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Steve Beck

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I have two old round head lignum vitae mallets which I have used for years. Thinking about making a square type headed mallet. Open to ideas and photos of your favorite mallet.
 

Ttrees

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I like this one for light work, made from mock orange
SAM_3724.JPG


This one for medium jobs, probably where the mallet you are thinking of making
would be best.
It's ok I suppose
SAM_3735.JPG


But my favourite is this Thor one, which is the plug thumper
Great yoke altogether
SAM_3346.JPG


Tom
 

TheUnicorn

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I was given a load of 18mm ply scraps a while ago, just for the hell of it I made a few mallets from it, obviously ply is not ideal for an edge on impact, that said they cost me nothing and have had a good bit of use. My favourite of the ones I made had a short handle and a heavy curved head, so in use you don't have to swing it hard to get a good clout, all the swing is from the wrist, so good for chisel work. I think I based it on this youtube video, though mine has a shorter handle

I think the key is to get the shape of the head right so that you are hitting the chisel as close to 90 degrees as possible so as not to skew the strike
 
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Jameshow

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I've made a couple of 18mm pine mallets work just fine.

I've also made a bigger one out of sapele or simalar. I don't tend to you it much.

Cheers James
 

GCM

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I made this one (actually, I made a few in different sizes!)
Made from scraps - oak and an unidentified heavy dense wood...
I weighted it with molten lead (used solder from my stained glass projects) which give it a nice solid weight.
509E77A5-98F0-42ED-AEAC-795426DDCAC7.jpeg
 
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IWW

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For donkey's years I used a round "carver's" style mallet for dovetailing & mortising & was perfectly happy with them. Then for no particular reason, I made myself a "square" mallet with a head that weighed around 450g (close enough to a pound in old money). After a bit, that became my go-to mallet for D/Ts & mortising, & now I find round mallets less desirable; I can direct the blows more precisely & sharply with the hammer type. But it's what you like & what you get used to, I cannot see an overall advantage in either. I advise experimenting with different sizes/weights of head to see what suits you best. That's easily said for me, living in a land with abundant scrap hardwood with densities around 1.0, which gives you a hefty, but compact mallet. (Also makes it easy to calculate a rough weight for a given set of dimensions).

I do like a decent handle with an oval hand-grip to help feel where the thing is going. I can't be bothered faffing with off-centre turning so I turn my handles from a blank with a rectangular cross-section, then work it oval with rasp, scraper & sandpaper. It's actually quicker than mucking about changing drive-axes. Pr.jpg

I've got all sorts of sizes, for all sorts of jobs & because it's easy to replace a head or make a new mallet, I'm not too careful with some of them - they get treated as "consumables". This one has had a bit of a tough time & about to get a head transplant: Old mallet.jpg

I've tried different angles on the faces, & settled on about 5* as suiting me, but mileages vary on that score.

Mallets are pretty easy to cobble up, whether you chop out the handle hole or laminate the head, so make yourself a couple & see how you like them. They may grow on you or you may go back to your round jobs - whatever works for you!
:)
Cheers,
 

Phil Pascoe

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My four. Two round lignum, one with an ash handle one with a hornbeam one. Two rectangular, one beech from a large bench leg offcut and a small one very heavy (sinks in water) ygiagam, both with ash handles.
 

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D_W

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all round mallets for me - nothing of the flat faced type. One of verawood for heavy work (ouch, my ears) and a couple of urethane headed round ones.

The rectangular type are so quick to make that you should just make one fast and then see what you don't like about it and correct it on the second one, or trim/change the first.
 

Steve Beck

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all round mallets for me - nothing of the flat faced type. One of verawood for heavy work (ouch, my ears) and a couple of urethane headed round ones.

The rectangular type are so quick to make that you should just make one fast and then see what you don't like about it and correct it on the second one, or trim/change the first.
Thanks for your comment, I think you have a good approach, maybe make one this weekend.
 

TRITON

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I've always fancied making one of those gigantic mallets they used in circuses and the like to bash in big marquee pegs. 5' handle and a sectional head at least 8" in diameter wrapped with brass or leather strips. :D
 

Brill88

Tom Brill general woodworker and woodsman
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I've always fancied making one of those gigantic mallets they used in circuses and the like to bash in big marquee pegs. 5' handle and a sectional head at least 8" in diameter wrapped with brass or leather strips. :D
I use mine I made from elm for hedglaying
B9D58F06-E42F-4306-8666-D55CBEA4E811.png
B9D58F06-E42F-4306-8666-D55CBEA4E811.png
 

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Brill88

Tom Brill general woodworker and woodsman
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I suppose you just get it out of your bag and the hedge gives up and lays down?
(or is it for the vertical (or angled, depending) poles)

big-top mallet, beetle, commander or maul -- any difference?
Beetle is the traditional name I think timber framers call them commanders and for fence posts mauls or mells but metal onse around 12 to 14 pounds that look a bit like a sledgehammer but with large faces either end
 

Bm101

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Nice job! Live hedging, just took me back to a different life there for a moment. Been years but the Elwell still sings for battle!
I use a Thor hide faced mallet (no 3) because I like a heavy hammer but I cut the handle down. It works well for me, like a cross between a carvers mallet in the hand and enough weight to smack the holdfasts down with no effort. 'Don't hit it harder. Get a bigger Hammer'. For really light work I have a brass jobby that I bought when I was more impressionable and a traditional wooden mallet in disgraceful shape I've had since I was a kid. Keep meaning to cut it down to sort it out but I never do and just hang it up again. 😬

20210407_185804.jpg
 
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