Blue Spruce Toolworks has just introduced a new 16 oz. square-head joiner’s mallet with a resin-impregnated head, which makes the mallet nigh-indestructible.
This little guy ($95) is similar to the 24 oz. version ($115) introduced at Woodworking in America, which I own, use and adore. Thanks to the heft and one leather-covered face of the big mallet, I gave away my old rubber dead-blow, which loved to leave black marks on everything it touched.
This smaller mallet is sized for chopping dovetails and other chisel-based joinery tasks.
I am a huge fan of these mallets with resin-infused heads. They feel like wood. They hit like wood. But they wear like iron. My 16 oz. round-head mallet from Blue Spruce has clocked thousands of thousands of dovetails now in my hands and the hands of my students. The mallet head looks barely broken in.
This is a lifetime mallet.
Wait, did you hear that? The sound of the townsfolks clanging their pitchforks and lighting torches? Indeed, there are woodworkers out there who say you should make your own mallet. And that’s totally cool in my book. But as someone who has handled many shopmade one-off mallets, I can pretty much guarantee yours won’t be as well-balanced or nicely made as a Blue Spruce. And it won’t last as long.
So I choose to support Dave Jeske and his employees at Blue Spruce and spend the extra shop time making furniture instead.
You can buy a Blue Spruce mallet here.
— Christopher Schwarz