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Tops Hawkin Stick - Anyone own or have used one?

Discussion in 'Axe, Tomahawk, & Hatchet Forum' started by boatsaylor, Mar 25, 2010.

  1. boatsaylor


    Oct 15, 2002
    Does anyone own, use, or has anyone tried out a TOPS Hawkin Stick? I don't know why, but the idea of a hawk head on the end of a 36'' walking stick seems to vacilate between sublime and stupid for me. I can see a couple of potential applications in one instant and then the next, the whole thing seems gimmicky to me. How sturdily is the head fastened on? If I slipped on a slope and dug into the side with one, would it hold my 6', 250 lbs frame or is it a bit too delicate for such things. It's made of Chro-Moly steel. Is it sturdy enough to be an impact weapon or has it been thinned down so much for weight considerations that smackin someone (in self-defense, of course) would bend it like a pretzel.
    Enquiring minds would like to know (and would be very appreciative of any feedback).

    "The best Marine is a Submarine!!"
  2. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Baryonyx walkeri Dealer / Materials Provider

    Mar 8, 2008
    I'd just mod a CS 'hawk head and mount it ciupaga-style. Cheaper and I'd have more faith in it (whether that's correct or not) :)
  3. boatsaylor


    Oct 15, 2002
    An excellent idea and thanks for the introduction to ciupagas. Did a little readin on'em and looks to be a possible inspiration source for the hawkin stick.

    "Have a Semper FIne Navy Day."
  4. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    i rehandled one with a composite haft for TOPS for SHOT SHOW 2009, a year and a half ago.

    it was light as air.

    and strong as could be, with storage inside (see Chloroprene plug on butt).

    the head is very small, but well made - anything you can hook it on should hold a big person - i am about 225 lbs, 5'11", and i'd trust it.

    the head is too small to worry about bending it IMHO, and it doesn't have enough mass to make a reliable killshot - the head only weighs two or three ounces, if i recall correctly, and the carbide pole it is attached to has consistent mass distribution, so you are going to be doing the warning with the head, and the breaking and killing with the carbide handle itself, i reckon, if it comes to that.

    the head is held on in the metal-hafted stock vesion with a bolt and some high-strength composite material on the inside for good measure, and it comes with a nice black leather sheath that allows you to use it as a good cane, in a low profile manner.

    Mister Hoffman carries it everywhere that I have seen him, in secure areas.

    i have been making super long hawks for a long time, and i laughed once when i saw the Hoffman Stick, and again when i was asked to do some mod work on it for TOPS - that was laughter of delight BTW, not scorn.

    a lot of folks make a huge mistake when they only think of hawk-like tools as choppers - most of them are excellent grapplers, in utility situations as well as a fight, for instance, plus many other non-chopping traits. a Hoffman Stick will slice like Hell.

    the ECO Hawk is a great one-handed draw knife along similar thought patterns, and i use it a lot in that mode to cut grasses and reeds for bushcraft, while staying cleaner than if i was in the middle of it with a simple knife.

    you can do similar things to this with the Hoffman Hawkin' Stick.


    cleanliness is a Marine's best friend.

    cane hawks and such are excellent - there is nothing trendy about them - in most of the world they would still be in use if they were not outlawed.

    i'd get one while you still could, the way this once-great nation is going....


    Last edited: Mar 25, 2010
  5. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    The value of that would be more or less just $ 10 dollars definitely:pnot 200$:confused::D
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2010
  6. RWC 1988

    RWC 1988

    Apr 6, 2009
    I made a walking stick, using that idea. Took a claw hammer head, shaped it to a hatchet like shape, slightly bent the claws, put it on a 36 in white oak shaft. Result excellent walking stick, with great striking ability and you can use the claws to turn over things with out bending over.
  7. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    sounds really good, brother.

  8. Terrill


    Feb 23, 2000
    Just to answer a question or two.
    The inspiration for the Hawkin Stick came from the old world Fokos. I had just had my forth knee operation when I attended a knife show and spent the weekend talking to several makers I know. Wayne Whitley (R.I.P.) and I talked about canes and hawks and we both remembered an article on the subject of the European Fokos.
    I have had to use a cane off and on for several years due to my knee and everytime I had to used it, I felt like a victim looking for a mugging. Try hobbling around on a cane in some cities and it will make you aware of your weaknesses.
    About a year later I went back in the hospital to have a total knee replacement. About a week before the operation I recieved a package from Wayne. He had made me an outstanding Curly Maple cane with a traditional forged hawk head. This tool became my prized possession. Over the next year or so I had several people try to buy it from me without a chance of it happening. I started to study the idea and thought that the hardest part of the manufacturing of such a cane is the forging of the head. By making the Hawkin Stick with the head mounted in the shaft rather than the shaft into the head, it could be made from bar stock and tubing. I also wanted to use the hollow tube as storage for such items as a small LED light, fire-starter, etc.
    The main purpose of the Hawkin Stick is as a cane. For this purpose, I modified the shape of the head for the greatest comfort during use as a cane. With the leather sheath in place it is comfortable (grip the head with the point forward). It's secondary use is as a defensive weapon. Short of having to face a firearm, I would feel comfortable with a Hawkin Stick as a defensive weapon. The boys at Tops and I myself have made great efforts to beat them to death and they have held up very well. No, I have not tried to hang by one. I don't see the need. I do not even try to chop wood with one. I carry one in the woods on every outting I take thus the reason for the items in the tube but again it's main purpose is as a cane and weapon.
    I saw and handled the cane Vector001 made using one of my heads and his shaft. It was great, I really liked it. I'm not sure where they stand with TOPS on getting together with the idea but I think it would be a good idea.
    I will say that I did not come up with anything really new. Let's face it, most new knives or tools are nothing more than a new approach to an existing idea. What I did was to take an old idea (somewhere around the 1600's) and come up with a way for TOPS to be able to mass produce it without the cost of forging the head. I just put the package together and presented it to them. TOPS did the hard work.
    The Hawking Stick will do what it was designed for and do it well. If you don't need a cane, you would be loosing 50 plus percent of it's value and I would suggest you pass on it.
    As a side note, I'll add my thoughts on canes and walking sticks. They are two different animals. Canes are made to help you walk when you have a problem with your legs, knees or back. Walking Sticks were more of status symbol of wealth and good breeding brought out in the 16th and 17th century. Remember, I am talking about walking sticks and not hiking sticks. All of them can be used to some degree as a weapon. As with any weapon, you must use them and train with them to get the greatest good out of it. Very few are willing to carry a cane everyday UNLESS they need it. Forget the idea of using one now and then. In a crowd you will stand out like a sore thumb. It is the everyday use that leads to the comfort of handling that makes the cane an extension of yourself. It is that comfort in use that allows it to blend in and become unnoticable to others. So even though I only NEED it every now and then since the operation, I carry it everyday and I don't feel like a victim looking for amugging. But of course the .45 under the jacket may help that a bit.
  9. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    ^ awesome.

  10. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    Terrill Tops Hawkin Stick design is too limited in comparison with ECO Hawk! A soon VEC come up with the idea and build some kind of handle for it.
    The price is also to much in the comparison!? Strange thing is...the same company build them to! And let's remember that 20$ CS Trail Hawk will out chopp both!
    Becouse the manipulation that you can applyin with the eco and is uniqueness is far better value...sorrry
  11. Terrill


    Feb 23, 2000
    I would be the first to say to go with the one that fits your needs the most.
  12. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    i don't think so.

    false premises like this always happen because folks can't handle all the tools together at the same time usually.

    i've (literally) handled them all, in more than one sense.

    my little claim to fame. har!

    look at the curves on the top of the Hawkin' Stick, and the overall size and the nature of the spike.

    like Mister Hoffman noted, it is primarily a cane, and a good one because of the ergonomics of that head, amongst other things - the fokos characteristics are just an added value.

    i don't need a cane, but if i did, i'd love a Hawkin' Stick.

    i am in full control of the design in my case.

    you can only get ECOs through me. that keeps the price down considerably.

    there is no "strange thing" involved.

    it's just economics. - the handle on the Hawkin' Stick is an expensive carbide tube, as well - add that to the cost of all the hands that touch it, and it's still a value to cane users at that price, considering its craftsmanship and that it is made in the USA with an Unconditional Guarantee.

    that's what i expected too at first, but i know that's not true, because i have sold almost a thousand Trail Hawks personally, brother, and still sell them stock, regularly.

    not to diminish your position, but let's stick to what we know - i don't think you own an ECO Hawk yet, and you definitely haven't put one on a stick and shown it to the world if you do indeed have one in possession, brother. - forgive me for saying that, but let's look at the possiblities before we let ourselves get too excited about that provocative statement for a second;

    (1) not only does an ECO Hawk have more blade edge than a Cold Steel Trail Hawk comparatively on their main bits, but it is made of a superior grain-oriented and zone-tempered steel for general hawk applications overall (1075) instead of the 1055 that the great Trail Hawks use.

    that's one point for the ECO Hawk.


    (2) the ECO has the tanto-spike, which is a good knife, whether on a hawk haft or not, and can tear and cut in a simple pull stroke what the Cold Steel Trail Hawk would be limited to chopping at rather slowly. 'easy to baton an ECO through most logs over the Cold Steel Trail Hawk as well. plus the ECO Hawk weighs 7.1 Ounces and you can make a haft when you need it - while you are stuck carrying a standard Trail Hawk head, which has a head weight of 14 - 15 ounces consistently, plus the weight of the hickory haft ( please weigh your hawk if you don't believe me, Trail Hawks usually way above the 19 ounces advertised on the Cold Steel webpage, and if it is not, you probably have a very old Trail Hawk, or the haft is going to break soon - we hone our BUG hawk heads down to 11 Ounces BTW.)

    whip out the current ECO kit's included saw and paracord and make a haft when ya need it with an ECO, instead of carrying the added weight of the other stuff all the time.

    that's two points for the ECO Hawk.


    (3) what about chopping in comparison? that's a fair argument in the mind of the novitiate to the ECO Hawk, and i respect that, but if you simply weight the head of the ECO'S haft, you get similar or better characteristics with the ECO Hawk over the Trail Hawk.

    you can weight it easily with a bolt and some washers, amongst other things, and the washers come in handy as fishing sinkers, as all of us poor boys remember from our youth gettin' bass, channel cats, and bluegill....

    so that's three points for the ECO. zilch for the Cold Steel Trail Hawk.

    if you'd said the ECO couldn't hammer as well as the CS Trail Hawk, i would've agreed, right as i went and chopped a baton to hammer with to solve that small issue immediately...:cool::thumbup:

    the Cold Steel Trail Hawk is a great value, you are absolutely right, but it is a quarter of what the ECO is on a good day, before i mod the Trail Hawks to BUG configuration and with the Gen 1 Mk V composite handles.

    to answer the next logical question;

    an ECO Hawk on an improvised wooden haft will never beat a Gen 1 Mk V BUG Hawk, ever. - there are just too many complex and subtle things going on inside a Gen 1 Mk V, with ballast effects, the endoskeleton, feedback, plus the ergonomics alone, and much more.

    that could change in favor of the ECOs as we develop handles for the ECO Hawk in composites....

    like i said,

    at your low 20 bucks quote, the stock Trail Hawk can do about a quarter of what the ECO can do out of the box, and since the ECO is worth four times as much (as judged by the added stuff that it can do), i find it reasonable to charge four times as much, plus ya get a whole bunch of other goodies to go with it.

    do what best suits ya, brother - but make sure that ya get the facts right.

    i think i have provided some good food for thought.

    eat up.

  13. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    Is not a premises, is the tool.... that you buy and carry with you....That make the difference

    What I can say Mister Hoffman made a good tool for a bad price!

    I have just a few.

    I agree for most what you said but on the point is... that The ECO will not out Chopp the Cold Steel Trail Hawk....SORY I REALLY DON'T THINK SO!
    However, Cold Steel Trail Hawk is heavier than both and a betterr chopperr!Not to mention variation of the handle and edge can I make in the trailhawk.
    The ECO only superiority VS trailhawk is... it gives you more edge and manipulation.....in other words, you have a knife more than a hawk!
  14. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    well, thanks for getting an ECO, first of all, brother. let me take this foot out of my mouth....

    you don't think that you can add weight to the ECO Hawk on the head-end of the haft arrangement, and get similar results, if not better, than the stock Trail Hawk?

    folks didn't believe me when i said the Trail Hawk could outchop the Norse Hawk, yet we are having converts all the time from the Norse to the Trail Hawk because of its higher PSI.

    ....so trust me, if you put that ECO Hawk on a weighted haft, especially a curved weighted haft, it will outchop the Trail Hawk.

    it's not a race though, do whatever ya like.

    that weighting strategy's definitely another thing for me to demonstrate - thanks for keeping the creative juices going.

    enjoy your ECO, bro. :cool::thumbup:

  15. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    vec I don't want to give people bad impressions with my post.
    Your ECO is worth every penny.... may I suggest you do a Video Review on the field to to show what's ECO is all about!
    Before someone else came up stupid review on it....and puts more confusion on the soup.

    'm on the list for BUG hawk head for very long time now. "Ask your Erica"
    I wish to get one ASAP:thumbup:
  16. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    i like folks doing what they want with the tools i design - the ECO is getting uses that i never thought of.

    i do need to do a primer on the ECO though, you are right, brother.

    i will let her know for ya.

    if you like the Trail Hawk, you will love gettin' bitten by the BUG.

  17. TiNi


    Mar 17, 2006
    This thread is a great read, much respect to the both of you (Vec & demoteamone).


    Regards, Tim
  18. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    Hooo Yeah..may be I do a bad Video Review if vector001 doesn't pay me:p:D
  19. vector001


    Aug 4, 2007
    you are my kind of scum.


  20. demoteamone

    demoteamone Banned BANNED

    Feb 21, 2006
    less than youhahahah:D:D:D
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2010

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