Hand Tools Archive
John in NM
Lignum is perfect for the heads, but I'd use something with more bending strength for the handles if they are to be used in earnest. Hickory is the easy one, as any old sledge or maul handle will provide the material. Or a new one from the hardware store would do, you can easily get three from a new sledge eye handle. I've busted more than my share of maul handles, I keep the broken ones for this kind of use.
White oak, beech, even maple probably good alternatives. Osage orange is overkill, but would be great if there is some available in your area and you have the time to dry it. I have to buy the stuff out here ($$$$) but it makes a fantastic ax handle.