To Salvage...or to Scrap? That is the Question.

Dec 20, 2015
All that's needed is the edge, eh? wlw

That's right,(and the chip-parting bevels).All else on the axe can be pitted,or corroded in a number of other ways.

Let's not forget that the so-called Telluric,or "Native" iron is extremly rare on the planet.The valence factor being the reason,,the natural preference one may say,of Fe is to exist in the form of Oxides.

Many of the common,accepted finishes Are oxides,like bluing,browning,pickling of any sort.The "forge-finish",a thick,hard layer of oxides is also very porous,and was used from time immemorial as a matrix that holds whatever oleatious substance to complete it's corrosion resistance....(like a classical British butler rubbing lamb's fat on the exterior wrought ironwork).

The shiny finish(the white-,vs the black-smithing),was adopted by the middle class only when,anf if,they could afford the servants,to scrub and polish the stuff incessantly...

The "verdigris" of the copper alloys,the shiny outside layer of stainless steel,all are oxides...To paraphrase the beer snobs:"Oxides are a sign that God loves humanity!".....:)
Aug 29, 2013
You're not going to incur any wrath from me. I too think that HBs are iconic and pretty, and have stood the test of time by fur trappers, country squires and New England sportsmen. But you'll never find (for very long, anyway) a commercial user of one of these. They are strictly recreational or for light duty use. If you choose to go the other route (namely investing in 'purpose-built') then you need look no further than a Jersey or a Connecticut. These were created solely to accomplish 'real' work.
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Basic Member
Feb 1, 2012
At the risk of incurring wrath for challenging your heresy: I accept that you may have some reason to denigrate the design of the HB on structural grounds, although it seems to me the pattern has stood the test of time for reasons other than simple eye appeal to recreational users;

I think the structural grounds he's referring to is the short eye. It makes for a weaker hang that gets loose quicker. That's why they're essentially a light duty axe, handy for bushcraft craft chores like a trapper would need. But they're not anything you'd want to build a cabin with.