Friday, 9 May 2014

Mini Axe

Cutting edge 21/2", 9" overall. just over 400g in weight

Still not feeling up to doing some woodwork, but I was able to take some pictures. This is an axe that I handled a while back using a head that I picked up for 50p from a car boot sale. I liked the idea making up a mini hatchet that I could use for spoon carving. Something small enough that I could daily take it on trips, comparable I guess to the Gransfors mini hatchet. Unfortunately it just didn't work very well. I played around with the bevels and tried to give it a nice asymmetric grind, but it just wasn't happening. So I put it aside and left it. Then one day I came across a blog post by tool and chair maker Tim Manney on how to tune a carving axe. He uses a grinding jig very similar to the one that I have and so I thought I'd give it a go. 10 minutes on the grinder and 20 mins honing later and my mini axe is singing to the right tune.

The difference, I think, is the flatness of the bevel. What Tim taught me was that the best way to get a flat bevel is to start with a hollow grind. That way you have two surfaces with which to register your hone and you just continue until those two high points meet each other. Encouraged by this success, I'm looking forward to putting together some more hatchets. I even have one smaller than this.

Stefan Ronnqvist axe for comparison

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