If you’re into DIY ideas then a wood splitting axe can be of huge importance to you. It can help you split wood, cut logs for a campfire, tear wood waste, chop wood as needed, and even shape or maintain it.
Many people even like to carry a wood splitting axe along when you go on camping or hunting trips. The axe can help you setup tens, prepare your hunt, and perform other such tasks.
In this guide, we’ll know about what a wood splitting axe is and how you can by the right one.
What Is A Wood Splitting Axe?
These are axes designed to cut through the grain, breaking the fibers apart. Its head can be quite heavy, usually ranging between three to six pounds. This is because you need pressure in order to cut the wood.
When the axe is swung downwards, the weight of the head along with the force exerted by you splits the wood into two easily.
How To Buy The Best Wood Splitting Axe?
Walking into a shop and buying an axe with no prior knowledge is not a good option. You may end up buying a poor quality product.
One needs to weigh all the features and factors before buying an axe. Let’s have a look at what all to keep in mind when buying a wood splitting ace.
Factors To Consider
If you are in search for the best wood splitting axe then you need to put forward your cutting needs first. Here are some tips and tricks that will help you buy the best wood splitting axe:
1) The Axe Head: The very first thing to look into when choosing a wood splitting axe is the head. It must have a sharp cutting edge so that the wood is cut without much effort and in few turns.
You will have to determine the quality of the steel used in order to get the right product. The best head the one that very little carbon. Low carbon content ensures toughness and makes the job easier. Moreover, they’re also shock resistant and easy to sharpen and maintain.
So, look for an axe that has carbon content between 0.4% to 0.6% as they are ideal for sharp cutting ability. You can learn more about axe steel heads here.
2) Blade Type – (Single Bit Or Double Bit): This refers to the blade type an axe has.
- Single Bit Axe: Such axes are commonly used around the world. They axes have extra weight on the poll (opposite end of the blade) are pretty common as well. However, pick a single bit axe only if you intend to cut a specific type of wood.
- Double Bit Axe: This type of axe has a double cutting edge and it offers multiple cuttin options to cut various kinds of woods. There are more benefits of a double bit axe over a single bit such as:
- Improved swing, accuracy, and balance: Both the ends of a double bit axe head are equal in weight and length. Therefore, the axe doesn’t wobble allowing you to make accurate cuts.
Winner (Single Bit/Double Bit): Double bit axes are often preferred over single bit axes because they are easier to use and offer precise splits as well.
3) Weight Of The Axe Head: “The heavier an axe, the sharper will be the cut” is a common belief. While it may be true to an extent, you should also remember that heavier axes require more strength and hence may be difficult to handle.
The weight may lead to poor cuts and injuries as well. While the right weight depends on your strength, experts believe that novices should not pick an axe above the weight of six pounds.
Moroever, if you don’t need to cut big pieces of wood and you’re new to wood cutting then an axe weighing only 2 pounds may be enough for you. It will keep you safe and also allow you to improve your woodcutting skills.
4) Handle Length: The longer the handle, the power the axe can inflict. However, this also comes with a drawback. An axe with a longer handle will have decreased control. Meaning, long handle axes are suitable for experienced users only because they require brute strength and tremendous control.
If you’re new to woodcutting then opt for an axe with a small handle.
5) Curved Or Straight Handle: Choosing the shape of the handle is easy. If you are content with buying a single bit axe then going for a curved handle is a good fit as it will offer more control.
However, in case of a double bit axe, a straight handle is a better option because it offers to flip the axe easily to use the other bit as well.
6) Remove The Varnish: Newer axes often have varnish coated on the handles. This makes the axe slippery, especially, when the hands are sweaty or wet. This can cause casualties and restrict you from making proper cuts. Use sandpaper to grease off the varnish and improve friction.
Other than this, pay attention to the price, durability, brand name, and warranty as well.
Conclusion: Keep these points in mind when buying a wood splitting axe. If this is your first time buying an axe then we suggest that you go for a lightweight axe so that you can learn the craft before you move to bigger options.