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Last updated: February 10, 2021
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A throwing axe, or better yet a throwing tomahawk, is an axe which has been designed for use as a close-range weapon; even sometimes a melee weapon. These axes can even be used to cut down trees, clearing brush, and cutting kindling, but mainly throwing tomahawks are used in sports. Many professional tomahawk throwers play against each other aiming down a range at a wooden target against the wall; typically, this sport can be found at places called Sport Axe Houses, but sometimes this game is just a local sport or even a local bar sport. But many still want to know, which axe makes the best throwing tomahawk?
The reason throwing tomahawks are becoming more and more popular isn’t just because of the competitive sports aspect, but also because axe throwing is something which takes a lot of skill, and throwing axes can improve personal aim, coordination, finger strength, among other things. Our review highlights all the important features of these axes such as length, weight, head and handle material, and even includes why these features are important and how they each change the usability of a throwing tomahawk.
In researching throwing tomahawks, we reached out too many players of the sport and asked them their preference for a throwing tomahawk and what brands they would suggest. We also reached out to the manufacturers of these tools. Our findings are organized below in an in-detail table showing our review of each product. A buying guide is included at the end.
This axe is our editor’s choice for this list for two reasons: first because it’s an excellent axe specifically for throwing, but also because it meets all the other qualifications for use as a regular axe out in the woods while chopping trees or kindling.
Every component of this blade is 100% US manufactured from the premium 1020 hardened Steel Head to the American Hickory handle. The axe features an HRC rating of 47-49, meaning its hard enough to hold a sharp edge for a lengthened amount of time, while also being the perfect hardness to keep the edge soft enough so that it doesn’t shatter on impact. Many axes not made for throwing are actually too hard at the edge and therefore they break instantly when thrown.
The blade itself is 3.75 inches long and comes pre sharpened right out of the box so that you can immediately start honing your throwing skills. For grip concerns this axe is 19 inches in length – this is important if you’ve ever thrown with a larger or smaller axe before – and its handle is not finished so as to offer better hand grip while throwing.
In fact, the handle was cut and turned along the grain, sanded, and then fire hardened so that it can be thrown expertly using one or even both hands.
If you’re a traditionalist you might not appreciate this throwing tomahawk with a rubberized nylon fiber handle, however what you need to know is that the handle has actually be scientifically designed to provide not only a great grip but a balanced weight which is ideal for throwing.
At the top of the shaft’s length is a 3.75-inch stainless steel blade which comes sharpened right out the box and balanced perfectly so that the weight of the blade pairs nicely with the length of the 14.5-inch handle. Purchase includes a protective 1680 D nylon sheath, and the kit even comes with instructions for perfecting your craft.
The stainless steel also contains more carbon, giving this axe an excellent hardness with an amazing edge retention; this is an essential addition which adds to the value of your axe, because many cheaper throwing tomahawks can lose their refined edge after just a day of throwing.
MTECH USA also offers one of the best 5-year warranties on the market which can’t be beat anywhere else, helping to prove that they believe their product is as high value as its price.
What we liked:
Grey Stone Blade with a Full Tang.
Comes with a 1680 D Nylon Sheath.
Fantastic 5-year limited Warranty.
What could be better:
This company has no listed HRC rating for their axe.
Not a traditional wooden design that many throwers prefer.
Southern Grind, Zac Brown’s Georgia-based knife company, offers unrivaled knife lines and unique metal works made by American hands using extremely high-quality and durable materials with an unapparelled attention to detail.
This single example of their craftsmanship is a skeletonized-style axe-blade with a highly dynamic shape which is balanced specifically for fast and acute throwing. Its balance is between a total body weight of 0.6 pounds (amazingly light) and 11.5 inches in length; coupled with this balance is an 8670 M Carbon steel handle and blade which features a .095 to .0105-inch thickness.
These dimensions make for an extremely thin knife-like throwing axe which arrives to your door with 4 blades and kydex sheaths for added protection. Throwing one of these beautiful axes is going to take a unique touch which is different from throwing any tomahawk, however the specific design lends itself to extremely fast throws with a high rate of accuracy.
The carbon steel blade features the finest edge and is sharp enough to meet its target and stick every time if thrown at the correct velocity. Truly one-of-a-kind, if you want to show up to a throwing match with a game-changer blade, this is a unique selection for putting your competition in their place.
What we liked:
Purchase comes with 4 refined blades.
Purchase includes a Kydex protective sheath.
Each blade features a skeletonized-style handle for advanced aerodynamic throwing.
What could be better:
Again, not your average wood-handled preferred design.
It will take retraining to learn how to throw this weapon.
There are different throwing models which include single sided – and as pictured here – double sided heads. These axes are very popular as the arch of your throw (even though it’s somewhat heavier) offers double the chance of hitting its target.
This particular double bit throwing axe is made with a 1065 carbon steel head, each side sporting a 3.5-inch length powder coated blade. The handle is also made from 1065 carbon steel but with a unique tan cord wrapping for advanced grip. Take for instance the last reviewed axe which is entirely made from carbon steel; this blade is harder to grip and therefore harder to throw.
With the addition of a cord wrap plenty of axmen find their aim and accuracy both improve. Included with purchase is a canvas double-bit sheath to protect both you and the blade at all times it isn’t in use. It’s a surprisingly light double axe at 1.6 pounds and pairs nicely with the throwing length of the 13.5-inch hilt.
For wood cutting, brush cleaning, or chopping kindling this is not the best dual-purpose axe; however, for the money this is a very professional axe for throwing purposes.
What we liked:
Double-bit throwing axe.
Very lightweight at only 1.6 pounds.
Includes an excellent double sheath made from durable canvas.
What could be better:
Lighter than most throwing axes and may throw off your aim the first few tries.
Our budget pick for this list, not only is this tomahawk very affordable, but it’s actually quite a professional throwing axe. The unique head is a tactical axe tool which features a flat edge for hammering and a spike opposite the mini axe head for piercing, making this a formidable chopping tool as well as a tactical hatchet.
It’s light yet very heavy-duty, making it a superb survival sport axe in addition to it being a practical choice for a survival hatchet. The head is shaped from 420 Stainless Steel with a 2-inch flat edge blade; the overall weight of the entire build is 1.2 pounds, with a length of 12.5 inches. Because of its superior length and lightweight build, this throwing tomahawk can be used as a mini tactical axe, chopping axe, camping axe and even backpacking axe.
It comes with a includes a ballistic nylon sheath that can be slung from your belt or gear, as well as a fantastic lifetime warranty. The F06-N Fast Hawk is a compact version of the F01T, it is coated in a scratch-resistant, black oxide coating for reduced reflectivity, and its known for its uncompromising style and performance.
What we liked:
Flat edge blade makes this capable for throwing as well as chopping.
Comes with a very durable nylon sheath.
Includes a lifetime value warranty.
What could be better:
Great axe for short distance throwing; at about 25 feet it loses its accuracy.
Sheath has a tendency to stick to the sharpness of the blade.
Things to Consider
The remainder of our guide is provided to educate the uneducated on the uses, purposes, safety measures, etcetera, which will assist in purchasing and using the best throwing tomahawk. In this section we’ve included descriptions for many different features, and even listed our own recommendations. Frequently asked questions and different nominations are listed at the end.
Choice variety: axe, tomahawk or hatchet?
Believe it or not, there are throwing varieties for all three of these tools, but that does not mean that each of these tools is the same. There are throwing axes, throwing tomahawks, and throwing hatchets; each weapon offers different perks and drawbacks, and there are clear differences between each of them.
A tomahawk can be distinguished by its relatively round eye, its ability to be hafted from the bottom with the axe handle typically sticking out through the head, and finally the handle which is longer and slightly more curved than the handle of an axe or hatchet. Due to these differences’ tomahawks are the easiest and typically best axes for throwing because their shape and momentum utilize friction to keep an axe head in place while its spinning.
Hatchets and axes can also be used for throwing, but their different designs will have different effects. A hatchet is shorter at the handle than both an axe and a tomahawk, its head is also typically shorter. For throwing purposes this makes a hatchet faster but less balanced. This means your strikes will be quicker and more accurate, but only at a close range. For far range throwing, the hatchet may not be the best tool.
An axe on the other hand is a long handled heavy tool with a thick head; very few people would ever use these for throwing. Typically, an axe is only used for cutting down trees and chopping logs, although there are some people out there who professionally throw these tools.
Tips for tomahawk throwers
First off, we recommend that rookies should start off with a dull tip. Why is this? Because if you hit yourself or someone else with it, the dull blade will cut wood but not a person; at first learning can be a somewhat dangerous activity.
Next, you’ll want to grip the axe like you’re shaking someone’s hand, that same exact grip you grab their hand with while keeping the axe straight down. Put simply, when your grip is straight the axe head will point down.
Then you’ll raise your hand up – the tomahawk’s head a little behind your ear – swing forward and throw.
The distance between you and your target should measure between 13 to 14 feet for the most accurate throw. Make sure the head of your axe is pointed at the target.
Again, bring the tomahawk straight back then straight forward and release. The hawk should then spin end over end until it sticks into the wood of your target.
A throwing axe does not have to be unaffordable to be good; typically, the best axes are between $90 to $130 dollars. The axes on our list have been rigorously reviewed to make sure the value of their materials and designs match up with the value of their price tag.
Features to consider while buying the perfect throwing tomahawk
Many of the following features you’ll find listed above with our product reviews. Below we have explained these features and their value to a throwing axe, as well as included some of our top nominations for a specific feature.
The tang of a tomahawk is, put simply, the point where the head connects to the handle. Many tomahawks feature a tang where the handle runs straight through the the head, but the best versions actually feature screws which hold the head to the handle. For instance, two great models with ideal tangs are the SOG FastHawk Throwing Tomahawk and the Condor Tool & Knife Throwing Axe.
The basics of balance are that the longer the handle, the slower your throw is going to be. This concept also applies to weight; the heavier the weight, the slower the throw. The ideal handle length is about 15 – 20 inches, where the ideal weight is around 1.5 pounds. These are the easiest axe measurements to start learning with for an easily balanced throw, and as you change the weight or the length it can make the learning curve much more difficult. On our list the top axes with an excellent balance are the BLADED Tomahawk Throwing Axe and the SOG FastHawk Throwing Tomahawk.
Handle and grip
As you take up tomahawk throwing you’ll find that a unique culture persists around using only axes with wooden handles. Wood material handles are, yes, the original designed tomahawk specifically for throwing and they offer a fantastic grip. The downside about these handles, however, is that they concentrate most of the weight on the head and often cause the head to break much sooner than it ever should have. Another factor worthy of note is that wooden handles are very inexpensive and keep the cost of your purchase low.
Rubberized handles have been becoming more popular, with the downside that these handles can actually become sticky and even brittle over time. What’s best when it comes to a rubberized handle is if the manufacturers have included a parachute cord, grip tape, or other wrapping specifically for a throwers hand placement. All metal handles are also becoming more popular, but like rubberized handles you need to make sure the tomahawk includes a grip at the base made from a different non-slip material. Just take a look at the binding on the Condor Tool & Knife Throwing Axe, that’s exactly the good quality base we’re talking about.
Head and materials
Different head shapes include a single head, double head, and even flat back and spike heads. Although there are even more unique shapes, these are the most common and they encompass the tomahawk heads listed in our review. For instance, the Condor Tool & Knife Throwing Axe offers a double bit, and in many ways, this can determine its uses and performance. This product is great for throwing because it has double the chance of hitting its target, it offers a better throwing balance and a better throwing arch, and it’s even stylish and fun to look at. The downside to different heads, like this double bit, is that they can’t be used for certain activities; in this case it’s log splitting and chopping kindling.
The material is also very important and should be made from either stainless steel or carbon steel. A soft edge is also preferred, and this is because axes with harder edges are actually more liable to shatter when they make contact with a target. For a truly great axe with a unique head made from strong steel, take a closer look at the BLADED Tomahawk Throwing Axe which is ideal for a wide range of activities and not just throwing.
It’s a good idea to have a leather sheath, not only because it will keep your axe sharp and protected from the elements, but also because leather isn’t easily cut while being fit on an axe, and then the axe itself won’t cut you. Other great sheaths include thick canvas and even nylon. All the axes on this list come with superior sheath guards to protect your axe from growing dull or picking up rust, and also to protect you from getting cut on your travels.
For the highest level of protection against manufacturing defects, make sure you choose an axe which comes with a superior warranty. For our review the best warrantied axe on this list is our budget pick with a lifetime limited warranty, the SOG FastHawk Throwing Tomahawk.
Axe throwing safety tips
Safety first! Always! Here are just the basic safety tips to keep in mind before throwing, during throwing, while throwing, and everything in between. First, always secure a perimeter between you and your target. This perimeter should encompass around 45 feet around the throwing area – we even suggest painting a distinct line or putting up flags – and then enforce the rule that while one person is throwing no one else is allowed to cross this perimeter. Some experts even suggest creating a secondary safety line of 10 feet behind the throwers.
If multiple targets are included in a perimetered space, ensure that each target is spaced at least 10 feet apart. So there isn’t as much moving or trading of axes, during a throwing rotation make sure that only one set of hawks is in use per target. If children or teenagers are throwing an adult must be there to supervise at all times; an adult who can drive to the hospital if needs be. Which brings us to another pro tip: always have a safety kit on hand.
Other somewhat obvious safety tips include storing the axes when they’re not in use and storing them out of reach of little children.
This is actually more of an age-related question than a strength related question. Different strengths needed vary based upon the axe being thrown and the distance of the target. Usually your strength changes and adapts as you learn how to handle the heft and balance of a particular axe. At age 12 most young adults can begin learning how to throw a tomahawk safely without necessarily being as strong as a full-grown adult.
This can be a matter of opinion, but again its also not a matter of strength or size. At age 12 and up the perfect throwing tomahawk is one which offers a handle from anywhere between 16 and 20 inches. At this length and with around a 2 pound or less total axe weight, it is easily possible to throw anything with the correct form and hit a target at a distance.
There is no need to complicate this one, most professionals take a saw an old tree stump into a large enough target space that axes can be thrown at it for different points. Some people build these targets out of plywood, but it’s our opinion that nothing beats the unbreaking thickness you can get out of sawing your own tree-ring target. For professional standard targets the cut should be 24 inches in diameter and have a sturdy mount (around a 4 x 6 backstop) affixing it to the wall. On the target itself you can paint pretty much the basic bullseye ring configuration for a truly enjoyable game.
For the best throwing tomahawk, among other products we review, we like to leave our readers with out final top three nominations. During out review these are the three products which stood out most to us and which should serve you well as you start throwing.
BLADED Tomahawk Throwing Axe. This axe features an unmatched balance and superior steel craftsmanship, its also a fine example of the traditional throwing tomahawk.
Mtech Throwing Tomahawk. Featuring a unique full tang this is the kind of throwing axe which offers dual services; it’s great for throwing at a target, but its also highly usable for chopping firewood and kindling.
SOG FastHawk Throwing Tomahawk. The budget pick for our list, nothing beats the affordability of this axe. Not to mention, it offers an amazing handle grip, great balance, and even a lifetime warranty.