Hatchets are a popular single-handed tool for camping trips, hikes, and the backyard. While an axe is longer and used with both hands, the smaller size of the hatchet makes it ideal for packing on a trip and carrying on the trail. With many axes on the market, you may be wondering how to source the highest-quality hatchet. Founded in 1697, with over 325 years of axe-forging experience, you can’t go wrong with the Swedish craftsmanship of a Hults Bruk axe. Below is a detailed review of their highest-selling axe, the Almike Hatchet.
Upon opening the box, the quality of craftsmanship was evident from the official Hults Bruk maker’s mark and weight hot stamped into the axe head. At one pound, the hand-forged Almike axe head made from 100 percent recycled Swedish steel is lightweight, making it easy to handle. The curve of American hickory wood provides a well-balanced hatchet that is comfortable to hold and easy on the wrist.
Removing the full-sized leather sheath, the blade is razor-sharp and ready to use. The cutting edge is thin and the axe head has a good taper, reflecting years of design perfection.
The Almike Hatchet is a top-of-the-line axe made out of quality products meant to last a lifetime. The aesthetically-pleasing, lightweight, and compact design make it a solid hatchet for the backyard or wilderness. In terms of price point, the Almike Hatchet is one of Hults Bruk’s more affordable options and on-point with other Swedish axe makers. At $169 USD, it is on the higher end in comparison with other brands. However, it’s hard to beat the skilled and coordinated art of over 300 years of experience, giving you more than enough bang for your buck. The Almike Hatchet is also extremely versatile and promises exemplary craftsmanship.
Versatility of the Almike Hatchet
While there are many types of axes, each with its own purpose, hatchets are a versatile tool for any backyard or outdoor enthusiast. The Almike hatchet is ideal for splitting kindling, clearing brush and weeds, and driving tent stakes at camp.
Whether in your backyard or the campsite, the Almike Hatchet is the perfect tool for splitting kindling for your fire. The size, weight, and design of both the axe head and handle make it ideal for holding in one hand to cut small logs for kindling. You can also use it to chop through small branches or to remove the branches of your Christmas tree.
Clearing Brush and Weeds
The Almike Hatchet makes an ideal companion in the backcountry and the backyard. Whether you need to clear-cut weeds, shrubs, or branches in your garden or along the trail, the lightweight hatchet is perfect for tackling these smaller tasks. At a compact 16 inches in length, the hatchet can easily fit into a backpack, toolbox, or shoulder strap. The leather sheath fully covers the blade, making it easy to carry on your belt or pack away.
Driving Tent Stakes
An added bonus of the Almike hatchet is that the butt end is also designed to use as a lightweight hammer. It’s a perfect two-in-one tool to have at the campsite to both chop kindling and drive tent stakes into the ground. For an age-old recreational activity, the Almike hatchet is also an ideal size and weight for axe throwing while at the campsite (for regulation throwing axes, check out the Agdor 15 or Agdor 28). To maintain the quality of the axe head, it is not advised to hit the axe with another object or use the axe as a wedge.
Hults Bruk Craftsmanship
Each Almike Hatchet axe head is hand-forged with 100 percent recycled Swedish steel which is apparent from the unique hammer marks that make each hatchet one-of-a-kind. It takes two blacksmiths plus a hardening master to ensure the quality and strength of the axe meet the high standard Hults and Bruk exemplifies. The Almike Hatchet features a 16-inch curved American hickory handle, a strong and top-quality wood choice. The full-sized leather sheath with metal grommets and a leather pull-tie is well-made and compliments the sleek-black look of the metal axe head.
Tips for Use and Care
Included with the packaging is a detailed guide booklet that provides the blacksmithing history of Hults Bruk as well as instructions for use and care. When using the hatchet, be sure to wear eye protection and gloves to protect yourself from flying debris and splinters. The hatchets are easy to care for but to maintain optimum performance you should clean them after use, oil them to avoid rust when storing for long periods, and sharpen them on a regular basis. Linseed oil is commonly used for both the axe head and handle, and wet sandstones are the best for sharpening the blade.
Do not store hatchets in dry places, such as furnace rooms as it can cause the axe head to come loose. Although it is rare for the hatchet to break when used properly, if the axe does break, it is often the shaft. Re-handling your axe is relatively straightforward and with regular care of the axe head, you can extend the lifetime of the hatchet. Replacement parts, if needed, are available through Hults and Bruk.
Choose Hults Bruk
With a lifetime warranty, Sweden’s oldest axe maker stands by its brand. The Almike Hatchet is the last hatchet you will ever need to buy. Its versatility is ideal for any backyard and outdoor lover, from gardening to camping and hiking. For those looking for a quality axe to cut down your Christmas tree next year, be sure to check out their many other offerings such as the Agdor felling axes.