27. Become an Expert Hatchet Thrower

Reader Poll: Party Tricks

Gransfors Bruks Throwing Axe     Photo: Courtesy of Gransfors

You can throw any old ax, but a double-bladed beauty like Gränsfors Bruks's Throwing Axe ($242; gransfors.us) is the way to go, according to Joel McCarty, executive director of the Timber Framers Guild, which occasionally holds ax-throwing competitions. Next: "Get a big, heavy target, usually the butt of a log three feet or more in diameter—six inches thick at the minimum—on a stand or easel rugged enough to take repeated blows. Plywood targets last a couple of minutes at most. Stand approximately 20 feet from the target. Square up with a two-handed, overhead grip, starting with the handle almost vertical, ax head down. Throw that baby toward the target with your shoulders. Do not snap the wrists too much. The ideal trajectory is a gentle arc. The ax will rotate a time or two and take quite a bit of leverage to dislodge from the target—assuming you hit it."

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