Sunday, 16 March 2014

New Axe Mask

I've been meaning to make a new mask for my Stefan Ronnqvist axe for a while. The last one was a bit of a rush job done with split leather (leather that is split one or more times so that you can get more out of the hide, the finish is like rough suede). It did the job, but I felt that such a fine axe deserved something a bit better. I'm not great at leatherwork, but I get by. It always surprises me when I see some very skilled woodworkers that don't have leather masks for their axes, because I really enjoy working with leather and it doesn't take much in the way of tools to do a lot of projects. An awl, a stitch marking wheel and an adjustable groover are all you need to get started and you could probably do without the groover if you've got some nice sharp dividers.

From L-R: Adjustable groover, stich marking wheel and awl
 There are loads of great tutorials on the internet for basic leather work, but I've also got a few books. I love the books by Al Stohlman as they have great hand drawn illustrations. His series on leather cases will show you how to make a leather case for pretty much everything you possess.

The mask didn't turn out perfectly and I've hopefully learned a few lessons in the process, but I'm happy with it and it does the job well.

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