Delta 28” Splitting Axe
Nuts and Bolts
The boldly designed axe head, leather sheath, and hand painted American Hickory handle clearly makes the Delta Splitting Axe an eye catcher. It certainly is beautiful and when you hold it, you are greeted with an intuitive confirmation that you are wielding a bad-ass tool that will likely be passed on to the next generation. Victor Axe + Tool started out refurbishing tools in 2011 but now are dedicated to making quality tools that will last long into the future.
The Victor Axe + Tool slogan is “Designed to live on.”
The 4.4 pound, C45 high grade carbon steel axe head is drop forged by the well respected smiths at Helko. It integrates a convex maul-wedge design which makes it ideal for splitting logs. Drop forging is a process in which the heated steel is repeatedly folded and hammered into a cast which creates lamination of the layers of steel. Essentially, this increases the strength of the axe head steel.
When I received the axe, the cutting edge was sharp but not sharp enough to slice with which was is probably a good thing. A real tool requires a bit of love before getting down to business. There is some age old wisdom that says that a splitting axe should not be sharp. That seems too vague to be an effective rule of thumb. Personally, I think it’s just finding the balance between having a clean and consistently sharp edge and enough thickness in the steel to ensure strength.
The 28” handle makes this splitting axe unique in that it is smaller than most splitting mauls but larger than most general purpose axes. It’s a practical length if you’re comfortable sacrificing more work at times for the added convenience of portability. It’s worth noting that the American Hickory handle is ergonomically designed with two curves which hold comfortably even through prolonged use which makes larger tasks more palatable. If you are just entering the axe ownership market it’s small design touches such as this that make a large difference in how comfortable and effective the tool is while in use.
For me, the Delta splitting axe is perfect for camping because it’s still some-what portable yet hefty enough to take on pretty much any splitting task. It’s not overly bulky and fits in the trunk with ease or serves as a gear divider in the truck bed. However, if I were to have a dedicated wood splitter to be kept on location, I would look into a splitting maul. Since the Delta is much more portable I will be relying on it for the time being.
Reviewed on 9/25/16 by Brandon Huang
Photos by Brandon Huang