History of Boker
A giant chestnut tree, shading the small Boeker tool factory in Remscheid in the 17th century, is the oldest traceable symbol connected with the Boeker name. Apparently, Boeker tools were very successful, since they were among the leading products in Germany and neighboring countries 100 years later.
Due to the increasing demand in a restless political era, Hermann and Robert Boeker decided in 1829 to begin with the production of sabers. As early as September 1830, the accounting records indicate a weekly production of 2,000 items, made by 64 smiths, 47 grinders and a large number of unskilled laborers. In view of the constantly increasing variety of tools and cutting instruments and the good opportunities for worldwide sales, the family realized that the individual steps in the manufacturing process had to be spread out for optimal realization of its interests. As a result, Hermann Boeker emigrated and founded H. Boeker & Co. in New York. Young Robert developed his enterprise in Canada, founding a branch in Mexico later in 1865. This branch is still a market leader in its country under the name of Casa Boeker.
Heinrich crossed the nearby Wupper river and went to Solingen, where the German industry of cutting tools was growing by leaps and bounds at that time. In 1869, he founded Heinr. Boeker & Co. with Hermann Heuser, a well-known specialist in the field of cutting tools. The Boeker family in Remscheid and their overseas cousins had a lot of interest in and a great demand for shaving blades, scissors and pocket knives from Heinrich's new enterprise. They had to identify their products for the overseas markets in a simple way, since many customers and consumers had problems with the German name Boeker - not considering the fact that illiteracy was widely spread. In Heinrich's opinion, the chestnut tree near the Remscheid facility represented an ideal, easy-to-remember symbol. This brand symbol was owned by the Remscheid company, together with a second logo, the arrow. One of the few valuable documents that survived the total destruction of WWII is an ad by Boeker, Remscheid, from the year 1874, showing both logos.
The relationship between the two Boeker companies had always been extremely friendly. Therefore, Heinrich was allowed to take the tree symbol across the river with him - without any big fight or cost. Since then, not a single Boeker article has left the Solingen factory without being identified by the tree symbol. After more than 100 years of existence the old chestnut tree was the victim of lightening. In 1925 a talented artist carved a copy of the majestic tree on a piece of the trunk. This original piece of art decorates the boss' office in the Boeker plant.
As early as 1900, the majority of articles produced by Boeker were distributed in the US market. H. Boker & Co. in New York concentrated primarily on cutting tools from Solingen. Soon pocket knives became more important than scissors, shaving blades and eating utensils. The demand increased even more rapidly than Solingen was able to supply, so that the Americans in New York began their own production of pocket knives. A little later, pliers were included as well. Since the tree symbol had become well known by then and the various branches of the international Boeker family enjoyed an excellent relationship among each other, it was not difficult to receive permission from the Solingen relatives to use the tree symbol also for the American products. Since that time, two different lines of Boeker knives have been on the American market with the same brand symbol, sometimes even with the same article numbers, but one line was made in the USA and the other in Solingen. Only the declaration of marketability clarified that one line was from Boker USA and the other from H. Boker Improved Cutlery Solingen.
The relationship was interrupted during WWII. The Solingen factory burned down completely. None of the equipment, tools, catalog materials or samples was spared. Those few originals from the past we have today survived the war in private homes and were made available to the company. The firm lost one of its most valuable assets: the registration of the tree symbol for the American market was confiscated pursuant to American law. John Boker Jr. acquired it in New York, in order to secure it for the distribution of the American and German products. Soon after the war, the destroyed factory was rebuilt. Those loyal skilled workers who had survived the war, returned and helped with the reconstruction of the building as well as the production, gradually regaining the previous high standard of quality.
The American cousins renewed their business contact with Solingen and started to place orders. Within a few years Boker, New York, had again become the principal customer. Models like the 7588 and 7474 and the most expensive item, the sports knife Flagship Model 182 could not cross the ocean fast enough to reach Boker friends all over the country.
In the early 60s, Boker USA was sold and eventually acquired by the well-known scissors manufacturer Wiss & Sons. Wiss retained the manufacture of Boeker knives and sold them together with Solingen products. Of course, this meant that the Boeker scissors ceased to be competitors of the Wiss line in the American market. In the early 70s, Wiss sold to Cooper Industries, a multinational company. This new change in America proved to be advantageous for Boker.
A very close business, as well as personal relationship developed with this industrial giant. Due to its strength on the market, Cooper was able to restore the original magnitude of the Boeker name. Thanks to the very lively business activities with Cooper for eight years, the Solingen facility could streamline its production and develop new, modern products. Without exaggeration, Boker manufactures the largest assortment of high-quality knives for sportsmen and collectors with an unsurpassed variety of materials for blades and handles. Today, Boeker knives range from 320-layer Damascus steel to very modern ceramics, with handles ranging from high-quality mother-of-pearl to Thuya root wood and state-of-the-art synthetics...
In 1983 Cooper discontinued its own knife production. Models still in demand are being manufactured in Solingen today. As a result of friendly negotiations, Cooper restored the American trademark rights three years later, providing Solingen with the opportunity to become self-reliant in the huge American market. Thus, in 1986, Boker USA, Inc. was created in Denver, Colorado. Dan Weidner, who has been part of Boker USA almost since its inception, is now the president of the company, working with a young, energetic team.
The great importance of Boeker in the South American markets (Argentina and Chile) and in Mexico is due to the efficient men of the Boeker family, who were active for us in these countries in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today's trademark includes the terms TREEBRAND and ARBOLITO. Since the Argentinian market in particular is subject to extreme economic and political fluctuations, the good name ARBOLITO was in danger of being forgotten. In 1983, Boeker Arbolito S. A. was founded jointly with the Salzmann family primarily to manufacture household and work knives in Argentina. Thanks to the constant modernization and expansion of product lines the company in Buenos Aires is able to compete worldwide with selected products today.
Welcome to the Boker USA Warranty/Sharpening Info Page.
On this page, we will provide answers to your questions regarding the Boker warranty, repairs, and sharpening of Boker ceramic knives.
Our warranty has been in effect for over 135 years. Any Boker product that is defective in material or workmanship will be repaired or replaced by us at no charge to the customer. Our warranty reads:
"Every Boker product is guaranteed to be free from defects in material and workmanship for the life of the product to the original owner. If this item should fail under normal use, we will repair it or replace it at no charge with an item of equal or better value."
To help you better understand whether your product is covered under warranty, the following items are normally not covered under warranty, although exceptions do exist:
- Blade rusting, particularly on carbon steel blades.
- Blade breakage, especially after more than a year of ownership.
- Handle scales cracking or breaking.
- Any knife that has been converted to perform as an automatic knife is not covered under warranty at any time. Boker USA, Inc. honors the Federal law that prohibits the importation or selling of automatic knives. Boker USA, Inc. does not import or sell any automatic knives. Due to the Federal law barring interstate transportation of automatic knives (switchblades), we are unable to return them when shipped to us. If we receive any automatic knives, we will have no choice but to dispose of them. Boker USA, Inc disclaims any liability for financial loss due to disposal of automatic knives. For further information, please contact us at 1-800-992-6537 ext 21.
If you would like to send your Boker knife in for repair work or examination to see if it is covered under warranty, it must be accompanied by your phone number, shipping address (no P.O. boxes, please), e-mail address (if applicable) and $5.00 to cover return shipping and handling (in the form of either a check, money order or Visa or Mastercard number). If we do not have a method of contacting you, we will not be able to proceed with any repair or warranty work. If you do not include shipping charges it will cause significant delays in returning your knife to you. If your repair is covered under our warranty, we will return the $5.00 payment along with your knife. To service you best, please contact the Boker USA Customer Service/Repair Department prior to shipping your knife at 1-800-992-6537 ext. 21.
Our mailing address is:
Boker USA, Inc.
Attn: Repair Dept.
1550 Balsam Street
Lakewood, CO 80214-5917
We do recommend you ship your knife to us via insured U.S. mail or through United Parcel Service so it can be tracked.
Warranty returns from Canada may incur additional charges due to customs fees.
BOKER CERAMIC KNIVES
Our ceramic knives are very keen cutting instruments but are not intended for chopping or cutting hard items such as bone, staples, or frozen products and are not to be used for whittling. Also, care must be taken while cutting items such as fibrous vegetables and cheeses.
Please exercise caution when using ceramic bladed knives.
Due to their extreme hardness, which is why they do not need to be sharpened as often as a steel blade, they are brittle. Therefore, blade breakage or chipping isnot covered under warranty. We do provide a sharpening service, which can get out most small chips in the blade and restore the original edge.
ORDERING REPLACEMENT PARTS
If you wish to order parts from us, there may be a charge incurred. Please contact us to find out what charges apply, if any.
If you have any questions on our warranty, repair work, or ceramic sharpening, please call us at 1-800-992-6537 Ext. 21.
Boker USA, Inc.
1550 Balsam Street
Lakewood, CO 80214-5917
Toll Free: 1.800.835.6433