MiVT: KarvTek

Published: Nov. 4, 2019 at 1:47 PM EST
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A Burlington native's wood carving business is showing signs it's having an impact.

John Bara spent 12 years working at Burton, cutting metals and plastics. "A lot of the stuff that's internal or people didn't know what they go to, even sometimes I didn't know what they go to," Bara said.

Now he's cutting items out of wood for everyone to see."When I started off I was going to do some commercial work, but then I needed something just to show, so I just started making signs, and after people saw them, it gave me a good feeling of appreciation of what I made for them," Bara sad.

He converts the image file through his computer program and maps out how the design will be cut. "If you get a picture on the computer, to get the perfect trace, you really have to manipulate yourself to get what you're looking for, and it can take hours sometimes," he said.

Karvtek's signs, plates and plaques have been shipped all across the country and as far away as Wyoming. Bara's memorial plaques are one of his more unique creations. "My dad passed away and I just saw a poem one time and I said, 'I can do this on a piece of wood.' So, I did that and I just included a picture. But it's really not just a picture, I actually take a photo and transfer it on a piece of wood," he said.

One of the cooler things that Bara makes are LED signs. And the best thing about them is that they're interchangeable, so you can go from Halloween to Christmas in a snap. "Seeing the expression on people's faces when they see it for themselves, I love their feedback and it just gives me a good feeling to know that they like it," he said.

The wood is mostly maple and cherry. Bara buys most of it from the Tree House in South Burlington.

He also takes custom orders, all of which are done on the CDC machine he purchased a few years ago, in the shop he built last year. "It's great. I love it. I love being out here. I can almost live out here. Give me a bed and bathroom and I'll be all set," Bara said.

After starting in a commercial career, Bara has found his home with KarvTek.