Can This Axe Head Be Repaired?

Discussion in 'Axe, Tomahawk, & Hatchet Forum' started by Ray Settanta, Mar 19, 2013.

  1. Ray Settanta

    Ray Settanta

    Aug 30, 2012
    The corner has been broken off.


  2. Square_peg

    Square_peg Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    Yes and no.

    A good blacksmith could forge weld some additional metal onto that corner and then re-heat treat the axe. But unless you can do that yourself it is prohibitively expensive.

    If you tried grinding it back you'd likely grind past the hardened edge and wind up with scrap metal. It's a shame really, 'cause big old masting axes like that are hard to come by. Maybe just display it as is.
  3. G-pig


    Jul 5, 2011
    If you soak it in vinegar you might well be able to see how far back the steel was hardened. You can get away with a pretty curved edge on this type of axe, so re profiling might be an option.
  4. Knifein

    Knifein Banned BANNED

    Mar 20, 2010
    Why would you even want to repair this? Not worth the hassle in my opinion.
  5. Square_peg

    Square_peg Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    How many masting axes do you have, Knifein?
  6. Coloradoman24


    Nov 3, 2012
    Oh wow that sucks but like what G pig said soak it in viniger to see if it is a laminated steel or one piece and how far back the temper is but I bet you can cut the bit off and reshape the edge, it will take some weight off the cheek side but I bet that will make the balance better. She's a beauty at that.
  7. richard thurman

    richard thurman

    Nov 9, 2005
    why can't you use it like that??
  8. Square_peg

    Square_peg Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    That's what G was getting at. Just sharpen it and use it. Big ol' axe. It'll hew.
  9. sintro


    Mar 5, 2012
    Just sharpen it and use it. I don't think it will impede the function of the axe hardly, just look like you abuse your axe :)
  10. JSMcustoms


    Feb 2, 2012
    I agree, it can't really be repaired, but there's nothing wrong with simply sharpening it up and using that axe head as is.
  11. chuxwan


    Aug 26, 2012
    What would cause it to break like that in the first place? The temper might be ruined up the whole edge already.
  12. CedarEater


    Aug 31, 2012
    Its quite possible someone threw it in a fire to burn the handle out of it.
  13. halfaxe


    Nov 29, 2012
    It could have been used in really cold weather on frozen wood. I've found a couple old axe heads damaged like that. I never messed with them other than hanging them on the shed wall.
  14. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
    If it is a masting axe that says to me that it has a single beveled cutting edge, then I imagine a strap construction with a laid on bit and if that's so, grinding it down and laying on a new piece of good steel is a matter of course which any good tool blacksmith should be willing to do without making a high price for the work. If the axe has any particular value to you, I would get it fixed in that case.

  15. Square_peg

    Square_peg Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    The few masting axes I've seen have all been double-beveled.

    The crack is probably due to a combination of a less than perfect heat treat and then striking a hard object with a cold axe.
  16. G-pig


    Jul 5, 2011
    Most of them New England pattern axes were double beveled, with the corners of the cutting edges curled off to keep it from tearing out.

    Double bevels hew pretty nicely

  17. killa_concept


    May 19, 2009
    As the others have suggested, you could vinegar bath it to see where the temper line is... even if it goes beyond the ding though, that's a LOT of steel you'd have to remove to true it up and the bit might be too thick back that far, making it a bad profile that might not work too well.

    You could, as others have suggested, just haft and use it as is. But since there's no point in my posting if I'm just going to mimic what others have said, I'll suggest something a bit more out of the box. Perhaps you could redo it in the below manner (sorry for the crude MS paint edit) with a dremel and cutoff wheels? I know not everyone has access to bigger power tools, but IMO there's no excuse for people to not have a dremel and drill. It's also mostly a cosmetic fix since you'd still be losing a good 1" or so on the cutting face...
  18. Stubai


    Mar 16, 2007
    I have seen these type of axes break in this manner. Usually such a 'trauma' comes from missing an intended target and hitting a rock or other very hard object. As has been said more than a few times, it boils down to whether you really want to spend the money to have a smith repair it.

    You could just reprofile the blade and use it as it. Back in the day, many of these were just filed off and put back into service. On smaller chips/breaks, I have used a belt sander to put them into working order. The short answer is that it probably is not worth fixing, but it can, with great effort and expense, be accomplished in the hand of a master smith.
  19. Square_peg

    Square_peg Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    Best suggestion yet.
  20. Ernest DuBois

    Ernest DuBois

    Mar 2, 2013
    Funny, I was today squaring up some timbers with another kind of double beveled timber axe and come in to see this video with some very correct technique on here. Nice close to the ground working there, whoever you may be.


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