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Thread: Ok folks, help me chose a new small camp axe/large hatchet.

  1. #1
    ECQC Dilettante Totem Polar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    PacNW

    Ok folks, help me chose a new small camp axe/large hatchet.

    Iíd like to say that this is for overlanding with our rooftop tent, or all the rucking into deep woods Idaho that Iíve been doing, but honestly, the real impetus is our fire bowl out front. With the reality of the 1st half of 2020, we really donít go anywhere, or do much of anything besides read, work, and hike. That and spending too much time in between all that stuff screwing around surfing P-F.

    Our firebowl has become a main pastime, with more than a few cocktails and a Jack Carr novel or 3 passing by while a log or two burned. Hence, the ďsmall axe/large hatchetĒ need: Iím mostly looking for something to split kindling off the edges of chunks of pre-cut firewood. Pretty tame duty, so I donít need a woods axe or log splitter.

    Iím leaning towards something from the Scandanavian concerns, eg.

    https://www.amazon.com/Hults-Bruk-An...01W5HRD9QS6MRF

    https://www.amazon.com/Hults-Bruk-Al...560910&sr=8-20

    But I really donít know what I donít know. It doesnít have to be an heirloom, btw, cheaper, but solid options welcome. Also, options to buy are welcome too; I can always do the Amazon prime thing, but Iím becoming just a bit wary of counterfeit goods from the megaretailer.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    I like the Camp Ax from HB Forge. I have the medium but the large might be better for your use.

  3. #3
    Deadeye Dick Clusterfrack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Wokelandia
    The CRKT Rune is what I use for that purpose. Itís available at a crazy low price, $40, here:

    https://www.smkw.com/crkt-rune

    "You can never have too many knives." --Joe Ambercrombie
    "You donít really graduate from certain problems or certain thingsÖ like you always have to work on trigger control and pulling the trigger straight. " --Ben Stoeger 1/24/2018

  4. #4
    Site Supporter
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    Feb 2011
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    Northern Virginia
    I think HB's handles are too thick. I also much prefer at least a 24 inch handle to use the axe properly with two hands. It can still split kindling, but can also do a lot more if you decide to use it as a camp axe. Council Tool's sport utility line is an excellent value, and they're made in the USA. The Boy's Axe is my favorite all around axe, but their Flying Fox hatchet is excellent of you decide to stick with a one hand axe.

  5. #5
    Site Supporter
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    Feb 2012
    Location
    Lexington, SC
    I have the Husqvarna 13" hatchet and have been very pleased with it. Its been my budget swedish hatchet.

  6. #6
    Site Supporter
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    Mar 2012
    Location
    St Louis
    I'm a retired construction craft laborer; Estwing is a trusted brand. I have two; the camp hatchet with leather rings handle, and the 16" tomahawk axe. The tomahawk axe I use in my gardens, also.

  7. #7
    In Lead... RevolverRob's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Somewhere Salishious
    Tom Brown Tracker? When youíre bored by the fire you can use it to make a bow and some arrows too...

    Seriously though, the Gerber/Fiskars hatchets still reign when it comes to bomb proof gear in this regard, in my opinion. I like the poly handles for absorbing shock like a wood handle, but for also being far more durable than wood. The Estwing suggestion is also a good one.
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  8. #8
    Site Supporter Oldherkpilot's Avatar
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    Dec 2019
    Location
    Warren, Ohio
    I like Hardcore Hammers hatchets.

  9. #9
    Depends on your budget.

    If you want something that you will keep for a very long time, thatís hand forged, take a look at Gransford Bruks. Itís an old world classic design and can be had in various sizes. I love the craftsmanship of the one we have.

    If you want something thatís bomb proof, light to carry on a hike, and can serve many different roles, take a look at RMJís tomahawks. I have a shrike 13 and itís an amazing tool that works well for a variety of tasks, including light chopping and almost all tasks you would need a camp knife, as well. It can also breach, cut chains, etc.

    But both of these options will be on the pricier side.

  10. #10
    Site Supporter
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    Aug 2014
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    Northern Virginia
    Quote Originally Posted by RevolverRob View Post
    Seriously though, the Gerber/Fiskars hatchets still reign when it comes to bomb proof gear in this regard, in my opinion. I like the poly handles for absorbing shock like a wood handle, but for also being far more durable than wood. The Estwing suggestion is also a good one.
    I've had a Fiskars in my camp box for 15 years. Other than touching up the edge once in a while, it is still going strong. I use it for driving tent stakes, splitting small logs into kindling, and cutting longer logs into campfire length. It's boringly dependable and easily replaced if lost, stolen, or otherwise rendered unusable. I don't recall the specific model, but it's the one with the 14" handle.

    Fancy hatchets are nice, but I use/abuse mine and wouldn't want to do that to something nice.

    ETA: This is the closest current model to what I have: https://www.fiskars.com/en-us/garden...14-375501-1001

    Chris

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