You are correct and dang, I had forgotten, have the same one! It's a tweener for me at 6 lbs, but if that is all I had, it for sure would get the job done.I have a Husqvarna (Wetterling clone I think) splitting axe. It works just as well as the Fiskars super splitting axe. Acutally a little better since it holds and edge. I was surprised that the shorter handle works good for me - I am 6'-4".
No personal experience here either but from what I hear the quality is top notch across the board from Swedish axe makers. I really like the looks of some of the Hultafors but haven't pulled the trigger on one yet. I'm in the market for a nice splitting hatchet. I haven't gotten around to making a handle for the one I have and the Fiskars hatchet just isn't doing it for me.No personal experience but it sounds as through the Gransfors are the top of the heap when it comes to wood handled tools. From those who have run the Wetterlings against the X27, most gave the nod to the Fiskars.
If you are willing to own something with a "plastic" handle the Husqvarna S2800 works wonderfully.
It’s been a while since I’ve been on these forums so I guess you could consider me a semi-lurker. The question in the initial post is one I have wondered myself. I don't own a GB maul however I studied various pic/specs of them and reground on old 8 lb. maul head (good steel) to attempt mimic the GB in shape and weight. I can’t recall what the GB weighs with a handle but after modifications mine is just over 8 lbs. including the handle. The performance difference is very noticeable. I've attached a picture to better explain (i gave up on ms paint and just hand drew it).I am seriously fighting the compulsion to acquire a Wetterlings or Granfors Bruk splitting maul. Are they really that much better than a 6lb or 8lb traditional maul or an X27?
Good stuff! We always like how to threads. Your observations make a lot of sense to me.It’s been a while since I’ve been on these forums so I guess you could consider me a semi-lurker. The question in the initial post is one I have wondered myself. I don't own a GB maul however I studied various pic/specs of them and reground on old 8 lb. maul head (good steel) to attempt mimic the GB in shape and weight. I can’t recall what the GB weighs with a handle but after modifications mine is just over 8 lbs. including the handle. The performance difference is very noticeable. I've attached a picture to better explain (i gave up on ms paint and just hand drew it).
While it varies slightly from maker to maker, a few of the problems with the traditional Maul Design are in my estimation: (not limited to)
1. The cheeks are too fat as you move closer to the edge of the maul – especially the last third
2. The rather extreme flare of the heel and the toe. I believe this slows the maul down and acts a place for uneven grain to catch that part of the bit because of the mass behind that portion of the blade.
It makes much more sense to have this sort of flare on a felling axe designed to sever fibers and pop chips across the grain.
If you look at the GB maul, you’ll notice the “toe” flare is not there at all; surprisingly it is slightly canted down. This struck me as odd the first time I noticed it since it differed from other designs. The top red line of the side view of my picture indicates where I cut off the pronounced flare of the toe of the axe as well as the heel and canted them downwards slightly.
I didn’t really know why I was doing this other than it was my attempt to copy GB since I couldn’t afford one and wanted to see what all the fuss was about. After using my modified version. I’ve noticed that slight can’t downwards is designed to have maximum impact in the arc of a typical splitting stroke-that is only if you are proper alignment with the wood where the bit has good contact across the face and where your body can generate the most power with your knees bent. I am 6’5” so I am very uncomfortable splitting wood on the ground/grass and when I do so (esp. w/ flared maul or axe) the flared portion (where there is less mass) hits the wood first and it simply doesn’t work as well.
If doing all that grinding and reshaping isn't your thing, I might suggest you take a look at the new Stihl splitting maul. These are made by Ochsenkopf and are an excellent value and design. $99 bucks where you’d easily pay 150 from them directly for one of these. They have the steel protector and the rotoband handle system. I am going to buy one for my Dad for father’s day… and I will totally admit much of my reasoning is so I can also try it out =)
If anyone is interested I will take some pics of my modified axe so you can see “the real thing” as these drawings are the best I could come up with while on my lunch break at work. My co-workers I think wonder about me =)