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Reinventing the Axe 217

Posted by samzenpus
from the exotic-weapon-proficiency dept.
Nerval's Lobster (2598977) writes "The axe has been with us for thousands of years, with its design changing very little during that time. After all, how much can you really alter a basic blade-and-handle? Well, Finnish inventor Heikki Karna has tried to change it a whole lot, with a new, oddly-shaped axe that he claims is a whole lot safer because it transfers a percentage of downward force into rotational energy, cutting down on deflections. 'The Vipukirves [as the axe is called] still has a sharpened blade at the end, but it has a projection coming off the side that shifts the center of gravity away from the middle. At the point of impact, the edge is driven into the wood and slows down, but the kinetic energy contained in the 1.9 kilogram axe head continues down and to the side (because of the odd center of gravity),' is how Geek.com describes the design. 'The rotational energy actually pushes the wood apart like a lever.' The question is, will everyone pick up on this new way of doing things?"
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Reinventing the Axe

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  • Wrong wood selection (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 21, 2014 @04:17PM (#46808935)

    Sounds like someone spent all their time with nice, straight grained woods and not things with nasty interlocking grain. I've seen some woods like Eucalyptus that when hit with an axe were more likely to "peel" than split. That is the split would go around the piece instead of through it. I think this twisting action would make that worse. OTOH, having split a bunch of wood, you often apply a twisting force to open up the split, so on the right wood(s) this could be a good feature.

  • Try Google. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Gorobei (127755) on Monday April 21, 2014 @04:33PM (#46809111)

    The axe has been with us for thousands of years, with its design changing very little during that time. After all, how much can you really alter a basic blade-and-handle?

    Well, a simple Google image search for "axe catalog" shows 42 different axe heads sold by the Shapleigh company in 1929.

    So, the answer would seem to be "quite a lot."

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