Test ad

Help me simplify all the info!

Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Okay guys, so real quick, I am a knife guy. But, I really want to get into axes too, and I'm starting to catch the bug. I have used tons of cheap Gerber axes, a cold steel hawk, and other cheap hatchets. And now, I feel the need to get my first and only, I hope (yeah right!), REAL axe.
I have been reading as much as I can the past couple days, but I work a lot so I don't have the time I used to for fun research like this anymore. I. Fact, after I post this thread, I will be reading some more trying to learn what I can, but I have a camping trip in exactly 1 week, and really want to bring this new axe!
So, please help me with a few things while I am reading, it would sure help a lot.
So, a few questions:
#1....I would like to know the real functional difference between a hatchet, an axe, and a hawk. I didn't see anything in the stickies about any of the silly questions for guys like me.
#2....I like what I'm pretty sure are axes, but I like the double bit kind, and also the more conventional single edge one like the Wetterlings small felling axe or carpenter axe. I see those for decent prices, that's why I bring it up. But why use that type of axe over the double bit, and visa versa? I feel like the double might be cool too?
#3....like I said, my camping trip is in one week, so I'm hoping you guys can just throw out whatever you feel like sharing, and I can get a better idea of what to look for for my uses.

I mostly do camping trips, hiking, and I love using my toys for any outdoor use I can make an excuse for. I am doing mostly firewood, and would really like all around use axe.
I am very big on aesthetics but, I don't want to spend custom money really right now. Something around 100 bucks or less would defininitely be cool too. I was looking at wetterlings because I think they were around forever? But maybe not so good now since used to be GB? Any other good companies you tell me is cool too, I still have to check out something called the Council tools boy's axe I think, and a few others.

I am sorry for being so frantic about this, I tend to us the wrong thing when I'm in a rush so I want to make the right decision. I am dying to buy something soon, because I need it soon.

Thank you so very much for your patience with me. I know I am a noobie at this axe stuff, but I am trying to learn all that I can fast. Any things you guys tell me I will take graciously, thanks again for your patience. Feel free to just throw out ideas!

Dave
 

Square_peg

Basic Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2012
Messages
12,902
.....I still have to check out something called the Council tools boy's axe I think.....

I can't think of a more useful or reasonably priced off-the-shelf axe than that right now. Just get it. It's a very handy size. A single bit axe's poll adds another function that double bits don't have. Just don't try to drive steel wedges with a poll axe. Tent stakes, wooden pegs, wooden wedges - all day long. Chopping, felling, limbing, bucking, splitting - it will do it all. And it's light enough that you can choke up on it and use it for detailed work.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Ok, so I think I am falling in love with the council tools Velvicut Hudson bay axe! Any other ideas or opinions on it? Best all a rounder in that price range?
Or do u guys recommend the Wetterlings instead? Thanks again, I'm really digging this! How is the customer service at council? I hope I can get in time.
 
Joined
Apr 9, 2011
Messages
592
You can not go wrong with either of these axes. Buy the one you think you like the best and go use it and enjoy it.

Howard
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Okay so, another question. I narrowed it down to either the velvicut Hudson bay, or the velvicut felling axe. What is the main difference between the two? Is it just a little bigger?
And also, I might still look at something similar from wetterlings since GB is out of business? Pros/cons of these? I wouldnt mind being able to process game and skinning chores, stuff like that with my new axe too. Am i on the right path? Im guessing the felling axe is a bit too big for packing for hiking, but i could be wrong. What do you guys think? I'm gonna probably have to order it today after work. Thanks for the help so far!! I'm soooo excited!!!

Dave
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Still trying to decide......
Do you guys recommend GB or council tools? I know they are probably both great, but I tend to want the best possible I can afford. So, either one over the other? Just curious on your opinions about this. Thanks again for the patience.
Dave
 
Joined
Jul 5, 2011
Messages
1,049
I dont like GB. too expensive for what they are. council is good, i dont care for the VC hudson though. dont especially like HB pattern and the handle is too short. of all production axes Id probably opt for the forest service council from bens backwoods, a simple working mans tool. what an axe should be.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
G pig: I was looking at that Forest service boys axe. That looks cool too. What would be the reason for that being better?

Also, what is the difference between the council hudson bay axe, and the Velvicut hudson bay? Is it just the fact that the head is polished nicer? Or am i missing something?

Thanks again.
 
Joined
Jan 24, 2012
Messages
64
Council Tool customer service is very responsive to your questions. Emailing them recently with questions during business hours, I was actually getting responses from Margo Council within 15-20 min.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 5, 2011
Messages
1,049
Much cheaper, more useful head pattern. comes well shaped, just needs a little edge work.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
G pig, the heads on those two look the same to me. Maybe i have to look at it again. They are both hudson bay head. I think you are maybe talking about the boys axe?
This one is sold out. I think the forest edition boys axe is better? Is it just polish or different shaped? I ask, because you said more useful head, and well shaped.....

thanks

also, being able to use it one handed sometimes is a plus, but being able to use 2 hands is just as important....

thanks again for the patience with me...
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2002
Messages
1,083
I recommend the Hudsons Bay Camp Axe for about $50 for a general use axe with the right length handle.
http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=175HB28

The velvicut is the same only with higher level finish. Looks are important to me as well but I believe the thing needs to be of a value that is replaceable and that you won't mind lending to your non-coordinated friend who will likely miss the tent stake and chip the handle...this happened to my friend when he was using my Gransfors smalle forest axe. I was pissed because I know the how much I paid for it but to him it was just like any other axe that you might get at home depot.

I was very disapointed about my axe but in the end I realized that it's the people you share the experience with and not the tools you bring with you. For this reason I suggest getting something lower priced maybe around $50 thats still good quality but that others can enjoy when they are with you.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
I understand. I learned quite a few lessons with my 3 hundred dollar knives!!!
Nobody touches my toys!!!! except me!

Is a full size felling axe(31" or 35") way too big to carry? I ask, because im thinking i don't mind carrying it a little bigger if not too heavy....but, i want to use it for other than just splitting, so what do you think? I am 6 ft. tall, and about 160 lbs. But, strong. I swing sledge hammers all the time, as i do tractor trailer tires with the hammer and crow bars.......yea, it sucks!

dave
 
Joined
Feb 12, 2011
Messages
2,520
If I understood what I read about the Velvicut, I think it has a more unifrom production temper from piece to piece (less variation) so your chances of getting a good ax head are better than their lower end models. This is in addition to the higher end finish on the Velvicut.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Okay, another silly question, but I'm curious. Is GB the real best? I want the best, and if the few bucks extra for the GB is worth it, even for looks, then I don't have a problem shelling it out!
Thanks

And, I know the hudson bay head is better for detail work, but can you still use the boy axe or felling head for detail, or it won't really work.
 
Joined
Aug 21, 2002
Messages
1,083
The gransfors scandanadian forest axe is a good size, ~26" handle if my memory is correct. My friend has one and it's top of the line. It's hand forged and the handles are installed properly and of high quality.

I had their Small forest axe and I think it's very versatile especially if you might need to carry it in to a remote camp site were as the 26"er would be too heavy im.

To answer your question, they are the best imo!
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
Okay cool. I know im kind of bouncing around a bit here, but now i think im leaning towards a larger axe, that can do more, and still possibly be able to choke up on it or use 1 handed.
Im thinking now,
about this axe: GB american felling 31" http://www.highlandwoodworking.com/gransforsbruksamericanfellingaxe31handle.aspx
or this one: BOys axe, regular, 28" http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=22BR
or I really want this one, but its sold out: boys axe forest edition http://www.bensbackwoods.com/servlet/Detail?no=719
possibly this one but also sold out: scandinavian forest axe

Then, theres this one: Velvicut Felling axe, but it doesn't say the specs. Anyone how long and how heavy?
http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=JP40DV36C

I really want the best one, sorry for all the questions......What would YOU choose?
 
Joined
Jul 5, 2011
Messages
1,049
Okay cool. I know im kind of bouncing around a bit here, but now i think im leaning towards a larger axe, that can do more, and still possibly be able to choke up on it or use 1 handed.
Im thinking now,
about this axe: GB american felling 31" http://www.highlandwoodworking.com/gransforsbruksamericanfellingaxe31handle.aspx
or this one: BOys axe, regular, 28" http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=22BR
or I really want this one, but its sold out: boys axe forest edition http://www.bensbackwoods.com/servlet/Detail?no=719
possibly this one but also sold out: scandinavian forest axe

Then, theres this one: Velvicut Felling axe, but it doesn't say the specs. Anyone how long and how heavy?
http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=JP40DV36C

I really want the best one, sorry for all the questions......What would YOU choose?

if it were my money, one of the council boys. I really think its the most versatile size. Council axes may not look as cool as expensive swedish imports but when it comes to processing wood I think it will do work better for a cheaper price.
 

Square_peg

Basic Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2012
Messages
12,902
it will do work better for a cheaper price.

And why would you use any other criteria in selecting a tool? A sexy import would be fun to show off to your friends so long as you don't mind exerting the extra effort to pull its flat cheeks out of the wood after every swing.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
1,944
And why would you use any other criteria in selecting a tool? A sexy import would be fun to show off to your friends so long as you don't mind exerting the extra effort to pull its flat cheeks out of the wood after every swing.

I assume this means the Scandinavian Forest Axe from GB? Does this axe have the flat cheeks like you talk about? Im just trying to learn..thanks
Its really down to the Boys Axe from CT or the GB SFA now. Still having trouble deciding, price doesn't matter but quality does...
 
Top