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aluminum veneer hammer blade?

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Forum topic by harum posted 10-05-2019 05:48 PM 246 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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harum

390 posts in 2186 days


10-05-2019 05:48 PM

Hello, was wondering if aluminum would make a good material for a veneer hammer blade? I have a 1/4” flat bar, however not sure if aluminum is an acceptable replacement for brass or steel. Would appreciate any comment! Best, h.

P.S. What’s happening with LJ? Doesn’t feel like it’s the same vibrant and busy community it used to be a couple of years ago.

-- "If you're not counting the ripples when throwing pebbles in the water, you're wasting your time."


3 replies so far

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John Smith

2052 posts in 705 days


#1 posted 10-05-2019 07:01 PM

aluminum “can” leave a mark on light colored wood just like pencil lead.
also aluminum is susceptible to nicks and dings which is not good for veneer work.
brass is the popular metal to use. (just my personal opinion).
that is on my bucket list to make a nice veneer hammer. (I have the brass already).

.

.

-- I am a painter. That's what I do. I paint things --

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shipwright

8400 posts in 3341 days


#2 posted 10-06-2019 02:56 AM

I don’t see any reason that aluminium would not work. I don’t think it should mark given that it is lubricated with glue when in use. (could be wrong) .
Personally, having made several, I’m sold on the cast iron commercial models sold under the Three Cherries and Kunst brands. They help draw heat away from the surface and get the glue gelling more quickly. It is the gelling glue that seals the edges and makes it all work.
The important things if you make one are having a fairly thin rounded edge to allow maximum pressure and angled ends to get into corners.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

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harum

390 posts in 2186 days


#3 posted 10-06-2019 10:22 AM

John, Paul, thank you for the responses! Yes, I’ve seen diy hammers with blades out of brass, steel, hardwood, plastic—but never aluminum. Interestingly, aluminum is a much better thermal conductor and has a higher heat capacity compared to brass abd steel, which might mean that it cools the glue too quickly? Or does it even matter considering that some veneer hammers only use a thin strip of metal and some, like regular hammers, are solid metal?

Aluminum, brass, steel, respectively:
Thermal conductivity (BTU/(hr x ft x deg F)): 118, 64, 17
Specific heat capacity (J/(g x deg K)): 0.9, 0.4, 0.5
Hardness(Mohs):2.5, 3.0, 4.5

Aluminum is in a different category here.

I guess nicks and dings would be easy to avoid. Marking with aluminum oxide or aluminum is a possibility considering the pressure during application. On the other hand, aluminum is comparable with brass in softness.

“The important things if you make one are having a fairly thin rounded edge to allow maximum pressure and angled ends to get into corners.” Good points, Paul, will keep it in mind!

-- "If you're not counting the ripples when throwing pebbles in the water, you're wasting your time."

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