Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Review - Condor Greenland Pattern Axe

The Condor Greenland Pattern Axe in its natural habitat.
Condor is a very innovative company with regard to their machetes and other large knives. In the last Knives Blog post, we looked at the Condor Parang Machete, and the quality, craftsmanship and the affordability was clearly evident. Condor, however, isn't only a machete/knife manufacturer. They also make some great axes, and this time we'll be taking a look at the Greenland Pattern Axe.

The Greenland Pattern Axe is a fairly small and portable axe, slightly larger than a hatchet. However, it is not so small that it becomes unusable. To be specific, the length is 14.7". The weight is nearly 2lbs, (1 lb, 15.4 oz). Along with the axe, you also get a very nice leather bit, which protects the blade, and more importantly protects YOU from getting cut.

The Greenland Pattern Axe comes with a
very nice leather bit.
The axehead, make out of 1045 High Carbon Steel, has a very solid, hammered finish. It is profiled nicely, although would need some work to get it razor-sharp. Some quick file-work would easily get the job done. The actual blade of the axe is 3.7" long. The back of the axehead has a flat area, great for use as a hammer, or even to hammer on if you're splitting wood by using it as a wedge.

The one fault that I would point out about the Condor Greenland Pattern Axe is that the handle wood is untreated. The handle is made out of American Hickory, a nice hardwood which is polished and smooth. However, it would need to be treated with oil or some other coating to protect it against rot. This could actually be a pretty fun project, since it allows you to stain it or finish it in any way that you would like. The handle itself is very ergonomically contoured, making it very comfortable to use.

From the side, you can see the
ergonomic contours on the axe handle.
Despite that fairly small criticism, the Condor Greenland Pattern Axe would be a very useful tool if you're out camping or working in the woods. There are certain tasks that an axe really excels in. The Condor Greenland Pattern Axe would be a great companion for any outdoorsman!

Have any experience with the Condor Greenland Pattern Axe? Share what you think of it in the comments below!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Review - Condor Parang Machete

Based on the traditional Parang design from Malaysia and Indonesia, the Condor Parang Machete works as well as it looks.

Lately, I have taken a real liking to Condor knives. For the money, Condor has some of the best machetes and sheaths on the market. Sure, a Tramontina or Ontario machete will work just as well, but they do not compare with the quality of workmanship that Condor machetes possess.

The Condor Parang Machete is as good looking as it is functional.
Many machetes on the market do not come with a sheath. Not so with Condor machetes (and knives/axes). Now, all Condor products come with high quality leather sheaths. Believe me when I say this: the sheaths that come with all Condor machetes, knives and axes are some of the nicest oil-treated leather sheaths that I have seen. The superior stitching and functional designs of these sheaths make Condor blades a bargain when compared to everything else on the market.

The sheath for the Condor Parang is also very high quality,
yet the price for both is still very affordable.
The Parang machete has a slim profile with a forward-weighted balance, which makes it an excellent chopper. The blade thickness is nearly 1/4" (0.23"), however. This is not a dinky machete in any shape or form. The hardwood handle is polished to a smooth finish, with brass rivets and a lanyard hole at the end. Even though there is no texturing on the handle, the shape has a downward swoop and is thicker on the end, which prevents it from coming out of your hand during use.

This machete is a chopper. It would work great for clearing brush and chopping through medium-sized saplings. It's not an axe by any means, but will also chop wood in a pinch.

In Condor's line of machetes, the Parang has definitely peaked my interests. I'll be reviewing more great products from the Condor line in future blog posts. There are just so many blades that should not remain untouched!