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Gransfors Bruk Wildlife Hatchet 13.50 Inch Axe Handmade In Sweden, 415
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- Length with handle: 13.50 inch, Item-ID: 415
- Weight: 1.3 lbs
- Sheath in vegetable tanned leather
- Traditional scouting and camping axe
- Comes with English language "Axe-book"
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The Gransfors Wildlife Hatchet is a traditional scouting and camping axe, with the same head as the Hand Hatchet but on a longer handle. This longer handle lends the axe more power, not least when felling trees. Practical for carrying in your rucksack when you need a small axe with plenty of power. The axe is capable of lopping off quite large branches or splitting small logs for the campfire. The shape of the sheath, which covers the edge and the top part of the poll, stops the axe head cutting into your rucksack. Comes with English language "Axe-book"
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Well, I succumbed to the hype and picked this up. In retrospect, probably not the fiscally soundest idea, but whatever...I love it! The Wildlife's looks, and feel, need to be held to be appreciated. I wanted this piece to use as a general yard and camp work blade and for its intended use, it excels. Now, I suppose an Estwing hatchet from the hardware store would have sufficed as well, but go big($$$) or go home, amirite?
A quick rundown of what I like about this Lil' guy-
-gorgeous to behold
-ergonomic, silken handle
-my example's handle having as perfect a grain as can be wished for
-comfortable, even after extended sessions of use
-head geometry is great for limbing, carving
-'choking up' on head is easy peasy for fine carving detail
-durable steel...takes a wicked edge rapidly and (so far)refuses to chip!
-leather mask is quality, if utilitarian
-price balking aside, it's still cheaper or comparable to many quality fixed blades
-for me, easily replaces larger knives en masse(barring machetes and their ilk)
- made by artisans in a 'green' manner
-proudly 'signed' by said artisans
-heirloom quality, as evidenced by my son bequeathing it to himself(way, waaay prematurely, I hope...)
- did I mention gorgeous?
Now, there is a few things I don't love about this hatchet, namely-
-the cost. I've made my peace with it, but I can see why others would, and will, grumble.
-the edge wasn't 'shaving' sharp on receipt. A minor nit, but still...
-the head's eye was punched a tad off. When sighting the edge from toe, to heel, down to the end of the haft, you can see that the heel(lower blade edge only, the top 'toe' is centered)is biased to the left. It's close though, as the heel still aligns within the haft(approximately 33% in, as opposed to bisecting it perfectly at 50%...for those who care) , but it's annoying. Disappointing for the price, but luckily this subtle cant does not effect a swing. I can hit where I aim, and glancing is rare. So after two+ years, I can say it's a mental issue only. As an aside, this issue could possibly just be from an imperfect head hanging. I won't know until I have to replace the handle. So watch this space circa 2035 for an update!
Overall, though, it's a great tool.
Now, I do think it's climbing costs and limited availability, coupled with quality alternatives:Condor, Husqvarna, Hults Bruk, H&B Forge(American!), Wetterlings, etc....makes it not quite the deal I once thought. That said, I'm happy with mine and imagine most would be too. Just make sure it's what you want.
Five stars for me, but perhaps four as a recommendation in light of aforementioned concerns.
This was the case with both. At this price, "MM" and "MB" at GB should have higher standards for quality control.
I help my brother outside with cutting wood, etc...and it's extremely comfortable to hold and use, not too heavy or clumsy. I'm 5'8" 130 lbs female and it fits great in my hands, and just as well for my brother who is 6'2" 200 lbs. Truly unisex. Even the 24" GB is comfortable for me to use, the heads look like they'd be heavy but they're really not heavy at all for what they are.
Highly recommend this for smaller jobs, and the 24" GB (Scandinavian Forest Axe) to go along with it for the bigger jobs. The leather cover they send in the box is a bit cheap but I do appreciate the effort to send it with something besides cardboard to cover the bit.
"Review Outdoor Gear" on Amazon marketplace sells spectacular leather covers if you're looking for something better than the stock stuff. I bought their leather axe collars and axe sheaths and both are fantastic quality & craftsmanship. I only go to them for these things. Will be buying a sheath for this GB as well if they have it.
It'll break one day.