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Expected Arrival: 04/04/2019
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5” 1055 carbon steel axe headDesigned by Vietnam Veteran Elmer RoushTennessee Hickory handle16” overallSheath not included
Vietnam Veteran Elmer Roush designed the CRKT Birler Compact Pack Axe to be light enough to cut down on weight, yet istill burly enough to get everything you need done on a mission. He’s applied his 40 years of blacksmith experience, as well as, techniques from thousands of years ago to create exceptional tools like the Birler. The blade is forged from 1055 carbon steel and is virtually indestructible. The sturdy Tennessee hickory handle ensures that it won't fold on you when you need it most. You’ll be amazed that this axe is such a heavy-weight when it comes to work and such a light-weight when it comes to carrying it. Use this tough tool for missions or the outdoors!
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Kennesaw Cutlery did their usual admirable job with quick service and shipping I've come to expect with all my orders from this company, kudus! Now onto the Birler Compact Pack Axe from CRKT that I've been anticipating since it's first introduction awhile ago. I was surprised to find that it was manufactured in Taiwan although I don't consider that a negative. The axe head comes with a lifetime guarantee as long as it is not modified in any manner. The edge on this particular head showed a slight irregular grind on one side and the edge seemed to be rolled on one side. As I plan on stone sharpening anyways this is not major... but I noticed that the whole head is covered in some form of dipped coating that will need to be removed in order to not junk up my stones. This was probably a protective coating to prevent corrosion of the 1055 steel during shipping. As I routinely remove the coating from my carbon blades this is not as big a deal as it sounds, just adds more time to prep.
The hickory handle I found to be somewhat thin for my large paws and there is no palm swell at the handle end. Because the axe seems a little head heavy the swell would have added better ergonomics I think. In checking the fit of the handle to the head I found there was a noticeable gap all around which tells me the handle was a little undersized when it was fitted. The head is held in place with the standard wooden wedge as well as 2 metal cross wedges. The head is tight and snug now and use will show whether the gaps will be an issue. The handle wood is covered in some type of pale orange stain that I found unappealing and which I'll remove so I can treat it with boiled linseed oil. The grain orientation was acceptable and I didn't have an issue with it. Overall I like the axe, even with the minor things I noted above. It comes with a temporary poly blade guard but no sheath, so you'll have to make arrangements for carrying attached to a pack or on a belt. I'll be putting it through it's paces splitting camp wood and chopping up the limb wood I stockpile for my winter tipi fires. This wood is mostly oak and maple so it should be a good test for it.
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