and 2 others like this.
  5. Dullknivescut


    Aug 10, 2016
    Is it just me or is the knife industry full of scam artists? I'm kind of new here and I've been reading, and I know there are douchebags in every department.. but it honestly appears that ( to new comers like me who simply skim through feedback forums, ) there is a vast ( huge ) portion of this industry that is dark, distorted, and highly unethical.

    Trust me after all of the hours and hours and hours of deceitful bullshit I've read on this forum I'm inclined to believe some people are capable of anything. I just don't understand why low life's are attracted so heavily to this hobby. I'm assuming because creating knives takes a long time for custom makers? This gives them enough time to come up with an array of scams and excuses? Many other hobbies it's more of a transactional nature ( even if there is a wait ) it appears it's standard for knife makers to take 6 - 12 months ( if you're lucky ) for a knife.

    I am by no means saying this represents the entire industry or those proven to be trustworthy.. I've just read so many threads about total scam artists or even once upon a time honest makers gone rogue.
    neal70 and LCKT707 like this.
  6. Jordan@DLT

    [email protected] Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Jul 22, 2014

    You hear about scam knife makers because that is who gets the loud/angry rants about them. The Knife industry has the silent majority of honest, excellent craftsman who want to make an honest living putting out quality knives. But, as that is what we as customers expect, you don't hear as much about the good ones as the bad ones.
  7. Dullknivescut


    Aug 10, 2016

    I suppose you're correct, but I wonder if it's at all true ( maybe just a tiny bit ) that the nature of the beast so to speak makes the knife industry more susceptible than other industries.

    I'd assume the " silent majority " would apply to all things, but some of the negative claims are fairly fascinating or extreme to say the least.
  8. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    Paul tried to convince people that he is not at fault for anything. that his business partner screwed him and is now saying things behind his back about him.
  9. Heineken


    Mar 23, 2012

    Nice to finally hear your side of the story, Paulo Balzano has been saying it's all your fault, etc, etc
  10. couch


    Sep 20, 2009
    I was never his business partner ever. He conveniently uses the words "shop partner" way too casually but I assure you I have NEVER been partners with him ever in anything. We have done some collabs together and I used to do some MFG for him as a vendor however I've never been part of Balzano's Knives, and he's never been part of Zodiac Engineering.

    Of course he is, nothing is ever his fault . Funny part is he told all of his backers he finished the knives in time to ship for Christmas then suddenly had "bottlenecks" with laser and sharpening. Yet somehow six+ months later it's now my fault he's late when I never had anything to do with the knives in the first place. He can't take responsibility for his own actions or keep track of his own lies and everyone clearly sees right thru it all. He photoshopped updates for his backers to make it look like knives were finished before he ever even got material then when people got antsy he suddenly stopped giving people updates and talked shit to them if they were persistent.

    I haven't said anything publicly to anyone about any of this until someone brought me up on here because it really isn't a big enough deal to start spreading details or drama. I moved out March 31 of my own shop when the lease was up and never looked back. I regretfully defended him multiple times on this forum in another thread but I learned my lesson. I couldn't be happier honestly though how things panned out. He's no longer around and I'm doing great. Much better off without him around without question.

    Just to be 100% clear, I never had anything to do with the mars knives or his Kickstarter. He never paid me a single cent for anything on them.
  11. looseyfur


    Aug 4, 2006
    Maybe next time when you come onto a forum where 99% of the people are telling you the person that you're attempting to align yourself with is a douche hole you'll listen. To me when you get tons of people telling you over an over what dick in someone's is, it should at the very least give you pause. You think, why are so many people saying this guys a thief and a liar. It's not like it was one or two people.

    Social justice Warriors are always quick to jump up and defend someone they think is being vilified on the internet but often they end up holding the bag for someone else's behavior. That someone else very typical could give a shit less.
    RevDevil and JJHollowman like this.
  12. Heineken


    Mar 23, 2012

    I would disagree and say that it's a very Big Deal. As a member of the knife community I think it's your responsibility to step up and do everything in your power to stop liars and thiefs like Paulo Balzano. That includes being vocal and sharing your side of the story and admitting you where wrong trying to defend Paulo Balzano.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong.
  13. Drew Riley

    Drew Riley Riley Knife and Tool Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 17, 2007
    I've always been intrigued by the Balzano phenomenon. For as many second chances as he seems to be getting, you'd think he'd try to make good on one of them, but it seems like there's always some kind of excuse or controversy that pops up. It's a shame, as I'm sure there are a lot of honest makers out there who would have loved to have garnered a name and a following as quickly and easily as Paulo did (before screwing it up that is).
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2017
    KELAMA likes this.
  14. RevDevil


    Nov 9, 2009
    If he ever pops up on here, please let us know and we can bounce his ass in the trash where he belongs. He is the last person that will be a part of this specific community.
  15. looseyfur


    Aug 4, 2006
    how is he not hall of shame material at this point?
    neal70 and KELAMA like this.
  16. JJ_Colt45

    JJ_Colt45 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 11, 2014
    Maybe Im missing something ... but if there is so much documented about his shady practices and it involves such a large sum of money ... seems to me the people who have sent their hard earned money to this thief could and should file a suit to either get judgement against him and money refunded or at least the ruling against him so he cannot continue doing this to others ... from the reading I've done just this morning this isn't just a maker behind on delivery or with a few unhappy customers the man is a common thief.
    Just my ttwo cents worth ... but people like this will go as far as others allow them and only stop when people put a stop to it.
  17. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
  18. romeo-1


    Jan 17, 2015
    Just reading his KS campaign updates hurt my brain...general rule of thumb for me is if the person running the campaign isn't completely literate, I walk away.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
  19. P-Blade


    Apr 5, 2016
    I am amazed at how much money people gave him. :eek:
    palonej and Armadew like this.
  20. Gastonknife


    Dec 15, 2008
    Any time I see one of these "pre-order/kick start" things I move on. If they are legit they don't need to do that. Red flags should go up. This is 5X worse than prepaying for a custom knife to be made in the future. Never, never pay up front. Period.

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