A traditional shape in Scandinavian axe design, the collared axe was orginally a function driven design element. Having forests of birch nearby to utilize as handle material, the countries of the North Men found a way to work around the relative weakness of that birch wood. The collar helps spread shock and impact forces during use, and greatly decreased the stress on the handles and subsequent breakage. Had they lived amongst forests of Hickory or Ash trees, you'd probably have never seen a collared axe design.
This particular axe was located and shipped in from Southern Sweden, where it was cleaned, inspected and refinished here in the KA shop. One of a few that have come in sterile of any forge markings or makers' marks, who and when has unfortunatly been lost to time. I would approximate a manufacture time frame between 1930 to 1960 based upon personal experience and observations of similarity between other known pieces. What I can tell you however is that this is a well made piece, showing nice clean lamination of harder high carbon steel into the cutting edge and a great uniform shape.
The edge was put on using a slack belt for added strength in the cutting edge geometry, and is currently hair popping sharp. A hand fabricated leather snap sheath protects that edge, and is a bit more unique than the usual in having made use of red thread for a little color pop.
The haft was hand fabricated in Quebec by Trinity Boletus out of a nice piece of white Ash and finished off with a hand rubbed oil finish. The pomel is a unique take on the traditional flare that Emile is so adept at hand carving. Fitting the hand perfectly, this new shape strikes an interesting visual balance between a sweeping flare and a more squared off tail. You'll be seeing more and more of this unique handle shape in the future. The swedish blue paint detail was added here in the KA shop.
The 21" long haft was chosen to hit the sweet spot of being short enough to pack and use as a camp axe, while retaining enough length for the head speed needed for effiecient felling.
A wonderful clean example of Scandianvian axe design, this piece would be equally at home taking down trees or bucking up and splitting firewood. Truly a utlitarian masterpiece, collard axes translate their extra heft into cutting force and efficiency all the while looking amazing! A real joy to use.