Axe and Hachet Sharpening

Mar 20, 1999
This past weekend I used both my hatchet and Axe to help in cutting down a damn stubborn pine tree. Now they need to be resharpened before next weekend to finish the job
I dont have a wheel to sharpen them, and my sharpmaker seems to small for the job. What would you recommend for this task ? Stones ? Steel Rods ?

Thanks for any advice.

Dark Nemesis

All of God's Critters may have knives, but most of them are stamped with the name BENCHMADE
I have been using a fine flat file when sharpening my axes. 5-10 licks per side tends to get a good useable edge. If I need it sharper I run the whetstone across it to bring it to a finer edge.

The Nichoson flat file seems to work well on my cheaper hatchets.

I have used the sharpmaker as well on a hatchet but be careful. The hatchet carries a lot of weight and may get past the guards. I use the sharpmaker after filing.


I used to carry a hatchet all the time when I was a kid. I have a nice scar on the back of my forearm from it just touching the edge one day while it was in my belt.I didn't have a sheath.( I know,I know,my old man had a death wish for me.
I always just used a file to keep it sharp.


Dark Nemesis,
I don't know what your cost consideration is, but SMKW at sells an ultra rough 220 grit axe and hatchet sharpener. Its about 20 bucks. I'm sorry I can't give you an ealuation, but I don't own one, I just saw it and it looks like it would perform well if you want to check it out.

Just because I talk to myself doesn't mean I'm crazy. What's wrong with getting a second opinion?
Dark, if cutting down one pine tree blunted your axe then you need a new axe. Anyway, you can use a file or if you want a someway finer edge just get a cheap AO hone at a hardware store for like $5. Use the file first to thin the edge before you use the stone. EstWing makes a decent axe/hatchet apparently. I have not have good luck with what I have experienced, but others have reported good results. If there is a smith nearby he will pound out an axe head much much cheaper than what you would pay for a decent folder. If I wanted a good axe now that is the way I would go. What you would get would be in a league far above the production stuff in hardward stores.

There was a thread on that I think I started along these lines. There was a lot of good AXE info, what to look for, which brands, etc. Can't seem to find it tonight but, I'm dragging pretty hard after the Blade Show and probably just missed it. With a search or two you may find it.

Cliff is right, with the usage you described you should still have a sharp axe. If not, Home Depot sells some cheap axes that would work much better or, get a good axe head as Cliff suggested for a little more.