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Recommend small inexpensive but quality hatchet?

Discussion in 'Knives' started by OreoGaborio, Aug 7, 2013.

  1. OreoGaborio

    OreoGaborio Loaded Pockets

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  2. swany66675
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    swany66675 Loaded Pockets

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    I like eastwing hatchets they last for ever easy to sharpen and fairly cheap. To find something better it a pretty large price jump.
    http://www.estwing.com/ao_leather_sportsmans_axe.php

    The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep.
     
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  3. Rockwell Torrey

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    Take a look at the advantages of a hawk. Cold Steel has a nice selection.

    Less weight.
    Takes care of most chopping tasks around camp
    Easy to replace handle
    Can be used in several ways as other tools
    Easy mods
    Easy belt or pack carry

    [​IMG]Uploaded with ImageShack.com
     
    Last edited by Rockwell Torrey, Aug 7, 2013
  4. xbanker
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    xbanker Geriatric Admin
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    Have never touched one, but have read good things about Helko line (from Germany), including the Classic Outdoor Camping Hatchet. <$50.

    helko hatchet1.jpg

    There are myriad other manufacturers of good hatchets, but "inexpensive" limits the field.
     
  5. OreoGaborio

    OreoGaborio Loaded Pockets

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    Weight's not really an issue as I'm not gonna be hiking with it. Versatility is. Expected use will be for light chopping & cutting kindling which is why I was thinking maybe a brush axe.
     
  6. burntrat

    burntrat Loaded Pockets

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    I was looking for something to chop up fire wood. Can I use a hatchet to replace a full sized axe? I have some cherry that are a foot in diameter.
     
  7. Foster
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    Foster Loaded Pockets

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    A hatchet won't have the leverage needed to chop fire wood efficiently unless it's just a few logs. Really depends on how much wood you're talking about.
     
  8. kye4some

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  9. OreoGaborio

    OreoGaborio Loaded Pockets

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    :eek: Husqvarna???? Order placed! My inner motorcycle lover is jumping up and down right now. :bounce:

    Oh man, the guys at the track are gonna be so jealous when I break this thing out. :p
     
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  10. jujigatame

    jujigatame Loaded Pockets

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    The Estwing is nice for the money but not meant for chopping much beyond a few inches diameter in my view, unless it's all you've got and really like swinging it.
     
  11. bull_paqqy
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    bull_paqqy EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I have 2, I bought 1 just to beat the crud out of fully intending on it being broken, and bought a second one at the same time that was for my "zombie" collection. Well needless to say i haven't broke the 1st one. The are tough little suckers. Maybe not as much leverage as a true hatchet. But come on really... how can you go wrong with it. :) There is a smaller version as well.
    The one below is the SOG F01T

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. PiperCub49

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    I have one of these and like it very much. It's great for my canoe and hiking trips. I can confirm that they are easy to sharpen as well. The only downside might be that the steel seems a bit soft, but you have to remember the price range when you consider that.
     
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  13. burntrat

    burntrat Loaded Pockets

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    If I were to split a cherry log of this size: http://rabika.com/chop-wood/
    I would need an axe? What would be the smallest axe size I can get, but that would still be efficient? I was hoping to carry around a small hatchet for portability, but I guess I can't.
     
  14. Foster
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    The one the axe is in, or the one off to the right? Splitting something the size of the big one you'd be much better off with a maul and a wedge, then moving to an axe once it's cut down to size. Splitting the small one would be pretty easy with a hatchet.

    It's a matter of economy of size and time. If you want to split two or three large logs (or a dozen small logs) for an overnight camp fire then go with a hatchet or small axe for the sake of portability. If you're looking to chop up a whole cord of firewood for a woodstove then go with an axe. The thing with a hatchet is that it takes a lot more muscle and time to do your chopping, since there's less weight in the axe to do the work for you. A full sized axe, once you get good and use proper technique, does the large part of the work of splitting for you just by gravity.

    You also have to take into account the shape of the axe head itself. Hatchet heads tend to be quite a bit thinner both at the edge and the eye, since they're used for limbing, carving, etc. A splitting axe has a much wider head, more pronounced wedge for efficiency so that the two sides of the log push apart. Cutting action vs. chopping action.
     
  15. burntrat

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    Sorry, I meant the the one the axe is in. I don't have a lot of those thick logs, but I guess I'll go with an axe because it is more versatile. Now off to find an affordable decent axe (any suggestions?) A friend bought an axe at a yard sale for $5 and the axe head came off in a few months. Sorry if my original question was off topic. Thanks, Foster.
     
  16. OreoGaborio

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  17. SAKplumber
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  18. Foster
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    I would say a hatchet is more versatile, since a splitting axe is pretty much just for chopping firewood; whereas a hatchet or small axe can be easily used for limbing, carving, or even food prep if it's nice and sharp, at the cost of efficiency in chopping. A splitting axe would be difficult to wrangle into other uses than chopping logs just because of its size and weight.

    As for affordable/decent axes, the Estwings are pretty good. A little bit heavy since they're full metal construction, but you'll never break a handle. Fiskars are decent for the price as well. The trouble is that any axe or hatchet that would qualify as 'affordable' is going to be about as sharp as a butter knife right from the store. Make sure that you get a sharpening stone and/or file as well, and lots of elbow grease. There's lots of videos on youtube for how to sharpen an axe, and you'll be amazed at how efficient they can be when sharp.
     
  19. echo63

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    I have a pair of Fiskars
    A small hatchet, basically an older version of the X7 (slightly longer cutting edge, much smaller swell on the end of the handle)
    And an X15

    Both have been great cutting tools, they sharpen up nice and easy, and seem to hold an edge well, I haven't noticed any of the issues the Amazon reviewers were talking about.
    That said I haven't been cutting any hard dried wood with them, they have been used for splitting kindling, limbing trees in the yard, and when cutting roots when digging out stumps - that did take its toll on the edge, but cutting into dirt will do that to any tool - it sharpened back again very quickly (then I went overboard spending an hour putting a hair shaving mirror polish on the X15
    [​IMG]
    the handle and non-stick coating got pretty scratched up - but I'm not too worried, it's a working tool and not a wall hanger
    [​IMG]
     
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  20. PiperCub49

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    ^^^Hey, you want to try polishing that edge up a bit? Geez...:p
     
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