Hammer buying guide
Joan, Young art-school graduate, Cardiff4 guides
Landing a solid blow feels good, but it takes the right hammer. It’s one of mankind’s oldest tools but we now benefit from modern advancements. From the mallet to the sledgehammer, discover the art of the blow and the hammer.
What is a hammer?
Which type of hammer do I need?
- Carpenter’s hammer: The most common and most popular. Whether it is used to sink a nail or just to accompany you on a construction site, everyone knows it. With a steel head and moderate handle length, these hammers can sink nails of any size and are equally suited to cabinetry, carpentry, and construction.
- Clawhammer: On the heads of these hammers, opposite the striking surface, is a slotted flat or claw that is used for removing nails. It is also called an American hammer.
- Electrician’s hammer: It has an elongated head with a similar shape to a Carpenter’s hammer. Its smaller size makes it easier to manoeuvre in the tight spaces common in electrical work.
- Glazier hammer: Useful for working with glass. The flat impact surface can be placed along fragile glass surfaces while sinking a nail. These hammers usually include a claw opposite the impact surface for removing nails.
- Roofing hammer: Essential for laying shingles and other roofing materials. The head of these hammers is offset to help to hold and tape shingles and roofing tiles into place.
- Riveting hammer: It has a thick head and a rounded impact surface that leaves no mark if used properly. The end opposite the impact surface is triangular with a rounded end.
When to use a mallet
Sledgehammers: heavy and powerful tools
What about the sleeves?
- Bi-material: Combines flexibility and strength and are robust while offering a good amount of comfort.
- Tri-material: These are uncommon but have very high quality. They combine robustness, comfort, and safety with their unbreakable head. They are commonly made of fibreglass, polypropylene, and elastomer.
- Plastic: Stronger than wooden handles but not usually as comfortable as they don’t absorb shock as well as other materials.
- Wood: Hardwoods, usually hickory or ash, absorb vibrations well. They are comfortable but require some attention to extend their lifetime. Regular cleaning and oiling, especially where the handle secures the head of the hammer will help to avoid unnecessary splitting, slippage, or wear.
What about the heads?
One last tip
For DIY enthusiasts interested in knowing how to choose the accessories related to hammers, follow the advice of our editors and discover their Guides:
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- How to choose a hammer stripper
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- How to make a drawer
- How to choose hinges
- How to choose an entrance door
- How to do roof maintenance
- How to build a garden shed
- How to maintain your garden shed
And to work safely:
Joan, Young art-school graduate, Cardiff 4 guides écrits
I realize many of my works, fed by my taste and my passion for DIY, might be called “made up.
My projects are born from reflections (more-or-less logical to others but they always make sense to me.) This process has culminated in the realization of a mobile greenhouse so I can walk my plants, an effervescent aspirin, a dispenser built from canned foods.
I consider DIY to be a way of moving at your own pace. We live in a world where the uncomfortable idea remains that our failings often teach us more than the projects themselves would. My wisdom is useful to me, whether it’s re-machine screws, reel a reel from camera springs, or using a torch.
I am delighted to use my experience and finally be able to share it.