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Author Topic: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?  (Read 15156 times)

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Offline Just Me

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Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« on: December 28, 2011, 07:04:58 pm »
Just like the title says, I need a new double bit ax. My wife and I have decided to buy domestic [USA/Canada] if at all possible, and to get along without if we can't find something not made in China.

 Thank you, Larry

Offline sealark37

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2011, 07:10:29 pm »
The Snow  & Neely Co in Maine has a good reputation for US-made axes.

Offline Just Me

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2011, 07:19:14 pm »
 I checked out Snow & Neeleys. They are forged out of country, couldn't find out where. I looked at one locally and the workmanship on the ax head was terrible, and I mean I would be embarrassed if I did work like that. The handle was a nice piece of hickery, I will give them that.

 But not USA made. Assembled in the USA.

Larry

Offline Ed_K

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2011, 07:20:20 pm »
 Email and beg LogRite to start making a line of axes. The cant hooks are great,so axes should be next.
Ed K

Offline mad murdock

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2011, 07:28:22 pm »
I'll second that. Snow and Neally make some real nice tools http://peaveymfg.com/products-axes-dayton
This Is only a single bit.
http://www.counciltool.com/DisplayCategories.asp?pg=displaycategories&category=29
Here is the double bit offering from the council tool co. Nice axes as well.
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Offline barbender

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2011, 07:37:52 pm »
Not made in the USA, but Gransfors Bruks makes top quality hatchets and axes. They are pretty expensive though. Husqvarna is selling a line of axes that I think are Swedish made as well, and much more reasonably priced than the Gransfors. Bailey's has them.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline mad murdock

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2011, 07:47:44 pm »
This one says that the forged head is made in the USA. http://www.counciltool.com/product.asp?pg=product&item=352MC
I have a council axe. They are good tools.
'64 Garrett 15A, Woodland Bumblebee CSM, Granberg Alaskan III, Logosol Timberjigg, lots of saws-gas powered and human powered :D

Offline tractorhal

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2011, 10:30:34 am »
Hard to find double bit. Wonder why? Possible Cos. Vaughn, Plumb, Collins. In the past you could also get curved end on handles. Was nice for grip in snow/rain and we would use back end on ax when dirt other debri on wood, helped keep other edge sharp. Grandfather and i would cut all fire wood with axes and haul out with horse and timber sled. Check out ADK logging.

Online beenthere

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2011, 10:43:41 am »
Curved handle went with single bit axe. Double bit was straight.

Here is made in USA double bit.
http://www.counciltool.com/DisplayCategories.asp?pg=displaycategories&category=29
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Online Maine372

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2011, 04:33:11 pm »
youre asking for hens teeth.

no one in the states forges axes of any quality anymore. all the steel is very soft and poorly shaped.

if you want a US made double bit start hitting antique stores around logging communities.

Offline jocco

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2011, 09:02:18 pm »
372 WELL SAID: find one and put a handle in it (good luck finding a good handle) Most are made of popple or something.
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Offline clearcut

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2011, 11:35:54 pm »
The Barco company has a line of Kelly (old brand) branded axes including 2 double bit (Michigan and Western) that are forged and finished in the US for about $50 + shipping. I do not have any experience with them though.

     http://www.barcodirect.com/CategoryDetail.aspx?CategoryName=Axes

I found a recent review of the lighter cruiser model here:

     http://woodtrekker.blogspot.com/2011/07/barco-kelly-woodslasher-michigan-double.html

They also have a line of US made hand tools.

Offline Just Me

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #12 on: December 30, 2011, 06:56:14 am »
I'll check out the Barco axes. They made the True Temper Rocket hammers that have been my standard for the last 35 years.

 The Council axes look better made than the Snow and Neeley, but I have not seen one.

 I make my own handles by first splitting out the stock and working them down, so the handle is not a huge issue. I had a nice old double wwith a handle I made out of Jatoba, but it walked away from a jobsite, hence my quest for a good head.

Larry

Online Maine372

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2011, 05:59:56 pm »
im lucky to have handle sources. i have one source for ash and another for hickory but neither can garuntee me correct grain. the best guy i have gets me ash custom shaped and properly grained.

its not what you know,but who you know.

Offline Just Me

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #14 on: December 31, 2011, 08:08:38 am »
Speaking of handles, I see that Council has a fiberglass handle. I buy sledge hammers for work with composite handles as they seem to hold up better with the laborers occasional misses.

 Well, now I am getting older and get tired sooner, and I occasionally miss. I'm buying this ax for splitting mainly because I enjoy splitting with a double, but I always thought that some of the energy was lost with the composite hammer handles. Is it just my imagination? If there is no difference I may try a council with the glass handle.

Larry

Offline 36 coupe

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2012, 08:04:50 am »
I have a double bit ax my dad used.I dont use it.Snow & neally sold their forge in Hampden years ago.Moved to Bangor and went to making high priced garden tools.They moved again to Brewer.I use an axe my uncle bought in the 30s.New axes look like junk.I would look for an old axe and rehandle it.I split wood with a maul.

Offline barbender

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2012, 02:35:00 pm »
I wouldn't pay too much for a double bit I was going to split with, like a$ 200 Gransfors.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline Spalted Dog

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2012, 07:21:54 am »
We have a local blacksmith here that is top notch.  Dad had him make a tomahawk/hatchet head for me.  I throw and use it, paid I  think 65 or 70 for it, I have used for years hard, no issues, holds an edge like the knives that I make.  I am going to try my hand at forging one, but getting the pole right is why he gets paid the big bucks ;D  I am sure that either he or a smith inyour local area could help you.  Make sure they know something about making edged tools though.  Some don't and you may get a piece of junk.
The older I get the less I used to know.

Offline Bret4207

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2012, 01:24:14 pm »
I'm something of a double bit freak. They just always felt better to me than a single, probably because that's what i grew up with. I have 4-5 I'm using now.

In my opinion Collins made the very best using axes, that is the temper was both fairly easy to file and held an edge on frozen, hard wood. I have a Collins Legitimus that's about as good as you can get. Plumb, Bluegrass, Vaughn, Chemical, Norlund all made good axes too. Conco is another good one I'd never heard of till I picked one up at an auction.

These days your biggest source for selection is Ebay, Very good axes go for just a few buck when they're missing a handle. Just watch the shipping, some people are absolute thieves on shipping.

Offline 2bitaxe

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Re: Best double bit ax, Made in the USA?
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2012, 09:31:01 pm »
IMHO I would get a used axe. There's plenty of good American made steel bits out there hiding in peoples barns and garages under a layer of rust. Check eBay or post an ad on Craiglist saying you're looking to buy an old double bit axe head. You should be able to find a good American hand forged bit for under $20. Fixing up bits is easy and doesn't require special tools. It can be really rewarding to turn a rusting hunk of metal into a finely honed tool you could shave with. Here's a great article on fixing up a double bit: http://diytimberframe.com/how-tos/15-tools/20-how-to-sharpen-an-axe