Wood carving has been a trendy hobby since the beginning of the iron era of human civilization. From then, till now axes of different sizes and shapes are made handcrafted with thousand-old methods. Even if in the ultra-modern era, an axe has to be crafted by hand in the ultra-modern era to make it flawless. On the other hand, carving wood is still a favorite leisure activity when people choose to take a break from the grip of technology and set off for an off-grid life for vacations.
Campers are the main users of carving and carpeting axes and hatchets. This same tool benefits them from chop down trees or making firewood and curve out woods to make bowls and spoons. However, we have created a list of carving axes and hatchets of different manufacturers to make your wood carving a little bit easier. Axe is an expensive tool, and choosing one is tricky. If one gets the wrong axe, it will not serve the ultimate purpose the best way. So we recommend reading the full article without skipping a bit to know which axe is the best for the reader.
View Top 7 Carving Axes & Hatchets Reviews
1. Husqvarna Wooden Curved Carpenter Axe
- Weights 2.42 pounds;
- Long 20-inch handle;
- Slight concave edge of the blade.
For one-third of a regular carving axe price, Husqvarna launched this quality saw for carpeting, curving, and camping. The narrow bit is ideal for chopping down a tree, limbing it, or even doing fine detailing work on it. The sharp face of the blade is slightly concave. I find this perfect for making bowls and spoons where one needs a concave-shaped cutting tool.
The head is made in Sweden by a century-old axe making technique, and the handle comes from the US. I suppose it should suffice for your consideration on this axe. The only issue is, it is hard to find a good axe at this price point, so this model gets out of stock pretty quickly. Grab your hurry before it is taken.
- Low price;
- High quality;
- Limited stock.
2. CRKT Freyr Outdoor Axe with Deep Beard Design
- Deep beard design;
- 4.5-inch head;
- 15-inch handle.
At first sight, you will love everything about this axe. It is elegant, high-end finish, and well made. The problem lies in its quality of the axe head. The head has a deep beard shape that was supposed to work well on chopping wood for carpentry. But in reality, the head arrives super dull. You can hon it, but it loses its sharpness pretty quickly. Moreover, the head has a thick bit, which is also a problem.
Apart from all these issues, I still suggest this for people who rarely go camping. For occasional use, this cheap hatchet will do the job quite well. We all know how high-quality axes costs. For a beginner on a budget, this one can be an excellent choice to try your luck.
- The durable finish on the head;
- Well ergonomics.
- Poor quality.
3. Drake Light Bearded Axe/Hatchet
- Weights 1.3 lbs ;
- Small bearded head design;
- Beech tree handle.
It is a well-made bushcraft hatchet. It is so light that you can actually take it everywhere with you. Its head has a small beard and a thin bit. Are you a fan of making small bowls and spoons from softwood? Then you will appreciate the smaller shape and concave face of this hatched. It also holds the sharpness longer.
The overall quality is quite impressive. It rarely gets any complaints from the customers. It lasts so long that you will not need to touch any other axe in your life. In fact, your next-generation also can get this one from their ancestors.
- Suitable for spoons or small bowls;
- Makes detailed work effortless;
- Nothing to mention.
4. Mapsyst Bearded Hatchet / Axe for Bowl Makers
- 1.3 lbs weight;
- High-end blade with a straight handle.
One doesn’t have to be a einestein to guess that this hatched is unique in design and performance. To make it lightweight, the blade is made curved instead of thick and straight. The handle is also straight, which made this axe more versatile. Use it for through competition, chopping of wood to make a curving shape, or do subtle detailing on any masterpiece, everything comes out outstanding with this too.
The best thing about this axe is, it is cheap yet looks expensive. I know the looks should not judge a curving tool, but the rust-proof material of the blade is genuinely praiseworthy.
- Perfect for detailed work;
- Elegant looking;
- Versatile use.
- Nothing to mention.
5. Gränsfors Bruks Hand Hatchet for Beginners
- Short, 9.5” handle;
- Weights 0.6 kg;
A short axe is a prerequisite for carving small workpieces. The 9-inch handle of this Gränsfors hand hatchet provides the perfect balance to cut and edge precisely. To start woodworking as a beginner, this one is a budget-friendly choice. Moreover, for its low profile design, it is suitable to carry in backpacking trips too.
As it is a budget hatchet, you have to deal with its flaws. The blade is not as polished as the high-end hatchets on this list. In fact, the blade arrives dull. You have to sand and sharpen the blade to make it usable. Even if it is cheap, a protective sheath is included in this package.
- More control over curving;
- Very light;
- Suitable for backpacking as well.
- The blade is not well finished.
6. Hults Bruk Akka Forester's Outdoor Axe
- Swedish axe steelhead;
- Weights 2.2 pounds;
- curved 24-inch hickory handle.
Maybe this one is not the best carving axe, but it is great for cutting off branches. Often campers are looking for an axe that can be used to clear up forest trails, cut branches to make a campfire, and of course, curve out the wood at their leisure. No one prefers carrying two axes in their camping for cutting and curving. So, for camp lovers out there, this one is the best deal for you.
The head is made in Sweden with Swedish steel. This head quality itself is promising in terms of quality and durability. It's cutting age and also longer than most of the axes in the market. The axe arrives with a pre-sharpened head that is covered in a full-length artistic sheath. You can utilize this beauty right out of the box.
If balance, if the axe is important for you, then you must know that this one has impressive ergonomics. With the long handle and dense hand, it only weighs 2.2 pounds. Cutting and curving will be more fun and comfortable with this axe.
- Full cover sheath;
- Arrives ready to use;
- Good for clearing forest trails.
- Nothing to mention.
7. Prandi German Style Hatchet for Carving
- Head is 600 gram;
- 4 inches head size;
- 15.75” handle length.
The head and handle specifications are for those who need the details before spending a fortune on a carving hatchet. No worries, this Prandi Hatched head came from Italy, and it is assembled in Germany. There is less likely that any quality issue will arrive upon using this beauty.
It arrives with a leather sheath and a golden mark of ‘Prandi’ on the head. For safety issues, the head arrives dull, and you need to sharpen it before use. On the other hand, the handle also has a glaze of varnish so that it comes to you intact, without any scratch, and so on. So, you have to sand out the varnish from the handle and apply oil on it too. Otherwise, the grip on it will be slippery.
This hatchet from Prandi is one of the most favorite among axe throwing competition winners. Its flat and thin head digs in wood faster than most other hatchets. With more precision and patience, you can use this to carve out the edges of bowls and spoons from softwood. Some have complained over the poor assembly of this too. It happens to all handmade products. You can always claim for replacement in those situations.
- Good quality sheath;
- Thin head cuts fast;
- Good grain-oriented handle.
- Needs to scrape off varnish from the handle.
Difference Between Axes/Hatchets for Curving and Cutting Trees
For curving, the axe head has to be thin and slightly curved. The handle is also made curved for an axe, which is meant for carving. On the other hand, the straight one is only good for cutting out a shape but worthless for scooping out a curve. Read more: How to Find the Best Wood Carving Tools
For cutting trees, felling or chopping, or climbing, a straight face axe with a straight handle is the best option. There is no such rule that you can’t use a curved edge hatchet for cutting. But one should know which one is good for what purpose before settling onto any particular hatchet.
How To Pick a Good Hatchet/Axes
To carve out a wooden piece, the hatchets with a concave face are the best. You can scoop out big chunks with it. A small handle and lightweight will help you to maneuver the hatchet easily. The best quality hatchets are those, which are traditionally made. These can be sharpened easily, customized to the shape of the face, and stays sharp for a long time. Read more: 7 Best Chainsaws for Carving You Can Use
For Multipurpose Use
For camping, backpacking, axe competition, chopping trees, and carving, the hatchet should have to be universal. We love to do all these things during camping. So, a hatchet with a straight face with the slightest concave shape is the best. One thing you must look at while picking a versatile saw is it’s joint. The joint has to be sturdy and reliable. Besides, a large handle will make cutting trees easy. On the other hand, the slightly concave shape will scoop out small chips at a time. The carving will be slow, but you will have control over it.
I advise you to get the cheaper version first to begin wood carving. When you have the confidence that you already mastered the skill, then switch to the higher quality axe or hatchets. If you are not a camper, then you don’t need a wood carving axe. Likewise, if you need a cutting axe or league competition axe, there is no need to get a curving axe; instead, you can get a multipurpose axe that serves both purposes.
Before ordering, look for the details if there is an option to make custom orders. Getting a personalized axe for left-handed or right-handed people is also a popular habit. However, we have listed axes that cut both ways. Warranty and return policy options are also needed to be checked carefully before placing the order.
Last Updated on January 2, 2021 by Jack Aaron
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Hey! I’m Jack Aaron. Wood carving is my passion so I’ve chosen this as my profession. I have been carving wood for over 12 years and a chainsaw is my most favorite tool. I love this profession very much. Now the goal of my life is to help and share everything I know about chainsaw and chainsaw carving from my experience. So newbies get the right guideline.