I have a customer who has beat the absolute crap out of his 18" War Chief. Here's what he said:
"What a performer!! This thing took everything we dished at it for over an hour and came out intact and meaner than hell. It chewed through various parts of a Chevy Silverado 1500 door. A heavy, thick ceramic kitchen sink. A padlock. Concrete blocks and bricks. Wood. Pig/cow bones purchased for dog chews. I can't even remember what else. The only thing that slowed it down, and chipped it, was taking on 1/4 thick steel hinges on that door. Had we kept at it, the hawk would have won. I am blown away and so happy with the construction of this hawk, James. It is built do everything I wanted it to do, and testing it out first hand was such a pleasure.
I got her sharpened back up, and I love the look of a new grind to the blade and tons of war scars."
And the pictures he took:
I asked him about what seemed to damage the spike and he said:
"I believe there was a section of the truck door that had thicker steel tubing running below the exterior sheet of steel that chipped off the tip of the beard and flattened the spike out a bit. The ceramic sink may have aided in that too- I can't remember- all I remember is that it was early on and then very little else affected the hawk after that :).
I took it to a shop here in town and had it professionally sharpened. "
More recently, " I'm still using it to clear out some of this shower floor, which is a weird concrete-mixture- It's this light brown/pink layer of "stuff" that held 100s of small stones in place- it's hard, but when struck crumbles and chips and everything. The hawk has been taking 1000s of direct blows into that as well as a lot of hits into these rocks." He finally did enough damage to the spike that he took it back to the same shop and had them reshape the spike.
He's still quite happy with it and looking at buying another 'hawk from me.
This is the most abuse I know of one of my 'hawks taking, and I'm morbidly pleased with the outcome. Though built for wood chopping, it withstood far more rigorous cutting without any kind of catastrophic failure and was able to be brought back to a working edge without major reshaping. The spike, a sharply pointed weapon, took damage from the abuse without snapping off and remained functional through it.
That's not a bad new shape to it, either, and would still knock a pretty good hole in a bad guy's skull. :D