Photo credit: Jason Schwartz/Rocky Mountain Bushcraft ©2015
When prepping a new axe for use out in the bush, one area that's often overlooked is the top of the haft that sticks out of the eye of the axe head.
The sharp edge of the wood, as it comes from the factory, is prone to splintering, and can lead to a damaged axe handle if not addressed before taking the axe out in the field. To fix this issue, simply sand the sharp edges with a fine piece of sandpaper, or a Dremel tool with a sanding drum, to make it smooth.
The result will be a more durable, splinter resistant axe handle. After you're done, make sure to apply two coats of linseed oil.
Jason Schwartz is the founder and senior editor of Rocky Mountain Bushcraft. He is a former Red Cross certified Wilderness & Remote First Aid Instructor, and has taught bushcraft and wilderness survival techniques to the Boy Scouts of America, interned with the US Forest Service, and studied wilderness survival, forestry and wildland firefighting at Colorado Mountain College in Leadville, Colorado. Jason has also written for magazines such as The New Pioneer and Backpacker, including writing the "Tinder Finder" portion of Backpacker's "Complete Guide to Fire," which won a 2015 National Magazine Award (NMA). Email him at rockymountainbushcraft @ hotmail.com (without spaces)