Roselli R860 Axe Review

MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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To start I hope this review is OK and provides useful information to people visiting this forum.
I have been curious about the Roselli axe for quite some time and since I got given some money for my birthday and not really needing much else at the moment I thought I would get one and satisfy my curiosity. I purchased the R860 which is the short version, the R850 has a handle that is 10cm longer which may provide more chopping power.

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This is the shorter handle R860 version next to a Gransfors Bruk (GB) Wildlife Hatchet.
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Upon initial inspection there were several things that I found quite different with this axe, firstly the handle is quite a bit larger in diameter than the GB hatchet which I though was quite good as I have quite large hands. The edge came sharp but not sharp enough for my liking so I spent about 10 mins touching it up with a bench stone, I did notice on one side of the bevel there was a slight concave between the edge and near the end of the bevel but this came out quickly with the bench stone. After a few minutes on the stone I tried to shave with it as it seemed sharp enough, I found that although it was razor sharp it would not slice paper or shave arm hair without a steep angle which is a bit dangerous, this I think is most likely due to the very large bevel on the edge of the blade.

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After sharpening I decided to chop some wood up, I was using some Jarrah logs of approximately 30cm in diameter. The Roselli bit deeply into the wood and performed well considering the thick blade, when compared to the GB it performed easily as well but I found when trying to cut a notch out the angle of attack needed to be adjusted to allow for the thicker blade. Next I cut some small branches which were about thumb thickness, the GB outperformed the Roselli only needing one swing were the Roselli needed 2. The thick wedge of the blade also makes it almost impossible to get stuck in the wood you are cutting which can be an advantage and in some ways a disadvantage, I did manage to stick it into some endgrain though with a few swings.

In other areas the Roselli axe performed very well, although I personally dont have much experience carving I think this axe would be a winner as it is very controllable when wittling stick and making curved cuts. This is something which the GB struggles with as I find it has a tendency to want to bite deep into the wood. The Roselli also shows promise in a lot of other ways such as fine detail axe work, feather stick making, wood splitting, food preperation and animal skinning.

Pros:

Cheaper than a GB or similar.

has great edge retention.

Solid build with a small hammer pole and thick handle with the weight well forward on the blade.

The thick blade is good for splitting.

The beard in the blade makes this axe useful for lots of other tasks and can even be used as an Ulu or knife.

The sheath with belt loop is a handy addition.

Doesn't get stuck in wood.

Cons:

More traditional shaped axes perform better when wood chopping.

Slightly heavier than the GB, this is negligable though.

Doesn't get stuck in wood when you want it to.

Overall I think this axe may make it into my permanent kit at some stage due to its versatility and the varied roles which it can fill in a bushcraft environment. This axe can even be used to do tasks you would normally only do with a knife due the shape of the head and handle as well as excellent edge retention. I think this axe lives up to its name as the "All Purpose Axe", which it is marketed as by Roselli.
 
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ozslon

Malcolm Douglas
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Thanks for the review

It looks like a t-hawk, but with beast of a head. Did you need to adopt to it or just standard axe technique was appropriate?

Cheers

Ozslon
 

MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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I found standard axe technique worked fine but as I used it more I found altering the angles of attack slightly improved the performance. I mostly found it really versatile though and it did fine tasks exceptionally well when chocked up on the handle. I may even buy the longer handle version at a later date because that may reveal more cutting power and close the gap on performance.
 

Howling Dingo

Richard Proenneke
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I really like this tool...Seems more useful if you are into making stuff.Really a craftsman's hatchet I think....
 

Bloffy13

Jon Muir
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How much of your birthday money did you spend? It's an interesting shaped head.
What does it weigh? Where did you get it from. Looking forward to seeing what you carve with it, mate.
Cheers
Bloffy
 

MongooseDownUnder

Richard Proenneke
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Ben Dono

Mors Kochanski
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Thanks for the review mate. I have seen pics of these axes before but was surprised at how thick it is!
 

Joe

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Not a huge difference considering how much meatier the roselli looks. Do you notice the weight difference in the hand and when working with it?
 

Wentworth

Bear Mears
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Thanks for posting this review. I've always liked the look of the roselli axes. Also their carpenter knife looks great too
 

Bloffy13

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We're going to have to have a WA show and tell again. Thrud made the bouncers in a Subiaco pub very nervous when he started pulling out "some" of his EDC knives last time. Would love to see their faces if you pulled THAT bad boy out of your bag and plonked it on the table.
Going to check that mob out.
Cheers
Bloffy
 

Bloffy13

Jon Muir
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Oh MDU, you bugger! That website is gunna cost me A FORTUNE...
Torn between the Roselli (s) and a Hultafors Trekking Axe Classic. I'm not very knowledgeable about axes so if anyone can help me, it would be appreciated.
My birthday (not saying which one) is coming up in April. I might have to speak nicely to my dearly beloved.
Cheers
Bloffy
 
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