PFC GREEN, ALEX J.
B CO 1/325th AIR
2 AUGUST 2013
A hammer is a tool meant to deliver an impact to an object. The most common uses for hammers are to drive nails, fit parts, forge metal and break apart objects. Hammers are often designed for a specific purpose, and vary in their shape and structure. The term hammer is also used for some devices that are designed to deliver blows like the cap lock mechanism of firearms. The hammer is a basic tool of many professions. The usual features are a handle and a head, with most of the weight in the head. The basic design is hand-operated, but there are also many mechanically operated models, such as steam hammers, for heavier uses.
History of the Hammer
The use of simple tools dates to about 2,400,000 BCE when various shaped stones were used to strike wood, bone, or other stones to break them apart and shape them. Stones attached to sticks with strips of leather or animal sinew were being used as hammers by about 30,000 BCE during the middle of the Paleolithic Stone Age. The hammer's archeological record shows that it may be the oldest tool for which definite evidence exists of its early existence. Stone hammers that date back to 2,600,000 BCE have been found.
Types of Hammers
In general, hammers have metal heads and are used to strike metal objects. The curved claw hammer used to drive nails into wood is one example. Other hammers include the framing hammer with a straight claw that can be driven between nailed boards to pry them apart. It is often used in heavy construction where temporary forms or supports must be removed. The ball peen hammer has a semi-spherical end and is used to shape metal. A tack hammer is one of the smallest hammers. It is used by upholsterers to drive small tacks into wood furniture frames. A sledge hammer is one of the largest hammers. It usually has a long handle and is used for driving spikes and other heavy work. Other modern hammers include brick hammers, riveting hammers, welder's hammers, hand drilling hammers, engineer's hammers, and many others. A related class of hammer-like tools is called mallets. They have large heads made of rubber, plastic, wood, or leather. Mallets are used to strike objects that would be damaged by a blow from a metal hammer. Rubber mallets are used to assemble furniture or to beat dents out of metal. Wood and leather mallets are used to strike wood handled chisels. Plastic mallets have smaller heads and are used to drive small pins into machinery. A very large wooden mallet is sometimes called a maul. A wide range of Hammers are available, varying in shape, size and weight. The different styles reflect different uses. Around the house, the average person only really needs one or two type. The shape of hammer heads has not changed much over the years although some modern materials are now used in both the head and handle. Traditionally handles were made of wood fixed through a hole in the head. This allowed the handle to be easily replaced if it was broken or damaged. Modern hammers use modern materials and the handles are often built into the head. They are usually built with a form of built-in shock absorber to make them easier to use. Claw Hammer
The claw hammer is the most popular hammer for general work, available with a wooden, glass-fiber or steel handle; with or without rubber grip. The most popular weights are between 16 and 24 ounces. The claw is normally curved, and incorporates a 'V' cut-out to draw nails from timber. The claw can be used to lever up floorboards or in other places where a lever is required; care must be taken, especially with cheaper models, as the force applied can easily weaken the joint between the handle and the head. Ball Pein
Normally used by engineers, the pein in this case, is rounded and is usually used for shaping metal and closing rivets. Ball pein hammers are available from 4 ounces up to 2 pounds, 8ounce to 12 ounce ball pein...
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