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 Post subject: Hand tools.
 Post Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 4:54 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 6:51 pm
Posts: 49
Location: North Whatcom
Hi guys...I just wanted to put my feelers out there.

I am looking for information on how you maintain your axes, both flat and pick head. For example, paint or no paint on the blades, tape or no tape on the handles. Do you use fiberglass or wood handles?

Beyond that, what kind of angle are you putting on the blade, sharp or dull, and what are you using to sharpen it.

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FTM - PTB

"The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn" Alvin Toffler.


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 Post Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:44 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 7:52 pm
Posts: 466
Location: South King Fire & Rescue
DJ, There is a pretty good book form fire engineering books called "Tools of the Trade " It has some pretty good info about taking care of your hand tools....Wrapping the handle of an axe just under the head to protect the handle...wrapping halligan tools....As for painted or unpainted? I prescribe to the Unpainted tools....If you take care of them they will look great...Plus it is much easier to see if there is damage if it isnt hidden under a coat of paint. I keep axes fairly sharpe. I will put and edge on them on a bench grinder and then fine tune it with a metal file. If it has an edge on it it is less likely to get wedged into what your cutting. Actually a flat head axe is a great tool to use to vent a residential roof .....use the Flat head side and hit along a truss you can open a roof faster than using the cutting edge, since it wont get stuck in the roof as often. Of course this is in case your saw breaks and all your left is your hand tool. As for handles....I like the old ash handles....just a little sanding and linseed oil and they look good. Fiberglass handles are ok, especially if you dont have time to do tool maintenance. Hope this helps? later Brother, Sven

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 Post Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 9:56 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 7:09 am
Posts: 35
Location: Milton, Ontario Canada
DJ,

My opinion is that tools should be checked at the start of ever shift, just like the other life saving tools that get checked. Axes, hooks, halligans, etc. should be pulled off the rig and visually inspected ever shift, if they require cleaning I found that a hand grinder with a wire knotted wheel http://www.milwaukeetool.com/webapp/wcs ... 635_192327 works fantastic to clean up your tools.

Cutting edges should be kept sharp but not to sharp, if they are to sharp they will dimple, chip, crack, and dull very quickly. All sharpening should be done with a hand file, avoided using a grinding wheel for this process I have seen far to many axes suffer the consequences of a over excited fireman taking to much “meat” off the axe. All nicks, burs, dimple, and mushrooming of striking surfaces should be squared away with a hand file also.

Taping your handles is a preference thing I personally do not tape my handles (especially on the halligan) because it some times interferes with your operations, taping your axe handles will hamper you from sliding the axe down the halligan shaft striking the squared off shoulder of the halligan (forcing doors in zero/limited visibility). Hooks are a different story; I love a good coat of black hockey tape on my hooks. Putting some tape on your hook shafts will allow you to have far better control and power when hooking ceilings.

Types of handles again is a preference thing, I love the feeling of a wooden handle axe in my hands simply from a tradition stand point but when it comes down to it either handle is good. The one big thing with wooden handles is they require a touch more maintenance that fiberglass and plastic handles, this maintenance can be done with some sand paper and linseed oil.

How you clean, maintain, and carry your tools says allot about you as a fireman and lots about your company, rusty and un-kept tools = no company pride.


Stay Safe Brothers,
Andrew

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"be the firefighter you would want coming to save your own family" -Tom Brennan

”In forcible entry there is lot of geometry going on……… except I don’t have a f%@king protractor on the rig” – Capt. Robert Morris FDNY Rescue 1


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 Post Posted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 1:26 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 07, 2007 12:46 am
Posts: 873
Location: Lacey, WA
I agree with the file. I not only like using primarily the file because it gives me more control (little changes at a time) but it's also just quality time. Grinders are a good tool but too much heat imparted into your cutting edge, adz, fork will cause a loss of temper and a weaker tool. Be confident of what your doing before you do it. A salty jake like Swen probably has done it enough and knows it's limit, others may not.

Don't forget to square off the edges of your flatheads, especially the ones that get used alot. Keeps them from loosing large burrs off the head.

Cutting edge- I sharpen with a file so that i'm taking material to about 1/2 inch back from the blade. File until sharp then take two passes with the file over the edge to dull it slightly for reasons Swen already talked about.

I don't like painted heads not only for the ease of inspection and looks but they also don't stick in whatever material they're buried in.

Wood handles! nuff said

A little gem that i was told by an old logger at the local saw shop when picking out my current axe handle. look at the grain at the bottom of the handle, get the handles with the grain running with the head of the axe not perpendicular. Has worked well for me so far.

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How you clean, maintain, and carry your tools says allot about you as a fireman and lots about your company, rusty and un-kept tools = no company pride.


Couldn't agree more.

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Ryan Cox
Lacey Fire District #3
31-C


"And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know"

Kansas


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 Post Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 6:08 am 
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Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 7:09 am
Posts: 35
Location: Milton, Ontario Canada
Quote:
A little gem that i was told by an old logger at the local saw shop when picking out my current axe handle. look at the grain at the bottom of the handle, get the handles with the grain running with the head of the axe not perpendicular. Has worked well for me so far.


That is a great tip, I have never herd that before.

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"be the firefighter you would want coming to save your own family" -Tom Brennan

”In forcible entry there is lot of geometry going on……… except I don’t have a f%@king protractor on the rig” – Capt. Robert Morris FDNY Rescue 1


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 Post Posted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 4:40 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2006 8:51 pm
Posts: 102
Location: Chehalis
I have to agree with everyone... No paint and wooden handles. However, I do like the hockey tape on our halligans. And really, Who could go wrong listening to a logger???

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 Post subject: Re: Hand tools.
 Post Posted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 5:46 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 30, 2014 12:30 am
Posts: 1
Hi guys, if you are looking for some stuffs, such as hand tools, power tools, electrical tools, mechanic tools, automotive tools you can find them all in this site.
http://www.thegreenbook.com/products/tools/


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