Having a bug out bag or survival kit with you is one of the best things you can do to be prepared for any unforeseeable circumstance. Even when you go camping or for any outdoor activity in the wild, having a survival kit with you is essential. Aside from including medical supplies, tools like knives, flashlights, cords, and dry food, having the best tomahawk in the bag can also prove to be beneficial. Like many other survival tools, the tomahawk has also evolved rapidly to cater to the changing needs of modern times. There are various kinds of tomahawks and it is one of the most multipurpose items to include in your survival kit. In this article, we share some tips you need to consider when buying one, plus the best tactical tomahawk available in the market.
Best Tactical Tomahawk Reviews 2018
In the following article, we present the best tactical tomahawks of 2018 and reveal their pros and cons. We also explain how to find the right model for your needs, and how to decide which one is better for you.
The SOG FastHawk F06TN-CP is the smallest of a long line of tactical tomahawks which derive from the famous Vietnam Tomahawk. It is lightweight but has the same strength and resistance its brothers have. It is perfect to cut firewood, to take down trees and even to clear a path or space to install your tent in. The blade is so sharp that you could probably use it to skin a deer or filet your fish. The axe blade is two inches across and is made out of 420 heat treated stainless steel, very strong material which will last forever if you use and care for it properly.
The SOG Tactical Tomahawk was designed to be used more like a machete in the jungle than a standard hatchet, but it does surprisingly well on the trail and at camp due to the swooping shape of the head and the integrated hammer and pick. The fiberglass handle is a great choice in materials as it absorbs shock instead of sending it into your hands and arms.
SOG even went as far as to wrap the neck in a metal band—something you might find on a splitting maul—in a successful attempt to prolong the life of the hatchet.
What Do We Like About It
- The head’s side can be used as a hammer. The impact surface is checkered, so you can use it to hit the same surface or object without slipping.
- Weighing only 24 ounces, this tomahawk is light. The weight and the ergonomic design will allow you to use the tomahawk for a long time without tiring.
- Designed to be used more like a machete in the jungle than a standard hatchet, but it does surprisingly well on the trail and at camp due to the swooping shape of the head and the integrated hammer and pick.
- The fiberglass handle is great choice in materials as it absorbs shock instead of sending it into your hands and arms.
Browning’s Tomahawk is what every tactical Tomahawk aspires to be. The Black Label tool makes short work of small jobs while being the perfect accessory for handling the tough stuff. The most discriminating critics have nothing but praise for Browning’s perfect creation. The stainless steel solid one-piece construction is designed with the ideal curve on its penetration spike. Browning has taken the tactical tomahawk to its natural extreme by creating a black powder coated sword-grade blade that is forged from 1055 carbon steel.
This gives the blade the ability to hack its way through sheet metal with ease. A must-have tool, the blade and penetration spike could allow the user to hack into or out of a car in an emergency. At just 1.8 pounds (2.2 with the sheath), the tomahawk works as if it weighs many times more.
Tomahawk enthusiasts experience their own shock and awe when handling Browning’s Black Label tactical tool. The price point also makes this tomahawk knife a fierce competitor amongst other tomahawks that can cost nearly 4 times the price.
What Do We Like About It
- This intimidating tactical tomahawk offers a black powder coated sword-grade blade.
- The curved penetration spike puts a serious hole in hardened targets.
- The unique Black Label Tactical Blades logo adorns the side of the blade. Its one-piece handle with spiked pommel is hand-wrapped with black nylon paracord and has a generously-sized lanyard hole.
- The Blade-Tech molded polymer sheath with Tek-Lok belt clip easily adjusts for carry angle and belt loop width.
The total length of the cutting blade is 4.37 inches and also features a handy spike end opposite the blade. This can offer itself up for a variety of uses. The weapon is 19.13 inches in overall length. From the standpoint of durability, the USA made the hickory handle is lacquered to stand up to the tough world and tough use. This Survival Tomahawk comes with a leather sheath to protect the beautiful blade when not in use.
The description of this tomahawk by Columbia River and Tool mention its ability to split wood “like a beaver.” This tomahawk was reviewed incredibly well by those who purchased it. People have used this thing for everything! They take it camping, cut wood with it, keep it in the truck for self-defense, they even throw this thing at targets.
What Do We Like About It
- For a beautifully designed and light-weight field hatchet, look no further than the Columbia River Johnson Chogan T-Hawk.
- The CRKT T-Hawk is shaped from a single piece of high-grade SK5 carbon steel with a black powder-coat for added resistance.
- Also features glass-filled nylon handle scales for additional grip, and includes a black Kydex sheath with M.O.L.L.E. clips and lashing grommets.
From the moment you lay your eyes on it, it is evident that the Gerber Downrange Tomahawk has one purpose, and one purpose only—destruction! Sure, you can take this tool camping and use it to chop firewood and drive tent stakes, but it would be like using a tank to drive your date to the prom. This tool is made for breaching—designed to remove unwanted doors form walls and unwanted walls from doors.
The Downrange Tomahawk (DRT) has a three-purpose axe head designed to pack the most function into this breaching tool: A beveled edge for chopping through drywall, doors, vehicle skins, rope, etc.; a hammerhead for busting locks, door knobs, hinges, and the like; and a cutaway grip for controlling the pry bar end.
Measuring at 19.27 inches, the Downrange Tomahawk is one of the larger “tactical” tomahawks on the market. While this makes it a little more cumbersome to pack around, it definitely adds to its leveraging capabilities when used as a pry bar.
What Do We Like About It
- With the exception of the welded on hammerhead, the DRT is made from a solid piece of 420HC steel and finished with a black Cerakote coating.
- The DRT has integrated tan G10 handle scales that contour with the jimping on the upper and lower portions of the handle.
- The DRT is made packable through a MOLLE-compatible sheath system that incorporates a molded pry bar sleeve attached to nylon webbing.
- There is a separate portion of the sheath system that covers the tomahawk’s head.
- The head cover slides over the head and secures in place with a snapping nylon strap.
If you’re looking for a small tomahawk you can carry anywhere without too much effort, you should take a closer look at the Black Label model produced by Browning. This tomahawk weighs slightly over 2 pounds, so you will be able to put it in your backpack and carry it around.
The Tomahawk comes with an axe head and spike configuration that will allow you to do most of the chores around a campsite. You can use the axe head to chop down branches and prepare shavings for the fire. You can use the spike to splinter logs or put holes in trees to anchor your hammock.
What Do We Like About It
- The end of the handle is angled, so it can be used as an emergency glass breaker. This will allow you to avoid being trapped in an emergency situation
- This tomahawk is compact, so it won’t take up too much space.
- The Tomahawk comes with a Molle compatible sheath that can attach to your other professional gear.
What Can You Use A Tomahawk Axe For?
Given the vast utility of a survival tomahawk, it is a tool that any serious prepper should be looking at. A survival tomahawk is one of the best multipurpose items you can have with you and can effectively carry out a great many tasks including:
- Chopping wood
- Kinetic building entry
- Glass breaking
- Vehicle rescue
- Piercing/cutting sheet metal
- The opening of metal, wood, and plastic containers
Few survival tools can offer as many practical uses in such a compact, simple package. One can see why a survival tomahawk is a favorite tool for hunters, police, firefighters, park rangers, farmers, and servicemen.
Best Tactical Tomahawk Axe Buying Guide
You cannot buy the best model if you do not know the various parts of a tomahawk. The cutting edge is called the bit/beak. The mid-section attached to the handle is called the poll. The section between the poll and the bit is referred to as the head. The side section of the bit is referred to as the cheek, while the upper part of the bit is the spine. The shape of the extension on the poll is what differentiates the various types of tomahawks. You can have different types of poll extension; the most popular ones are spike and hammer.
2. Types Of Hawks
The spiked hatchet was designed to bear a resemblance to a late eighteenth-century axe. The most common types have a 2¾ inches cutting edge and a head, plus spike width of 8½ inches. Most pieces have a handle that measures roughly 20 inches. The most ancient spiked tomahawks have spikes and blades that are curved marginally downward. In the eighteenth century, the amount of curvature along with the length of the spike defines the probable age of the hatchet. Therefore, more curved, as well as a longer tomahawk, means they are older.
Spiked hawks have an extended sharp section that prolongs from the poll. They are just the perfect weapons for hawk throwing, hunting, chopping, cutting, and surviving a zombie apocalypse.
The most recommended spiked hawk should have a sharpened spike on both edges. However, not all models are perfectly designed. Therefore, you have to ensure that the piece you are buying has quality construction, durable, precise, and lightweight.
A hammer poll tomahawk has a hammer-shaped end that extends from the poll. This piece has been an important part of survivalist’s equipage for use both as a weapon and a utilitarian tool. These kinds of hawks are unique in design and usage.
The most common model has a steel head of 6 inches with a nice sweeping curve to the base of the blade. As far as hawk throwing is concerned, hammer polls are more convenient when compared to spiked hawks. The design of hammer tomahawks evolved from the ancient hatchet, making them more convenient.
The history of pipe hawks extends back to the first half of the eighteenth century. The pipe hawk frequently uses a tapered handle fitted with a leather washer at the expanded top, which forms an airtight connection between the handle and the metal pipe bowl. The handles of these hawks were initially drilled from end to end, which made it easier for them to break.
The best model utilizes drop through handles, allowing for easy replacement. The simplicity of pipe hawks is entirely dependent on the pipe design and the head.
3. Head Material
This is one of the most important considerations that you must make. You cannot just pick any hawk; you need to pick one with the most reliable head material.
Cold steel provides you with a high-quality surface, and the edge is generally held to close tolerance. This is one of the most commonly used steel. During manufacture, the steel is rolled while it is cold instead of hot. Cold rolling produces much stronger steel with tighter dimensional tolerance than hot steel. Cold rolled steel has a nice clean appearance.
This material is clear as well as free from scale distortion. It is strong, and you can easily work on and it is highly receptive to most types of sharpening. Steel that has been cold rolled is less ductile than hot rolled steel. Generally, cold steel tends to be stronger than hot steel.
High carbon steel has a carbon content of 0.5 to 0.9%. This type of steel is much more difficult to weld. The high carbon content causes the heat affected zone to transform to very hard as well as brittle martensite. The hardness levels, as well as the metal wear resistance of this material, are highly rated. High carbon is preferred by most manufacturers of cutting tools.
The very first design feature that you must consider is weight. Depending on the type of outdoor activity or survival situation you wish to use your hawk for, you need to be able to carry it around comfortably. The weight should range between 2 and 5 pounds. Choose a model with a well-constructed blade that should provide you with a wide edge for immense chopping, cutting, and slashing.
Tomahawks usually come with a utility edge that may be useful for chopping wood or breaking the glass but barely enough for self-defense. In that case, you have two options: either buy a tomahawk with an edge that’s sharp enough or use a whetstone to sharpen the edge of the existing tomahawk. Whichever you prefer, remember that an edge that isn’t sharp enough will not suffice for self-defense purposes.
Before using your newly purchased tomahawk, you must practice getting your aim right. The best way to practice hitting a target is to use it on a space car tire. Tie it to a tree or hang it from somewhere high up, and then practice hitting it to get your aim right.
Adding a tactical tomahawk to your survival arsenal is no different than piecing together the right hunting accessories like laser rangefinders or two-way radios for your next hunting trip. A hatchet or an axe may be a better all-around tool to take camping. With that being said, a tactical tomahawk is still an excellent survival tool that can be used in a variety of methods. It’s something that you can take with you on your next hunting trip while out hunting deer with your crossbow, compound bow or recurve bow, yet still be effective enough in the most dire survival circumstances. Our list here isn’t all inclusive but it’s a good representation of some of the best tactical tomahawk on the market today.
SOG Tactical Tomahawk
Browning Tomahawk Knife
Columbia River Tomahawk
Gerber Downrange Tomahawk
Browning Black Label Tomahawk
A survival tomahawk is an extremely versatile and useful tool in any kit. Here we showed you how to choose the best tactical tomahawk for YOUR survival needs.