My hands and jacket still smell of boiled linseed oil, which yesterday I spent a good amount of time working into my axe handle. While I was at it, I also applied it liberally to an old hickory hammer (which was either left in the garage when we moved in, or that my father-in-law gifted me from his infinite roaming storehouse of battered tools that he drives up and down the coast for work; at present I can’t remember which) and into the handle of the sledge that I procured at the same time as the axe (along with a 4-pound splitting wedge). After the handle had absorbed the oil, I wiped it with a cloth and ran it over the axe-head, whose blackness shined steely as a result.