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Ever wondered why the axemen start at different times? Or why they put nails in their logs?

Find out more about Woodchopping and get all the answers you need right here in our FAQ's

Can't find the answer to your question below? Please contact us! We would love to hear from you.

What are the different modalities of woodchopping?

The main modalities of woodchopping are; Standing Block, Underhand, Tree Pegging and cross cut sawing. There are other variations of each of these modalities but they are the 4 main modalities.

I saw a competition once where all the axemen started at the same time, I thought the sport was handicapped?

The sport is handicapped. Sometimes we have events where all axemen start on the same mark (the count of 3). This is called a championship event and shows you who the best of the best really is.

The axes look razor sharp and everyone wears volleys and sneakers! Surely they would be better off in steel cap shoes?

The axeman choose to wear sneakers (usually volleys) as these give the best grip and flex when cutting a log. For safety purposes some axemen wear chain mesh socks under their shoes for protection. 

Note: All junior axemen and novices are required to wear chainmesh socks or leggings. Axemen competing in the Stihl Timbersports are also required to wear chain mesh socks for safety purposes.

What kind of wood are they cutting?

In Western Australia our axemen generally cut Jarrah. The wood usually comes from land cleared for mining.

The logs are trasported to the club where they are cut to the correct length trimmed to size. The at the end of each competition/exhibition the wood is recycled into firewood.

Why do the axemen wear white pants?

GREAT QUESTION! Clearly the people who do the washing in the household didnt get a vote in this!

White pants were traditionally worn and the tradition has carried forward through the years.

Axemen competing in the Stihl Timbersports wear black trousers.

How can you get involved?

Anyone can become an axeman! In fact we encourage new people to come and give it a go and see if it's the right sport for you. Simply visit our contact us page and get in touch with the club. We can point you in the right direction.

Why do the axemen start at different times?

Woodchopping is a handicapped sport. Each axeman is allocated a handicap based on his ability and past performances during competitions.

The higher the handicap the more competitions the axeman has won.

The ring steward threw down a red rag/flag. What does that mean?

During a competition a ring steward may drop a red rag/flag in front of an axeman. This indicates that the axeman has been disqualified. Disqualification can happen for several reasons. Maybe the axeman started cutting before they were supposed to. Maybe they didn't cut all the way through their log or maybe they cut into their foot holes.

Why do the axemen put nails in their logs? 

You will often see axemen putting nails in their logs at a competition. Sometimes axemen may even use tap around the ends of the log. This is to hold the log together while they are cutting. In some cases a log can "slab", slabbing is when a large chip comes off the log and runs the entire length of the log. If this happens and the axeman's log slabs and they do not cut the slabbed piece, the axeman will be disqualified. A slab is classed as uncut wood because technically the axeman hasnt cut the wood out, its chipped out. Nailing and taping logs prevents slabbing from occuring.

The wood looks rich and fresh, is it green?

Yes it is, the wood the axemen cut in competitions is in fact green. The wood is cut and trimmed to size and then wrapped tightly in plastic wrap (similar to cling wrap) this keeps the moisture in the log and can keep the logs green for up to 18 months.

Where do you get the axes from? Can I get them Bunnings?

The axemen source their axes from a few different companies. Most of the axes you see come from a New Zealand company called Tuatahi. Axes cost anything from $400 upwards. So no... they are definitely not your average axe from Bunnings.

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