What’s A Hatchet Between Friends?

What’s A Hatchet Between Friends?

In this case, it was more than just a tool.  It came at a time that I had been feeling a bit down, during a time when things weren’t going so well.  It was a gift from a friend that has really helped lift my spirits.

I met this friend when he came on the gun forum I frequent wanting to learn how to reload.  He is intelligent, and thus asked many questions.  I answered his questions, even when he rephrased them, or changed a detail and asked again.  I do this myself when I’m learning something as it helps me to really understand a concept.  He appreciated the attention to detail in my answers, as well as the fact I was even willing to take the time to help him.  And so, we became friends.

I have a little farm here, really more of a patch of woods and overgrown field, and I was always talking to him about the things I was up to on the farm.  I’m working on harvesting some tulip poplar trees for a trapper’s cabin of sorts.  Basically it will be a camping spot for me and my boy.  A fun little getaway spot for a weekend during deer season.

I was telling my new friend about this, and how I didn’t have a hatchet that suited me.  I of course do have a hatchet, but it wasn’t to my liking.  I also have an Estwing camp axe, which is 26″ overall and is a very good tool for farm work and felling small trees.

While I had a hatchet, and a small axe that met my needs, what I really wanted was a Gransfors Bruk hatchet.  We were talking about it one day, and I was telling him my hatchet desires, and he asked which model I would get.  I told him The Wildlife Hatchet, and didn’t think anything else about it.

Well, about a week passed and we were talking in text and he asked if I’d checked the mail yet.  No…why?  So with that I knew something was up.  I went up our long drive and in the the mailbox there was a package.  I felt the package, and I thought “surely not!” as I felt what seemed like a hatchet shape.  I instantly remembered the conversation we’d had the previous week.  When I got back to the house, I opened the package, and sure ’nuff, it was a hatchet.

He had gifted me a brand new Gransfors Bruk Wildlife hatchet.  I was shocked, and went to show the wife the awesome gift I’d just received.  I was quite flabbergasted, and couldn’t believe it.  I went outside and called him to say thank you, but he was busy with an important meeting, so I sent a text.  When he had a moment he called me back and I was able to thank him properly.

Now, it may seem like just a hatchet to a lot of folks, and it is a hatchet, but it is the finest quality hatchet I have ever laid eyes on.  It is superbly balanced, light, fast, and agile.  With the contrast of the dark grey as-forged areas of the head against the silvery grind of  the polished edge, it has a beautiful aesthetic appeal.

A masterpiece of Old World craftsmanship,  each axe made by Gransfors Bruk is hand forged and bears the initials, stamped into the steel,  of the blacksmith that made it.  Gransfors Bruk has been making axes with the same care and dedication since 1902.  They use recycled steel as part of the responsible and sustainable manufacture of their axes.

Also, as a part of that responsibility to the Earth and their fellow man is the use of vegetable tanned leather.  Chrome tanned leather is cheaper, and would make a suitable mask for the blade, but it isn’t good for either the environment or the workers that produce it.  So Gransfors Bruk chooses to use natural vegetable tanned leather for their masks.

The handle is hickory, with a linseed oil finish.  After the linseed oil is dry,  a coat of wax to further seal and finish the handle is applied.  My hatchet handle is very well shaped and the slight curvature is just right for chopping, and the butt swells enough so that it doesn’t slip or require a death grip during use.

With its thin blade, the Gransfors Bruk Hatchet is as much at home in the wood shop as it is the woods.

Since owning this hatchet for 4 months, I’ve held it nearly daily, and used it almost that often.  Not only does it make short work of kindling for our wood stove, but it also is a trusted companion on the walks I take through the woods on my farm.  I slip it under my belt at the small of my back, and it rides there no matter how rough the terrain gets.  It feels so good riding there that I hardly want to take it off even when I’m done with my walk.  It just feels right to carry it with me, and at a scant 1 pound 5 ounces, it isn’t even noticed.  Truly, it’s a trusted companion.

I also often show my friend pictures of the hatchet in use.  Chopping kindling with my son has become an almost daily tradition for us.  He is 3-1/2 and loves to go with dad for a walk in the woods.  We always bring back a couple limbs to chop up.  When we get inside, he steps on them and breaks the ones he can.  Then we get the choppin’ stump and go to work.  I chop and he hands me the sticks that he couldn’t break.  I don’t know who enjoys it the most, me or him.

So to my friend, Thank You again.