Broadaxe

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A very large, single-bevel broadaxe Broadaxe.jpg
A very large, single-bevel broadaxe

A broadaxe is a large-(broad) headed axe. There are two categories of cutting edge on broadaxes, both are used for shaping logs by hewing. On one type, one side is flat and the other side beveled, a basilled edge, also called a side axe, [1] single bevel, or chisle-edged axe. [2] On the other type, both sides are beveled, sometimes called a double bevel axe, which produces a scalloped cut. On the basilled broadaxe the handle may curve away from the flat side to allow an optimal stance by the hewer in relation to the hewn surface. The flat blade is to make the flat surface but can only be worked from one direction and are right-handed or left-handed. The double bevel axe has a straight handle can be swung with either side against the wood. A double beveled broad axe can be used for chopping or notching and hewing. When used for hewing, a notch is chopped in the side of the log down to a marked line, called scoring. The pieces of wood between these notches are removed with an axe called joggling [3] and then the remaining wood is chopped away to the line.

Axe tool or weapon

An axe is an implement that has been used for millennia to shape, split and cut wood, to harvest timber, as a weapon, and as a ceremonial or heraldic symbol. The axe has many forms and specialised uses but generally consists of an axe head with a handle, or helve.

Hewing

In woodworking, hewing is the process of converting a log from its rounded natural form into lumber (timber) with more or less flat surfaces using primarily an axe. It is an ancient method, and before the advent of the industrial-era type of sawmills, it was a standard way of squaring up wooden beams for timber framing. Today it is still used occasionally for that purpose by anyone who has logs, needs beams, and cannot or would prefer not to pay for finished lumber. Thus homesteaders on frugal budgets, for example, may hew their own lumber rather than buy it.

Contents

History

Broad axes have been used since ancient times until the end of the 19th century in Europe and North America. Broadaxes were commonly used in manufacture of square timbers for wooden shipbuilding, log building, timber framing, and railroad ties sometimes called axe ties. [4] [5] Some broad axes are of a shape where part of the axe is called a beard so the axe is called a long-bearded axe.

Shipbuilding construction of ships and floating vessels

Shipbuilding is the construction of ships and other floating vessels. It normally takes place in a specialized facility known as a shipyard. Shipbuilders, also called shipwrights, follow a specialized occupation that traces its roots to before recorded history.

Log building

Log buildings and structures can be categorized as historic and modern. A diverse selection of their forms and styles with examples of architectural elements is discussed in the following articles.

Timber framing building technique, construction method using heavy squared-off and carefully fitted and joined timbers

Timber framing and "post-and-beam" construction are traditional methods of building with heavy timbers, creating structures using squared-off and carefully fitted and joined timbers with joints secured by large wooden pegs. It is commonplace in wooden buildings from the 19th century and earlier. If the structural frame of load-bearing timber is left exposed on the exterior of the building it may be referred to as half-timbered, and in many cases the infill between timbers will be used for decorative effect. The country most known for this kind of architecture is Germany. Timber framed houses are spread all over the country except in the southeast.

Modern uses

Since the introduction of sawmills and modern power tools, the use of this tool is now uncommon in manufacturing but still used in restoration carpentry or undeveloped regions.

Sawmill facility where logs are cut into timber

A sawmill or lumber mill is a facility where logs are cut into lumber. Modern saw mills use a motorized saw to cut logs lengthwise to make long pieces, and crosswise to length depending on standard or custom sizes. The "portable" saw mill is iconic and of simple operation—the logs lay flat on a steel bed and the motorized saw cuts the log horizontally along the length of the bed, by the operator manually pushing the saw. The most basic kind of saw mill consists of a chainsaw and a customized jig, with similar horizontal operation.

A power tool is a tool that is actuated by an additional power source and mechanism other than the solely manual labor used with hand tools. The most common types of power tools use electric motors. Internal combustion engines and compressed air are also commonly used. Other power sources include steam engines, direct burning of fuels and propellants, such as in powder-actuated tools, or even natural power sources such as wind or moving water. Tools directly driven by animal power are not generally considered power tools.

See also

Related Research Articles

Adze edged, handled woodworking tool

An adze is a cutting tool similar to an axe but with the cutting edge perpendicular to the handle rather than parallel. They have been used since the stone age. Adzes are used for smoothing or carving wood in hand woodworking. Two basic forms of an adze are the hand adze—a short handled tool swung with one hand—and the foot adze—a long handled tool capable of powerful swings using both hands, the cutting edge usually striking at foot or shin level. A similar, but blunt, tool used for digging in hard ground is called a mattock.

Chisel tool for cutting and carving wood, stone, metal, etc.

A chisel is a tool with a characteristically shaped cutting edge of blade on its end, for carving or cutting a hard material such as wood, stone, or metal by hand, struck with a mallet, or mechanical power. The handle and blade of some types of chisel are made of metal or of wood with a sharp edge in it.

Kukri Knife

The kukri or khukuri is a knife, originating from the Indian subcontinent, associated with the Nepali speaking Gurkhas of Nepal and India. The knife has an inwardly curved blade, similar to a machete, used as both a tool and as a weapon in the Indian subcontinent. Traditionally, it was, and in many cases still is, the basic utility knife of the Gurkha. It is a characteristic weapon of the Nepalese Army, the Royal Gurkha Rifles of the British Army, the Assam Rifles, the Assam Regiment, the Garhwal Rifles, the Gorkha regiments of the Indian Army, and of all Gurkha regiments throughout the world, so much so that some English-speakers refer to the weapon as a "Gurkha blade" or "Gurkha knife". The kukri often appears in Nepalese and Indian Gorkha heraldry and is used in many traditional rituals such as wedding ceremonies.

Hatchet single-handed striking tool with a sharp blade on one side used to cut and split wood, and a hammer head on the other side

A hatchet is a single-handed striking tool with a sharp blade on one side used to cut and split wood, and a hammer head on the other side. Hatchets may also be used for hewing when making flattened surfaces on logs; when the hatchet head is optimized for this purpose it is called a broadaxe.

Plane (tool) tool for working with wood

A hand plane is a tool for shaping wood using muscle power to force the cutting blade over the wood surface. Some rotary power planers are motorized power tools used for the same types of larger tasks, but are unsuitable for fine scale planing where a miniature hand plane is used.

In archeology, a uniface is a specific type of stone tool that has been flaked on one surface only. There are two general classes of uniface tools: modified flakes—and formalized tools, which display deliberate, systematic modification of the marginal edges, evidently formed for a specific purpose.

Grind

A blade's grind is its cross-sectional shape in a plane normal to the edge. Grind differs from blade profile, which is the blade's cross-sectional shape in the plane containing the blade's edge and the centre contour of the blade's back.

Log house type of house, built from wooden logs; much the same as a log cabin

A log house, or log building, is a structure built with horizontal logs interlocked at the corners by notching. Logs may be round, squared or hewn to other shapes, either handcrafted or milled. The term "log cabin" generally refers to a smaller, more rustic log house, such as a hunting cabin in the woods, that may or may not have electricity or plumbing.

Froe

A froe, shake axe or paling knife is a tool for cleaving wood by splitting it along the grain. It is an L-shaped tool, used by hammering one edge of its blade into the end of a piece of wood in the direction of the grain, then twisting the blade in the wood by rotating the haft (handle).

Kitchen knife used for the processing of food and are often used in the kitchen

A kitchen knife is any knife that is intended to be used in food preparation. While much of this work can be accomplished with a few general-purpose knives – notably a large chef's knife, a tough cleaver, and a small paring knife – there are also many specialized knives that are designed for specific tasks. Kitchen knives can be made from several different materials.

Japanese carpentry

Japanese carpentry is a style of carpentry originating in Japan which uses distinctive woodworking joints. It is closely related to Japanese architecture.

Billhook cutting tool

A billhook or bill hook is a traditional cutting tool used widely in agriculture and forestry for cutting smaller woody material such as shrubs and branches and is distinct from the sickle. It is very common in the wine-growing countries of Europe. Elsewhere, it either developed locally such as in China, India and Japan, or was introduced by European settlers, such as in North and South America, South Africa and Australia.

Axe ties are railway ties that are hewn by hand, usually with a broadaxe. There are 2,900 ties per mile of track on a first class railroad. The early railways would not accept ties cut with a saw, as it was claimed that the kerf of the saw splintered the fibres of the wood, leaving them more likely to soak up moisture causing premature rot.

This glossary of woodworking lists a number of specialized terms and concepts used in woodworking, carpentry, and related disciplines.

Twybil A hand tool used for chopping out mortises in green woodworking

A twybil is a hand tool used for green woodworking. It is used for chopping out mortises when timber framing, or making smaller pieces such as gates. It combines chopping and levering functions in a single tool.

Cleaving axe

A cleaving axe or cleaver is a form of axe used within green woodworking to split wood lengthways. Cleaving (riving) is used to turn a log into lumber or billets into firewood. Splitting axe is sometimes described as an old name for a splitting maul or froe.

Wood splitting

Wood splitting is an ancient technique used in carpentry to make lumber for making wooden objects, some basket weaving, and to make firewood. Unlike wood sawing, the wood is split along the grain using tools such as a hammer and wedges, splitting maul, cleaving axe, side knife, or froe.

References

  1. Salaman, R. A.. Dictionary of tools used in the woodworking and allied trades, c. 1700-1970. New York: Scribner, 1975. ISBN   0684145359
  2. Mercer, Henry Chapman. Ancient carpenters' tools: together with lumbermen's, joiners' and cabinet makers' tools in use in the eighteenth century. 5th ed. Doylestown, Pa.: Horizon Press, published for the Bucks County Historical Society, 1975. 81.
  3. Foxfire - Volume 19 - Page 246. /books?id=u0bYAAAAMAAJ
  4. Railway age - Volume 110 - Page 982 axe ties
  5. Richard M. Van Gaasbeek. Wooden Boat and Ship Building 2010 edition, reprint. 196