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Old 11-20-2008, 09:41 PM
Angrist Angrist is offline
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Default Norlund axe project



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I found this Norlund ax in some old tools my father had. It is stamped "Genuine Norlund." It has a 6 3/4" head, a 4" bit and a 25" handle. It is coated in a think layer of rust, about 1/8" of the toe is curled over slightly, the poll is a little flared from being used as a hammer, and the handle is broken.

Norlund axes have a loyal following, but that is all that I know about them. I was unable to find any usefull information pertaining to this ax online. I was wondering if anyone here can tell me anything about it and whether it is worth rehabilitating.

A fixer-upper for sure. I like projects, and I like the feel of this ax for a camp ax, but it would be nice to know if it is good steel, etc. before investing too much time in it.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
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Old 11-21-2008, 02:21 AM
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Seeing as how the trend in materials used in a lot of things has dropped off over time, I would guess that it's probably OK steel. After all, how bad could it really be? I'm sure somebody will be able to tell you for sure.

I recently restored an old Finnish axe made by Bilnäs. I started with a rusty, cruddy head (it looked worse in real life than in the pics). Anyway, as you can see, a little elbow grease can turn a piece of "junk" into something you can't buy anywhere. I say go for it. Let me know if you have any questions about how I did it (don't know if you've done stuff like this before).
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Old 11-21-2008, 01:58 PM
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Some rust remover or naval jelly on the head, and then emery cloth, plus a trip to the hardware store for a new handle, and you will have a fine axe- better than most of the current (Chinese) stuff.
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Old 11-21-2008, 07:24 PM
Angrist Angrist is offline
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I was thinking of using a hand file and some sandpaper followed by progressively finer sandpaper or emery cloth. I haven't used rust remover, maybe I'll try that.

bmatt that's a nice looking ax! What did you do to get the polish?
Old 11-21-2008, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
It is stamped "Genuine Norlund."
You suck , now every axe I look for will have to have Norlund on it .............crap another hobby .................Thanks .




Old 11-22-2008, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angrist View Post
I was thinking of using a hand file and some sandpaper followed by progressively finer sandpaper or emery cloth. I haven't used rust remover, maybe I'll try that.

bmatt that's a nice looking ax! What did you do to get the polish?
First off, I soaked the head in plain old vinegar for about 12 hours. It broke up and removed a LOT of rust, old paint etc. and it's healthier to use than harsh chemicals. It makes the job much easier. Then I washed the head off, dried it and started sanding. I did all the work by hand. I just started with a very rough grit (maybe 60) and finished with something like 400, I think. Not necessarily a very smooth grit, but it did the job. I wasn't looking for a mirror finish. After that I used 00 steel wool. That's all there was to it.

Let me know if you have any other Qs.
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Old 11-22-2008, 12:31 PM
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I believe I may have the same model out in my garage. How long is the head and handle on yours?
Old 08-21-2010, 02:13 PM
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Oh yes! I t sure is worth fixing up, that is if you wouldn't rather just oil it and rub off the rust with a cloth and put it up as a memento/keepsake. They are worth MONEY $$$ Be careful what you do to it, and it might be a family heirloom worth some cash, if you want to use it, you won't find many better axes Norlund is great! Your father knew quality, I'd say. Have a nice new handle put on it by someone who KNOWS HOW to do it, without messing it up potentially. The net is FULL of info, just type Norlund Axes, and look up what you want to know! Oldjimbo.com has some info, lotsa plaes out there! Take care of a piece of history and your father's memory, it's made the way they used to be wheneople cared about their products. Now, if you find Norlund axes, they are probably made in a foreign country, far east , I heard. Take care!
Old 08-21-2010, 05:32 PM
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Naval jelly and a brass bristle brush, wipe it down with white vinegar after you've got most of all the rust off, take emery paper and some penetrating oil and rub away to your heart's content, finish off with 0000 steel wool and some sewing machine oil.

Sharpen with a bastard file and final finish with a med/fine puck sanding stone.

Replace the handle -- standard dimensions found in any hardware store.

They are a classic single bit felling axe and worth far more then the $30 that you'll be spending on stuff to fix it up...Commonly called a cruiser's axe.

Great project for the winter -- wear well!
Old 11-07-2010, 04:04 PM
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Angrist (Iron Clever)... i like your screen name! must be a bit of a Tolkien fan there huh? i am fanatical about Tolkien.

like the axe work there, i have a Norlund double bit hand axe (called "Saddle Axe") i bought off a friend, they seem to be pretty solid peices. looks like you have a good project axe there. good luck and please post pic of finished project.
------- Eric
Old 11-16-2010, 03:52 PM
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I have one of these Norlund Axes. Bought it at Walmart when I was twelve years old. I am now 49. It is on it's fourth handle. I have always used this trapping, camping, hiking, etc. I also have the smaller hatchet with the slightly smaller head. My brother in law had it in his tool box and I traded him a 12 pack of Bush Light for it. Great pieces...
Old 11-16-2010, 07:11 PM
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I have the Norland camp axe. It is part of a vehicle kit I put together. Many...many years ago I had a Norlund double bitted cruiser axe and it has long since disappeared. I believe it grew hair and legs and walked away??? stolen...
Anyway I've always wanted to replace it and have yet to find one...

This thread got me thinking I'll have to do another search for a Norlund cruiser...BTW good find great axe and it does deserve to be cleaned up and used...enjoy...
Old 05-19-2017, 12:11 PM
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Old thread, I know. But I'm excited for my new project. I hit a garage sale and picked up a very good condition Norlund ax head with light rust and a dull blade, for $1.

(Picked up 7 awesome folder knives too, $1 each).

Will be getting out some rust remover and a file and sandpaper and get a new handle on this old girl.
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Old 05-19-2017, 02:59 PM
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I have inherited two Norlund axes and the steel is fine unless they have been in a fire and lost their temper.
Old 05-21-2017, 10:09 AM
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I picked up a Norlund boy's axe a while back.
Started a rebuild, got carried away.
Polished and blued the head, hand made red oak handle.
In short, made it too nice to use. Now it live on my brothers living room wall.
Old 05-21-2017, 11:00 AM
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A thread from 2010?
I still have my Norlund camp axe and still haven't found a cruiser. Although I did manage pick up a chainsaw, wedge and maul in the interim.
Old 05-21-2017, 06:24 PM
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I got the Trappers axe and hatchet for maybe 12 bucks at flea market and yard sale. I let my son trade the axe at the trappers convention for a big straight blade he had an eye on. I still have the hatchet. There are sought after tools for sure.
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