The splitting maul came with a perfectly aligned handle, vertical grain, center balanced head and the edge split the handle exactly sighting down the butt. Both maul and wedge had fully formed and shaving sharp edges. A couple of shots from the Gransfors Bruks website :
Comparing the Gransfors Bruks maul and wedge to two cheaper versions bought at Canadian Tire, it was readily obvious that the more acute and tapered edge on the Gransfors Bruks maul and wedge allowed those versions to sink into the wood with greater ease. The Gransfors Bruks maul and wedge were also easier to control, nicer handle on the maul, with better setting, and overall balance and was thus more controlable. Thus on lighter wood, work could be done work faster with less effort, clear win for the Gransfors Bruks versions.
However both Granfors products, are of slim in cross section, and the maul actually has a hollow grind to the head. It is a lot thicker than a felling axe, but still the hollow grind tended to bind on the really knotty and wet woods. The cheap versions from Canadian Tire were flat with a hint of convexity and had better splitting power and thus on really hard to split wood, the cheaper versions tended to work better, especially when a lot of force was used.
Looking at long term use, while the Gransfors Bruks version is steel shanked to give some protection it could be made longer as after splitting over a dozen truckloads of woods there are a couple of minor dents in the handle, this doesn't effect the fibreglass handle on the cheaper version. A difference in steel quality can be noted as well as the Bruks version maintains the edge much longer, resisting denting and deformation better than the cheaper version, similar with the wedge.
I would prefer a convex grind to the head as the existing hollow one binds on knotty or wet woods. After using it extensively, there really isn't a strong incentive to choose this over a decent hardware store splitting maul, unless you want to also use the maul for finer work like making kindling. The Bruks wedge is a lot easier to set than the cheaper ones, but this just requires on more tap, and on really bad wood, the thicker and convex cheaper wedge works better.
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|Last updated :||04 : 01 : 2005|
|Originally written;||04 : 01 : 2005|