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SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)

Gareth · 29 · 1503

scotland Offline Gareth

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OK, having had a chance to play with this for a day or so I thought I'd share my initial impressions. 



So, for me anyway, this is going head to head with my Gransfors Bruks Small Forest Axe, a fantastic axe in it's own right.  As you can see the Bushman is around 80mm longer than the SFA and (less obviously) it's also about 100g heavier.



As most of the reviews point out the head is most definitely more geared towards splitting than many other "bushcraft" axes and it shows when you use it.  Instead of biting into the wood it immediately starts to wedge the wood apart and throwing it into two pieces.  I didn't have much in the way for knot free wood, but what I did have was extremely easy to split and the Bushman clearly had the upper hand over the SFA.  The slightly longer shaft plays it's part as well.  Even the knotty stuff came apart with a bit more work.

On the other hand when trying a bit of carving and chopping the thinner cheeks of SFA were clearly much easier to use and it also felt better balanced and nimble in the hand.  Not that the Bushman couldn't do the job mind you, it is very sharp right out of the box, but it's not as easy as it is with the SFA.



I need to try a bit of cross cutting and felling when I get the chance, but my thoughts are that it'll be less prone to sticking but not bite quite as deeply, time will tell.  No, it's not a cheap axe but given Wetterlings name will soon be a thing of the past I'm not sorry I got one.



« Last Edit: March 23, 2017, 01:21:56 PM by Gareth »
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scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #1 on: March 24, 2017, 10:08:47 AM
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


nz Offline zoidberg

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #2 on: March 24, 2017, 10:32:20 AM
(Image removed from quote.)

Lol, I was waiting for you to submit the badge request before I said anything.

The wetterlings handle looks cool.   :tu:


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #3 on: March 24, 2017, 12:50:05 PM
Yeah, sorry about that.  My only excuse is that I'm on my phone ATM and I hate copy and paste.
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nz Offline zoidberg

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #4 on: March 24, 2017, 01:07:19 PM
Yeah, sorry about that.  My only excuse is that I'm on my phone ATM and I hate copy and paste.

Totally understand and badge awarded.   :tu:   :tu:


nz Offline zoidberg

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #5 on: March 24, 2017, 01:08:43 PM
If I had to chose between the two, I would take the GB.   :like:   :gimme:


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #6 on: March 24, 2017, 03:12:20 PM
If I had to chose between the two, I would take the GB.   :like:   :gimme:

It's definitely a tough choice IMO.  Taking cost out for a minute I'd perhaps still favour the SFA as "do all" axe.  Factor in the fact the SFA is actually cheaper and if I was to only have one I'd almost certainly recommend the SFA.  However it's early days with the Bushman and the SFA is an old friend, so perhaps time and usage will change my mind.
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us Offline SteveC

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #7 on: March 24, 2017, 03:51:42 PM
Great comparison, they both look like solid axes  :tu:


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #8 on: March 24, 2017, 10:58:15 PM
Great comparison, they both look like solid axes  :tu:

Cheers Steve.  :cheers:
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gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #9 on: March 25, 2017, 08:45:36 AM

On the other hand when trying a bit of carving and chopping the thinner cheeks of SFA were clearly much easier to use and it also felt better balanced and nimble in the hand.  Not that the Bushman couldn't do the job mind you, it is very sharp right out of the box, but it's not as easy as it is with the SFA.


(Image removed from quote.)


Nice review, 
That is odd because it 'looks' like the Bushman would be the better axe, I guess there's no telling until you pick the thing up  :tu:
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hr Offline styx

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #10 on: March 25, 2017, 09:07:43 AM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors
Solving problems you didn't know you had in the most obscure way possible

"And now, it's time to hand this over to our tame race axe driver. Some say, he can live in the forest for six months at a time without food, and he knows of a secret tribe of only women where he is their God. All we know is, he's call the Styx!" - TazzieRob


wales Offline Smashie

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #11 on: March 25, 2017, 10:11:04 AM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors

Sparky or Ray Mears?  :pok:
“Strong minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, weak minds discuss people.” - Socrates
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us Offline Poncho65

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #12 on: March 25, 2017, 03:07:02 PM
Awesome comparison :dd: I have neither and would love both but the wallet say otherwise :facepalm: :D I thought the shape of the Bushman was suppose to make it good for carving :think: Maybe you got a bad one :whistle: I know you can send it to me and I shall test it to find out ::) :D

Great pics and when you have had a bit more time a follow up please :D


gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #13 on: March 25, 2017, 04:58:42 PM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors

Sparky or Ray Mears?  :pok:

Where's my hotel key gone?  :think:

 :whistle:
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wales Offline Smashie

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #14 on: March 25, 2017, 05:02:45 PM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors

Sparky or Ray Mears?  :pok:

Where's my hotel key gone?  :think:

 :whistle:

That's the other one
“Strong minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, weak minds discuss people.” - Socrates
"I'm not feeling very talky today, off you smurf". - Smashie
Complaining is mental preparation for failure.
Si vis pacem, para bellum


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #15 on: March 25, 2017, 08:04:54 PM
Thanks for all the comments folks. :salute:

Awesome comparison :dd: I have neither and would love both but the wallet say otherwise :facepalm: :D I thought the shape of the Bushman was suppose to make it good for carving :think: Maybe you got a bad one :whistle: I know you can send it to me and I shall test it to find out ::) :D

Great pics and when you have had a bit more time a follow up please :D

Don't get me wrong, it isn't at all bad at finer stuff, just not as good as the SFA.  The head shape allows you to choke up very nicely.  The issue for me is more that the fat cheeks limits the angle you can approach the work from compared to the SFA.  As you can see though it does have an excellent edge and certainly can produce a curl of wood.

choking up.JPG
* choking up.JPG (Filesize: 282.81 KB)
« Last Edit: March 25, 2017, 08:12:50 PM by Gareth »
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hr Offline styx

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #16 on: March 25, 2017, 08:47:30 PM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors

Sparky or Ray Mears?  :pok:

I thought Ray Mears was Sparky's cover identity like Clark Kent is to Superman
Solving problems you didn't know you had in the most obscure way possible

"And now, it's time to hand this over to our tame race axe driver. Some say, he can live in the forest for six months at a time without food, and he knows of a secret tribe of only women where he is their God. All we know is, he's call the Styx!" - TazzieRob


us Offline SteveC

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #17 on: March 25, 2017, 09:15:45 PM
How about a top view of both to show the difference  :pok:


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #18 on: March 25, 2017, 09:39:22 PM
How about a top view of both to show the difference  :pok:

will do. :)
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scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #19 on: March 26, 2017, 01:35:58 AM
Just for you Steve.  Also worth noting that the grain orientation is excellent.
DSC_0013.JPG
* DSC_0013.JPG (Filesize: 223.96 KB)
DSC_0015.JPG
* DSC_0015.JPG (Filesize: 198.28 KB)
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


us Offline Poncho65

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #20 on: March 26, 2017, 03:38:29 AM
Thanks for all the comments folks. :salute:

Awesome comparison :dd: I have neither and would love both but the wallet say otherwise :facepalm: :D I thought the shape of the Bushman was suppose to make it good for carving :think: Maybe you got a bad one :whistle: I know you can send it to me and I shall test it to find out ::) :D

Great pics and when you have had a bit more time a follow up please :D

Don't get me wrong, it isn't at all bad at finer stuff, just not as good as the SFA.  The head shape allows you to choke up very nicely.  The issue for me is more that the fat cheeks limits the angle you can approach the work from compared to the SFA.  As you can see though it does have an excellent edge and certainly can produce a curl of wood.

(Image removed from quote.)

Ah yes the angle would be a problem if you couldn't adjust it some :salute: Thanks for the reply :cheers:

The grain looks superb :o :like: :like:


gb Offline Sparky415

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #21 on: March 26, 2017, 09:10:26 AM
no idea how i missed this. that mind you reminded me of another British fellow that knows a thing or two about axes. and other things outdoors

Sparky or Ray Mears?  :pok:

I thought Ray Mears was Sparky's cover identity like Clark Kent is to Superman

I'm far too lazy to be Ray, I like to take petrol and matches when I go camping  :D

Great looking feather sticks Gareth  :salute:
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us Offline David

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #22 on: April 09, 2017, 09:17:40 AM
Great thread Gareth have enjoyed reading through it!      :tu:      :like:
What? Enablers! Are you serrrrious? Where? I dont see any.
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scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #23 on: April 09, 2017, 09:33:10 AM
Great thread Gareth have enjoyed reading through it!      :tu:      :like:

Cheers David. :salute:  I was having another little play with it last night as it happens and it really is a very pleasing axe to use.
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no Offline Grathr

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #24 on: April 09, 2017, 10:39:19 AM
Nice review! :tu:
I dont know how i missed this!

-Knívleysur maður er lívleysur maður.
 "A Knifeless man is a lifeless man" old Faroese proverb.


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #25 on: April 09, 2017, 11:05:31 AM
Nice review! :tu:
I dont know how i missed this!

Cheers mate. :cheers:  Did you ever get one?
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no Offline Grathr

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #26 on: April 09, 2017, 01:10:41 PM
Nice review! :tu:
I dont know how i missed this!

Cheers mate. :cheers:  Did you ever get one?

No I didnt.
Only got a refund :D
-Knívleysur maður er lívleysur maður.
 "A Knifeless man is a lifeless man" old Faroese proverb.


us Offline wonderwolf

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #27 on: June 06, 2017, 05:00:48 AM
Was stunned to see there would no longer be a Wetterlings brand....and you just cost me $165.....
"A good plan today is better than a perfect plan tomorrow" - The Edge


scotland Offline Gareth

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Re: SA Wetterlings Bushman by Les Stroud (badge request)
Reply #28 on: June 06, 2017, 08:49:19 AM
Was stunned to see there would no longer be a Wetterlings brand....and you just cost me $165.....

Don't blame me, blame...errr...someone else! :-[  I know it's a very pricey axe, but I'm not sorry I bought it and I hope you feel the same way.  In fact I don't think I've used anything else since I got mine. 
Be excellent to each other and always know where your towel is.


 

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