Barfy Bill is a former sea captain with a chronic case of sea sickness. He bought a ship with the hopes of making a fortune as a merchant, but spent his first voyage at the rails. Shortly afterwards, his ship was destroyed in a fire, but happened to be well insured.
He has since taken up residence in Lumbridge, riding canoes down the River Lum and explaining information about the various canoe types to players and telling them how to build a canoe. If a player does not have a hatchet to make a canoe, he will lend the player his own hatchet.