Ipe & maple mallet #2: Turning

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Rick_M posted 03-12-2014 05:57 PM 1372 reads 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Glue up Part 2 of Ipe & maple mallet series Part 3: Burning lines with Formica »

I always forget to take pictures so it goes from mounted on the lathe to nearly done.

I knocked the corners off on the tablesaw. The bandsaw would have been my first choice but mine only has a carbon steel blade and ipe can damage carbon steel. I only have 2 types of turning tools, carbon steel (cs) and carbide (note to self: really need to get some HSS tools), so it was carbide on the head and c.s. on the maple. The ipe machined nicely but carbide tends to tear out more than steel so I had a good bit of sanding. Ipe is merely amused by sandpaper so I got the head fairly smooth but not perfect.

Normally I prefer linseed oil only on tool handles, especially hammers/mallets, but wanted to keep the maple a neutral color so I used blonde shellac instead.

The lines were burned with a piece of Formica which does a nicer, cleaner, line than wire. Tried burning a couple lines in the end grain but it wasn’t happening, guessing the pores slow heat build up.

Mallet is finished. Final weight is 17 oz. I’ll post pics in the project section when I get to them.


15 comments so far

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 2266 days

#1 posted 03-12-2014 06:03 PM

Very nice looking.

-- Brian Timmons -

View TerryDowning's profile


1064 posts in 1898 days

#2 posted 03-12-2014 06:13 PM

Nice Job Rick!

-- - Terry

View Hammerthumb's profile


2752 posts in 1756 days

#3 posted 03-12-2014 07:20 PM

I like your design Rick. Thought it would be a little heavier. How is the balance? Let me know what you think after using it. I have about 100bdft of Ipe left and have thought about using some it for a mallet.

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View doubleDD's profile


6607 posts in 1824 days

#4 posted 03-12-2014 07:51 PM

Great looking mallet. Looks like it will be around for awhile. Good job on the turning.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Rick_M's profile


10256 posts in 2161 days

#5 posted 03-12-2014 08:54 PM

I thought it would be a little heavier too, maybe 22 oz. But I got carried away roughing and turned the diameter down thinner than intended; should have been about 3.25” diameter and ended up a little under 3. The balance isn’t bad, obviously front heavy.


View Matty272's profile


80 posts in 1319 days

#6 posted 03-12-2014 09:38 PM

That looks lovely; absolutely lovely!

One question, though: What is Ipe? Totally unfamiliar with the name :(

-- It's worth every moment of effort you put in if the kids enjoy it!

View Matty272's profile


80 posts in 1319 days

#7 posted 03-12-2014 09:41 PM

Don’t worry, I’ve found the answer with a quick google ;) Don’t know why I didn’t do that before posting the question

-- It's worth every moment of effort you put in if the kids enjoy it!

View Arminius's profile


304 posts in 3584 days

#8 posted 03-12-2014 10:25 PM

What is the finish over the ipe? Blonde shellac as well?

View Roger's profile


20871 posts in 2585 days

#9 posted 03-13-2014 12:10 AM


-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Rick_M's profile


10256 posts in 2161 days

#10 posted 03-13-2014 01:39 AM

Thanks everyone. Yes, shellac on the ipe. Finished, pictures should be going up as a project later tonight or tomorrow morning.


View waho6o9's profile


7981 posts in 2358 days

#11 posted 03-13-2014 04:51 AM

Clean work Rick!

View CFrye's profile


9760 posts in 1621 days

#12 posted 03-13-2014 07:00 AM

Beautiful mallet Rick! Really like the construction. May have to copy this. Thanks for the ‘how to’.

-- God bless, Candy

View Don Broussard's profile

Don Broussard

3320 posts in 2032 days

#13 posted 03-14-2014 04:01 AM

@RickM—Well done, buddy! Good choice of woods, too. Re: the burned lines on the handle—I imagine that you just hold a piece of formica against the piece while turning. Did you just use a square-edged piece of formica to burn the lines, or did you use a shaped piece? Just curious, since your blog is the first mention I’ve seen of using formica in that way. Nice blog too, BTW.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

View Rick_M's profile


10256 posts in 2161 days

#14 posted 03-14-2014 04:55 AM

Thanks. Just a rectangle Formica sample, used the edge to burn the line. Snagged one of the free samples from Lowes, one of the ugly ones that no one wants .

Since there was a lot of interest I added another blog entry on burning lines.

Looks like this one except mine is reddish.


View Rick_M's profile


10256 posts in 2161 days

#15 posted 03-14-2014 05:00 AM

BTW, here is the project page.

Click for details


Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics