How To Make An Axe
Core- Square or rectangular cores are preferred. In this case, thicker cores are often better. An axe is a mass weapon and built to be sturdy.
Handle/Pommel- I do the same as with my sword handles and pommels. It is very important to have oval handles with axes. It makes hitting with the blade much more consistent.
Courtesy Padding- My long axe has Plastidip courtesy padding. Use at least 3 layers of blue foam. The short blades make it more likely to hit the target with the courtesy padding. My preferred method is to cut a long strip of Ozark blue foam about 1 or 1.5 inches wide and give it VERY a tight spiral wrap.
For Plastidip, I dapped on a layer of fun foam (craft foam) from Michaels. Sanded down the seams and applied three layers of Plastidip. Then I painted it and coated it with a gloss.
Step 1- Build the box around the top 5 or 6 inches of the core. I like to use a foam more dense than EVA or Walmart Ozark, but you don't have to. Start by cutting two pieces of foam the width of the core and two that are 3x width of the core. DAP glue them to the core in a box shape. I spread some Goop glue in the cracks so that the foam will stay in place and minimize twist. The box should go 1/2 inch above the core. I put a "cork" piece of foam on the box with Goop glue.
Step 2- Cut three pieces of Ozark blue foam in the shape wanted for the axe head (only 1/2 smaller on the top and bottom). It will be glued to the box, so be sure that the back edge of the head is flat and the length of the box you have built.
Dimensions for my axe
6 Inch box around core
9 Inch blade surface when finished
7 Inch wide axe head when finished
Give it a large beard. Axe beards are awesome.
Step 3- DAP the axe head to the box on the core. Apply duct tape at the seam.
Step 4- DAP a strip of soft foam to the blade of the axe. Use 1 inch yoga mat or 1 inch kneeling pad. I get my kneeling pad from K-mart for a couple dollars. It should be as wide as the axe head is so far (roughly 1 1/2 inches) and 1 inch thick.
Step 5- Get a strip of leather and DAP it along the underside of the axe beard. It should extend along the beard and down a couple inches of the courtesy padding. Duct tape it to the head and the courtesy padding. This will help prevent the beard from tearing and give it more support.
Step 6- Layer blue foam over the leather to completely cover it. DAP and tape it down. Also DAP a layer of foam along the top of the axe, from the box to the tip of the blade.
Step 7- Wrap the entire flat of the axe head with one large piece of foam. I find that 1/4 EVA foam works very well, but another foam could work. You could even use 1/2 inch foam, but I prefer the size of the axe when I use 1/4 inch foam for the last layer. This piece of foam supports and protects the axe. It should extend all the way up to the blade on both sides. I leave 1/2 of the soft blade foam out of this layer on each side.
Cover- There's no way around it, the cover will have the be hand sewn. A sewing machine can partially sew it but eventually someone will have to put it on and sew the cover shut. I don't know much more than that. I give it to someone brilliant who sews and they give me back a beautifully covered axe.