Bench Chisels

Bench Chisels

This will probably
be one of the most beneficial hours
you have spent learning woodwork. Chisels are such a fundamental...
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Working with Hands - James E. Price

  English Joiners' Mallet 1 of 3  


I have heard quite a few discussions concerning mallets but I have seen no reference to fine English joiners' mallets.



I guess it is up to me to discuss one. I have used this particular mallet for several years and find it to be just the right one for tapping mortise and tenons together. It weighs about two pounds and behaves for me much like a deadblow mallet, you know, the orange plastic ones with the oil and lead shot in them.

I use it only for assembly of joints and find it ill suited for striking chisels. The way the handle holds the two lignum vitae inserts into the heavy gunmetal casting is intriguing.

The mallet has an adze eye. The distal end of the handle is tapered from big to small toward the proximal end, the end you hold. Holes through the wooden inserts are tapered and the front hole in the casting is bigger than than the back hole.

To assemble this mallet one has to insert the curved front piece of lignum vitae into the gunmetal casting first followed by the back piece of lignum vitae which has parallel sides.

The tapered holes in the the two pieces of wood are then aligned one to the other and in turn with the holes in the gunmetal casting. The handle is then inserted through all three to lock the parts together.

I have wanted to make boxwood inserts for this mallet and maybe I'll soon have a little extra time to do it. Besides being a practical well designed functioning mallet, this tool is a dazzler and is fondled lots by my students and visitors to my joinery demonstrations.

The handle is exactly 13 inches in total length and the casting is 2 inches wide.

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