Robin Lewis
Robin Lewis
  • Hometalker
  • Australia

Hatchet Restoration

$50
3 Days
Medium

This is an old hatchet I've had for a few years. It's seen a lot of action and it's looking a bit tired. It's time to show it some love.
Watch the video here: https://youtu.be/wCarg9bBbdg
hatchet restoration
The old handle was made of rubber so getting it off was pretty easy. A heat gun and a chisel made light work of it.
hatchet restoration
There were small pieces of it in the corners of the handle so to get those off I had to use a wire brush. This brush came in handy again later to clean the rest of the handle.
hatchet restoration
To lock the new handle in place I was going to use a combination of epoxy and dowels. I drilled 3 holes in the handles to accept 8mm dowels.
After the holes were drilled I went back to cleaning the steel going from the wire brush, to the belt sander, and finally 600 grit paper. This brought the steel up to a brushed finish.
hatchet restoration
Using some hardwood scraps I cut 9 squares, 35mm x 20mm x 20mm. Each square got sanded to flatten it but also get it ready for glue.
The specific look I was going for with this handle required the grain change direction. This is how plywood is made. You can see the striped effect here.
hatchet restoration
I glued all the pieces together and used some levels to stop the pieces sliding around as the glue dried.
hatchet restoration
Once the glue had dried I cut the new piece in half down the middle.
hatchet restoration
Now I could trace the outline of the hatchet handle onto the pieces of wood and remove the material using a router. You want to the fit to be as snug as possible but ultimately the epoxy will be doing most of the work.
hatchet restoration
hatchet restoration
The first half of the handle is glued to the hatchet using 5 minute epoxy. 
hatchet restoration
 Once that dried I went back with the 8mm drill bit and drill holes through the steel and through the wood. Then I repeated the process, on the other side; route the inside of the wood handle and glue it to the steel using 5 minute epoxy.
hatchet restoration
Once the second glue up had dried I drilled through the wood, through the steel and through newly attached piece of wood.
hatchet restoration
I glued some dowels into the holes and cut off the excess.
hatchet restoration
When the glue had dried I sanded the dowels flush and used a big round-over bit in my router to give the handle a rounded shape. This worked a lot better than I was expecting.
To shape the handle I used various pieces of sandpaper and worked it down until I was happy with the feel.
hatchet restoration
I used boiled linseed oil as a finish. This great for hardwearing surfaces because it can be reapplied easily at any time.

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