What is the best wood for axe throwing targets?
- Cotton Wood
When building an axe target, it’s important to keep in mind that an axe is designed to chop wood! And how different woods react to an axe will determine how long an axe throwing target will last.
How soft or hard that wood is will also determine how easy it is to stick. Pine is a common choice since it’s easy to pick up at any hardware store. The problem is pine is not as “forgiving” as the softer woods like cotton wood. When the axe hits, it is more likely to splinter or split making for a need to replace boards more often.
Soft woods like cotton wood can last 3-7 times longer on axe throwing targets as they “heal” better… they are soft, forgiving, and tend to move back to shape to fill the gap when the axe is removed.
The ultimate solution to the best wood for axe throwing targets is using an End Grain target, as then you are not having to cut through fibers, but simply have the blade slide in between them. Just like above, cottonwood will last longer than pine, but just by making it end grain, any of the woods will last longer on a magnitude of 50x’s or more.
Keep in mind with end grain, even when a “block” wears out, you are changing out 1/49th of your target.. not 20%!