Cabinet Maker's Mallet

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Project by sIKE posted 02-25-2008 04:58 AM 2930 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Made two of these as Christmas gifts. The heads are made from hard maple and dark walnut and the handle is made from hard maple all finished up with tung oil. The plans are from a recent issue of ShopNotes. This was a very fun project to make and I have a thrid in progress for myself with some Mahogany added to the mix. There are three pieces of 1/2” threaded rod imbedded into the head to add heft. The handle is shaped to the hand of the owner.

Now for the shop accident:

I got my finger boogered up while resawing the maple on the TS. Was using a push stick, zero clearnce insert, and was standing to the side. The board pinched and was sent flying back and up. I had on a thick lined flannel shirt on. My arm was curved and the board raked accross my index finer and hit me hard in the chest. Like a 6’6” 240 lbs guy hit me full on in the chest. I promptly stopped and made a thin ripping jig and no longer cut with the thin piece up against the fence. Lesson learned.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

12 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 2774 days

#1 posted 02-25-2008 05:15 AM

Great looking mallet. I really like the head.

Careful, careful!

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 2546 days

#2 posted 02-25-2008 05:29 AM

very cool lookin’ mallets

View CharlieM1958's profile


15868 posts in 3004 days

#3 posted 02-25-2008 05:40 AM

Great mallet, and a good safety lesson!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Karson's profile


34925 posts in 3186 days

#4 posted 02-25-2008 05:42 AM

Great looking Mallet. Thanks for pointing it out to me.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware †

View cajunpen's profile


14443 posts in 2851 days

#5 posted 02-25-2008 06:12 AM

Good looking mallet – thanks for posting and for the safety reminder, glad to hear that you weren’t hurt to badly.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View USCJeff's profile


1046 posts in 2854 days

#6 posted 02-25-2008 08:19 AM

I’d tease you about the kickback if I wasn’t scared I’d jinx myself. Really, thanks for the post on the project as well as the lesson learned. If I’m reading your process right, I’ve cut boards in a similar manner as well. I have been decent about using a blade guard/splitter, but it isn’t always feasible. I think we’d better invest in an overhead guard and stand-alone splitter.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View Jiri Parkman's profile

Jiri Parkman

951 posts in 2598 days

#7 posted 02-25-2008 01:40 PM

Beautiful mallet.

-- Jiri

View sIKE's profile


1271 posts in 2539 days

#8 posted 02-25-2008 04:40 PM

You noticed I didn’t have a splitter, I have been doing some research on that, for now I am thinking about this for now or maybe a dedicated thin kerf ripping blade and the thin kerf version of this splitter. Long term is a TS replacement with riving knives built in.

And of course a decent Bandsaw whose blade doesn’t wander over heck and high water so I can re-saw with it.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 3032 days

#9 posted 02-26-2008 04:28 PM

Good looking mallet, looks like it” wood” do the job. mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 2660 days

#10 posted 02-26-2008 06:42 PM

That is a great mallet. I am glad you were not injured more than you were. And thanks, by sharing the incident you may have helped the rest of us think a bit more about our shop safety.

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6725 posts in 2765 days

#11 posted 03-17-2008 03:13 PM


That’s a crazy looking mallet. Very unusual. I like it!

Sorry to hear about your finger. Hope it wasn’t too bad.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View JonH's profile


79 posts in 2872 days

#12 posted 11-24-2008 08:00 PM

Nice mallet! I agree that putting the thin strip between the fence and blade is asking for trouble. Anti-kickback pawls and a zero clearance throat plate are a must as well. A nice thin strip jig that allows the strip to lay off to the waste side of the blade is easy to make and helps keep the wood from flying around. I’ve even used a push stick that keeps the hands up high to just rip down wide stock by adjusting the fence each time. I used the handle of an old handsaw to layout the handle. Its comfortable in my hand, and it works great for pushing and keeping pressure down on the workpiece. Hope the finger heals up soon for making more Xmas gifts!

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