Hey folks, Just thought I'd do an update on the Council Tool FSS(Forestry Service Edidtion) Boy's axe. I just couldn't come around to the lacquer handle and the painted head. So now the handle is sanded and oiled and the head is clean. The way I like them. Well I've used this axe a bit since getting it and I'm loving it. Here it is in use on a dead standing oak about 6-7" wide. This axe bites deep and holds it's edge well. It's the best 3/4 axe I've used.
Here's a few more shots of the axe after paint and lacquer removal
Well I got the old Collins hatchet out for a little trial run to see how it performs.
good; the handle was very comfortable in full chopping motion and for
choking up on the head for finer work and about midway grip for
carving. So comfortwise I was very happy. The steel held up pretty
good. After the tasks I did below I really swung it hard into some well
seasoned wood and no damage at all. The steel held up great.
for the bad; I didn't get the edge thinned quite enough. The feather
sticks and curls weren't as good as I was hoping for but that's just 15
minutes or so with a file and I think I can have it performing those
tasks well too. I thinned out the bit some before using it but i like
to do this in moderation. You don't want it too thin so I like thinning
and checking it's performance so it's thinned just enough to where I
Overall though I liked it and after a little more filing I think it will be as good as anything on the market today
Well here's the pics for you axe folk
first was felling a dead tree that was around 4" wide
down, this felt like it took forever compared to the boy's axe I've
been using a lot lately. But it was biting good and deep.
up was some more chopping on the tree I felled, I bucked a log out of
it and it did pretty well. Better than I thought it would actually. I
forget to take a picture of the split log but it did fine in this role
for a hatchet.
were trying out some curls and feather sticks. The bit needs to be
thinned out a little more for this to be done well. I managed some but
it felt like a chore
that was about it. I gave it a run through the tasks I will be doing
with it. It'll be a great user for me when I don't need an axe.
Well I finally was able to get some fresh air at a nice area. I got my
hiking buddy and set out for a wilderness area with a nice lake in the
middle. Here's the first view of the lake coming out of the trees
arriving at the beach line
view back at the trees
Bel with a big muscle shell, these shells were all over the shorelines, so naturally we had to take a few with us
was a fire in this area a few years ago and remnants of it are still
all over the place. There were a lot of dead standing trees that would
make great firewood
some spring purple color
we kind of weaved our way in and out of the trees and down the shoreline
interrupted quite a few ducks as we emerged
view where we came down
some lake shots
found a lure that is still serviceable
resting in the shade for some lunch, PB&J's and some crackers and cookies
I wanted to make a bow drill out of things I found. Given this is not
hard as pretty much every lake around has trash a long the shoreline.
It didn't take long until I found some bank line that someone had tied
off for a trotline
been awhile since I've done a friction fire. I got decent at it about
10 years ago. Mostly just to know I could do it if I needed to. But I
haven't messed with them much since then. Well this was my spindle as I
started. Way too long. I ended up trimming it down about half the
size and it worked much better
As I was carving away the excess wood I am always taken by the grain on cedar
well here's what I used at first, again ended up cutting the spindle to about half the size
looking for a nice flat piece for the base board and wouldn't you
know...found an old board, can't beat that. This was just getting the
I got distracted at this point and forgot to take pictures. I got the
hole drilled out and the spindle shortened. I got to pumping the drill
and it didn't take long for me to realize that the cedar spindle was too
hard to produce a good amount of dust. I was going to get another
spindle but bel was ready to move on from this spot and getting
impatient so I'll have to save it for another time. So all in all a
fail with the first attempt at a beach combers bowdrill. There will be a
round two at some point...
Well nothing else too exciting
happened. We made our way back down the shoreline throwing rocks and
collecting shells. It was a very enjoyable day. I love the take your
time jaunts with nothing particular on the agenda...I need more days
here's a parting view for you folks as we left the lake to head back in the trees
Well my swedish axe phase has subsided and I wanted to use an old American hatchet. So I recently was able to acquire an old Collins hatchet head in very good condition. While it is old, it doesn't look to have been used much at all. Edge and poll are in great shape. All it needs was a little TLC. So let's get to it.
here's the head as a I got it
used a wire wheel brush and a grit flap wheel to remove the paint and rust
I found a suitable 14" Link hatchet handle. A couple things I'll say on Link handles is do not buy one if you can't hand pick it. I see more with flaws to the point I consider them unacceptable than good ones. But the wood is very dense and holds up great. They are not fitted at all really so you will have to plan on removing a lot of excess wood to fit your head. But if you have the means and the time and can hand pick one that's straight and shaped well they do make for a good handle.
This pic is about half way through the fitting
The eye on this head is very small. I had to thin it down quite a bit. Eventually I got her hung straight.
Well after thinning the neck and shoulder a bit we are finished. A few coats of boiled linseed oil will complete the restore. It turned out nice and it feels great in the hand.