TOPS Knives has unveiled its new wilderness tool that can be a field axe and a pick until you take it apart and it becomes a knife/scraper/chopper combo. The HAKET’s blade is 1095 steel with a small tomahawk blade on one end and a knife blade on the other. It slides into a slot on the chrome-moly allow handle and fastens tight with a special bolt. It weighs about 2.5 pounds with the black nylon sheath. It will cost you $169 to $189 and will include a basic survival kit in the handle. Extra blades will be available for just under $60.Read More
Clockwise from Bottom, RMJ, American Tomahawk, Sayoc Winkler, SOG
Referenced by the U.S. military back as far as 1757 in the 28 orders of Roger’s Rangers, the tomahawk has seen a resurgence in popularity as an effective weapon and a useful battlefield tool. They are decent breaching tools, outstanding weapons and are replacing knives as the last-ditch CQB weapon of choice by some of America’s elite forces.
While many are sold as breaching tools, this belies the ‘hawks best and bloodiest use. No other weapon of the same size can generate as much force with a short stroke in an enclosed space. Period. If a bad guy gets in your entry stack, you can’t shoot him without endangering your teammates; and a knife is a slow kill. If you really want to get someone off your teammate in a hurry, there’s nothing deadlier than the spike of a tomahawk to the head. Small and short might not look as cool, but they do the bloody job better than a knife in a confined space. Now, if you want to get through a wooden door, rake some glass or punch in a door lock, the longer handled tomahawks fit the bill.
Looking at the range of ‘hawks in today’s posts, you’ll see everything from budget-minded quality all the way up to exotic-looking designs. One of the keys to a tomahawk’s durability is the way the shaft is connected to the head. Nylon handles attached to steel heads will bend back into shape after a hit, but the head could eventually separate. Full tang designs mean the head and shaft are made from a single piece of material with no chance of head separation. Another factor to consider is the type of steel. Each of the ‘hawks below use different grades of steel and you get what you pay for in weight, durability and edge retention.Read More
SOG Fusion Tactical Tomahawk $62.00
Some times it’s about the value. Manufactured overseas and based on the Vietnam Tomahawk, the SOG Fusion Tactical Tomahawk is an update of the battle axe optimized for breaching operations, excavation, obstacle removal, extraction, and other utility applications. The 420 stainless steel head is mounted to the fiberglass reinforced nylon handle with heavy-duty bolts and a steel ferrule for stability. Just under 16″ and 24 oz, the Fusion ‘hawk can get you though some tough spots without breaking the bank. Comes with a simple nylon sheath.
PRO: Value, no tears if 1st Sgt takes it away
CON: Two piece design, may come loose someday
American Tomahawk LaGana Tactical Tomahawk (“VTAC”) $129.95
The LaGana Tactical Tomahawk is also based on the Vietnam era ‘hawk. Peter LaGana’s axe-head design has served the United States in every major conflict since the Vietnam War. AT’s update lightens the weight to 16 oz and adds an unbreakable Nylon handle and manufactures them in the US. The 1060 steel head is heat treated and weighted for throwing. The edge bevel is utility ground to retain its edge during breaching operations, so don’t expect it to pop the hair off your forearm. The included sheath will mount up to MOLLE gear for safe transport on your pack or vest. The army found them useful enough to make them standard equipment in the Stryker combat vehicle to support 3am door knocking ops.
PRO: Intermediate sized, wicked strong handle, light, USA made
CON: Two piece design, may come loose someday
RMJ Tactical Shrike Hammer Forged Tomahawk $360.00
Stepping up to a hammer-forged chrome-moly 4140 steel RMJ Tactical has taken the tomahawk into the new millennium. Forging the entire axe from a single piece of steel covered by an electrically insulated grip give you two things. First, the head can’t fly off, and you’re protected when you accidentally hack through a power line while making entry into UBL’s cabana. The handle is ST801 Super Tuff Nylon overmolded onto the 8″ tang. The butt cap unscrews to reveal an enclosed sharpening stone. The long spike is designed for serious penetration and the heads narrow profile rakes glass with ease. The sleek head shape contains an extra cutting surface, called the beard, that is used on the pull stroke like a shroud cutter; a very nasty, appendage rending shroud cutter. The included bottom-eject Kydex scabbard works with PALS and holds the ‘hawk securely until you need it. It’s probably the most seriously engineered ‘hawk holster in the group.
PRO: Full tang (One piece) construction, several cutting surfaces, insulated grip, long reach, USA Made
CON: Big, impractical for IBA mounting
Sayoc/Winkler R&D Hawk F/S
$555 military/$840 civilian w/sheath
The R&D is the child of two tomahawk titans. Rafael Kayanan of Sayoc Tactical Group and Daniel Winkler, an accomplished bladesmith. This hand machined hawk is designed for combat and features 2 hand hold areas. A traditional grip at the end of the handle provides considerable swinging leverage and a second just under the head is ideal for close quarters work. This distinctive axe starts with 3/8″ 5160 steel and features a full tang that is skeletonized and tapered to maximize the weight, and impact force, at the head. The blade angle isn’t a typical utility axe grind. It’s a knife grind, optimized for damage.
This isn’t a breaching tool. The spike on the blade serves two purposes; its got looks to intimidate and it’s designed to cause maximum soft tissue damage on a slash. Pain is the point here. A slash with a razor sharp knife might not even register during an adrenaline fueled fight, while a rip with the jagged nastiness of the R&D F/S is going to get some attention. Overall length is just over 13″ with a weight of 1 lb 6 oz. Available with light curly maple, durable black Micarta or grippy recycled rubber scales.
PRO: Most deadly in close quarters, light and small enough to consider IBA carry, full tang construction, USA made, looks awesome in a deployment shadow box with your ear collection.
CON: Price, knife grind on blade makes edge a bit too delicate for breaching.