When you do a little bit of digging, you’ll come to learn that a hammer is not just a hammer, just like how to a fisherman a lure is not just a lure. Each one serves its own unique purposes, and has traits that make it more or less useful in a given situation. In the case of a sheet metal hammer, there are several traits to look for that will make the tool more suitable for use with sheet metal, primarily who roofers who work with such material.
In general, sheet metal hammers are used for bending, flattening, marking and otherwise shaping the sheet of metal that are used in roofing applications, and there are a few things that make them more (or less) suitable to the tasks at hand. Keep in mind that no two metal hammers will have all of the following traits, but that they should rather be assessed on a case by case basis.
- All metal, single piece forged construction – Some hammers are made with single piece, all metal, forged construction. This is without a doubt the toughest method that can be used to produce a tool, as it is effectively indestructible.
- A wood or polymer handle – By contrast, some tools like these are made with wooden or polymer handles, which, though not as tough as steel or other metals, are much better at absorbing vibration.
- Differential hardening – Many sheet metal hammers have polished heads with different faces, typically one flat face and one beveled face for making markings and for precise shaping. The different nature of the purposes for these faces requires differential hardening to improve the performance of the tool and extend its useful lifespan.
- Rebound reducing features – Some roofing hammers are made with rebound reducing features so that energy transfer into the tool is increased and user fatigue is reduced.
- A comfortable grip – Many hammers, including those made from single-piece steel construction, are made with comfortable grips as well.
- Non-marking, non-marring faces – Not all metal hammers are made with metal faces; some are made with composite materials so that they will neither damage the sheet metal being worked on or mark it in any way.
- Noise reduction features – As you can imagine, striking a piece of steel with another piece of steel produces quite a racket. If it is valuable to you, you can find hammers that incorporate noise reducing features into their design.
Now, as you may have noticed, no single hammer could possess all of the above traits. For example, a hammer could not both have a wooden handle and be forged from a single piece of steel – rather, each of these carries its own benefits and should be evaluated individually on its merits by the buyer.
If you’re looking for an industry leading selection of sheet metal hammers, make the process easy on yourself and visit John Stortz & Son at Stortz.com, where you’ll find a collection of metal hammers alongside other specialty tools such as brick hammers, slate hammers and much more. Check their website, and if you have any questions, call them at 888-847-3456.