An Ax to Grind: A Practical Ax Manual by Bernie Weisgerber

By Bernie Weisgerber

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3. Now move to the large or butt end of the log and repeat the process of scribing the end dimensions of the beam or cant. Figure 97a 44% 3 x 3 3/4 6 7/8 x 8 5/8 Print to Outside Edge of Borders PRINT Borders 4. Snap a chalk line from the upper corner of the layout on one end to the corresponding corner on the other end (Figure 99). It is easier to do if you first cut a notch in the log with your pocket knife immediately above the scribed vertical line. Drive a nail into the vertical line just deep enough to hold one end of the chalk line.

At the minimum, you’ve drawn the temper for at least 3 /16 of an inch back from the edge. You can always tell when the temper is drawn because the color of the steel at the edge turns blue. If this happens to your ax, you’ve got to remove a lot of steel to reshape the edge back to where it still is tempered. If you use a pedal grindstone, keep it wet, and always rotate the grindstone toward you and into the ax, not away from it. If you don’t have a pedal grindstone, your options are limited to a file and whetstone.

Figure 78—Cut at a 45° angle to be most effective (drawing by Frederic H. Kock). 36 Kock). 1 Using Axes of the swing is not nearly as important as its placement. Chop with a series of strokes: the top, the bottom, and then the middle (Figure 80). If you chop in that order (top, bottom, middle) with both the forehand swing and the backhand swing, the chip will fly out after your last cut. On your last cut in the middle on the backhand swing, you should give a slight twist to the ax as you sink it into the wood to pop the chip out.

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