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Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod

us Offline The Warrior

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Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
on: October 21, 2011, 12:58:02 AM
Hey guys, first post here. Been lurking for a few days, decided to join.

Bought this Sub Zero some time ago, finally got around to modding it. I mostly followed this tutorial: http://oldjimbo.com/survival/vaughangrind.html

I ground the head down per the tut. Tried cold bluing the head, but it kept streaking on me, so I went another route. I soaked the head in apple cider vinegar for a few days, to darken/patina/etch it. You can actually see where the heat treat line is. Painted the handle black, and paracord wrapped it. Cool little hatchet, but I feel the eye socket is way too small. I always forget to take before pictures, but I did take one when I first got it:

You can see how small it is next to the BK2:



The mod:













Back in the cheapy sheath that came with it:



Back home in my Maxpedition Lunada Chinese rip off bag:



scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #1 on: October 21, 2011, 02:57:43 AM
Welcome to the forum Warrior, and a great first post. :cheers:  I do keep thinking about the little Vaughan as I like mini hatchets, but I've never gotten around to it.  Your mod-job looks excellent. :)
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


ca Offline Sean

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #2 on: October 21, 2011, 04:11:01 AM
That is a fantastic mod, looks super.  :tu:  I also like what you've done to the scales
of the BK.  Makes me kind of think of doing something to my BK7.
And...welcome aboard. :)


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #3 on: October 21, 2011, 04:36:33 AM
Thanks guys, much appreciated. The Sub Zero is a cool little hatchet. Made for small tasks, no doubt, but does surprisingly well for it's size. That was my second tiger stripe job. I also did one to my BK9 first. I'm an olive drab freak. I modded a CS Trail Hawk tomahawk I'll post soon. It turned out pretty sweet. I actually did it before the Sub Zero.


ca Offline Sean

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #4 on: October 21, 2011, 05:37:34 AM
That is an amazing thread over on blade forums with the CS trailhawk mods.  Last time
I had a look I think it was around 70 pages in length and growing.  I thought of doing
something with my CS hawks but once I had them in hand I pretty much knew I would
get more joy from throwing them, now they have that "put to use look!"


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #5 on: October 21, 2011, 05:41:48 AM
That is an awesome thread. I'm a member there.


us Offline David

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #6 on: October 21, 2011, 05:51:19 AM
Nice looking axe.    :tu:   I keep one of those in my pack at all times. Mine came with a thick edge so I`ve thinned it down alot. Now it chops much better than the factory edge.   :)
What? Enablers! Are you serrrrious? Where? I dont see any.
Hold Fast


gb Offline Mike, Lord of the Spammers!

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #7 on: October 21, 2011, 09:35:40 AM
Like Gareth I keep angling for one too :)

Fantastic looking mod mate, and welcome to the forum :tu:
Give in, buy several Farmer's!!!!!!


gb Offline AimlessWanderer

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #8 on: October 21, 2011, 09:47:47 AM
Nice work mate  :tu:

I've got one of those Mini Vaughans myself. Other than a bit of reprofiling (following Old Jimbo again, but to a lesser extent) I've not done a great deal to it. It's certainly a light duty item, but I've chopped through stuff up to 2" diameter with it quite a bit. Though light they can bite quite deep with a decent edge and a flick of the wrist. Eye socket might be small, but when you compare it to hammers that you would give a decent thump with it's not that bad really. Fine edge and "pecking" rather than "hacking" is the ticket I suppose


The cantankerous but occasionally useful member, formally known as 50ft-trad


gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #9 on: October 21, 2011, 11:54:19 AM
That's a nice looking hatchet now  :tu:
Everything’s adjustable


dk Offline AHB

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #10 on: October 21, 2011, 02:55:47 PM
That's a nice looking hatchet now  :tu:
+1  8) 8)


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #11 on: October 22, 2011, 12:18:55 AM
Thanks guys, much appreciated. I tried the hatchet out before thinning it out. Of course, I sharpened it first, as they come dull. They work okay after you sharpen them, but work way better after thinning them out. And oldjimbo is right, you have to grind the soft metal off to get to the good stuff.


us Offline J-sews

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #12 on: October 22, 2011, 04:22:26 AM
Great first post Warrior. :salute: Welcome :)
In order to be certain of having the right tool for every job.........one must first acquire a lot of tools


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #13 on: October 22, 2011, 03:44:58 PM
Thanks for the welcome, appreciated.


gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #14 on: October 22, 2011, 07:44:51 PM
Thanks guys, much appreciated. I tried the hatchet out before thinning it out. Of course, I sharpened it first, as they come dull. They work okay after you sharpen them, but work way better after thinning them out. And oldjimbo is right, you have to grind the soft metal off to get to the good stuff.

I am very surprised that there seems to be hard metal under the soft if anything I would have thought it was the other way around  :think:

but I am easily confused   :ahhh
Everything’s adjustable


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #15 on: October 22, 2011, 11:51:41 PM
Thanks guys, much appreciated. I tried the hatchet out before thinning it out. Of course, I sharpened it first, as they come dull. They work okay after you sharpen them, but work way better after thinning them out. And oldjimbo is right, you have to grind the soft metal off to get to the good stuff.

I am very surprised that there seems to be hard metal under the soft if anything I would have thought it was the other way around  :think:

but I am easily confused   :ahhh
I read that in the oldjimbo link on the OP. But, he's right. When I first sharpened it, that "outer" layer came right off. Not sure why myself.


gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #16 on: October 23, 2011, 09:31:50 AM
Thanks guys, much appreciated. I tried the hatchet out before thinning it out. Of course, I sharpened it first, as they come dull. They work okay after you sharpen them, but work way better after thinning them out. And oldjimbo is right, you have to grind the soft metal off to get to the good stuff.

I am very surprised that there seems to be hard metal under the soft if anything I would have thought it was the other way around  :think:

but I am easily confused   :ahhh
I read that in the oldjimbo link on the OP. But, he's right. When I first sharpened it, that "outer" layer came right off. Not sure why myself.

   :salute:     I'm still learning about hardening and tempering etc  :think:
Everything’s adjustable


us Offline The Warrior

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #17 on: October 23, 2011, 03:05:11 PM
Don't know much about it myself.


00 Offline Dtrain

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Re: Vaughan Sub Zero Mini Hatchet Mod
Reply #18 on: October 23, 2011, 03:25:06 PM
Maybe it has something to do with the stamping process or when they grind the first edge on.Maybe too long on the grinder and it hurts the temper a bit,but the thickness saves the Temper underneath
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