For some woodworkers, building your own mallet is a rite of passage. After using dozens of student-made mallets, however, I wonder if many of us would be better off with a well-balanced, professionally made mallet. If you are a person who wants to buy a thing once and be done with it, you should look at the new rectangular joiner’s mallets from Blue Spruce Toolworks.
Unlike other mallets, these are designed to last a lifetime thanks to the resin-infused heads, which are nearly indestructible. I’ve used a Blue Spruce resin-infused round mallet for years as my primary striking tool, and it hardly has a mark on it. The company’s new rectangular mallets are built with the same material and are holding up nicely after a few months of use in my shop.
The striking surfaces of each mallet’s maple head are properly angled so you hit tools and your work with the full face. One of the two faces is covered in thick leather, which allows you to use the mallet to knock assemblies apart without denting your wood. The leather has survived surprisingly well.
The resin-infused heads add a little weight to the tools, but both sizes of mallets (16 oz. and 24 oz.) are balanced because the heads are compact. And like all Blue Spruce tools, the fit and finish is somewhere north of outstanding. The small mallet is good for light chopping, such as removing dovetail waste and chopping out hinge mortises. The big boy is good for mortising and knocking things together and apart.
These might be the most expensive wooden mallets on the market, but a Blue Spruce mallet is likely the last one you’ll ever have to buy.
From the June 2014 issue, #211