Bill Anderson wrote:[W]hat's that handy dandy tool in the second picture?
It's a very old billhook. I found it in an antique tool shop in England. It does much of the things you would expect from a hatchet and a draw knife. Of course it is great for copicing and hedge laying.
"Now he called his name Noah, saying, 'This one will give us rest from our work and from the toil of our hands arising from the ground which the Lord has cursed." -Genesis 5:29 (NASB)
It's much easier to use fresh (green) wood. Once it's more than a couple days old it gets much tougher to work. I'd think a hatchet should be a better tool than an axe for this project. There's a BB for sharpening an axe (or hatchet) that you could knock out first
"Hundreds of years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in or the type of car I drove... But the world may be different because I did something so bafflingly crazy that it becomes a tourist destination"
What Mike said! I made my mallet--albeit a small one that works well for my weak wrists and small hands--from fresh maple. It took a long time to do with my dull hatchet. Once we sharpened the hatchet, work went much faster.
Aged wood is also harder to carve. I made my spoon from aged, dry cherry wood, and it took a while! The one from fresh maple I made went much faster, even though it was 4 times as large.