Tomahawk and crooked knife

Askew

Ray Mears
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So I've read many times that with the combo of tomahawk and crooked knife you can make just about anything you might need, but I haven't seen much about anyone actually using them. This thread is going to be me seeing just what can be done with these tools, updated sporadically as I get time.

I started out by touching up the edge of my tomahawk, then did a bit of pruning with it. Cut small branches up to about 40mm just fine, need to try chopping some bigger stuff though. Didn't get any pictures I'm afraid. Then tried cutting an angle on a scrap bit of pine which turned out ok.20200322_180045_copy_756x1008.jpg

After that I roughed out a tea spoon from a small branch of camellia. I did this to see if it could make something small. It didn't chop as well as carving axe which is to be expected due to the weight difference, but choking up on the head and using push cuts did a good job of shaping.
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So far so good. If anyone has any suggestions as to things I could try to make I'd appreciate it. It'll be interesting to see just how much these tools can do.
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Thrud

Richard Proenneke
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thanks for posting

Would having a sharper area of the head be of use,for when you choke down?

my Skrama has a very sharp area close to the handle for about 7cm then the edge profile changes.
Not sure if this would work for a tomahawk
 

Le Loup

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So I've read many times that with the combo of tomahawk and crooked knife you can make just about anything you might need, but I haven't seen much about anyone actually using them. This thread is going to be me seeing just what can be done with these tools, updated sporadically as I get time.

I started out by touching up the edge of my tomahawk, then did a bit of pruning with it. Cut small branches up to about 40mm just fine, need to try chopping some bigger stuff though. Didn't get any pictures I'm afraid. Then tried cutting an angle on a scrap bit of pine which turned out ok.

After that I roughed out a tea spoon from a small branch of camellia. I did this to see if it could make something small. It didn't chop as well as carving axe which is to be expected due to the weight difference, but choking up on the head and using push cuts did a good job of shaping.



So far so good. If anyone has any suggestions as to things I could try to make I'd appreciate it. It'll be interesting to see just how much these tools can do.
I do have a crooked knife but found that I used it very little. I use my clasp knife for making kettle hooks, traps & trap triggers & other camp chores. My square poll tomahawk I use for making shelters, hammering in shelter & trap stakes, making traps, throwing for recreation & practice for hunting (just in case the need should arise), & self defence. The head is easily removed to be used for scraping skins for rawhide or tanning. I also used my tomahawk to make my Welsh Drag Cart.
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Keith.
 

Askew

Ray Mears
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thanks for posting

Would having a sharper area of the head be of use,for when you choke down?

my Skrama has a very sharp area close to the handle for about 7cm then the edge profile changes.
Not sure if this would work for a tomahawk
Not sure if that would work, I'll have to think about which parts of the blade I use for different things.
 

Askew

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I do have a crooked knife but found that I used it very little. I use my clasp knife for making kettle hooks, traps & trap triggers & other camp chores. My square poll tomahawk I use for making shelters, hammering in shelter & trap stakes, making traps, throwing for recreation & practice for hunting (just in case the need should arise), & self defence. The head is easily removed to be used for scraping skins for rawhide or tanning. I also used my tomahawk to make my Welsh Drag Cart.
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Keith.
No one seems to use them much, which seems strange given how pretty much everything I've read about them says what wonderful and versatile tools they are. Is it lack of familiarity? Or are they just not as good as they're made out to be?
I've watched your drag cart video, I might try one if I can find appropriate wood I can cut. Do you coppice any trees in particular?
 

Le Loup

Rüdiger Nehberg
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No one seems to use them much, which seems strange given how pretty much everything I've read about them says what wonderful and versatile tools they are. Is it lack of familiarity? Or are they just not as good as they're made out to be?
I've watched your drag cart video, I might try one if I can find appropriate wood I can cut. Do you coppice any trees in particular?
I coppice mostly grey stringybark Askew, but for no other reason than most of the forest is stringybark. I have used it for tomahawk helves, & it works just fine.
I had the same thoughts on the crooked knife, & wondered if it was more to do with the use in particular crafts, such as canoe making for instance, & perhaps also the types of wood it was used on. Familiarity could also be a factor yes, I have been using knives ever since I was a kid, but only in the last maybe 10 years have I tried using the crooked knife. Stands to reason I will be more skilled with a knife blade than I am with a mini drawknife blade. A knife can be used for many tasks, where as I imagine that the crooked knife was developed with specific tasks in mind.
Keith.
 

Aussie123

Never Alone In The Bush
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Great to test out your tools.
Try a bigger spoon, like a mixing spoon, that's a good try out for the hawk and knife ...
 

Askew

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Had a standby shift at work yesterday, and there was some wattle lying around that had been conveniently cut back, so it seemed like a good time to play with the crooked knife. The knife in question is the one in this thread https://bushcraftoz.com/threads/crooked-knife.10331/

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The tannins in the wattle stained the blade quite quickly. It took the bark off quickly, then once I'd worked out what I was doing I was able to shape the wood faster than I'd expected. I thought the edge might need a bit more work but the knife I was using for comparison, a more 106 that's definitely sharp, didn't do any better. I squared off part of the branch, then squared off another bit with the mora.
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The first picture was with the crooked knife, the second with the mora. Still need to do more but I'm beginning to see why the crooked knife got it's reputation.
 

Randall

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Re the differing sharpness of the hawk edge: I saw a video of a guy who is an enthusiast (and it's his work). He kept the heel sharp, but wasn't too worried about the toe. Personally, after using my own axe, I just want the whole thing sharp. I'm guessing that perhaps the toe gets blunt sooner and that dude wouldn't necessarily stop to sharpen it until the heel needed sharpening (a work / time reality) - but I don't know.
 

Askew

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Haven't made anything else with these lately but I did make another crooked knife with another old blade. Thinner handle this time, not sure if that will make much difference. Still need to sharpen it.

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Handle is buddleia from some pruning, lashing is waxed linen.
 

Askew

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Does it cut? Yes it does!
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It cuts very nicely in fact. This is from a branch I scavenged that had been sitting around for a couple of weeks so still fairly green. I've thinned it down and removed the taper, measuring by eye, it's going to become a couple of twca cam handles once it's dried out a bit more.
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The thread I used for the lashing stretched out a bit in use so the blade was a little wobbly by the end but it still worked just fine. I'm quite happy with how this turned out, although I need to work a bit more on the curve at the tip of the blade, it's not cutting well yet.
 

silver_capsicum

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Haha you posted this on my thread on blade forums! Very intriguing and I think what I see on the linked forum here may answer my question
 
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