In just a fairly short period of time the velvet from Bark river Knives ended up being incredibly well-known in the global knife world. Yet why? We will certainly tell you more about the incredible story behind Bark river Knives.

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How it every began

For year Mike Stewart had actually been working in the knife company for countless different well known American companies once he started to notification that in state of manufacturing compromises were made. Knives were no longer produced the way he would favor them come be. Once you with that point there are numerous things you can do. Stewart opted because that the pro-active approach: in 2001 he created Bark flow Knives with his wife Lesley in his barn in Bark River, Michigan. Quickly after they moved to Escabana, Michigan, where you have the right to still find the Bark flow workshop today. Stewart’s boy Jim and also daughter Jacquelyn likewise work in the company. As a true family service they continuously shot to boost the quality and introduce brand-new designs every solitary day.

What species of velvet does Bark river produce?

Bark river produces dozens, perhaps even hundreds of various designs. Characterizing is the they room actually all designs v a classic look and feel. Often also reproductions or modern interpretations the old designs. In ~ the exact same time Bark flow uses modern materials and techniques to do these ‘old-fashioned’ knives.

Bark river Gunny Hunter A2, woodland Green Elder Burl

Quality without compromise

Regardless that the version Bark River always wants come make certain it is top-quality product. The ideal heat treatment, the best modifications and the ideal grinds. A lot of of manual labour, so much even it is tough to comprehend exactly how these knives have the right to be easily accessible in this price range. Occasionally they are also called ‘semi-custom’ knives. The is for a factor that Bark river Knives provides a ‘no questions asked’ lifelong warranty. 

Who walk Bark River create for?

With so numerous different models there is always something that will certainly appeal come anyone. However, in the communication Bark river thinks the what civilization do in the north parts of Michigan: hunting, fishing and also other outdoor activities such as bushcraft.

Bark River, however, additionally really listens to their customers’ demands. A good example is the story the the 1st Force Reconnaissance firm of the US maritime Corps. The company decided to look for a new bushcraft knife without any type of support from their organization and with their very own means. With each other they purchase a comprehensive amount that knives and tested them till they can no much longer be used. In the finish only one remained: the Bark flow Gameskeeper. They took this knife ago to Bark river for a couple of modifications. After all, in the basis the Gameskeeper was a hunting knife and also needed a couple of adjustments to make it perfect because that bushcraft purposes. The result was the Bark flow Bravo 1. Today this design is available with different varieties of steel.

Bark river Knives Bravo 1 ar Knife

Manual labour

We currently shortly questioned it: the enormous amount of manual labour that is used for every Bark flow knife. The coarse shape of the blade, the ‘blank’ is cut out of a piece of steel with the help of a machine. ~ that whatever is excellent by hand. The blank receives a warmth treatment and is enhanced with a handle.

The handle

The manage is virtually always secured through ‘corby bolts’. This are, simply put, screws v a really high height to make sure you can sand them turn off to it is in left through a straightforward pin. This pins, however, firmly keep the take care of in place. The an excellent thing around Bark flow is that they develop these corby bolts themselves.

If the components of the take care of are glued together it is time to begin shaping it. Bark River, after all, is recognized for its more than fantastic ergonomics. To form the take care of they use CNC milling because that the an easy shape the the handle, however the complete and added sanding is done completely by hand. If the material allows it that course. Part delicate species of wood and also all types of horn and also bone are completely shaped by hand. The knife makers at Bark river take the coarsely shame handle and sand it down by hand to finish up through the right shape. The takes a lot of experience and craftsmanship. No everybody can do it!

After the handle has been offered the appropriate shape that is time to completely finish it. After ~ all, Bark River desires the handle to be completely finished prior to they begin working on the blade.

Convex grind

Adding a grind way removing material from the tongue to make it thin sufficient to have the ability to cut with it. After all, if you have a 4 mm blade it won’t be sufficient to include an edge come the end: the remainder of the blade requirements to it is in thin too to make cutting even an option. Bark flow is recognized for its wonderful convex edges.

A convex edge method that the edge is not concave (hollow) or flat, yet slightly convex. This makes the edge a small stronger leaving girlfriend with less cutting resistance due to the fact that of the absence of the ‘hard shoulder’ i beg your pardon is situated at the sheet of a common Western edge. As a result convex edge excel in virtually all areas. According to Mike Stewart a convex sheet will stay sharp four times much longer than a standard edge. The only ‘problem’ is the a convex sheet is a lot of more challenging to produce. That will constantly be something that is used by hand. Specifically what Bark flow excels at. 

At Bark river the knife machines take organize of the knife through the perfect handle and apply a convex grind through hand while using a sander. For it they usage sanders v extremely great sharpening belts. ~ all, the tongue has currently been hardened which renders it more difficult to remove material. The is likewise important come make sure that the blade doesn’t get too hot as the grind is applied as it could affect the heat treatment. Because that that reason the experts at Bark River work with their bare hands. Because of this they will immediately know as soon as the knife is getting too hot. ~ all, if the knife never ever gets hotter 보다 what your bare hands can handle it can never really influence the warm treatment.

If you look very closely you can see just how on this Bark river Donnybrook the grind moves in one flow convex line approximately the edge.

Finish and razor-sharp results

After finishing the early grind the is time to finish the blade and make that razor-sharp. At Bark river they execute so by utilizing a mix of finer and finer sprucing up wheels. A couple of sharpening professionals use them day in day the end to do each knife razor-sharp. The knife is tested and tested until it is good.

Bark river sheaths

The process doesn’t end up after the knife has been completed. In practically all situations a Bark river knife comes with a beautiful animal leather sheath. Bark River is one of the very couple of companies that likewise produces their own ‘in house’ animal leather sheaths. Therefore yes, in the crowded and also busy Bark flow workshop friend can also find a separate leather department. Right here the sheaths for every the knives space made by hand. Every made indigenous pure top-quality saddle leather.

Etching the Bark flow logo

After finishing the knife the logo is etched ~ above the tongue by hand. A silkscreen stencil is stuck to the knife and with an etching solution and also a special machine the logo is applied. No laser that will engrave dozens of velvet in mere seconds, but each knife individually, by hand.

Bark flow Cub in Desert Ironwood

Quality check

In a process with so many different procedures there are many moments during which something deserve to go wrong. At the same time over there are also a the majority of moments throughout which you can examine to see just how the knife is transforming out. The is exactly what Bark flow does. Exactly since so plenty of different human being are involved in do one knife, countless people likewise check each knife after every step. As a an outcome the knife is checked much more than 3 times to view if it is actually sharp. Also much? Perhaps. But it is a an excellent way of gathered the tremendous reputation Bark River has actually today. 


Because of all this manual work the attentive reader will immediately see a big problem looming in ~ a growing company such as Bark River: the availability. At Bark flow each knife that is being created is also already sold. A manufacturing schedule is made which significant dealers and also distributors can use to suggest how countless pieces they desire to order and also which handle they would favor it come have. Stop say a batch the 250 piece is make of a certain model. If automatically 200 are sent out to American certified dealer you understand that just 50 room left because that the rest of the world.

An additional complication is that some models are made only when per year, sometimes also less. If castle still use the same type of steel that is. As such we can not guarantee the shipment times. We carry out the best we have the right to to acquisition as lot Bark flow knives together we can, but sometimes the is merely not possible. And if we space successful in retrieving knives it occurs that we acquire less 보다 we wanted in the very first place which means that they are offered out in no time at all.

As a result all knives that are detailed as in stock on our website room actually lied in our warehouse prepared to be transport the exact same day. This, however, unfortunately also method that backorders on models that room no much longer in stock can only seldom be filled.

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Bark river Ultra-Lite Bushcrafter CPM 3V, black color Canvas Micarta

The growth of Bark flow Knives

To fulfill the ever farming demand Bark River has actually been widening their manufacturing facility nearly annually because that over 18 years. Today about 40.000 knives are made every year. Because that 2019 one expects to have the ability to produce end 52.000 knives. The problem, however, is the crew: an excellent knife devices are rare. The is therefore an overwhelming to find the human being who can make the business grow. Girlfriend could select to automate procedures to have the ability to produce more, but that would median that not as much attention would be payment to quality. That is something Bark river doesn’t want to do. They would certainly rather produce excellent knives that are scarce, than sacrifice a piece of top quality to have the ability to make more. A mind-set you deserve to only respect! 


Sometimes people ask united state if the reasonably high price the a Bark river knife is in reality worth it. As soon as you read ago and when again discover out exactly how much manual labour goes into making a product that is created in the United states you have the right to only conclude the Bark flow asks a same price for its knives. There are also very couple of knives of which we get so tiny knives returned, which likewise says a lot. Bark river is definitely one the the best brands once it comes to fixed knives.