First axe hang help and ideas

Discussion in 'Edged Tools' started by Willem208, Jun 26, 2018.

  1. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    I have a 2 pound axe head (872 grams precisely; 1.9 lbs). I'm going to buy a 24 inch West Woods Axe Handle for it, but they are currently out of stock. Does anybody know when they will be back in stock? In the meantime I will clean the eye of the axe, as there is a bump on the inside. When I get the handle I will shape it and fit it to my axe. I will use the wedge that came with the handle. I will soak it in BLO first before driving it home. To drive the wedge in I think I will start it with a hammer from the top, then turn the axe over and support the wedge on a wood block and hit the handle to drive it in. Then I will turn it over again and wack the wedge a few more times. Next I will use the axe a bit, just give it a few swings and check if all is well. If all seems good, I will give the wedge a few more hits an then cut it off. Lastly I will soak it in BLO overnight in a ziploc baggie. Then I will clean the axe head and get the oil off. Lastly I will finish sharpening it to shaving sharp, oil the handle and the axe head and use it! Thoughts on what I mentioned, oiling the handle and axe head and any other tips and tricks will be really appreciated. Constructive criticism is welcomed. I am really excited to get this axe ready to be used again. I will post again when I eventually get the handle and hang it. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Some photos :) I was amazed at how well it worked. Really excited!
    IMG_20180224_205904.jpg IMG_20180309_163817.jpg
     
  3. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    Sounds like you have the right idea. Just take your time fitting the handle to the head. In general I do a number of test fits working the head futher and further onto the handle. You want to ensure that the bottom portion of the tounge (part of the handle that goes in the eye of the axe head) is very tight. It can be a pain working the head off of the handle between test fits, but it will result in a better hang that will last and you will be able to tell where you need to remove wood from the handle as you go based on the marks left on the handle from the fitting.
     
  4. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    I definitely will make sure it fits good and tight. Does anyone know when the West Woods Handles will be back in stock?
    Thanks for your input.
     
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  5. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Paging @batmanacw for the West Woods status.
    One tip for fitting the head is to remove wood only from the back, and leave the narrow front side alone.
    Other than that, your plan is a good one, and the advice given by @MJGEGB regarding many test fits as you go is gospel (he's hung one or two axes himself, lol).
    Take your time, and enjoy the process.
    And oh yeah...nice axe! (and excellent choice on the West Woods handle, they're exquisite.)
     
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  6. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    Almost all handles will be back in stock week after next. I've been busy getting my house sorted out again.....lol. Damn tornado......
     
  7. victoratsea

    victoratsea Supporter Supporter

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    This is good news. Westwood Handles are the BEST!
    Victor
     
  8. victoratsea

    victoratsea Supporter Supporter

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    Hey Willem208, you're new here, welcome aboard. Sound advice above, be patient. In the meantime check out @MJGEGB thread "A camp axe, a neverending story". This is a treasure trove of smaller axe info and inspiration. And @batmanacw thread "Axe profiling". This is a step by step tutorial to profile your axe to incredible cutting power and durability. Lots of the info you're looking for in these threads.
    Victor
     
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  9. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Yip I'm new here. I just finished reading through the camp axe thread. Lots of good info there, although it took me a couple of days to read everything. I definitely will check out the axe profiling thread. Recently I read something really interesting in a book called 'Woodcraft' by Elmer Harry Kreps (http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/34773). He used a 2 pound head on a 32 inch handle, which seems rather strange. I know everyone is different, but has anyone bothered to try this combo? He also recommends leaving the part of the bit 2 thirds from the heel the thickest and laving the heel the thinnest. I put this grind on my only usable axe, it seems to work really well. If anyone wants to I can post some more pics. Really glad to hear about the WW Handles.
     
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  10. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Head weight and haft lengths...there may be a post or two around here on that subject.
    :D

    I jest, of course. It's a popular (and sometimes divisive!) issue.
    Heavy heads on short hafts, light heads on long hafts, there are some fellas here that have piles of axes of every combination known to man (cough cough... @batmanacw ).
    I think the general consensus is that a 1.75lb head on a 24" handle is a sweet spot for light weight and use-ability.
    My personal favorites in this "unconventional" category are a 1.25lb HB head on a 20" West Woods, a 1.25lb Mann/True Temper head on a 24" WW, and a 3.5lb Wetterlings head on a 28" reprofiled Link:
    IMG_20180420_052215.jpg IMG_20180109_052750.jpg IMG_20171229_141556.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2018
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  11. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Good stuff. I wish I can get some more of these things called axes... I currently have a stubby short axe, an old rubbish head, a 4 pound hardware store axe with decent ish steel, the nice one posted above and a 4lb Hults Bruks head which will eventually get a handle. In my part of the world I struggle to find good old axes, let alone handles.
     
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  12. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Keep your eyes peeled everywhere you go. Not sure if garage sales, yard sales, flea markets, etc are common in your neck of the woods but it always helps if you're always looking.
    Your 4lb HB sounds like a good one!
     
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  13. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    I will just keep looking. That 4 pounder is in a very good condition. IMG_20180627_161717.jpg
     
  14. Willem208

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    Guess I just got to keep waiting. Wil definitely post back later when stuff starts happening.
     
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  15. okapimike

    okapimike Scout Bushclass I

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    Nice axe heads Willem. I carve my own handles, we have good wood here in SA.

    Look out for a drawknife too at the second hand shops.
     
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  16. Willem208

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    What you are also in South Africa? What wood do you use for the handles? And what Okapi knife do you use? I just got excited- another South African on BCUSA :)
     
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  17. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Does anyone know what the 24 handle weighs?
     
  18. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    Approximately 13 oz. for the pack axe handle. More for the 24" boy's axe handle.
     
  19. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Thanks. I pay postage per pound, if you were wondering why I asked.
     
  20. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    It's the week after next now and still nothing. Not meaning to sound rude but I'm getting a bit tired of waiting. :/ :) This old head has been lying around a long time now and I'm itching to use it.
     
  21. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    Family came first. I'm picking them up this Friday.
     
  22. Willem208

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    Thanks. What wood is your wedges made of? Sorry for all my questions.
     
  23. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    Poplar or ash depending on what he has on hand.
     
  24. Willem208

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    Now I'm really getting excited... Can't wait!
     
  25. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    The handles are finally in stock. Now which one do you recommend? The 24 inch boys axe handle or the 24 inch pack axe handle? Remember the eye is 5 cm by 2cm, which is 2 inches by 13/16 inches. The front of the eye is also quite round.
     
  26. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    The 24" pack axe should work, but you might go for the boy's axe handle just to have a bit more meat to work with.

    Can you post pictures of the eye?
     
  27. Willem208

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  28. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    I would go boys axe just to be sure. You might have to take some material off the front line of the tongue to increase the radius a little. I usually don't take material off the front, only working the back and sides. 24 or 28 is up to you.
     
  29. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Thanks I also thought the boys axe handle 24 inches would be the best for my purposes. Can you remember to include 2 wedges with the handle? I'll order it just now. Thank you for bearing with and helping me. Now it will be just a few more weeks and she should be swinging! ;)
     
  30. batmanacw

    batmanacw Guide

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    I'll be sure to. Send a message on Ebay so my wife sees it too. I'm on my way to St Louis for work. She will package it up for you.
     
  31. Willem208

    Willem208 Tracker

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    Thanks I'll order it now.
     

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