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broadax broadaxe

Broadaxe

[brawd-aks]

A broadaxe is a large-headed axe. Usually one side is flat and the other side beveled, though sometimes both sides are beveled. With one bevel the handle may curve away from the flat side to allow a flush stroke when hewing a flat plane on a log.

The flat blade is to make the flat surface, the curved handle to enable the user to wrap his hand around the handle without damaging his knuckles by hitting them against the object being worked on. Single bevel axes are made either right or left-handed. A double beveled broad axe may be used to either side, but requires more skill as it must be swung near the angle of the bevel to produce a flat cut.

In the 19th century, the broadaxe was commonly used in manufacture of square timber, for shaping logs used in log cabin construction and in the manufacture of axe ties.

Since the introduction of sawmills and modern power tools, the use of this tool is now uncommon in manufacturing.

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