Next week I will be in NYC/Brooklyn to take my FOURTH workshop with him but this blog post is not about that, it is about chasing hammer handles, yeah and about one of mine in particular.
During that first workshop (here, here and here) we ordered some new hammers from All Craft. I bought 2 - a 22 mm and a 30 mm. Val also showed us how to customize the handles (see picture below, the hammer handle at the top has not been customized and the one on the bottom is partly customized) - to narrow the neck to give it more spring and how to get the end of the handle to fit into our hand
I have modified the handles for the 26 and and the 32 but I had not done the 33 yet and I was using it all day, yesterday. After about 5 hours of work, I realized that
- Yes, the end of the handle didn't quite fit in my hand correctly - note to self, modify the handle.
- Hmm, I feel like I am getting a blister on the second joint of my middle finger where it holds the underside of the handle. I looked and nope, there was no blister but it was rubbed a bit red.
So I put the hammer down and that is when I noticed that the handle was canted sightly to the right when aligned to the center of the hammer head. This would not seem odd to the average chaser. Wait, don't take that the wrong way, I am not saying all chasers are average. I just mean that if you look at the majority of chasers, they would not find this odd.
Why? Well they are probably all RIGHT-HANDED so a hammer handle which leans to the right (position and not politically, sheesh) in a right hand would feel normal. Yet, for a lefty, it literally and figuratively rubs me the wrong way.
Now, I am pretty certain that the handles on the other chasing hammers were not canted in one direction or the other but I could not be certain cause they were all modified but if they had been leaning in that direction they had been, I think I would have some memory it with a note to correct it while I was doing the modifications.
Here is a picture of the 33 (on the left) and another handle end, you can see it is leaning.
The second picture below show the size of the 33 head in comparison to the 32, it is quite a bit bigger ,and for the handle you can see how much material I will be removing.
I am off to the garage to customize the handle and correct this handle problem.