Their primary tool for cutting was the stone adze (adz). The adze was used for cutting trees, shaping canoes, to carve idols, shape calabash bowls and cut up plants. The Bishop Museum has adzes in their collection from almost two feet down to an inch.

There was plenty of dense basalt for making adzes on these volcanic islands. The finest were made at the large-scale auna Kea quarry on the Island of Hawaii, which had a permanent crew ofworkers. Mauna Kea black adzes are among the most prized. Their cutting edge could be razor sharp.

The Hawaiian Adze is unique among Pacific cultures and is called a hafted adze. The adze would be fastened to a special handle that would enable the user to swing it in a cutting motion. Sometimes the adze would be fastened at the end of a stick and used like a chisel. Other adze made like chisels and hit with a stone.

This is a section of papers on Kauai adzes.

Kauakahi Quarry

Kaua'i Adzes