About Kingfisher WoodWorks LLC

 Kingfisher WoodWorks LLC manufactures bokken, jo and related wooden swords and staffs specific to the Japanese sword related martial arts - mainly used for aikido but also selected old schools (koryu). We work from two facilities in Wilder, Vermont. While small orders for individuals make up our primary business, we also supply the film industry including the bokken used in Edward Zwick's "The Last Samurai," props used in GI Joe Retaliation and fighting sticks used in Marvel/Netflix Daredevil series.

Hiroyuki Sanada in "The Last Samurai"

Hiroyuki Sanada and Tom Cruise in "The Last Samurai"

An exaggerated sword stand used as a prop in "G.I. Joe: Retaliation"

Charlie Cox in Marvel's "Daredevil"


While maintaining the wooden character of the best practice swords and staffs we use every technology available (many invented here) in conjunction with archaic technologies ranging from hand carving tools and WWII vintage machines to modern custom milling machines and pressure/vacuum processors.

But while machines are used for rough stock removal and general shaping, balancing, tuning and creating nuance are achieved with hand tools. While machines are useful, and we use multiple technologies, machines are not a substitute for a skilled human. The operator of a machine, no matter how inventive, always works within mechanical and practical boundaries established by the machine's designer. Evidence of these limits is not only the hallmark of modern woodworking but the hallmark of mass production as it relates to artistic expression. In the Kingfisher woodshop, the nuances that create the weapon's refined shape, its authenticity and balance are all done by hand.

We prefer Appalachian hickory over all other wood species. This indigenous wood is tougher, safer and more reliable than all others. Moreover, the lumber, and practically everything in the Kingfisher shop, comes from mills we know personally providing well managed domestic resources.

Enhanced Yagyu bokken patterned after the wooden practice sword of the Yagyu Shinkage Ryu of the 16th century