By Bernie Weisgerber

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Place the head of the double-bit ax in the front notch that you have just cut, with the handle pointing directly in the planned direction of the fall. If the handle does not point in the planned direction of the fall, you must re-chop the notch until the handle points in the right direction. 39 Using Axes Front notch first, allowing you to detect whether the tree is going to fall in the planned direction. A gust of wind blowing opposite the planned direction of fall can get you into serious trouble at this point.

Com Ames Lawn and Garden Tools Box 1774 Parkersburg, WV 26102 Phone: (800) 624-2654 or (304) 424-3000 Fax: (304) 424-3399 Buying a quality used ax at a secondhand store, flea market, or farm auction may be your best bet. Most used axes are also abused axes, but about 1 out of 10 is still usable. The price is usually right. Used axes can often be picked up for half the cost of a new ax. Look not only at the ax’s condition, but take the ax’s manufacturer and its head pattern into A Defective Axe will consideration.

Stand the wood on end, either on the ground or on a chopping block, if the wood has been cut straight with a chain saw or crosscut saw. If the ends are uneven, the wood needs to be placed in a crotch of a downed tree to hold it upright (Figure 93). You should have a designated splitting ax. Its blade should have a much steeper angle than a felling and bucking ax. Take advantage of existing cracks or checks in the wood to help direct your first blow, because the first split is generally the most difficult.

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