View Full Version : Axe Heads

10-07-2010, 03:25 PM
I noticed I had a couple old axe heads laying around. Is there a way I could make a knife with said axe heads; without ruining the hardness?

I don't have a forge, yet - oxy/acetylene torch, anvil, and 5lb hammer. Slowly building, but my question stands. Any input?


10-07-2010, 04:16 PM
You could, but I doubt the steel would make a very good knife blade. Depending on the age of the axe head(s), they are likely either going to be a a .40-.50 carbon steel, or if newer, likely cast steel.
If you heat the steel much above about 450F you'll wreck the hardness.....which will happen if you take the torch to it. You might be able to grind it down to the size you want, but that is an awful lot of grinding, and you would have to keep it cool in the process if your not going to re-heat treat it after you done.

10-07-2010, 07:40 PM
They're fairly old (at least 20-30 years) and I believe I could keep the temperature at an acceptable level using just acetylene but I'd need an infrared thermometer I suppose to keep tabs on the temperature. But at 450, I don't believe I'd be able to bang out a blade shape from it - doesn't seem hot enough?

10-08-2010, 06:39 AM
Nope, it won't be hot enough to hammer on. In order to "move" the steel, it's going to need to be in the 1400-1800F range. Every steel has what is known as a "forging range", which is the temp for that particular steel where it will move under that hammer.

Basically, if your looking to forge it, there is not way your going to save the heat treat that is there now.

10-08-2010, 07:01 AM
Bummer. Ohwell, it was an idea, haha. Can't blame a guy for thinking. I shall think of some other way to put them to use, rather than grinding a ton of material off one for a knife.

10-08-2010, 08:44 AM
On another forum, I saw a tomahawk ground from an axe... he said he kept a bucket of water beside the grinder and once it was too hot to hold, he dunked it...

I have a vision of running a bandsaw to split it in half horizontally, and you could get 2 tomahawk blades from it... then you can heat and pound to stretch the metal into rough shape...

Just thoughts...

10-08-2010, 12:55 PM
I thought about that, re-purposing them as hawks. Only problem is, I have limited funds and no hickory or other good handle woods around, haha. But, I may still do that. Wouldn't take much to re-shape an axe head, since the contours are pretty much there already.

10-11-2010, 09:45 AM
I've seen solid hickory hawk handles online before, or you might be able to find a handle that you could trim down at home depot or lowe's...

10-11-2010, 01:09 PM
There's hickory axe handles at Lowe's but nothing short.. Although I could take one axe handle and make at the least 2 tomahawk handles from it.

10-11-2010, 01:53 PM
I was actually looking at hatchets at HD at lunch today... :) And thought about this thread and what I could make out of them... but, I wouldn't want to pay $25 for a nice brand new hatchet to grind it up...

YOU however.... :)