Mors Kochanski on axes

Mors Kochanski is seen by many to be the “godfather” of modern bushcraft, and his book “Bushcraft” is a common sight in many bushcrafters’ libraries. To my delight, Mors started making videos for YouTube relatively recently. He puts out videos fairly regularly and covers a wide range of topics.

In a new video, he covers some of the axes in his collection and their uses, as well as his favorite type of axe for bushcraft and survival: a 3/4 axe or boy’s axe (which has been my favorite as well since I restored and rehafted one in 2010).

Enjoy. :)

Update: Mors has now put out a second video on axes.

*Any similarity between this post and a post on the same subject (with the same name) at a bushcraft forum is purely coincidental (honestly). When you have multiple people writing about the same thing, this kind of thing happens.

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2 comments on “Mors Kochanski on axes

  1. wgiles says:

    Things were a little slow this afternoon and I have been thinking about axes. I have three 3/4 length axes. Two are Dayton pattern boy’s axes and the other is a Jersey pattern Miner’s axe. The miner’s axe has a full sized (about 3.5 Lb) head, but has a 27″ straight handle. It’s a bit heavy to pack around, but is a good axe to leave by the woodpile. I’m not that fond of the Dayton pattern axes. The upswept tip does not lend itself to leather sheaths. The flat upper tip of the Jersey pattern is more to my liking. Does it really matter? I don’t know. I suppose that the proof is in the chopping. I had both of my boy’s axes out at deer camp last month. The first one was in my hunting trailer and seemed to perform well in camp, but I noticed that the head was loose. The second time out, I took the other boy’s axe, while I tightened up the first one’s head. I had just gotten this second boy’s axe. It seemed like a decent axe and seemed decently sharp. When I tried to use it, it just bounced off the wood and wouldn’t bite. I decided that the bevel was to broad and proceeded to thin it once I got home. I think that it’s OK now, but haven’t really tried it. Both boy’s axes appear to be similar in weight and shape, but one worked decidedly better than the other. I cheat when sharpening my axes. I have a small hand belt sander that takes 1/2″ wide belts that I use instead of files and stones. With fine belts, it’s a lot faster and doesn’t overheat the steel. If I use the slack side of the belt, it produces a slightly convex bevel, which I think is probably a good thing for an axe. I do my final sanding with an old 400-500 Grit belt, which produces pretty close to a mirror finish.

    • Thanks for the comments, Bill. There certainly can be a lot of variation in the 3/4 axe category. Ideal examples seem to be very capable of doing a lot of work, but not being too much of a burden to carry. I love using mine!

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