Cherry Mallet

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Blog entry by terryR posted 10-08-2012 04:19 PM 5429 reads 4 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi everyone…as I’ve said before…you can blame the appearance of this cherry whacker on the new Mallets of your Dream thread.

I’ve been using a stick of black walnut found in the firewood pile as a mallet for a long time…sap wood on one side, heart wood on the other…really sucks as a mallet.

So, why not carve a new one? I have terrible joinery skills…but love to carve…so a one-piece mallet was my dream. At least, for the first try…

I literally tripped over this huge chunk of cherry while looking for a wood specimen, so cherry it was to be! Let’s get this big chunk out of the darn way…

No photo of the big Grizzly bandsaw, but first I had to re-saw the chunk to 2 5/8” for the final thickness of the mallet’s head. No big deal there…a 3/4” WoodSlicer blade influenced by 2hp made quick work of that! Love my Grizzly!

Next, to the cheapo bandsaw to cut out my profile…no way to cut curves with that WoodSlicer…and too much trouble to change blades for one project! So, my little Ryobi was pushed to the limit…and beyond…making the profile cuts…ruined one $10 blade. Bummer…

In order to true up some of the nasty cuts left by the cheapo saw, I used my lil chainsaw. Yep, a 2” diameter chainsaw blade in a Proxxon angle grinder…loads of fun! A highly recommended toy…errrrr…tool…

I was able to use the 12” disc sander to shape the head nice and square…with a slight radius along the top…but the dust soon ran me out of the shop! Cough…cough…

After catching my breath, I continued to clean up the profile using a nice big hand-cut rasp. I really have a fondness for rasps!

Once I was happy with the profile, I outlined the rest of the shape of the handle…trying to create symmetry as much as possible. Then, back to the cheapo bandsaw for more stock removal.

Now, a quick trip to the drill press with 1 1/4” forstner bit installed to help remove more cherry.

At this point, the hand tools just took over! This Auriou rasp knew what to do…so I just sat back and watched as the square corners were gently pushed round. Also note, I use colored pencils a lot to highlight low spots which need to be blended in with the surrounding wood…seems to help the rasp see better!

And, more rasping…and more rasping…no hurries…

This was as far as I made it the first day…since I got a late start…

The next day was just sandpaper, band aids, and coffee while I continued to round the edges into a comfy handle. (sorry, no photos) I tried to NOT get carried away with the hand sanding since this mallet is intended as a striking tool…but I still worked her to 600 grit just to see the pretty wood.

And, here’s the finished mallet with 2 coats of BLO…Overall length 11.5”…15oz.

Sure hope you guys like it as much as I do…and the shop time was a much needed escape for me! Ideas and comments are always welcomed!

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

10 comments so far

View Spoontaneous's profile


1334 posts in 3358 days

#1 posted 10-08-2012 04:24 PM

Really nice job on this. I bet a lot of judges would like something this solid to use as a gavel when the courtroom gets out of order.

-- I just got done cutting three boards and all four of them were too short. (true story)

View Don W's profile

Don W

18756 posts in 2596 days

#2 posted 10-08-2012 04:26 PM

very nice Terry. I like the little chain saw. I need to look into one of those. I’ve seen the 4” on an angle grinder, but never a 2”

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View Kookaburra's profile


748 posts in 2253 days

#3 posted 10-08-2012 04:27 PM


-- Kay - Just a girl who loves wood.

View cajunpen's profile


14575 posts in 4094 days

#4 posted 10-08-2012 04:29 PM

That sure is a beauty! I wouldn’t know whether to put it on display or whack a piece of wood with it – but it is pretty. Nice story as to how it arrived to it’s beautiful state.

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

View Bsmith's profile


330 posts in 2699 days

#5 posted 10-08-2012 05:09 PM

Now that’s what I call a mallet!

-- Bryan

View ChuckC's profile


828 posts in 2964 days

#6 posted 10-08-2012 05:14 PM

What a great mallet!

View Mauricio's profile


7144 posts in 3180 days

#7 posted 10-09-2012 01:50 PM

A thing of beauty Terry. Well done.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View AnthonyReed's profile


9761 posts in 2469 days

#8 posted 10-10-2012 03:00 PM


-- ~Tony

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 2230 days

#9 posted 11-11-2012 05:24 PM

Nice blog, I love those Rasp as well can’t beat’em….....

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

View ColoradoMtn's profile


55 posts in 904 days

#10 posted 01-09-2016 04:40 AM

Beautiful! Thanks for including the step by step pictures!!!

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