Rifleman's hawk - handle length

Discussion in 'Accoutrements' started by mrstang01, Feb 13, 2019.

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  1. Feb 13, 2019 #1

    mrstang01

    mrstang01

    mrstang01

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    I just got a Cold Steel Rifleman's hawk to customize. I didn't realize the handle was going to be so long. Is this anywhere close to being correct, or should I shorten it up before I strip it and stain it.

    Just seems to be long to be carried on the belt daily.

    Michael
     
  2. Feb 13, 2019 #2

    Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave

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    Well maybe it would fit Simon Kenton or Daniel Boone, but not James Madison (Madison was 5' tall ;))

    I was taught to measure the handle from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow..., not longer than that for a "regular size 'hawk" (whatever that is) to check the length of the handle.

    I carry a "small" 'hawk with its handle about the length of a standard claw hammer (sits on the back of my hunting pouch), and use that for jointing deer when needed.

    So really, it's up to what works for you, right ? :thumb:

    LD
     
  3. Feb 13, 2019 #3

    Black Hand

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    I'd determine the most comfortable length for you. I find a handle that is the length from the elbow to the knuckles of a closed fist just right.
     
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  4. Feb 13, 2019 #4

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

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    I agree with both posts above. You’ll have to go with what fits you. It’s kind of like trying on shoes.
     
  5. Feb 13, 2019 #5

    Black Hand

    Black Hand

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    If only one could find the proper bag to go with the shoes....:D:D:D
    Sorry - too good to pass up.
     
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  6. Feb 13, 2019 #6

    Straekat

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    Length and physics can go hand to hand here. (There might be a pun in there.... ;-) ).

    Framing carpenters like heavy heads and long handles on hammers. It's easier to drive spikes using a 32 oz framing hammer, than the old 16oz or less ones with short handles found in any flea market or second hand store anywhere. A hefty head, and long handle can do a lot of the work for you if you know how to use the tool properly. It can save a lot of wear and tear on arm and elbow. Hatchets and hammers aren't interchangeable, but the way the arm and hands use them is. So, go with a length that is comfortable for you, and gets the job done quickly and efficiently.
     
  7. Feb 13, 2019 #7

    NW Territory Woodsman

    NW Territory Woodsman

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    You got the easy way with the long handle, my hawk's head is so heavy it pulls my sash down.
     
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  8. Feb 13, 2019 #8

    Le Loup

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    Helve length is a personal choice. The recommended length for competition throwing is from the tip of your elbow to the knuckles on your clenched fist. But the choice is yours.
    Keith.
     
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  9. Feb 14, 2019 #9

    Danny Ross

    Danny Ross

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    The handles are 22 inches long on cold steel hawks, cut it to the length you want. DANNY
     
  10. Feb 14, 2019 #10

    tenngun

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    In use the longer handle makes less work. Throwing shorter is better.... unless you have a real long arm. To carry, long is a pain and short easier. I haven’t thrown a hawk in years but I do carry it for use. It’s about 19” and a bit.
     
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  11. Feb 14, 2019 #11

    Rifleman1776

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    If you are throwing in a competition regulated by NMLRA rules, the hawk must make a full rotation before hitting the target. For throwers who are short/tall or have short/long arms, the length of the handle can be adjusted to suit yourself. A short handled will make that rotation from a closer distance to the target. But, by rule, you may be restricted to a different distance so too short would be a handicap.
     
  12. Feb 14, 2019 #12

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

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    Blackhand... you’re missing the important part of the shoe thing and bag thing. It’s like a two legged milk stool. Fashion divas all know the mantra is: Shoes, belt and purse/ bag. You can not overlook the belt.
     
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  13. Feb 15, 2019 #13

    buckskinner35

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    Personally I have a 13.5" trigger pull, and I have a Cold Steel "pipe hawk" and have had a couple of shorter handled hawks, and I much prefer the 22" handle on my Cold Steel hawk. I also like that the handle does not taper as much as a lot of hawk handles do.
     
  14. Feb 15, 2019 #14

    Loyalist Dave

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    Rather disturbing that you know that....I didn't..... :p:D:D

    LD
     
  15. Feb 15, 2019 #15

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

    DOUBLEDEUCE 1

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    If you talked to the boss... And there is also unequivocal end to the conversation “I got them on sale”. Sometimes it’s just best to cut your losses...
     
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  16. Feb 15, 2019 #16

    rafterob

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    Stated above, but if you are just using it for throwing, then determine the length by throwing it. Holding at different points along the handle to see what is most natural feeling. If you plan to use it as a camp ax also, leave the handle the way it is to maximize force.
     
  17. Feb 16, 2019 #17

    Stophel

    Stophel

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    Depends on the feel of the head, and what the "sweet spot" would be for a handle. For a "tomahawk" type head, I like about 17 1/2" - 18". That's just where it feels right (at least with the H&B medium "camp axe" that I'm fooling with now).

    I'm a lighter head, longer handle kind of guy anyway. The stubby 14" handles on pound and a half hatchets always seemed VERY awkward and clubby to me. A 14" handle goes real good on my old Bedford belt axe that's probably a 3/4 pound head, though.

    Remember also, that the "tomahawk" was primarily a weapon, not necessarily a camp tool. The longer handle gives you more speed and power and reach. ;)
     
  18. Feb 20, 2019 at 11:09 AM #18

    Artificer

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    Oh my, Gentlemen, you forgot to mention the matching garters...….:D

    Reminds me of the time Navy Arms first came out with their new One Piece Black Walnut Stocks on their M1863 Springfields with a huge price increase, back in the mid/late 1980's. One customer sighed after examining one and said his wife wouldn't let him buy another Rifle Musket. I offered every excuse/reason I knew of, but he had tried them all and she wasn't buying it. Finally when he told me he had just bought a Union Uniform to occasionally "galvanize" at events were there weren't enough Federals and it would go nicely with the uniform, I cried "That's It !! You need to tell her you have to have this for your new outfit! You had to get a new bag, belt, hat, shoes and now you need this to finish the outfit !!" He grinned and with a great deal of disbelief, he said, "Do you really think she would go for that?' I told him you have to think like a woman to justify to a wife something you want to buy....

    About four hours later he returned, pointed to the Rifle Musket on the wall and while he was peeling of five One Hundred Dollar Bills - he was grinning and shaking his head. I told him I had to know just what convinced her. He laughed and said he had tried all the old reasons/excuses and had once more bombed with them. He got mad, kicked some firewood and hurt his toes a bit because he was wearing PC repro Brogans with not much protection for the toes. While he sat and nursed his aching toes, he remembered what I had suggested. So after that he hobbled over to her a bit later and tried that with her. She said, "Oh, I understand now. You have to finish accessorizing your new outfit! OK, go ahead and get it." We both got a belly laugh out of that.

    Afterwards when I told that story, I was surprised it worked for some more guys as well.

    Gus
     
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  19. Feb 20, 2019 at 7:32 PM #19

    jrmflintlock

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    I used to throw a mouse hawk with the handle cut to the same length as my throwing knife. That way you can throw them from the same place. If the Hawk handle is longer than the total length of the knife, One must adjust their distance from the block.

    With a full size hawk it looks kinda funny with a stubby handle but it works!

    I am throwing a cold steel trail hawk I modified now and I'm still getting the hang of it. I only shortened it a little. (Looks cooler that Way! :cool:)

    I only use them at Rendezvous for throwing. My throwing knife was made by a guy in AZ, Bomboy throwing knives! It throws awesome!
     

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