How To Choose The Best Tomahawks – Buyer’s Guide

If you want to build a bug out bag or even just go camping, it’s worth adding a high-quality survival tomahawk to the survival gear. A survival tomahawk is one of the most reliable modern-day survival tools.

In the modern age, it has rapidly evolved to meet modern needs and requirements. In this post, we have discussed how choosing the best tomahawk is possible with some simple tips. We have discussed the most important factors you need to consider.

What are Several Types of Tomahawks?

Several Types of Tomahawks

Tactical Tomahawk

Recently, the tactical tomahawk has become popular in both law enforcement and dynamic duty military society. The value of a tactical tomahawk as both a weapon and a tool makes it a very useful piece of equipment that is similarly proficient at obstacle removal, opening crates, dynamic entry, IED removal, digging infighting positions as well as a personal protective weapon. One of the main benefits of a tactical tomahawk compared to an axe is that it is light to carry for a longer time without unnecessary fatigue, and during the war, its lightweight enhances speed.

Combat Tomahawk

Unlike other axes, a throwing tomahawk is a designed military weapon for sport and hunting. The throwing tomahawk provides the same rush as throwing a knife only with more power. It delivers power, balanced speed and damage. However, in a throwing tomahawk, weight and length are two defining characteristics that should always be considered. Those with longer handles and higher weights produce slower spins. The slower spin is an important aspect for beginners, since it allows learners to regulate their throw. Larger throwing tomahawks also offer a bigger impact and can go further than smaller tomahawks.

Throwing Tomahawk

Unlike other axes, a throwing tomahawk is designed military weapon, for sport and hunting. The throwing tomahawk provides the same rush as throwing a knife only that it has more power. It delivers power, balanced speed and damage. However, in a throwing tomahawk, weight and length are two defining characteristics that should always be considered. Those with longer handles and larger weights produce slower spins. The slower spin is and important aspect to beginners since it allows learners to regulate their throw. Larger throwing tomahawk also offers a bigger impact and can go further than a smaller tomahawk.

Things to Consider for Choosing the Best Tomahawk

Best Tomahawk

The most important thing to consider while looking for the best survival tomahawk is the purpose you want to use the gear for. A survival tomahawk meant to be primarily used for breaching and chopping needs to have a lot of features. It should also act as a good self-defense tool. Here are the parts of a tomahawk you need to consider when buying a survival tomahawk.

Handle Length

Most tomahawks range in length from about 8-20 inches. Once again, the intended usage will determine the size you should buy. A longer handle can provide you with better leverage when prying. Moreover, it also leads to increased force when swinging. However, such tomahawks are heavier and make less compact. On the other hand, a smaller handle enables effective usage in close quarters. It also leads to less weight and volume to the pack. Here are the most suitable applications for different types of handles:

Long Handle

  • Chopping trees
  • Splitting wood
  • Breaking locks
  • Opening doors
  • Forceful opening of various vehicles
  • Butchering large game
  • Prying
  • Piercing tough materials, such as sheet metal, kevlar, heavy plastic, wood and other such objects.

Short Handle

  • Close quarters self-defense
  • Long hikes
  • Precision chopping
  • Throwing
  • Butchering small game
  • Evacuating vehicles

Back Slide

The rear side of a survival tomahawk is called the butt or poll. Traditionally, it’s rounded or flat. However, modern tomahawks also come with a spike on the back. While choosing the backslide, you will once again have to consider the intended purpose. For instance, a bushcraft tomahawk will have a flat butt. It will allow hammering.

If you have been looking for a tactical tomahawk for the survival kit, you will have to choose a spiked back tomahawk for effective piercing. It’s worth mentioning that both a spike and a flat butt can effectively break the glass. Here are some uses for both types :

Flat Back

  • Pounding
  • Hammering
  • Defeating locks
  • Forcefully opening doors
  • Easier to deploy and carry

Spike

  • Prying
  • Piercing
  • Intimidation
  • Self Defense

Cutting Edge

There are many different options for the business end of a survival tomahawk. Just like other elements of choosing the best tomahawk of the survival kit, you will have to focus on intended usage.

Cutting Edge Length – A longer cutting edge will need a heavier and larger axe head. However, this additional edge length and weight will allow greater force when swinging the tomahawk. This will make chopping doors and splitting wood easier.

Most of the tactical tomahawks have circular cutouts in the cheeks. This saves weight without compromising the size. If you’re looking for a large cutting edge without additional weight, this may be the right choice.

The narrower cutting edge can pierce deeper with every strike. The primary reason is that a narrower cutting edge encounters less resistance. Due to this, a narrower cutting edge is better for piercing heavy duty materials and emergency vehicle extraction.

Beard and Spine Options

If you have been looking for a good tactical tomahawk for your survival kit, it’s worth mentioning that most modern tomahawks feature additional sharp edges. This can provide you with a major tactical advantage. It opens up more options for defense and attack when using the tomahawk. Most modern manufacturers have started including beard and spine options.

It’s quite clear that choosing the best tomahawk can be a complicated process. You will have to choose many different things. Just like other survival tools, the most important factor will be the purpose of the tomahawk. A survival tomahawk can be a good overall choice because of compact design and versatility.

However, if you want to focus on specialized tasks, such as extracting people from various vehicles, breaching doors or self defense, you should consider a specialized tool, like a tactical or breaching tomahawk.

How are tomahawks used today?

Tomahawks are used in a variety of ways nowadays. Tomahawk throwing is a popular sport in the midst of American historical re-performing groups, and new martial arts have embarked on tomahawk fighting techniques used during the colonial era. Tomahawks are also useful in bushcraft and camping scenarios. Modern tomahawks have other features such as spikes and hammers which are commonly used as an alternative to hatchets because they are usually slimmer and lighter than hatchets. They are used in:

Competitions – today there are hundreds of events and meetings that host tomahawk throwing sports. Throwing tomahawk is the commonly used of all the three tomahawks in these events. One such event is organized by the International Knife Throwers Hall of Fame.

Hunting – Native Americans still use tactical tomahawks in their hunting endeavors as well as more adventurous game hunters.

Military purposes – combat tomahawks are commonly used in war zones and in other general purposes within military functions.

Law Enforcement – some law enforcement agencies such as SWAT have embraced the use of tactical tomahawk. The need for a light tactical weapon has made the tactical organs to frequently use tomahawks.

New tomahawk fighting – not many systems in the world teach civilians fighting skills with a tomahawk or an axe but there a few however who use tactical tomahawks.

General purpose – tactical tomahawk is commonly used by civilians for cutting, chopping, splitting and many more general tasks.

Gilbert
I'm Gilbert, Founder of the Listoutdoor. As veteran online buyers ourselves, we realize that our experience will create value for readers time-wise and money-wise. This is why we build this site. Our team is trying best to present in every review a Well-Organized Buying Guide, a Clear Comparison Chart and Carefully Shortlisted Products with Concise Remarks, Pros & Cons brief. We do all the research for you and pay special attention to user experience and after-sales service.