Joinery mallet for mortising - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-22-2020, 03:45 PM Thread Starter
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Joinery mallet for mortising

My main mallet is the Narex 14oz joiner's mallet for general bench chisel work. It's light, easy to wield and comfortable. It also works good for smaller mortise jobs (up to 3/8" chisels). But once I get to 1/2", I think it's a little bit light, especially on harder woods. So I'm going to make a larger mallet for mortises.

I know it's somewhat a matter of taste and feel, but what size/weight mallets do you guys use? I was thinking maybe a 24oz would be sufficient for most furniture sized mortising. I've seen some people say their mallets are more than 32oz, which I'm thinking is probably overkill and difficult to wield over longer sessions.

Geoff
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-22-2020, 03:52 PM
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Designing a Mallet

Geoff - I ran across this formula for mallets a while back.
it makes sense to me (sorry, I don't know who to credit the drawing to).
you can make a cardboard template and have someone draw the lines
for you while holding different parts of the handle to see what works
best for you.
(it has nothing to do with the weight - just the angle of the head).

Joinery mallet for mortising-mallet-angle.gif

I am a painter: that's what I do, I like to paint things.

Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 01-22-2020 at 03:59 PM.
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post #3 of 6 Old 02-03-2020, 08:52 PM
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Last fall I started using an old engineer's hammer, which I think is around 2.5 pounds. I was worried about damage to the chisel handles (it IS a steel head), and whether my arm would get tired any faster, but I haven't had any problems. I find it considerably easier to cut mortises or chop out the waste from dovetails than with a lighter hammer (I think 12 oz), and I don't get nearly as tired.

Short version, I think a 2-3 pound hammer is a great choice for pretty much anything that involves hitting a chisel.
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post #4 of 6 Old 02-04-2020, 12:59 AM
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For general use, I like to use a Thorex. This is the one recommended by Paul Sellers and it's a great buy. Has a hard nylon head and a softer PVC head. Weighs about 1 lb.

For heavy duty, I use a Lump Hammer. This one weighs about 2.5 lbs.

⚡ Anthony
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post #5 of 6 Old 02-04-2020, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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I have cut a 24oz (1.5lb) mallet head. I think that will be plenty for most of my mortising. If not, it's not that difficult to make another.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Smith_inFL View Post
Geoff - I ran across this formula for mallets a while back.
it makes sense to me (sorry, I don't know who to credit the drawing to).
you can make a cardboard template and have someone draw the lines
for you while holding different parts of the handle to see what works
best for you.
(it has nothing to do with the weight - just the angle of the head).
Attachment 383895
Thanks for this. Good info.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmishElectricCo View Post
For general use, I like to use a Thorex. This is the one recommended by Paul Sellers and it's a great buy. Has a hard nylon head and a softer PVC head. Weighs about 1 lb.
I have the Thorex, also on the recommendation of PS. Nice mallet. I gave it a run, and just didn't get attached to it compared to my wooden.

Geoff
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post #6 of 6 Old 02-21-2020, 11:04 AM
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I am looking to make a mallet
What wood do you guys recommend using?
Do you use a different species for the handle and the head?
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