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Steampunk Joiner’s Mallet

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Project by shipwright posted 12-07-2017 08:32 PM 2300 views 3 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

OK, I’m bad,not made of wood. ... but, a woodworking tool nonetheless.

I just bought some very nice Japanese dovetail chisels to do some fine work with and my big mallet seemed overkill for the job. At home in Canada I have a lovely brass joiner’s mallet from Lee Valley but I’m not at home so I decided to make my own “Arizona model”.

The two pipe fittings cost ~ $5 and the lead was free from a local tire shop. The “casting” was way easier than a 10,000 lb. keel and only took a few minutes. The best part is I have a nice small, heavy, decently balanced mallet that works really well with the chisels.

The photos show the setup I used to melt the lead. As the weights were quite clean, and I wasn’t that concerned with absolute purity, I didn’t melt in a separate container and pour. I just broke the weights up and dropped them down the handle a few at a time. For the last bit I held the pieces with the clips in them in pliers and just let the lead drip off them into the handle.

The last photo is of the non-lead weights that I weeded out before starting. A good trick for that is dropping them on a concrete floor. Zinc and steel will ring while lead just goes “thud”.

Thanks for looking.

Paul

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/





24 comments so far

View rbrjr1's profile

rbrjr1

170 posts in 403 days


#1 posted 12-07-2017 08:42 PM

that’s a pretty slick idea..
was there any need to clean out the black steel pipe first?
approximately how far up the handle did the lead go (if you know?)

-- only an idiot dismisses an intelligent statement because they dont know anything about the person delivering it.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

21717 posts in 3303 days


#2 posted 12-07-2017 08:48 PM

Way to go, Paul!! I have been melting lead in a pot and found that there are 3 kinds of wheel weights – pure lead, steel and a tin allow that does not melt well.
That was a smart way to fill the mallet with lead. I have made wooden molds for lead and find that it works well and does not burn up like I thought it would!!

Cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

32087 posts in 3064 days


#3 posted 12-07-2017 08:49 PM

That’s very creative and nicely done. Hey! It’s a tool that can be used in a woodworking shop. That’s close enough for me. Nice work!

helluvawreck aka Charles
http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

-- helluvawreck aka Charles, http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

View Ocelot's profile

Ocelot

2113 posts in 2836 days


#4 posted 12-07-2017 09:16 PM

What’s that thing weigh?

View madts's profile

madts

1873 posts in 2537 days


#5 posted 12-07-2017 09:31 PM

I like it much.

—Madts.

-- Thor and Odin are still the greatest of Gods.

View Karson's profile

Karson

35145 posts in 4598 days


#6 posted 12-07-2017 09:50 PM

Paul you should have put a couple of pieces of brass on the end or the “T” fitting and then you would have had a brass piece to tap your chisels instead of the steel pipe.

A brass door pull could have had it’s screw embedded in the melted lead. A wooden cap covered in leather would give the other end a softer hit.

Very creative

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View icemanhank's profile

icemanhank

442 posts in 2354 days


#7 posted 12-07-2017 09:52 PM

Great idea mate, I love the chisels too what brand are they?

-- "These are my principles. And if you don't like them, I have others." ... Cheers, David from Sydney Australia

View pottz's profile

pottz

3515 posts in 1182 days


#8 posted 12-07-2017 11:11 PM

now thats true innovation.nice work.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View kiefer's profile

kiefer

5621 posts in 2865 days


#9 posted 12-07-2017 11:20 PM

Looks like it will work but the handle sucks at least it should have a wooden cap .

Klaus

-- Kiefer https://www.youtube.com/user/woodkiefer1/videos

View Jerry's profile

Jerry

2889 posts in 1846 days


#10 posted 12-07-2017 11:42 PM

Pretty Cool!

-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be. http://www.geraldlhunsucker.com/

View shipwright's profile (online now)

shipwright

8163 posts in 2995 days


#11 posted 12-07-2017 11:45 PM

Thanks everyone,

rbrjr1, I didn’t clean anything, just screwed them together and threw the lead in.. The lead goes about 3/4” up the handle.

Jim, I guess in small amounts it may not burn the wood too badly but the keel I mentioned was cast in a wood mould and while it worked fine the wood was deeply charred and could not have been re-used.

Ocelot, I haven’t weighed it but I’d guess around a pound.

Karson, the chisels get struck by the lead which is nice and soft.

icemanhank, they are Matsumura white steel from Japan Woodworker.

Klaus, All in good time grasshopper. You never know, I might find a way to put marquetry on it.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View woodbutcherbynight's profile (online now)

woodbutcherbynight

5676 posts in 2606 days


#12 posted 12-08-2017 01:46 AM

Nice work. I work in a auto repair shop. Plenty of raw material.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View Andre's profile

Andre

2201 posts in 2004 days


#13 posted 12-08-2017 04:16 AM

Must be some special project to be making all them tools?
Have been reading some of your blogs on Hide glue, I might be going that route in the future?

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View blackwell's profile

blackwell

11 posts in 1671 days


#14 posted 12-08-2017 04:51 AM

I’m gonna have to try this. What an elegant and cheap solution

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

8718 posts in 3040 days


#15 posted 12-08-2017 10:31 AM

Paul,

Always thinking! Nice response to Klaus. LOL!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

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