What Is the Best Urban Survival Axe?

Determining what is the best urban survival axe requires pairing its characteristics to your specific survival gear requirements.

The best urban survival axes can be rated according to versatility, portability, and strength. For versatility, the Grid Tools OGT-SA100 Survival Axe Elite is superior. The NedFoss Camping Axe is unmatched for portability. For power and ease in handling, the Sparrow Double Tactical Axe is best.

This article will provide you with information on why each urban survival axe ranks best in its category.

While some applications may be a little tongue and cheek, we wanted to present some options outside of the norm.

We will also present each model’s downsides to help you determine for yourself what axe best suits your needs. So, read on!

Stay tuned, because we will be posting a follow-up to this article highlighting more practical applications from smaller options like the Council Tool Velvicut 1.25# Premium Hudson Bay Belt Hatchet up to larger options like the GRÄNSFORS Scandinavia Forest Axe.

Anyways, let’s get back to it.

For Versatility: Grid Tools OGT-SA100 Survival Axe Elite

In an urban environment, your survival gear needs to be as versatile as possible.

Combining multiple functions into a single tool saves space and enhances what you can accomplish.

The Grid Tools OGT-SA100 Survival Axe Elite is an excellent example of such versatility.


  • The blade is heat-treated for strength and durability
  • Re-sharpenable
  • Includes a hammerhead and claw
  • Made of carbon steel
  • Includes a glass breaker and seatbelt cutter
  • Weighs in at a very manageable 1.6 lbs (0.73 kgs)
  • Comes with a full lifetime warranty
  • The small form-factor is ideal for a bugout bag
  • Comes with a 6-inch (15 cm) saw blade
  • Serves as a hex socket wrench in the following sizes, 3/8, 7/16, 1/2, 9/16, 1/2, 3/8, 10mm, 11mm, 13mm, 15mm


  • Requires sharpening when first unboxed
  • Well-suited for urban environment tasks, not so much for heavier demands in rural settings
  • The plastic handle can cause gripping issues, especially when wet
Off Grid Tools Pro Survival Axe Elite - Black, All Steel, Ultimate Outdoor Multipurpose Tool, Made in USA, Hatchet Blade, Hammer Head & Claw, Changeable Saw, Steel Glass Breaker, Seat Belt Cutter
  • SURVIVAL AXE MULTITOOL: The OGT Survival Axe Elite is the ultimate outdoor multitool. With 30 features, the tool is ready for any situation, from chopping, clearing debris, demolition, pounding in and removing tent stakes, or repairing your deer stand.
  • ALL STEEL DESIGN: The build incorporates an all-steel full tang and axe head with an ultra-strong, lightweight glass filled nylon handle, a heat-treated hatchet blade that can be resharpened, and a hammer head and claw.
  • REPLACEABLE SAW BLADE: The inner changeable 6” bi-metal saw blade folds out of the handle, locks into place, and will saw through just about anything you need it to. The gas valve shut off wrench with integrated bottle opener saves the day in multiple ways.
  • COMPACT TOOL KIT: Only 11 inches long and weighs just over 1.5 pounds, the survival axe is large enough to do damage yet compact to fit in the glove box or small bag. The car escape tool at the base of the handle includes a seat belt cutter and window punch.
  • HIGH QUALITY PRODUCTS: Off Grid Tools brings the latest and greatest outdoor multipurpose tools that are functional, versatile, high quality, and innovative. Put survival in the palm of your hand during long adventures hiking, hunting, fishing, and camping.

Is the Grid Tools OGT-SA100 Survival Axe Elite Best for You?

If you live in a small space where storage space is at a premium, the OGT-SA100 provides a small form factor that will conform well to a survival pack that is smaller in size.

The fact that the axe is small and light makes it well-suited to be handled by people with limited arm or hand strength. It is ideal for easy storage in a home or vehicle.

The fact that this axe includes a glass breaker, hammer, saw blade, nail claw, and integrated hex socket wrench makes it superb to be kept as an urban survival axe inside your vehicle.

Ironically, the small form factor of the OGT-SA100 can become a liability if you intend to use the axe in rural environments.

Outdoor tasks, such as chopping bushes or trunks thicker than 4″ in diameter, would be difficult with this axe.

Essentially, the OGT-SA100 would be best for people who live in smaller urban apartments or who want a survival axe stored permanently inside their car.

It is best for those whose survival strategy doesn’t include rural environments or roughing it in the wilderness.

For those who are seeking the versatility of the OGT-SA100 but who would benefit from a heavier axe, the SE 3-in-1 Multi-Function Hatchet is a suitable substitute.

Equipped with a hatchet blade, a hammerhead, and a crowbar claw, it offers a decent amount of versatility with the added benefit of a heavier weight.

For Portability: NedFoss Camping Axe

While the Grid Tools OGT-SA100 Survival Axe Elite can be portable, its design focuses more on offering versatility.

For those who seek a portable axe with an excellent power-to-weight ratio, you need not look further than the NedFoss Camping Axe.


  • It weighs 15.2 oz (431 g). Light enough to carry on your person, strong enough for heavier tasks
  • Can be used to chop medium logs of 6 in (15 cm) in diameter
  • 9-inch (22.5 cm) overall length provides you with an excellently balanced tool when in your hand
  • 4.5-inch blade width combined with a 4.4 mm (0.17 in) thickness results in excellent edge retention and strength when chopping
  • Full tang design for reliability and durability


  • The wooden handle may upset those preferring a synthetic “no-slip” handle
  • Reflective properties of the stainless steel blade make it unsuitable for camouflaged or covert use
  • Comes with a nylon sheath as opposed to leather
NedFoss Warthog Camping Hatchet Axe, 9" Full Tang Small Axe Camp Hatchet with Leather Sheath, Survival Hatchet with Wood Handle, Tomahawk Axe for Outdoor Backpacking, Bushcraft, Hiking
  • HIGH QUALITY SHARP BLADE: This camping hatchet is designed with premium stainless steel heat treated blade, ensuring efficient and precise cutting. Whether you're chopping firewood for a campfire or clearing away debris on a hiking trail, this camp hatchet axe is designed to tackle any task with ease.
  • ERGONOMIC WOOD HANDLE: Our small hatchet axe is designed with precious natural wood and etched warthog handle, which is both ergonomic and aesthetic. This bushcraft hatchet provides balance and comfortable grip to use for camping and backpacking.
  • EXPERTLY DESIGNED AND CRAFTED: Designed with versatility and utility in mind, this survival hatchet axe lacks the power for full-on wood-splitting but is easier to control. Crafted from a single piece of steel and boasting a blade thickness of 5.0mm, this full tang hatchet is built to withstand even the toughest tasks. Its tough design ensures that survival axe won't easily break or dull, making camp axe a reliable and long-lasting tool for your outdoor adventures.
  • CUSTOM LEATHER SHEATH: Well-designed leather sheath can be worn comfortably on the hip or attached to a belt, providing protection, convenience, and safety. Stylish hand hatchet with sheath adds a touch of elegance and sophistication to your camping gear.
  • VERSATILE OUTDOOR HATCHET: With its exceptional build quality and attention to detail, NedFoss Warthog hatchet is sure to exceed your expectations and become an essential part of your backpacking gear. Our sturdy tomahawk axes and hatchets are ideal birthday gifts, fathers day gifts, Christmas gifts for outdoorsy folk, avid backpacker, professional hiker, dedicated camper or seasoned woodsman.

Is the NedFoss Camping Axe Best for You?

If you are looking for a strong, full tang, portable axe, the NedFoss camping axe passes the test with flying colors.

It is well-suited for urban tasks, such as breaking down or chopping through doors and walls.

It can handle chopping down medium-sized logs easily for firewood or shelter in the outdoors.

It is a well-balanced axe that is very strong for its size. It can easily be carried on a belt or safely stored as part of a survival kit.

It will even fit in a small bug-out bag. It is easy to handle for both the novice city-dweller and the experienced survivalist.

The NedFoss Camping Axe provides you with robust durability and strength in application in a portable form factor.

For Strength: Sparrow Double Tactical Axe

Versatility and portability are important attributes to have in a survival axe in an urban setting.

However, even with the two previous examples cited above, the tradeoff for portability and versatility means sacrificing strength. 

For those who want an urban survival axe that doesn’t sacrifice power—one that delivers a powerful chopping force and that also remains easy enough to handle for slicing and carving—the Sparrow Double Tactical Axe fits the bill.


  • Has a black-oxide finish that is rust-resistant and deflects light
  • Double-edged blade
  • Military-grade sheath
  • 22.5 in (57.2 cm) in length
  • 1.85 lb (0.84 kg) weight makes it light and easy to carry for its size
  • The fiberglass handle comes with finger grooves to make it easier on the hands


  • The handle is smooth and requires the addition of textured tape to ensure a solid grip in all weather conditions
  • Does not incorporate a full tang construction
  • The sheath can be cumbersome to place and remove on the double-headed axe
  • Too large to be included as part of a bug-out bag
Sheffield 12179 Side Winder Double Tactical Axe with Sheath | 3.5" Dual Edge Cutting Blade | 14.5" Nylon Fiberglass Handle | Great Camping and Survival Axe for Chopping Wood, Self Defense & More
  • TWICE the Tactical Hatchet: Double Edged 420 SS Blade w/ Black Oxide Finish resists rust, deflects light and cleans easy
  • BOLT REINFORCED 14.5" Nylon Fiberglass handle features finger grooves for comfort.
  • MILITARY GRADE 1680D sheath + lanyard hole keeps the Sidewinder secure and gives you a variety of carry options.
  • LENGTH: 22.5" HEFT: 1.85 LB.
  • The perfect accessory for your camp site, take the Sidewinder along for chopping, cutting, splitting and more; Not rated for throwing.

Is the Sparrow Double Tactical Axe Best for You?

If you are looking for an urban survival axe that is large and strong enough to perform chopping, slicing, scraping, and personal defense (let’s hope not) duties— the Sparrow Double Tactical Axe is the survival axe that meets all of those requirements.

Having a double head allows you always to be ready with a sharpened blade.

Long enough to allow you to take full swings at what you are chopping, yet light enough to allow for single-hand precision tasks—such as carving and slicing—the Sparrow Double Tactical Axe makes for a wise addition to a larger survival kit.

For people who are not comfortable with handling a larger-sized axe, or whose survival contingencies don’t call for tackling rustic environments, the Sparrow might be overkill. For those people, the aforementioned NedFoss camping Axe would be a better fit.


Determining what is the best option for a tool as essential as a survival axe requires taking into account the person who will be using it and the axe’s characteristics in terms of versatility, portability, and ease in handling.

The three axe models highlighted above deserve the moniker of the “best urban survival axe” based on the listed criteria.

However, achieving a universally accepted superlative status for any single axe model may not be possible.

It is too much of a subjective choice. That said, these three models are an excellent starting point.

Cody Martin

With over 18 years of federal law enforcement, training, and physical security experience, Cody focuses his time nowadays on both consulting and training. He regularly advises individuals, groups, multinational corporations, schools, houses of worship, and NGOs on security threats while conducting customized training as needed.

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