5 Best Burke Bars of 2022 – Pry Bar Review & Buying Guide

You need a Burke Bar


A burke bar is a long pry bar with a metallic handle and a curved edge on the prying end.  This tool is used by woodworkers, mechanics, and masons when lifting heavy loads, prying stuck things or demolishing floors and walls.  

Burke bars usually have a more extended handle than crowbars or pry bars. The length of the bar works as the leverage for moving massive objects. There are many models of burke bars in the market, and so finding the right tool can be challenging. 

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Here is a top 5 best burke bar review plus buying guide.

Burke bar buying guide

No one wants to spend so much time and energy when moving logs or prying heavy objects. For that reason, you will need to find a reliable tool that can stand the pressure and the tests of time.  A burke bar offers the functionality that is hard to get from shorter prying bars and crowbars. However, I personally encountered real dilemmas when purchasing my first burke bar.

You must admit, there is very little information available about the efficiency of these tools.  Every manufacturer is coming up with new tools in an environment where performance standards and testing mechanisms lack. So, tired of looking around, I zoomed over to Amazon and bought a random burke bar, a decision I regretted not long after the item was delivered.

After several instances of trial and error, now I have a sharp eye to sift through the generic and find something compelling, safe, and efficient.  So, if you are looking to buy a burke-bar, there is a lot to consider before you spend your money, and as they say, good things come to those who wait. Take time to evaluate every aspect of the device. 

Adjustable burke bars are more efficient 

Lately, adjustable burke bars have been hitting the market. These large pry bars can operate at adjustable lengths.  Such burke bars are the most ideal of you looking for more power because you can shorten or lengthen the shaft. The only downside is that these models tend to be heavier and on the higher end of the spectrum when it comes to price. 

Fixed bars are ideal if you seek affordability and weightlessness 

Lighter burkes can be advantageous too, especially when you are not dealing with heavy loads.  The old fixed models tend to be lighter than adjustable ones. They are also more affordable. Owing to their lightweight nature, you can work fixed burke bars all day long with little fatigue. 

Look for high quality 

I’ve had the misfortune of having a burke-bar buckle under the pressure of a massive oak trunk I was prying. At a time when you need these tools to work more efficiently, it would be such a shame if they bend, deform, or snap in two. It is also a significant safety concern. Generally, the burke bar should be made of a hollow 1095 or heavily alloyed steel. A powder coating finish also helps to strengthen the bar and minimize wear and tear.

Focus on your specific needs 

The same burke bar that works wonders for a woodworker might be troublesome to a mechanic. As opposed to basing your buying decision only from second person opinions, investigate to find out if the device’s features are relevant for your intended use.  

Choose an ergonomic handle

As mentioned before, high carbon or steel alloy is ideal for strength and longevity. An ergonomic design on the handle is also necessary for comfort and efficiency. Find a burke bar with rubber holdings on the handle. A longer shaft is also ideal for more strength.

The claw needs to be sharp

At the end of the steel shaft, there is a curved claw that is mostly a v notch design for nail removal and similar tasks. The best Burke bar will come with a sharp claw that makes it easier to dig below items and wedge them up. 

Depending on your task, you might have to find a burke bar with a more significant fulcrum or a flatter curve.  When moving massive logs, a burke bar with a steeper pivot will be preferable.

5 Best Burke Bar Review

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When targeting to get the most versatility out of your contraption, you will want to get a tool that works well in all tasks. However, because different jobs have different moving or prying requirements, versatility can remain to be a theoretical concept.

Craftsman presents a solution to that dilemma with a 3 bar set packaged as one. This set includes burke bars of different sizes for your various jobs. In there, you will find a 12 inch, 17 inch, and 25-inch burke bars. 

The Craftsman set of pry bars come with strike caps, making it possible to hammer it out when it gets stuck.  These caps are at the top end of the handle. The hammer caps will prevent the risk of broken frames. The handle material is stainless steel. 

Despite the ergonomic design and sturdy handle, there are some quality control issues with this burke bar set. You might find that on delivery your product has dents and chipping that indicate usage or poor handling during storage.

The other concern you might find with this Craftsman set is that it buckles under heavy pressure. You might not be able to move heavy loads with this burke bar. It is okay for light use, though, such as DIY projects.

Craftsman Pros & Cons


  • Ergonomically designed handles for comfort during use
  • The handle is made of tempered and hardened steel for durability and strength
  • The set includes three different sizes of pry bars
  • Includes strike caps


  • Quality control issues
  • The shorter pry bars in the collection don’t qualify for tough jobs

2. Marshall Town Monster Pry Bar

  • Made From The Highest Quality Materials

Last update on 2022-10-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Marshall Town Monster stands out with its finishing and precise balancing; you won’t be able to spot quality issues such as rough edges.  The bar is long (56”) to give you sufficient leverage on those loads that won’t budge. 

This burke-bar features an all steel construction which is advantageous for longevity and strength even in the face of massive logs or sturdy concrete.  Also, the bar features a powder coating to prevent the risk of wear and tear.

Apart from lifting heavy objects, you might find that this tool is also ideal for removing toe flooring, removing massive equipment tracks and demolition projects.  Nevertheless, as much as it makes the job easier and faster, it will take a considerable effort on your part too. That’s because its thickness and breadth are considerably small. 

Because of the Marshall Tow Monster’s questionable thickness, my use was limited to the prying of boards and decking. For moving heavy loads, you might have to use this alongside another pry or wrecking bar to successfully dig under the load. 

The constraining thickness, one might say, is compensated by the fact that the steel bar isn’t entirely solid; it’s a hollow tube, a factor that could work in your favor in terms of strength.   The strength to weight ratio for the tubular bar is better than in a solid metallic rod of a similar mass. A tubular design makes a burke-bar twice as strong as its solid counterparts, and thus resistant to bending and breaking.

Marshall Pros & Cons


  • The all steel construction is a surety of long life
  • The powder coated finish helps to prevent wear and tear
  • Its length, 56” generates considerable traction
  • The hollow metallic frame makes it’s stronger
  • No quality control issues


  • It is of questionable thickness

3. Stanley 55-525 15-inch Super Wonder Bar Pry Bar

  • Prying Tools
  • Manufacturer: Stanley
  • Country of Manufacturer: Mexico

Last update on 2022-10-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


The Stanley 5 5-525 15-inch Super Wonder Bar Pry Bar features a heavy duty and curved design. The considerably longer bar (16 inches) will provide you the leverage necessary to pry beneath and move enormous logs. 

Its design embraces versatility, featuring nail removal openings at two places. On the other hand, the prying end is sharply chiseled to make prying faster and effortless.  This sharp chiseled end also makes this burke bar ideal for opening lids or removing flooring.

The Stanley 55-525 15-inch Super Wonder Bar burke bar has a tight bend (fulcrum) towards the prying end for precise positioning and easy lifting. The arching is near the center to take advantage of the center of gravity when moving heavy loads. This configuration also means that you can naturally work with the burke bar alone, without having to use a wood block to achieve a swinging motion. 

The bar length being 16 inches long extends your reach, so that you don’t have to put your back through a strenuous bending as you work. You will find that the overall design of the Stanley 55-525 burke bar greatly favors lifting, nail removal, and prying. 

The Stanley burke bar is made of steel and weighs 1.6 pounds.  By aligning the pry end beneath a panel and applying force on the handle end, this bar can work as a panel lift.  The thick width of the bar’s blade (1-3/4 inches) helps to achieve efficient results in that. 

Because of its sharp V- end, the bar can comfortably slide under a weight that’s sitting tight on the ground. Its versatility ranges from woodworking to auto mechanics, roofing and furniture re-arrangement. 

Stanley Pros & Cons


  • Its length provides more lifting leverage
  • It’s a multifunctional tool with a natural fulcrum
  • Made of tough steel


  • Its U design might make nail removal a taxing process
  • Can be unstable and laborious to work with
  • It’s more of a DIY kind of burke bar

4. Kraft Tool GG631 Heavy-Duty Little John Pry Bar

  • Country Of Origin: United States
  • Model Number: GG631
  • Item Package Dimension: 9.0" L x 6.0" W x 0.375" H

Last update on 2022-10-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


The Kraft Tool GG631 is a 46 inches long burke bar that significantly minimizes stooping when working. This length also helps to make your work less burdensome by increasing the mechanical advantage of the device. 

Its thickness is assuring too; a 3-Inch width that provides a sturdy base for ripping and prying objects. The center of gravity falls within the blade, an aspect that further enhances leverage and energy efficiency. 

This heavy-duty material weighs 7 pounds, which is comparatively higher than all other burke bars in this review.  The weighty nature of the lever, in simple terms, is an indication of its strength and resilience. You will be able to move heavy loads and pry stuck objects without the risk of bending or breaking the steel frame.  Just like in the Stanley 55 525, the length of the handle is tubular to increase the resistance and strength of the whole contraption. The top side has a sealing, as you would expect to prevent debris from lodging into it. 

The prying end is designed with a V notch for unplugging nails from boards. The prying blade is 10 inches long, extending into the 41-inch handle to bolster the support and provide a reliable prop for wedging loads.  The Kraft Tool GG631 Heavy-Duty burke bar might not be light enough to wield all day, but whenever you engage it on a task, its heavy-duty nature guarantees an efficient performance. 

Kraft Pros & Cons


  • The blade incredibly thick (3 inches wide) to provide a strong base for wedging loads
  • The fulcrum angle falls within the bar for more leverage
  • The handle length extends 46 inches long so you can work without stooping too low; this is good for your back
  • The nail slot end is an additional welcome


  • Heavy to work with for long

5. GEARWRENCH 82220 Extendable Indexable Pry Bar

  • Expandable and adjustable to reach areas inaccessible to a fixed head tool for improved access
  • Head rotates 180° through 14 locking positions for unparalleled access and leverage
  • Compact design allows for work in tight spaces

Last update on 2022-10-04 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


The GEARWRENCH 82220 is an adjustable pry bar with a handle that ranges from 29 to 33 inches in length. The prying head of the bar is adjustable to attain the suitable length for wedging, lifting and removing objects. By making its length shorter or longer, you get to maximize your leverage and comfort levels (on your back) when working with this burke bar. 

The steel handle of the bar also features a black phosphate coating. This finishing helps to guard your device against the elements and also boosts its aesthetics. 

Additionally, because it’s an indexing pry bar (a single pointed end as opposed to a v notch design) users get additional leverage in hard to reach places. What’s of concern though, is that the burke bar could doesn’t have a strike plate on the end of the handle. That would have made wedging between massive loads an easy task. 



  • 14-position head
  • Adjustable-size
  • Rust-resistant coating


  • Could benefit from a strike plate

Which Burke bar should you choose?

From this review, it’s easy to make an informed buying decision: the right burke bar needs to have an extended handle to ease the stress on your back, but be wide enough for stability. A tubular steel rode is stronger and steadier than a solid one, while a big fulcrum is advantageous. 

Based on these and other tenets in our buying guide, the Kraft Tool GG631 Heavy-Duty Little John Pry Bar stands out from the rest.  The handle is 46 inches long; its width is 3 inches while its heavy-duty nature (7 pounds) makes it reliable for massive loads. What’s more, the length of the metallic handle is hollow for extra strength and resistance.


Last Updated on February 13, 2020 by Tom Bradly

Tom Bradly

My entrepreneurial journey started in 2006, when I dropped out of university. I wanted to work with my hands, to build things. Now I mix my background with computers with my first-hand experience with woodworking to provide insights into the tools I like best. I love everything about woodworking and have been building stuff for over 20 years of my life. I hope to pass some knowledge and expertise. See more at TomBradly.com