To Axe or not to Axe?

Discussion in 'Knife and Blade Forum' started by greg_r, Nov 29, 2020.

  1. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    I am upgrading my camping/bushcrafting gear. I am really not much of an axe person. Most of my axes / hatchets are on the inexpensive side. $50 or less. Probably one of my most used hatchets of late came from Walmart. Ozark Trail. $15. It splits campfire wood with the best of them.

    I have the Hatchet from Fiskars, and their chopping axe as well. It’s the set I would take if I really felt I needed an axe or hatchet.

    Then I have the Mora Camp Axe. It rides in my haversack or day pack but probably gets used for knife work more than chopping.

    I have a few more but head weights range from 4 tom8 pounds, more than I will carry with me on a camping / bushcrafting foray. I lean to saws for most of my axe needs anyways.

    but I am sort of wanting an axe for backpacking. Something made in the USA 1 1/2 to 2 1/4 pound head with a length between 18 and 24 inches. About to purchase a Council Tools Velvicut series Hudson Bay axe. I will have to put about $150 into it. For something just to have. They sell one a bit cheaper, but it has not been finished as well and I would have to do the finish work myself.

    Then there is the Snow and Healey. Priced between the two Council Tools axes. But it doesn’t get a lot of love.

    Do I really want an axe? Will I use one more if I get a quality tool? Is there a cheaper USA made option? Opinions and options please. Thanks.

    Edit to add; I will likely only use it for gathering and processing firewood.
     
  2. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

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    I would use the hatchets for around camp. An axe is overkill for most camp chores. A saw and a hatchet will do anything you need, really.

    Check out Swedwoods on YouTube, he does several varieties of bushcraft or commercial buck saws. No talking, just video.
     

  3. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    I will likely go with something longer than the typical 9 to 14 inch hatchet, although I have not ruled them out. The Council Tool Flying Fox is 16". That’s one I am looking at and is probably as short as I will go.

    I do carry a 21 inch folding buck saw. It would be (IS) more capable than the smaller hatchets
     
    ajole likes this.
  4. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    I always like Tomahawks. I can usually talk myself into buying a new one. But if you're happy with what you've got, then it's not a "need." I'm ok with buying a "want."

    I'll enable. You should buy it. Buy two. :D

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     
  5. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    And Al, I hope that did not sound to snarky. I do want opinions and yours makes sense. But I am really not 100% that I really want an axe.

    I am going to log this as continue on with the Awaga Canyon Boreal 21 and Jääkarä Skrämä. No axe . Thanks :)
     
    ajole likes this.
  6. histed

    histed Supporting Member

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    Like Kirk, I prefer a Tommy-hawk. Longer handle, wider cutting surface (mine is made similar to a bearded axe blade) but plenty light enough for easy carry. It's also one of the very few bladed weapons I've actually practiced fighting with - no, not throwing - and it feels more comfortable for that than a knife. My two cents.
     
  7. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    A USA made Tomahawk I would snatch up quickly. Unfortunately most of them are tactical and I don’t want that. I would want a hawk with a hardened hammer pommel.

    The CRKT fits the bill except.....it’s made in Taiwan.
     
  8. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    But like I responded to Kirk, the USA made hawks don’t fit the bill for me. I would love to find one that did.
     
    histed likes this.
  9. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    There are a ton of custom smiths here in the U.S. The last nice one that I got was a semi-custom job at a theme-fair. I'm sure your knife-maker buddy would make you exactly what you are wanting. :)

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     
  10. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    T
    thought of that, but he has fallen off the face of the earth it seems.

    besides, because of the eye I am 99.999% sure they have to be made by a blacksmith.
     
  11. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    Fair enough.

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     
  12. @greg_r I'm pretty sure you can find an axsmith or similar easily on that one bushcraft forum you're on ;) I think someone converted a roofing hatchet into a tomahawk with hammer poll. I could be wrong though.
     
  13. histed

    histed Supporting Member

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    I made my own. Cut out the blade I wanted, rolled the "eye" around a mandrel and welded it. Then I heated it and shaped the eye the way I wanted it. Made a handle to fit. Not "authentic", but it works for me
     
    SWAGA likes this.
  14. mr_flintstone

    mr_flintstone Supporting Member

    Almost what you want, but made in Mexico. Truper Boy’s Axe.

    I’ve had one for several years, and I like it a lot.

    8F9C3EB7-798C-491F-A177-774FC71D965C.jpeg
     
  15. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

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    No, it’s all good, I get it. I think.:p
    You were looking at a tool with more uses than a hatchet, a little more reach, and more velocity in the swing with less muscle input.

    For “survival“ use that makes sense, for “just” camping, I’m not sure it’s needed, and you were asking if you really even wanted it... but...needs and wants aren’t the same things.

    I was saying there’s not much need, IMHO. But if you want it...you do you, and it’s all good; there’s nothing wrong with having good tools.
     
  16. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    That German made tomahawk is what I am looking for....except it’s German. Being of German descent I do tend to be more forgiving in that aspect. Wonder why folk see the need to paint up their product. Still, I really want USA made.

    I have had this one in my cart for a while. Just not bought it because it doesn’t have the hammer. USA made.
    1F50EC72-7A1A-4BEB-9AF9-C7C2DFA777C4.jpeg
     
  17. Rerun

    Rerun Supporting Member

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    Whelp,

    in a shtf event one will need to use an axe to fell trees to build a cabin.
    A round nosed full handle shovel to make a dugout.
    Likewise a sod house will need a square nosed shovel. Or, a machete.

    If ya'll are just going camping for a weekend, a wood handled hatchet should do the trick.

    Helpful eldar
     
  18. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    Nice. But it doesn't have the hammer pol.

    I have just the thing for you. (warning! off-site links!)
    [​IMG]
    US $42.95
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Ma...875045?hash=item2a77ffbc65:g:gKgAAOSw2xRYYv6O

    [​IMG]
    US $17.00
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-CR...444427?hash=item1cf5d4bdcb:g:ruUAAOSwwH5fhisZ

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk
     
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  19. greg_r

    greg_r Lifetime Supporter

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    I have thought about a roofers hatchet rehandle to get what I am looking for, but those that know more than I do say they have their limitations. Particularly chopping, so I would be right back to the saw. I personally dont know. But for 17 bucks? Tempting.