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Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun Jan 19, 2020 6:04 pm
by bearrowland
Thanks Enactive!

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun Jan 19, 2020 10:24 pm
by kennethsime
I've been looking at the Gransfors Bruk Small forest or or Scandinavian Forest Axe for a bushcraft axe; something easy enough to throw onto a backpack.

Would love to hear pros and cons of each!

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Mon Jan 20, 2020 7:01 am
by bearfacedkiller
I burn a minimum of 5 cords of wood a year. I split A LOT of wood. I guess that I would say that my fiskars super splitter is my favorite axe. Sure, it is plastic and soft steel, but it sure works well and I have swung it thousands of times now. It keeps the family warm year after year so it deserves some love.

As far as wood processing goes I use a chainsaw around the house. For bushcrafty stuff and camping I tend to lean towards the folding saw and big knife combo. My folding bow saw and Becker BK9 weigh just two pounds combined and I can process more wood faster and safer than with an axe.

That said, I do use the Husqvarna boys axe quite a bit. You can see in the third pic that the boys axe is stellar for scavanging limbs off of blow down in the winter.

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Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Wed Jan 22, 2020 5:10 am
by Woodpuppy
SFA vs. SFA.. I guess it depends on your AO. What wood are you using. What are to willing to pack. I don’t have a strong preference yet, though I would tend towards the longer handle I think.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:22 pm
by Enactive
kennethsime wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 10:24 pm
I've been looking at the Gransfors Bruk Small forest or or Scandinavian Forest Axe for a bushcraft axe; something easy enough to throw onto a backpack.

Would love to hear pros and cons of each!
I instinctively go for the Scandinavian Forest Axe. I only like the 19 inch axe handles for hewing tasks, not chopping and splitting.

Your height, arm span, strength and skill all play into it. The longer handle generally makes for a safer tool for the user.

I figure you don't save enough weight and packability to offset the performance disadvantages.

If you are game to do the final shaping, finishing and sharpening, save half the dough and get the Husqvarna branded Hultafors instead of the Gransfors Bruks. Both are great, just the Husky can come with uggllyy grinds and basically unfinished.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Fri Jan 24, 2020 8:36 am
by bearfacedkiller
I find 19 inch handles awkward and thus dangerous. In my opinion it is the size axe that you are the most likely to hurt yourself with. To big to use one handed and too small to use two handed. They are popular because Ray Mears likes them and recommends them. I mostly choose between a boys axe and a hatchet. That is a boys axe strapped to my pack above. I find it carries well like that.

The truth is that a 36 inch handle is superior because it is powerful and it is difficult to hurt yourself with it because it is so long that it will usually hit the ground before it hits you. Unfortunately they are hard to pack unless you are canoe camping.

I would go with a hatchet or an axe in the 26-28 inch range for a packable bushcraft tool.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:34 am
by FullScaler
I have about 20 axes out in the garage that I have collected and used over the years. And out of all of those, there are only two or three that I use very often.

For splitting, I have a big ol' 12 lb maul that I grabbed out of an old second-hand store. The building was so old it looked like it was about to fall down and the axe head had so much dust on it you could hardly tell what it was. I put a 36-inch curved hickory in it and it has split dozens of cords with ease.

I have a Fiskars X15 that I got in a discount bin and didn't think I would ever use or even like but it has proven to be a handy tool that has held up well over time. I am not a big fan of plastic handles but with that said, it feels nice in my hands and does the jobs I need it to.

The last axe I use often, and the one I like the most is the Gransfors Bruks Small Forest Axe. This one goes with me pretty much anytime I head out into the bush. It is just heavy enough to chop and limb well but is still light enough and small enough to be easily packable. And like everything I have ever used from Gransfors, it is an extremely well made and high performing tool. My favorite axe in my collection by far.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sat Feb 22, 2020 9:34 pm
by Woodpuppy
I’m nearly finished with this sweet Flint Edge. It’ll be about 23.5”. Just need to clean up both ends and a few coats of BLO.

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Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Tue May 26, 2020 12:13 am
by kennethsime
Well, I had an REI 20% Off Coupon to use by the end of the day, and a halfway-decent dividend, so I ended up with a Hults Bruk Kisa for $70: roughly 50% off. 26" handle, 2.85lb head. Just a bit bigger than the GB Scandinavian Forest Axe.

How'd I do?

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Tue May 26, 2020 2:36 pm
by Spydergirl88
Hey I got a Kisa today as well. Chopped some wood. It came very sharp. This is my first axe, so far I like it. Can't wait to try it out on something other than pine :(

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Fri May 29, 2020 4:40 pm
by prndltech
I live in central Texas, and I have a chainsaw... I’m very thankful I don’t have to split wood to stay warm.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sat May 30, 2020 8:22 am
by kennethsime
Spydergirl88 wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 2:36 pm
Hey I got a Kisa today as well. Chopped some wood. It came very sharp. This is my first axe, so far I like it. Can't wait to try it out on something other than pine :(
I'd love to see some action shots if you get a chance! Mine's not here until next week, kicking myself for not paying the expedited shipping.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sat May 30, 2020 10:14 am
by JD Spydo
bearrowland wrote:
Sun Jan 19, 2020 9:01 am
IMG_20191225_093236.jpgGot this one from my son for Christmas. It's done a great job!
I've got a few ESTWING tools myself. And I must say that there is nothing wrong with them and their quality is in the upper tier.

I've also wanted to compile a list of some of the better manufacturers of axes, hatchets, hawks and other striking tools. The "True Temper" axes that were sold by the True Value Hardware stores were a very good tool.

If anyone makes a better ax than Grandfors Bruks in the current market I would sure like to know about it.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sat May 30, 2020 12:35 pm
by Woodpuppy

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sat May 30, 2020 1:34 pm
by MacLaren
Yeah, Fiskars splitting axe
But, my favorite is the Fiskars Super Splitter/ Go-Devil or technically the 8 pound maul
They both work so dang well.
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Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun May 31, 2020 6:33 pm
by JD Spydo
Woodpuppy wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 12:35 pm
https://www.hoffmanblacksmithing.com/

https://lamacaaxes.com/

https://theworkingaxes.com/

https://www.nwaxeco.com/

http://counciltool.com/axes/

https://whiskeyrivertrading.com/

Fiskars is hard to beat for pure utility, and I even like the aesthetic.

This is a deep rabbit hole!
Hey thanks for the most interesting links "Woodpuppy". I don't know if any of you guys remember a few years back there was a guy who worked for the U.S. Forest Service named Bernie Weisgerber and he did a really nice book entitled "An Ax To Grind" and I believe it's still available for a nominal fee by contacting the U.S. Forest Service. I also got a video with mine by the same name and it shows how to hang a new ax handle along with some really good maintenance and sharpening info as well.

I've found the U.S. Forest Service to be a great source of information on a wide range of tools along with other things related to working in the forests.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun May 31, 2020 6:42 pm
by JD Spydo
MacLaren wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 1:34 pm
Yeah, Fiskars splitting axe
But, my favorite is the Fiskars Super Splitter/ Go-Devil or technically the 8 pound maul
They both work so dang well.
When it comes to splitting mauls I've got a 6lb and an 8lb set of mauls made by Collins Tool Co. I got these when they were still made in the USA.

I've also heard that Grandfors Bruks also has a really great splitting maul too. When I've got a good sharp maul there are times I prefer using a good one over using a log splitter. Those Collins mauls could split a cord of Oak or Locust in less than 90 minutes if your logs have a good, straight grain in them.

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun May 31, 2020 7:12 pm
by Woodpuppy
JD Spydo wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 6:33 pm
Woodpuppy wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 12:35 pm
https://www.hoffmanblacksmithing.com/

https://lamacaaxes.com/

https://theworkingaxes.com/

https://www.nwaxeco.com/

http://counciltool.com/axes/

https://whiskeyrivertrading.com/

Fiskars is hard to beat for pure utility, and I even like the aesthetic.

This is a deep rabbit hole!
Hey thanks for the most interesting links "Woodpuppy". I don't know if any of you guys remember a few years back there was a guy who worked for the U.S. Forest Service named Bernie Weisgerber and he did a really nice book entitled "An Ax To Grind" and I believe it's still available for a nominal fee by contacting the U.S. Forest Service. I also got a video with mine by the same name and it shows how to hang a new ax handle along with some really good maintenance and sharpening info as well.

I've found the U.S. Forest Service to be a great source of information on a wide range of tools along with other things related to working in the forests.
Hi JD, you can get An Ax to Grind on the net too:
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/re ... 23/toc.cfm

Good stuff. It’s why I have had success maintaining and hanging vintage axes!

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Sun May 31, 2020 7:56 pm
by MacLaren
JD Spydo wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 6:42 pm
MacLaren wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 1:34 pm
Yeah, Fiskars splitting axe
But, my favorite is the Fiskars Super Splitter/ Go-Devil or technically the 8 pound maul
They both work so dang well.
When it comes to splitting mauls I've got a 6lb and an 8lb set of mauls made by Collins Tool Co. I got these when they were still made in the USA.

I've also heard that Grandfors Bruks also has a really great splitting maul too. When I've got a good sharp maul there are times I prefer using a good one over using a log splitter. Those Collins mauls could split a cord of Oak or Locust in less than 90 minutes if your logs have a good, straight grain in them.
Oh man Joe, I so used to love splitting wood!
Your exactly right too. With the right wood and right Go-Devil, man can split A LOT of wood really quick!
Man, I miss those days. Daddy could always fell a tree anywhere he wanted. And, the bigger the better!
Those were great days...

Re: Got a favorite ax? Post ‘em up!

Posted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 11:57 am
by JD Spydo
Woodpuppy wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 7:12 pm
JD Spydo wrote:
Sun May 31, 2020 6:33 pm
Woodpuppy wrote:
Sat May 30, 2020 12:35 pm
https://www.hoffmanblacksmithing.com/

https://lamacaaxes.com/

https://theworkingaxes.com/

https://www.nwaxeco.com/

http://counciltool.com/axes/

https://whiskeyrivertrading.com/

Fiskars is hard to beat for pure utility, and I even like the aesthetic.

This is a deep rabbit hole!
Hey thanks for the most interesting links "Woodpuppy". I don't know if any of you guys remember a few years back there was a guy who worked for the U.S. Forest Service named Bernie Weisgerber and he did a really nice book entitled "An Ax To Grind" and I believe it's still available for a nominal fee by contacting the U.S. Forest Service. I also got a video with mine by the same name and it shows how to hang a new ax handle along with some really good maintenance and sharpening info as well.

I've found the U.S. Forest Service to be a great source of information on a wide range of tools along with other things related to working in the forests.
Hi JD, you can get An Ax to Grind on the net too:
https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/re ... 23/toc.cfm

Good stuff. It’s why I have had success maintaining and hanging vintage axes!
OH for Sure!! Everyone who uses an ax or maul or any other striking tool for that matter can benefit from Bernie Weisgerber's "An Ax To Grind" put out by the U.S. Forest Service. I was lucky enough to get the original book and video both and I still look at both of them occasionally. Mr. Weisgerber joined the Spyderco Forum a few years back but only posted just a few times and hasn't been back since. I would really like for him to return.

In the past 3 years I've bought some really nice replacement handles for two axes and one maul I use a lot. They were made by the O.P. Link company and I believe they are out of Tennessee. There are other companies here in the USA that make great hickory handles. It's actually interesting and fun to play with these older axes and other tools.