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Old 04-02-2011, 09:03 PM   #1
DARKSCOPE001
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Default wood vs. metal hammer handles

Hey guys I want to get a full set of ball peen hammers for my box. But I cant really come to a good conclusion. Metal or wood? both have their advantages but can someone perhaps tell me which one edges the other one out in my particular situation?

Anyways here goes. I would like a full set of ball peens to have in my box for various tasks. I rarely use them all day long. I know that wood handles absorb vibration better than metal. But I more or less want this to be the last set of ball peens that I have to buy. So with metal I would not have to worry about them being stored wet or aging and the head becoming lose.

I just want it to be U.S. made. I had my eye on the craftsman ones but It seems that they have taken the wood handle set off the online sight. But this is the metal handled set i was looking at. http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...3&blockType=G3 They look similar to estwing and I have heard that the wood handle ones are made by vaughan

Anyways what do you guys think

Thanks
Sean Scott
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:05 PM   #2
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Wood handles, over metal OR fiberglass, always. At the end of the day your shoulder will thank you.
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:10 PM   #3
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Depends on the type of hammer and how it is built. Better designs will always produce superior feel, regardless of material.

Anybody who has hit a baseball outside of the "sweet spot" of a wooden bat knows that wood is just as capable of stinging your hands as any other material. In fact, Aluminum bats have a larger "sweet spot" and are thus less likely to sting while hitting the ball farther.

I suggest you look for hammers based on feel and quality, not necessarily materials. I have wooden, FRP, and metal handled hammers. Each have their place and preferred uses.
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:14 PM   #4
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

i have wood,but i also have my trusty estwing ,love the estwing good grip,some kind of rubber grip,made in usa, nuff said!
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:18 PM   #5
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

I have several of each, I prefer the feel of a wood handle on a ballpein. I have a soft grip on my deadblow, and a steel handle, although rubber coated on my small sledge. That said, I just started to go through some old wood handle one`s and give them much needed love and handle replacement.
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:25 PM   #6
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Always preferred wood myself. Just like the way it feels in my hand better than anything else.
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Old 04-02-2011, 09:35 PM   #7
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Darkscope001 Hi,

Every Wed,Sat & Sun on the west side of town they have the Westside Flea Market on High Street. If you have the time get there early in the morning and bring a small amout of cash ($1.00 dollar to park your car).

If you walk around you will find a lot of different types of hammers,buy a few of the different types and try them out.

Hope this helps.

Woody
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:22 PM   #8
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

I prefer wood over metal, much better on your arm. As a carpenter I only use Vaughan, very good balance and the wood absorbs a lot of the shock. If you abuse them you will break handles but it is not a big deal to replace them.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:24 PM   #9
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

I don't think durability is necessarily an issue. I have several hammers that have to be well over 50 years old and they're still in good condition.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:35 PM   #10
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

If you are not planning on using them all day long, go with the one that feels the best when you pick it up. I have all three types of handles on my daily hammers and can tell you that each feels right with the right kind of handle. My blacksmith hammer is wood and feels great. My framing hammer is fiberglass and it feels right also. I use one with a metal handle and it has a good grip and transfers blows well. Pick them up and feel how it feels in your hand and how it feels when you swing it. It only has to work for YOU.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:37 PM   #11
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Ball peen hammers are usually used in metal work with center punches or direct to metal. I like wooden handles.

I still like Estwing hammers. I don't see a problem with the steel handle, especially in a framing hammer since you will be using it to drive nails against wood anyway.
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Old 04-02-2011, 10:39 PM   #12
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

metal with the tuning fork built in
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Old 04-02-2011, 11:06 PM   #13
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Vaughan Commercial Ball Pein Hammers
Made entirely in the U.S.A., Vaughan Commercial Ball Pein hammers are forged of high quality American steel, hardened and tempered to precise standards. Polishing operations on these ball pein hammers are limited to face, bevel and pein, while other surfaces are finished in rust resistant black paint to permit more economical pricing. They are ideal for all industrial applications.

Catalog Number Head oz. Weight g. Length in.
TC504 4 115 10 1/4
TC308 8 225 11 3/4
TC2012 12 340 12
TC016 16 450 13 3/4
TC120 20 570 15
TC224 24 680 15 1/4
TC432 32 900 15 3/4
TC640 40 1135 16
TC848 48 1360 16
Unloaded some my pay check on a few of theses bad boy 5 months a go love them so far.
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Old 04-02-2011, 11:11 PM   #14
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

For ball peens, I don't think I would buy one with a metal handle, maybe a fiberglass but not metal. I have four ball peens, one in the track box;wood, two in my garage box;wood, and one in a tool bag in the truck;fiberglass. The last one was a purchase on the way to a junkyard. I forgot a hammer and stopped at TSC and bought a cheap one, it stays in the tool bag now.
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Old 04-03-2011, 07:55 PM   #15
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

estwing with the metal handles. No more loose heads. If you are going to swing a hammer ALL day then maybe this is not the best for your body; wood may be better for your joints. But if you're like 99.9% that only use a hammer a few swings at a time per day, these will last forever
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Old 04-03-2011, 08:28 PM   #16
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

If you are swinging the hammer against metal use a wood handle. A few swings now and then it matters not one way or the other. All day in service your arms will thank you for the wood or other shock absorbent handle material. Wood at steel, steel at wood is my rule of thumb.

My framing hammers are steel with (long) moulded rubber handles and my ball peens and slugging hammers are all wood handled. Not all planned out just ended up that way. I like the Estwing long all steel with moulded rubber handled framing hammers. Good feel, balance and power and well built. I have a mix of ball peen brands. My go to in the shop is a big crapsman.
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Old 04-03-2011, 08:53 PM   #17
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

I faced the same decision as the OP. I went with the metal handle so I never have to screw with old wood handles but it was a toss up. I mainly decided to go with the last-forever metal because I'm a very light user right now as I have two little kids to keep me busy.

I went with the Craftsman set listed by the OP. They have been great so far. They are also made by Vaughn. That wood plug in the head is patented by Vaughn and is supposed to reduce vibration. There was a sticker with the patent number on each hammer.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:46 PM   #18
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Dumb question. I have a few different hammers, but I don't have a ball peen. What do you use it for?

I do like Estwing, cause they will last forever. May favorite is 20oz in standard length. Also got Estwing hatchet. I don't use them all day though.

When I pick up a framing hammer, I may go wood after reading its easier on the body.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:54 PM   #19
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

Framing hammers are for carpenters, ball peens are for mechanics and metal workers, BFH hammers are for those times something won't move or you are pissed off.
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Old 04-03-2011, 11:57 PM   #20
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Default Re: wood vs. metal hammer handles

A ball-peen hammer is for metal working.

I swing my ball-peen and my black smith hammers all day. Both of mine have fiberglass handles, I love them, don't have a single issue. Mine have lasted me for years now, so I guarantee you would never need another one.

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