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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am getting into traditional woodworking, and began looking at buying an adze. It seems these tools are rare these days. I can only find a few online and they are all around $100+. Does anyone know if a pick mattock or pulaski axe can easily be substituted for an adze? Or, does anyone know where I can locate a reasonably priced adze? There aren't any in my local antique stores.
 

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I've swung fullsized pulaskis for trail building and the like. Your mileage may vary but the tool I used could be used for woodwork but not very comfortably. It was big, heavy headed, straight handled, and balanced for two handed operation and a lot of stooping over. I think it'd be tough to have good control for carving logs. A few of the woodworking adze images google brought back showed what looks like a very nicely balanced one handed bugger, used by guys standing up, more or less. It made my back relax just looking at it.

A buddy showed me a $150 canoe paddle once. I said "you gotta be kidding!" He said it weighed six ounces less than his regular aluminum one. I still scoffed. Six ounces is worth $150 ?? He said, "Here, let's trade for the day." After however many thousand of strokes, you bet I knew the difference. The next day at first he couldn't find it, because I'd stashed it in my boat. :whistling2:

There's a lot to be said for ergonomics if you're going to do sweat labor all day.
 

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We have one 'round here somewhere?Gotta agree with Steve on the weight and subsequent balance thing.Ours has a sq hole/handle and has a delicate feel,that can even be said.On a somewhat related note,have seen some friends "cheat" and use big Hilti rotory hammers set on hammer only,with spade bits sharpened to a razor edge to VG effect.BW
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Steve. I think you're right about the weight and ergonomics. An adze and pulaski are made for different jobs. I still might look into it though since money is such a big factor for me, as a poor college student. I won't be using it for long periods of time or for a lot of projects, so a sore back may be worth the savings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I like the inventiveness of the rotary hammer and spade bit, but I am trying to stick to hand tools. What do you think about a mattock? They seem lighter than the pulaski and actually more affordable.
 

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Mattocks I don't know.

But I always wanted to try building a canoe with burning coals, just never had the huge blocks of time to give it careful attention
 

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PS How about making your adzes? Sure, you may need to have a shop make the initial blanks for blades, but if the old timers could use rawhide straps and sap to somehow glue their adzes to their handles, why can't you do the same? Suggest watching for blacksmithing or mountain man history events and go talk to those guys.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I like that idea, I thought about having someone with a forge make a froe for me out of a leaf spring in an old car.
 

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substitute for adze

Hi Bob here I have a 1940s Cyclopes adze Australian Made has a 10 inch head with blade width 4 inches in good condition with new ******** handle for sale $50 plus postage . I am in Ballarat victoria Australia . I can send Photos if you are interested Regards Bob
 
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