Max forestry tool …. Are they any good?

GeneralDisorder

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Honestly looks like a gimmick that tries to do everything and probably does all of it poorly.

An axe is a great tool when used carefully (it is a seriously dangerous tool if you don't know what you are doing) - it is WAY out-performed by even a hand saw for most applications. Unless maybe you need to chop a hole in a burning building. As a fire fighting tool I think it's probably excellent - an implement of destruction to be sure. I'm not usually needing to haphazardly destroy things when out on the trail. A good folding hand saw, and a camp hatchet are best bets for this category.

There's no substitute for a real shovel with a proper handle. Any GI that has had to dig a fighting position would gladly trade an e-tool for a proper shovel (been there). And if you are in this forum I assume you have an FMTV - plenty of room for a shovel somewhere.

Anything else (a rake, pick, etc) is both rarely needed and can be fashioned from the environment fairly easily. If the ground is so hard you need a pick...... well you aren't likely to be stuck in it are you? A rake is just a tree branch away......

TLDR - I would take a *sharp* camp hatchet, a folding saw, and a proper shovel over that any day. And it will cost half as much or less.

And yeah - Chainsaw. FTW. Spend this coin on the Stihl battery saw.
 

frank8003

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I carried it, jumped with it, dug with it.
Designed to dig while lying down. Good tool. M1950.
My 1966 Ames is still on my web gear. It will be one of the very last things I part with.
It is the last backup to all the other weapons.
 

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ramdough

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I do plan to have 2 long handle shovels and maybe a short one (just in case), a bow saw and a chain saw, and some sort of hatchet/axe/log splitter (to be determined) for splitting wood.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Green Mountain Boys

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I am not a fan of the "all in one" tool. If you need to do some light cutting I carry something like this.
https://sherrilltree.com/silky-ibuki-390-xl-teeth/
This type of saw is available in many sizes, from small folding saws you can fit in your pocket up to saws even larger than the one show in the link. The tooth design is the secret to the clean, fast and nearly effortless cut. The teeth are not something you can sharpen so they are throw away, but if you only cut clean wood a blade will last about a year of commercial use, a lifetime for the average homeowner. I have been using this type of saw since they were first introduced to the market back in the late 1980s. I was using a handsaw like the one in the link just a couple of weeks ago and a guy walked over to watch what I was doing and was in awe of how quickly and easily the saw was cutting through frozen hard wood limbs 3 to 4 inches in diameter. I am so accustomed to the saws capabilities I forget how good it is compared to other tools. They are simple and they always work.

If you have to clear multiple fallen trees across the road then a chainsaw is certainly going to be the fastest option. BUT, not only do you need the saw, you need everything that goes along with the saw. Gas, 2 cycle oil, bar oil, round file for sharpening cutting teeth, flat file for filing depth gauge, ear, eye and head protection, chainsaw safety pants or chaps are a good idea, a spare chain, wrenches to put the chain on or put the chain back on after you derail the chain. A backup plan for when you pinch the bar in the cut because you made the cut from the wrong side of the log. A backup plan for when you pull the chainsaw that has been sitting for 18 months without being run and it won't start. I carry a tool kit specific for my saw(s) that includes tools to be able to repair a broken pull cord, spare spark plug, sprocket and bar, muffler bolts, flanged bar nuts and other small problems that are typical.

Of all of the tools I have ever used, a chainsaw is one of the most difficult tools to learn how to operate with a high level of skill. I would compare it to shooting a gun. Almost anyone can go out and shoot at stationary targets and get some hits on target but it takes a high level of skill and practice to be truly proficient with a gun. A good tip to remember is: If you cannot visually identify a low kick chain from a pro chain then never grab your friends saw and start cutting with it. It could be, you thought you were jumping into the driver's seat of a Prius but you jumped into the driver's seat of a Dodge Challenger SRT and mashed the pedal to the floor.

I am not a fan of battery powered chainsaws due to limited power, charging batteries in the cold (it is usually cold here), battery shelf-life etc.

Axes are dangerous tools and have very limited use today. If you have a double bit axe the only place for it is hanging on the wall.

A shovel is a useful too and it always works. It also can be used as an aid in changing an LMTV tire.

I have no financial interest in the product or company in the link provided. I have a lifetime of experience in cutting wood.
 

GeneralDisorder

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The Silky japanese saws are amazing. I have a couple of them. Great for backpacking, etc. My german shepherd has a Silky PocketBoy in his backpack. He also carries (along with his bowl, food/water, and treats) a small first aid kit, a bite/sting kit, and a pocket knife. Because if someone falls down an embankment, etc he may be the only one that can get to you. 4-Paw Drive.

Rick
 

Awesomeness

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It's not clear if any of the above replies have actually seen or used a MaxAxe.

They are ok. I've used them a bunch of times, up to digging fighting positions, and they get the job done decently, and are fairly compact. If you are only carrying one MaxAxe set, and have to do a lot of work, it gets annoying to have to keep changing out the attachment heads. The axe is a real axe, with full size handle - that makes for a normal size pick, but a small rake and shovel. Overall, totally viable if you're trying to keep a lot of tool capabilities in a short space (which is why they carrying them in HMMWV's a lot). It works well for periodic/occasional/emergency work, like tending a fire in camp, digging out deep snow packed up under the truck, filling in a tire rut, severing a tree trunk fallen across a trail, etc.

If you're planning to dig a lot, you will want at least one full length shovel. Extended digging with a short shovel/tool means you are hunched over the whole time, and that gets exhausting really quickly. If you're in an LMTV, you have the storage length necessary somewhere to keep the full length tools (again, a luxury a Jeep or HMMWV doesn't have).

When driving an LMTV on trails, one of the biggest annoyances is constantly having to trim branches. The trails are created by the height and width of standard consumer vehicles, so many branches that drag the roof of a fullsize lifted pickup hit an LMTV about mid-windshield... it's not even close, and limb lifters or roll cages aren't going to lift 2" diameter limbs (plus all the branches on that limb) over the truck. You've got to get out and cut them down. So I carry a large bow saw, and sometimes chainsaw, in the back.

I also always carry a Silky hand saw, collapsible loppers, and an entrenching tool in the cab, in a basket behind the driver's seat... I use these A TON. I don't want to keep having to get in the back of the truck to cut branches every 100 yards on the trail, so having some small, easily accessible, tools in the cab makes it way easier. They handle 80% of the things that need to get done.
 
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