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Thread: Heavy Metal

  1. #1

    Heavy Metal


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    This is a big 10.5 lb. American hewing axe that I've been slowly working on. It's marked "Beaty and Sons - Chester Pennsylvania". The cutting edge is just shy of 15inches. The handle is an unfinished 40inch brush axe handle from HickoryHandleStore. M3mphis; the dimensions are 1 1/8 by 2 3/4 by 6 inches (for that big Jersey you're trying to haft). I haven't hafted this type before, anyone got any experience with these?




  2. #2
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    no i dont, but that is frekin' awesome... follow up pics please...

  3. #3
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    That's so awesome! No experience, here. Are you going to shorten that handle?

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by bearhunter View Post
    no i dont, but that is frekin' awesome... follow up pics please...
    Thanks I'll post more as I progress.

  5. #5
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    Nice one! I'm interested to see how yours turns out, since I have one to haft myself.

    From what I've read, you can make it right handed or left handed depending on which end of the eye you insert the handle. Depends on which side of the log feels more natural to hew if you are standing on top of it. (These considerations, of course, are because the flat, unbeveled side of the axe contacts the log when hewing).

    Someone with more experience, please add your comments.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by M3mphis View Post
    That's so awesome! No experience, here. Are you going to shorten that handle?
    Thanks I'm going to leave the handle alone because if I ever get around to using this I want to try the Japanese method where you stand on top of the log. I haven't done any hewing but from the videos I've seen it looks like the Japanese method is a smoother motion and maybe less tiring, which might be helpful with a ten pounder. The traditional Western method of standing beside the log might be tough because it seems like you have to arrest each swing or the axe will go into the ground. I'm not sure I could stop this heavy chunk of metal once I get it going. That may be why you don't see many American hewing axes this big.

  7. #7
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    Again, I have no experience with this...but, aren't the japanese hewing axes significantly lighter??? Hence the bigger swing in order to gain more momentum?

  8. #8
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    That's a cool head. You get where you can swing that all day and you really will be Paul Bunyon.

  9. #9
    trailmaker, that axe head came out real nice. Look forward to the update.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by M3mphis View Post
    Again, I have no experience with this...but, aren't the japanese hewing axes significantly lighter??? Hence the bigger swing in order to gain more momentum?
    The Japanese hewing axes I've seen look like they vary in weight. The method I'm thinking of employing can be seen at 1:13 of this video. It looks like some lighter axes are used to "score" and then he comes along and makes glancing blows with the heavier axe. I will not be in bare feet. Steel toe boots for sure with some Celox nearby.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ueIB0h4SzHc

  11. #11
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    Aaahhh haaa...I'm with you now. Yeah, definitely go with boots!

  12. #12
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    That's a great head, I love that axe, congrats Trailmaker. I had an old friend who used to build dovetailed log homes who used a broad axe pretty much like yours, I think an 8 pound head on his. He stood on the log and used a handle that curved toward him from the head. He used another big head with a straight handle for scoring. I once watched him square a plate log for a big house in less the an hour including dovetailing the ends. He was a true good old boy and a pleasure to watch. I seem to recall that he steamed the handles and bent them himself.

    That's a great project, can't wait to see it hung.

    Best regards

    Robin

  13. #13
    Thanks for the compliments and encouragement guys. Pipeman, that's a cool story about your old friend, I'd love to be that proficient. It's interesting that his handle curved toward him while he was hewing from above. That means the handle would curve towards the flat side of the axe which is something I've never seen. It makes ergonomic sense though, if you're hewing from above.

  14. #14
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    Are you hanging this bad boy over the weekend?

  15. #15
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    You would need a shorter handle in order to counter the weight on that thing, otherwise you are gonna have 11 lbs on on the end of that big stick, and you arent going to be able to control the momentum like you could on a shorter handle. Though it might work, and you will have huge shoulders and forearms when you are done.
    Axes4Life

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by M3mphis View Post
    Are you hanging this bad boy over the weekend?
    Not quite yet. I have a tiny outbuilding full of junk that I need to clean out first. I want to put a little space heater in there when I get it cleaned up so the humidity will get really low. I'll put all my handles in there from now on before I hang them and oil them.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Operator1975 View Post
    You would need a shorter handle in order to counter the weight on that thing, otherwise you are gonna have 11 lbs on on the end of that big stick, and you arent going to be able to control the momentum like you could on a shorter handle. Though it might work, and you will have huge shoulders and forearms when you are done.
    I think if I went any shorter I'd have to hunch over in order to clear my feet. I'm thinking that standing upright will be less tiring.

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