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Ragweed Forge British Belt Axe

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by The Heretic, Oct 16, 2015.

  1. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Ordered this Monday, Ragnar shipped it Tuesday and it got here today.

    23c.jpg

    This is smaller and lighter than I thought it would be. It is a couple of ounces over a pound altogether (at least on my scale) whereas my CRKT Woods Chogan is about 10 ounces heavier. The handle is an inch or so shorter than the Chogan too, and it is noticeably thinner.

    All this together concerned me, because that is actually lighter than my Schrade hatchet which isn't very good for chopping or splitting, despite having a nice head on it.

    I needn't have worried - the Schrade has a curved handle that is about one foot long. The much longer handle (18") of the "belt axe" makes a big difference when splitting a small half round of dry fir. I.E., the longer handle gives you more speed and leverage, which means more energy and momentum.

    The Schrade had a longer cutting edge, but the 3.5" of the "belt axe" does the job and puts the same weight on a smaller area, meaning it will and noticeably does, take a deeper bite, which is good for both chopping and splitting.

    The nice thing is that this is enough lighter that given how well it does, this will now be what I carry on my belt (or pack) instead of the Woods Chogan - once I make a sheath for it.

    I haven't thrown it yet, maybe it will throw as well or better than the Chogan - but that is really of little concern to me - I am not into throw t-hawks as a sport, and I most likely wouldn't throw at anybody as a defensive move either. It is sometimes fun to stick them in a big stump though.

    I am going to put some grip tape on the handle, but is isn't as slippery as the Chogan was with its lacquered/varnished handle before I sprayed that with Plasti-Dip - as the belt axe is a plain finish.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
    etrain16, mjbskwim, Sgt Nambu and 2 others like this.
  2. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    I have made around a 100 hand forged tomahawks, most with a real similar shape. Its interesting how much you can change the tool by altering the sweep, beard and length of the edge. Nice write up and cute tool.
     
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  3. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Is there a waiting list for those?:rolleyes:
     
  4. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    There is.

    I have a guy on the waiting list now who this spring I told I would make him one this fall. A few weeks ago he sent me a text and ask "Is it fall yet?" I replied to him it wouldn't be fall till after winter.
     
  5. johnny bob

    johnny bob Auburn wa Member

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    Nice looking tool. I have used canning paraffin wax on my framing hammers to make them less slick in the rain. I believe candle wax would also work. 1 application lasted several days. I didnt have to grip the handle as tight and no blisters. I didnt like to use a file to rough up the handle as that caused blisters. Yes I know no one uses a framing hammer these days but I'm just throwing this idea out there as my experience. It leaves the handle looking natural. JB
     
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  6. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    "Vikings" has made small axes popular again. They are not as pragmatic for chopping wood as a modern Trail Axe or Forester Axe due to their smaller width pole eye but far higher on the Cool Factor. I prefer a stout, wide chopping knife blade with a long handle in mild steel like the Chinese use, it works great on green hard woods and is not as easily deflected as a hatchet is but throwing such a blade is virtually impossible

    th?id=OIP.Mf80be0f63fc0cec2bf579c78e94f458ao0&pid=15.1&P=0&w=241&h=161.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
  7. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    That's a good looking 'hawk! Let us know how she throws!
     
  8. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    So I guess a Bearded axe would be next spring fall winter?
    Spring?
     
  9. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I am one who does not believe in misusing a knife, especially pounding on it. If my father or either of my grandfathers had caught me batoning with a knife they would have tanned my hide and then handed me an axe or hatchet.

    I know it is useful to be able to do it in an emergency, but I think those kinds of emergencies are a lot less likely than those people think who are constantly using a knife to split wood.

    A light "belt axe" like this is more useful than a knife for those kind of chores and is about the same weight as a heavy knife. There is a reason axes were invented - there is energy saving and efficiency in them over using a knife for those kinds of tasks.

    That is something some don't think about - the energy and time it takes to use a knife to do something that an axe is much more suited to do. In an emergency, time and energy are important things. The less time and energy you spend on mundane tasks like chopping or splitting wood, the more time and energy you can spend looking for food, water and shelter.

    To me, the extra weight of carrying a belt axe is more than offset by the time and energy it saves in doing work.

    Of course, a person could carry around a chainsaw too, but in everything there is balance.

    YMMV
     
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  10. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    1779894_10201382922322064_1611039657_n.jpg

    529494_4625777249483_780474596_n.jpg

    Here are a couple I made
     
  11. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    Here is a zombie axe I did with a baseball bat handle. It's a 5 layer forge weld with a full 4340 core.

    You can see my monster touchmark on it.

    I also did the Kydex scabbard


    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
     
  12. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I like the second one in the first post.

    The one thing I prefer for the poll though, is that it would be serrated or knurled.

    This is the poll on my Schrade hatchet:

    Schrade_Axe_Pommel.jpg
     
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  13. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    Not that big of a deal to do some texture like that. I used to have a contract to forge breaker bits and I reconditioned concrete bush tools which look a little coarser but its the same pattern.
     
  14. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Yeah - I need to get some tools, a bench grinder, etc. and a nice steel bench to work on things. It would take much - just some roughing it up so it takes a bite on things. The polls on the Chogan is rounded and smooth, the belt axe is much flatter but still smooth. I wouldn't flatten the Chogan poll because I don't want to remove any heat treatment, but I would rough them up so they wouldn't be so slippery when striking something.
     
  15. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    A needle scaler would probably make quick work of giving a bit of texture assuming it's not super hard
     
  16. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    Here is a little Viking style hatchet with a forge welded eye. Has a iron body with a 1090 edge


    image.jpeg
     
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  17. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    A little more beard to it and I'll take it
    Cool stuff,you're a lucky man having the skill and equipment to make these things.Looks like a fun trade to be in
     
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  18. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    It sticks okay - easier to throw than the Chogan.

    2ey8egk.jpg
     
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  19. The Heretic

    The Heretic Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I could try.

    I don't have one, but I could use one on a number of projects.
     
  20. IronMonster

    IronMonster Washington Opinionated Member Diamond Supporter

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    I got 4 of them, want me to drop one in a flat rate box off to you for a go? You could just ship it back when you are done