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Thread: Council 3.5lb Classic Jersey

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by FortyTwoBlades View Post
    I think they have a market ready and waiting for a mid-level line of products between the Velvicut and standard series, personally.
    I agree 100%, but at this point, I'm unsure if I trust them to deliver with the appropriate quality. It seems to me that the qualities prioritized at each level are often backwards, and while I get the purpose, it still falls short. I'm not trying to whine, I really support CT and want them to prosper, but I can't see them making large leaps in axe production without seriously evaluating why things are the way they are. In essence, I think they need to start from the ground up to build an $80 axe, if that makes sense.

  2. #42
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    I think a lot of it has to do with them just being very comfortable with doing things as they've done them. They have some good folks starting to push the outside their comfort zone now and encouraging them to make positive changes. I think they can do it, it's just going to take continued coaxing.


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  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Park Swan View Post
    I agree 100%, but at this point, I'm unsure if I trust them to deliver with the appropriate quality. It seems to me that the qualities prioritized at each level are often backwards, and while I get the purpose, it still falls short. I'm not trying to whine, I really support CT and want them to prosper, but I can't see them making large leaps in axe production without seriously evaluating why things are the way they are. In essence, I think they need to start from the ground up to build an $80 axe, if that makes sense.

    It makes sense if you decided that their low end products are worthless - and they are not.
    What's the market targeted for the 40$ product? Users that don't mind too much to take the axe and make it theirs.
    What will be the market targeted for 80$? The guys who don't want to buy +120$ axes but are expecting that quality. It will never happen. There are just 3 elements that you can change on the axe to increase the price: steel, handle and wedge. As company who produces low and high end products, you don't want to stab yourself in the foot. What can you change to make it cheaper than Velvicut line? Steel? I am not sure if you are not daily user. Handle? You just lost Velvicut buyers. For me, it doesn't make sense a 80$ axe - from business point of view - unless you try to sell just one line - Velvicut quality at under 100$ mark.
    Last edited by Derzelas; 03-14-2017 at 10:50 AM.

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    It makes sense if you decided that their low end products are worthless - and they are not.
    What's the market targeted for the 40$ product? Users that don't mind too much to take the axe and make it theirs.
    What will be the market targeted for 80$? The guys who don't want to buy +120$ axes but are expecting that quality. It will never happen. There are just 3 elements that you can change on the axe to increase the price: steel, handle and wedge. As company who produces low and high end products, you don't want to stab yourself in the foot. What can you change to make it cheaper than Velvicut line? Steel? Not that much difference between if you are not daily user. Handle? You just lost Velvicut buyers ...
    Steel, attention to surface finishing, and edge. The $60-80 product would be taking the finish to nicer than the rough forged finish that gets painted but not as polished as the Velvicuts, upgrading the wedge, and perhaps improving the hardness a little, plus designs made for that target market segment. Edge could be left basic rather than finished, and no fancy unit packaging.


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  5. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    It makes sense if you decided that their low end products are worthless - and they are not.
    What's the market targeted for the 40$ product? Users that don't mind too much to take the axe and make it theirs.
    What will be the market targeted for 80$? The guys who don't want to buy +120$ axes but are expecting that quality. It will never happen. There are just 3 elements that you can change on the axe to increase the price: steel, handle and wedge. As company who produces low and high end products, you don't want to stab yourself in the foot. What can you change to make it cheaper than Velvicut line? Steel? Not that much difference that counts between steels if you are not daily user. Handle? You just lost Velvicut buyers ...
    They really already do it. The classic series just sells below the price it is supposed to. You can get the red ones for 30 ish and they are supposed to be 40. You can get the classics for 40 ish and they are supposed to be 60 or so. The velvitcuts are supposed to be the high end. I kind of agree that an 80$ axe line would be nice. But I do not want any novelty on a wierdbeard handle. I want felling axes and boys axes on 36 34 32 and 28 inch handles. I want high centrelines and no coating. I want no secondary wedge, glue away the wooden one if need be. I want classic head patterns and old school geometry that works. Go ahead and blue them, fine. Keep the nonsense for the high end. Give us a cruiser. A four pound Rockaway on a 34 inch thin handle with a large knob. A four pound Connecticut. Go ahead and copy the four pound perfect Jersey, nobody else is going to! You have umpteen years of axes during the hayday of US axe manufacturing to take a look at, perhaps do that. One of the absolute best axes I own performance wise all around is a 3.5 lb plumb victory Michigan. Take a look at those. Then sell them to us at a reasonable $80.
    Last edited by Woodcraft; 03-14-2017 at 11:02 AM.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by FortyTwoBlades View Post
    Steel, attention to surface finishing, and edge. The $60-80 product would be taking the finish to nicer than the rough forged finish that gets painted but not as polished as the Velvicuts, upgrading the wedge, and perhaps improving the hardness a little, plus designs made for that target market segment. Edge could be left basic rather than finished, and no fancy unit packaging.
    If an assembly line will be easy to set in this way: finishing tools to "half rough finish" or "75% polish" , CT would have already done it. But I guess they can't, so they just take out the steps and price the end result accordingly.

  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodcraft View Post
    They really already do it. The classic series just sells below the price it is supposed to. You can get the red ones for 30 ish and they are supposed to be 40. You can get the classics for 40 ish and they are supposed to be 60 or so. The velvitcuts are supposed to be the high end. I kind of agree that an 80$ axe line would be nice. But I do not want any novelty on a wierdbeard handle. I want felling axes and boys axes on 36 34 32 and 28 inch handles. I want high centrelines and no coating. I want no secondary wedge, glue away the wooden one if need be. I want classic head patterns and old school geometry that works. Go ahead and blue them, fine. Keep the nonsense for the high end. Give us a cruiser. A four pound Rockaway on a 34 inch thin handle with a large knob. A four pound Connecticut. Go ahead and copy the four pound perfect Jersey, nobody else is going to! You have umpteen years of axes during the hayday of US axe manufacturing to take a look at, perhaps do that. One of the absolute best axes I own performance wise a is a 3.5 lb plumb victory Michigan. Take a look at those. Then sell them to us at a reasonable $80.
    I am with you on this. Don't invent the wheel, give something that worked in all different types of weight and length.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    If an assembly line will be easy to set in this way: finishing tools to "half rough finish" or "75% polish" , CT would have already done it. But I guess they can't, so they just take out the steps and price the end result accordingly.
    Just because they haven't made the decision to do something doesn't mean that they can't. They already finish the Classics to a higher degree than the base line models. The Velvicuts just have another couple of grits they run through (as the coarser finish on the Classics removes the forge scale) and have much more attention to evenness and flash removal. It's just WAY faster to skip the finish grinding entirely and dip the heads in paint to hide the as-forged pebbly surface finish.


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  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by FortyTwoBlades View Post
    Just because they haven't made the decision to do something doesn't mean that they can't. They already finish the Classics to a higher degree than the base line models. The Velvicuts just have another couple of grits they run through (as the coarser finish on the Classics removes the forge scale) and have much more attention to evenness and flash removal. It's just WAY faster to skip the finish grinding entirely and dip the heads in paint to hide the as-forged pebbly surface finish.
    A big company will say always "I can't" if there is no monetary incentive behind. Velvicut line was born because they realized they don't get a piece from the "boutique axes" pie. And as I said above, in my first intervention, they are not ready to produce just one single type of product (80$ mark quality) in a world where axes are not having a day-by-day utility if you check the potential number of buyers. How many buyers of 120$ products will convert to 80$ products? A lot of them imo. And like this they just shot themselves in the foot.

  10. #50
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    This is a hatchet being produced under Marbles branding but I'm pretty sure it's Council's basic little hatchet with a custom stamp and label. It's available in two finishes. This one is the as-forged uncoated finish.



    And here it is with paint over that finish.



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  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    A big company will say always "I can't" if there is no monetary incentive behind. Velvicut line was born because they realized they don't get a piece from the "boutique axes" pie. And as I said above, in my first intervention, they are not ready to produce just one single type of product (80$ mark quality) in a world where axes are not having a day-by-day utility if you check the potential number of buyers. How many buyers of 120$ products will convert to 80$ products? A lot of them imo. And like this they just shot themselves in the foot.
    Not necessarily. Just keep certain models as Velvicut exclusives and they have the advantages of higher overall fit and finish, higher end steel, and finished edges. A lot of folks who would buy $60-80 axes wouldn't ever spring for a Velvicut, but most folks who buy Velvicuts might also buy from the $60-80 lines.


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  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    It makes sense if you decided that their low end products are worthless - and they are not.
    What's the market targeted for the 40$ product? Users that don't mind too much to take the axe and make it theirs.
    What will be the market targeted for 80$? The guys who don't want to buy +120$ axes but are expecting that quality. It will never happen. There are just 3 elements that you can change on the axe to increase the price: steel, handle and wedge. As company who produces low and high end products, you don't want to stab yourself in the foot. What can you change to make it cheaper than Velvicut line? Steel? I am not sure if you are not daily user. Handle? You just lost Velvicut buyers. For me, it doesn't make sense a 80$ axe - from business point of view - unless you try to sell just one line - Velvicut quality at under 100$ mark.
    There are many more elements. Steel is meaningless without a respectable heat treat. Handles are pointless if they need to be shaped for hours or removed entirely. I don't care about the fact that Velvicuts are "polished," because I think they look like polished turds. I'm more concerned that at Velvicut price, the head might not be evenly ground, but they took the time to make it shiny. I don't think their low end products are worthless, but I think they are close to being worthless, just like I don't think that Velvicut is a "premium" line of axes. I don't think they really know what a premium axe would be exactly, so I'm not sure if it counts as false advertising, or if they're just saying "it's the most premium axe we're going to make, anyway."

    Surely I'm not the arbiter of what makes an axe good, but I think it's fairly evident that doing things the wrong way has influenced people to assume that those ways are correct or desired. A perfect example is the hilarious full tank tomahawk designs where makers or companies build a new axe with a pre-worn toe curve because of looking at poorly sharpened vintage numbers. Maybe I have a different idea about what quality means, and that's fine.

  13. #53
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    Another option would be adding to the Velvi-cut line. How about a nice full-cheeked Connie? I'd buy one. How about a 4-5 pound rafter with hard poll and a straight haft?

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Park Swan View Post
    There are many more elements. Steel is meaningless without a respectable heat treat. Handles are pointless if they need to be shaped for hours or removed entirely. I don't care about the fact that Velvicuts are "polished," because I think they look like polished turds. I'm more concerned that at Velvicut price, the head might not be evenly ground, but they took the time to make it shiny. I don't think their low end products are worthless, but I think they are close to being worthless, just like I don't think that Velvicut is a "premium" line of axes. I don't think they really know what a premium axe would be exactly, so I'm not sure if it counts as false advertising, or if they're just saying "it's the most premium axe we're going to make, anyway."

    Surely I'm not the arbiter of what makes an axe good, but I think it's fairly evident that doing things the wrong way has influenced people to assume that those ways are correct or desired. A perfect example is the hilarious full tank tomahawk designs where makers or companies build a new axe with a pre-worn toe curve because of looking at poorly sharpened vintage numbers. Maybe I have a different idea about what quality means, and that's fine.

    How much do you charge for better heat treatment when the 40$ has no issues with it? I am playing the devil's advocate here, not that I don't want a better product for slightly more money.
    On the other hand, I think someone here said that as long as the geometry of the bit is not off and the heat treatment is good, the educated buyer will get the cheapest tool and transform it for his needs.
    And it is another big issue that nobody actually talks about. A good axe it lasts for a life time + extra. Who wants to produce it at a moderate price when the pool of buyers is limited? Shitty grain handles could be a solving problem on getting some extra cash-flaw and keeping some people busy. Which counts a lot in a world where axes are not day-by-day tools. I see Wetterlings dismantle as a way to eliminate an entire quality level, not necessary a way to absorb a product and rebrand it due to a merger.
    Last edited by Derzelas; 03-14-2017 at 12:22 PM.

  15. #55
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    Well, they definitely will be adding to the Velvicut line. They're adding a mini-Hudson Bay very soon and I hear there's a lot more in the pipeline. I just think that for those who don't need or want the extra spit-shining but would like some "better than hardware store" features that there's room for adding budget-conscious "rough cut gems" to their lineup. Personally I don't need the polish or finished edge of the Velvicuts, band while I enjoy the strong value of their budget baseline offerings I find the level of the Classics to be more like what I wish their other budget models were offered in, just with a wooden wedge and maybe slightly harder heat treatment. The aluminum wedge in my personal Classic Jersey is holding steady, but the overwhelming chorus I always read is "I wish it was a wooden wedge", and I wish it was, too. Still a great value that I'm quite enjoying, and I intend to simply keep an eye on the wedge and replace it with a wooden one should it ever work loose. It's a very nice handle.


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  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Park Swan View Post
    A perfect example is the hilarious full tank tomahawk designs where makers or companies build a new axe with a pre-worn toe curve because of looking at poorly sharpened vintage numbers.
    A picture in case anyone doesn't already know what you're talking about.



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  17. #57
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    LoL, I am one who didn't know about. Thank you for posting, I was in the dark with that line.

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    HA I literally cringed when I scrolled down.

    Quote Originally Posted by Derzelas View Post
    How much do you charge for better heat treatment when the 40$ has no issues with it? I am playing the devil's advocate here, not that I don't want a better product for slightly more money.
    On the other hand, I think someone here said that as long as the geometry of the bit is not off and the heat treatment is good, the educated buyer will get the cheapest tool and transform it for his needs.
    And it is another big issue that nobody actually talks about. A good axe it lasts for a life time + extra. Who wants to produce it at a moderate price when the pool of buyers is limited? Shitty grain handles could be a solving problem on getting some extra cash-flaw and keeping some people busy. Which counts a lot in a world where axes are not day-by-day tools. I see Wetterlings dismantle as a way to eliminate an entire quality level, not necessary a way to absorb a product and rebrand it due to a merger.
    All good points. The Wetterlings news is interesting. I had always thought that GB were higher fit and finish, but recently GB's have seemed to be much rougher than they were 5-6 years ago, maybe they are now what Wetterlings was then, but keeping the higher prices?

  19. #59
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    I think that the two brands were starting to blend together to the point where Wetterlings, which had less cachet and market pull, just wasn't different enough anymore to make sense keeping the two lines separate when Gransfors couldn't keep up with demand.


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  20. #60
    Quote Originally Posted by FortyTwoBlades View Post
    This is a hatchet being produced under Marbles branding but I'm pretty sure it's Council's basic little hatchet with a custom stamp and label. It's available in two finishes. This one is the as-forged uncoated finish.



    And here it is with paint over that finish.

    I thought those were forged in South America and handled in the us a. Wranglerstar has a review vid of them.

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