What is an adze?

 
     
     
 Shop for Adzes 
     
     
 Image of an adze, a tool made of a sharpened metal head attached to a metal handle that is used for shaping wood 

An adze (also known as an adz) is a sharpened piece of metal attached to a handle that is mainly used for shaping, smoothing or carving wood.

 

Buy Carpenters Adze & Handle

 
     
 Image of a woodworker using an adze to hollow out a bowl 

It is a versatile tool that has many uses, including hollowing out chair seats, bowls, troughs and canoes...

 
     
 Image of a carpenter debarking a tree trunk using an adze 

...flattening the surface of logs to make them into wooden beams...

 
     
 Image of a sculptor carving a totem pole from wood using a selection of adzes 

...sculpting, carving and bending wood...

 
     
 Image of the Polynesian god of trees, Tane, who the Polynesians believed first taught them how to bind a sharpened stone onto a wooden branch to make an adze 

...and gaining favour with the Polynesian god of trees.

 
     
   Wonkee Donkee explains how adzes are related to the Polynesian god of trees 
     
   

Adze attachments

 
 Image of an ice axe showing the location of the adze head attachment 

Adze heads also appear as attachments on other tools.

 

On ice axes, they are used for creating steps in snow-covered slopes and digging trenches and seats in snow.

 
     
 Image of a DIYer using the adze head on a mattock to dig their garden 

Adze heads on mattocks are used for digging or hoeing.

 
     
 Image of a halligan bar adze and spike attachment, used by the US fire service 

Adze heads also appear on Halligan bars, which are tools frequently used by firemen in the United States when they need to prise open locked doors.

 
     
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