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Old 05-30-2019, 12:22 AM
BoulderTroll BoulderTroll is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Central CA
Posts: 3,108
My intent isn't to rekindle a disagreement, but I recently came across information that I thought interesting about tang/ haft length on axes/ hatchets/ tomahawks.

I'd never owned an axe before recently, and in doing some research I decided to start with a Gransfors Bruk. They are a company that make hand forged axes in Sweden, one of the few remaining companies that mass-produce hand forged blades (almost sounds like an oxymoron).

I recalled the conversations between WCCountryboy and USMM regarding handle length, and whether it constituted a single handed or two handed weapon. Now to be fair, the GB axes are not "weapons", and I get that a woodsman's axe will handle differently than a tomahawk. But that said, Gransfors Bruk define anything with a haft longer than 14" as an "axe", which they define as two-handed use. Their hatchets are all 14" and under, and designed for single handed use. In fact, their hugely popular, "Scandinavian Forest Axe", which is considered a general purpose axe, and not small by any means, has a 25" OAL.

Their axe that I own is the "Small Forest Axe", which has an OAL of 19" (which includes the head, not just the haft), and I can't imagine trying to be effective with it in combat with one hand. It definitely feels like a two-handed weapon. And when I placed the SFA on my belt, even at 19", it felt like it was long enough to inhibit mobility. If I were choosing a hatchet with a back-up purpose of being a weapon, I'd personally go shorter than 19".

Like I said, I'm not trying to restart a debate, I just wanted to weigh in with something I found interesting, and some new food for thought.
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Last edited by BoulderTroll; 05-30-2019 at 12:25 AM.
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