According to research done by Al Reader of New Jersey, who by the way is considered by most to be the most knowledgeable Bear collector alive, serial numbers work very well for dating Bear bows, but only for the years 1965-1969 when the first digit of the serial number is the year of manufacture. Secondly, the large amount of shock contributed to a large number of bows delaminating. The bottom Kodiak is a maple window version of the 1959 model. Options: Right or left handed in weights of 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, and 60. In this article, I will present an overview of Bear Archery, and give you just a taste of the different items which you should be looking for. Also, if you have a 1961 Bear bow, would you please post a photo? The archery business was renamed Bear Archery.
I have hunted with a bow for meat for forty years. It was positioned high up in the handle and was raised above the surface of the bow. The early Bear Archery catalogs were not dated, but numbered. Apparently this is because it is thought of as a target bow rather than a hunting bow by collectors. The initial focus was on silk-screening and advertising support work for automotive companies. The walnut bows were made only for the first 2-3 months of 1954, before being replaced by maple in mid-year.
Beginning in 1955-56 Bear began using the silk-screened logo shown on the far right. The 1951 model is identical to the 1950 model with the exception of the bi-directional glass being replaced with uni-directional blonde glass. I am open to any and all new ideas from other collectors. Remember also that Bear had to take the next yearns catalog to the printer in late fall of the prior year. Manufacturer Location: in 1978 Bear moved all manufacturing and offices to Gainesville, Florida.
The first was The Archers Bible in 1968. In late 1999, we started our first message board. The early Bowhunter Kits had a Western knife with real bone handle, and the. In 1959, the Kodiak Special removed the leather grip and in 1961 the Kodiak did the same, as well as the Grizzly in 1964. If your bow shows Gainesville on it then it was made after 1978 8.
Nels left Bear in 1948 when Fred made the decision to begin mass production of bows at the new factory in Grayling. It is currently owned by Escalade Sports. Most of the bows made after the early 1950s are still very usable, but there are no guarantees that come with any of them. The large Standing Bear decal was used until 1955 when it was replaced with the improved methods of silk-screening the identification on the bows. Today this watch holds a place of honor in my collection unlike few other items I possess. Archery equipment was carefully examined and tested by men who had expertise in bowmaking, and many years of experience in the industry.
This warranty problem caused a substantial strain on the companies finances, but Fred insisted that all bows be replaced if returned broken. It was Glen who set up the famous Little Delta hunts in Alaska during the late 1950s, and it was Glen who designed the famous St. These generally have no serial number as they were no longer covered under warranty. However, his private venture lasted only two years before he took a job as a model maker for an appliance manufacturer. This was the last year for decals on Kodiaks.
The model number should be 648. So in 1959, Bear began flattening the ferrule tip to improve this situation. The bow third from the bottom is the 1962 Kodiak, in Brazilian Rosewood. Instant identity for every model Bear bow. Model Of The Bow: Check the Model of the bow.
This same aluminum coin reappears in the Grizzly model in 1970 to 1972. He also placed a coin in the riser to symbolize Bear quality. Many thousands of copies of this book were sold for many years after it's introduction. Have you ever seen as many bow makers as those listed throughout the pages of Traditional Bowhunter? This original quiver, made of soft sheepskin, was available only in a 3 arrow model, was made from 1946 through 1956. Most all of us who grew up in the days before compounds saw Bear ads and promotions everywhere we turned. This is to be expected as Fred was continually trying to improve on design and material. Please check out other auctions I may have listed!!!.
With only a few factory records available for these years, I have only the bows left as pieces of the puzzle. The bottom bow is the all African Rosewood 1961 Kodiak. A sample of some of our bows:. The middle bow is the 1965 with olive gray glass. From left, the Pinned Ferrule, the 1956 Bubble-Head, the 1959. This was apparently to hide cracks in the glass.
Upon Nels departure, Fred moved another employee by the name of Bob Meeker over to supervise the manufacturing of the new bow lines. By 1963 only brass and aluminum in a new stamping was used see photo. The later Grumleys also can be found in laminated woods as well as self-wood models. This book can still be found in used book stores and from book search services fairly easily. This version lasted through 1986.