Design thought.

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
Evening Gents!

I was wondering what Y’alls thoughts on this this tomahawk/hatchet is and any thoughts on improvements?

As much as I hate the term “tactical” I kind of went for a tactical look on this one. I have plans for a much nicer more involved version of this but I’ll keep that under wraps for now. This is just going to be bare bones to see how it looks and feels. Not sure I’ll keep the glass breaker I was just seeing what the reaction to it is.

total length: 16”

handle length 13”

blade length 4”

Spike length 2”

tip of spike to blade 6”

handle width 1 1/4th”

7C68F706-3930-4C8A-A47A-F6B3D678C89B.jpeg

Apologies for my bad drawing.

normally not my kind of thing but I’ve had this stuck in my head for some reason.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
For initial concept I like it. Just a suggestion, but I think the spike either needs to be longer or broader? Maybe both?

Not sure, but to me it looks out of balance and a bit small compared to the blade. I like the glass breaker idea. Makes for an all around good tool.
 

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
If it's usability an somewhat tactical you're after.....my suggestions are..

1. Flatten out the top curve on the blade..... the upward curve at the top often makes a blade "slide", where as if it's flat there, or has very little curve, it will not.

2. Make the spike short and fat..... think spike get stuck/lodged....fat ones do not. No exact ratio, but I often will make the base at least 1/2 of what thee length is.

3. Ergonomics in the handle..... curves that fit the hand, and a flared butt (in the photo your hand get skinny, then flares...that the same as having not flare) ;)
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
I like the overall shape and the “glass breaker” style pommel is a great idea (expect to see me copy that part). The main thing I would change is the shape of the bit. It looks cool like it is but that middle section (tip?) will take all of the initial force of a strike if the user hits squarely. My concern is it may take damage or best case it will flatten on its own. Not to copy Ed but I would make maybe the last third or quarter the handle a gradual straight taper to the pommel. It should grip better that way and inspire more confidence that it will not fly out of the hand. Its really a great idea. Are you going to forge it with the integral handle? If so watch for stress risers in the handle/head area. I just forged a one piece hatchet (which I need to finish) it was a fun project.
 

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
@EdCaffreyMS Thank you for the tips! I will Incorporate Them when I get home!

@Chris Railey Thanks for the advice and I appreciate the complement. Completely agree with both you and Ed on the blade shape. I kept getting Viking style axes stuck in my head and it shows. :)

yessir I will forge it one piece though I may cheat a bit on the handle that way I’m not having to move such wide width the head is going to require by hand.

just wait till y’all see the fancy version of this. Let’s just say it involves Damascus and several integral parts.
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
@EdCaffreyMS Thank you for the tips! I will Incorporate Them when I get home!

@Chris Railey Thanks for the advice and I appreciate the complement. Completely agree with both you and Ed on the blade shape. I kept getting Viking style axes stuck in my head and it shows. :)

yessir I will forge it one piece though I may cheat a bit on the handle that way I’m not having to move such wide width the head is going to require by hand.

just wait till y’all see the fancy version of this. Let’s just say it involves Damascus and several integral parts.
I cannot wait to see it...
 

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
Well gentlemen hopefully I understood your advice and took it to heart. Not sure if I flattened the blade out on top enough and I might be forcing the curve of the blade to much but I would love y’all’s input on Version 2!

959D8350-02F5-4665-9EBD-632B0A27102F.jpeg
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
Dang! I just figured out the axe is a little to big for my forge.
That was what I was saying in another thread. Small round forges are great for knives, not so good for general forging. If you have a decent source for coal a coal forge is a much cheaper (and easier to build) option. I have forged a few items using lump charcoal too. If I remember my source correctly one of the guys over at “I Forge Iron” has a great set of plans for a forge made from a 55 gallon drum. Go there and search “55 forge” and you should find it. If you want to go the charcoal or wood route search for “washtub forge”. That one has a deep V shaped fire-bowl which is better for charcoal or wood. Both are made from scrap you more than likely already have. I once made a pretty decent forge from a wooden box, a piece of pipe, an air mattress inflator and some Georgia red clay.
 

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
That was what I was saying in another thread. Small round forges are great for knives, not so good for general forging. If you have a decent source for coal a coal forge is a much cheaper (and easier to build) option. I have forged a few items using lump charcoal too. If I remember my source correctly one of the guys over at “I Forge Iron” has a great set of plans for a forge made from a 55 gallon drum. Go there and search “55 forge” and you should find it. If you want to go the charcoal or wood route search for “washtub forge”. That one has a deep V shaped fire-bowl which is better for charcoal or wood. Both are made from scrap you more than likely already have. I once made a pretty decent forge from a wooden box, a piece of pipe, an air mattress inflator and some Georgia red clay.
I absolutely love coal. I used itfor a while and just got scared off by some of the long term health effects so I told myself I wouldn’t use it again.
 

Chris Railey

KNIFE MAKER
I absolutely love coal. I used itfor a while and just got scared off by some of the long term health effects so I told myself I wouldn’t use it again.
Lump charcoal and/or wood are good forge fuel too. In my opinion alone they have the benefit of not burning your steel as quickly as coal can.
 

Austin Thrasher

Well-Known Member
Cool idea man. It’s looking good. Im curious about the best way to heat treat one of these as far as, does just the head get quenched or does the whole piece benefit from being uniformly hard? Should the handle be hardened is what I’m asking. Anyone have any idea?
 

Daniel Macina

Well-Known Member
Cool idea man. It’s looking good. Im curious about the best way to heat treat one of these as far as, does just the head get quenched or does the whole piece benefit from being uniformly hard? Should the handle be hardened is what I’m asking. Anyone have any idea?
I don’t know if it’s the best way but I was planning only the head and the glass breaker.
 

Sean Jones

Well-Known Member
I absolutely love coal. I used itfor a while and just got scared off by some of the long term health effects so I told myself I wouldn’t use it again.
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe you would be OK if you use a P100 mask while forging. I wear a mask under my welding helmet for the same reason.
 
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