This is the beginning of a look at the Husqvarna 26” Multipurpose Forest Axe. After seeing my unflattering review of their hatchet you might expect me to be frothing at the mouth about this one, but I actually think it has potential or I wouldn't have bought it. The video is a short intro with a lot of chopping. I kept falling asleep while trying to edit it because the repetitive chopping is somehow very soothing. This is a class of axe that is light enough to pack, but as the name implies is good for a lot of different stuff. I like this class of axe for running around the woods here or doing a little limbing. The Gransfors Bruks Forest Axe is the most famous example, which I own. Having put that axe through a lot of firewood last year just to see what can really reasonably be done with it, I can say that these light short axes can do some real work! They are probably not the best at anything. It’s compromises all around. I would not really recommend this as a firewood axe to most people. it is too light and it would be better if it were longer.. However, if someone interested in a packable axe and improving their skill at using one, I think it would be an excellent exercise to get one of these and cut a quantity of firewood with it. It is also probably an easy axe to learn to chop on. Although a somewhat longer handle could be safer, the shorter handle should be more accurate.
I’ve had the gransfors for a very long time and thanks to the outstanding quality of the handle wood and my hard won skill at not breaking axe handles all the time, it has survived the years and seen a lot of use. I like the design, but it’s a tad short at 25 inches, which is my short limit for a truly effective and comfortable axe at my height (5’ 10”). The workmanship on the head is terrible though. The bit is extremely crooked. So if the Husqvarna works out, which I think it will, the Gransfors will go on the auction block. I’m not interested in these things hanging about gathering dust.
Coming up in this project, we’ll talk about the axe, buying it and what I do and don’t like and then start modifying it. Some stuff I know what I want and other stuff will be experimental. during and after, we’ll test it at various uses to see how it performs.