Sharpening and Maintenance

Eventually, you will need to sharpen your axe and having good sharpening implements provides the most efficient means of re-establishing and maintaining an effective axe edge.

How long you go between sharpenings is a function of how often you use your axe, what types of wood you’re chopping, in what weather conditions, and the maintenance routines you regularly employ. In practice, sooner or later, the blade edge will need to be filed in order to correct the blade shape, to remove any nicks or dings that have formed on the blade edge, and to re-establish the bevel face. This is accomplished with an axe file, and will result in a blade that is functional for chopping, but will not produce a fine razor edge. To do this, one must employ a sharpening stone to further refine and grind the blade to the next level of sharpness.  After sharpening, a final stage of stropping with leather and compound will further hone the edge and remove any slight edge burr, re-establishing that razor edge we know and love.