How to tighten your Nordland Axe head.

Today we are going to take a quick look at how to tighten your Nordland Axe head if it should ever work loose. This axe is designed to be mounted as the original was with the haft going through the eye of the socket with its entire length and fitting tight against the haft as it swells near the end. This means it is not wedged as our larger axes like the Danish War Axe.

Our Nordland Axe is based on a find from the northern part of Norway in the earliest part of the viking age. It is one of our most popular axes as it works well in the yard and is period for anyone doing reenactment or period displays. It is now made with a hardened edge that comes sharp unless requested otherwise.

A&A Nordland Axe with hickory haft 

Nordland Axe

Our haft is custom made out of hickory for our axe. It has a kick out similar too many medieval axes at the base of the grip which helps with grip retention in use. The haft is seated to the head individually for each axe and set by our craftsmen. It can loosen with hard use or adjusting humidity, so we made a quick video to show you how to tighten it up and keep going.

This is easy to do and can be done in the field or at home. The key is to have a solid surface that you do not mind marring and won't damage the haft. I have done this against stumps and logs in the woods as well as a solid work table or even chunk of waist wood on the floor.

So with a little bit of care and checking your axe head before use if its been unused in a while your axe should keep of chopping or flying or even just walking about the woods for years to come.


Nathan Clough, Ph.D. is Vice President of Arms and Armor and a member of the governing board of The Oakeshott Institute. He is a historical martial artist and a former university professor of cultural geography.  He has given presentations on historical arms at events including Longpoint and Combatcon, and presented scholarly papers at, among others, The International Congress on Medieval Studies.

Craig Johnson is the Production Manager of Arms and Armor and Secretary of The Oakeshott Institute. He has taught and published on the history of arms, armor and western martial arts for over 30 years. He has lectured at several schools and Universities, WMAW, HEMAC, 4W, and ICMS at Kalamazoo. His experiences include iron smelting, jousting, theatrical combat instruction and choreography, historical research, European martial arts and crafting weapons and armor since 1985.

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