Introduction: Scrap Wood Mallet
Welcome to my Instructable on how to make a Wooden Mallet from off cuts and scrap wood. I have a selection of wood left over from when I make cigar box guitars, I've decided that I will try to make mallets out of them rather than throw them away or burn them. As most wood workers and hobbyists say making your own mallet is a rite of passage why not give it a go?
I was browsing Pinterest looking for inspiration when I saw a mallet that had a hatchet style handle, this looked like a more comfortable grip than the usual straight handle store brought mallets have.
I then drew up my own version of the handle in Inkscape, printed them off and made a template out of MDF so that I can eventually make more of these mallets.
The plans will be attached at the bottom of this Instructable
For my mallet I used 21mm beech and oak, in the plan that I have drawn the handle will fit onto a 300mm x 130mm peice of beech, I cut it out of the middle as the off cuts will make the insides of the mallet.
My oak was 130mm x 130mm, the overall dimensions of the mallet head can be changed to suit your needs but mine was 120mm x 80mm, once laminated up it has a thickness of 63mm.
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Step 1: Marking Out and Cutting the Handle
In this step we will firstly Mark out our handle for cutting on the bandsaw, I made the choice to place my handle in the middle of my piece of Beech.
This may seem like a waste of wood but I chose to do this as I could then flip the off cuts over and use them as the "insides" of my mallet.
I then took the wood over to the band saw and rough cut close to the line.
Step 2: Refining the Handle Shape and Countours
I then used my Oscillating belt / spindle sander to sand to the lines on the handle. This allowed me to get closer to the lines that I drew on the wood in Step 1.
My sander was fitted with an 80 grit belt which made light work of the remaining wood.
I then drew lines on the handle so I could profile and make the grip more comfortable. These are about 6mm from the edge. I held the mallet at an angle on the belt sander to profile these lines. Once I was happy I'd moved enough material I started to roll the handle on the sander to round over the edges.
Step 3: Gluing Up the Head of the Mallet and Cutting It to Shape
First I take one of the 130mm x 130mm oak pieces and find the centre line, I then draw out the width of the handle tenon.
I applied glue on half of the wood and used my brad nailer to attach one half of the inside to it, the inside is the offcuts from the handle. I then offered up the handle and attached the other side for a nice tight fit.
Finally, I glued the other oak piece on top of the head and clamped it into place to dry.
Once I was happy that the glue had fully dried and cured I took the block to my sliding mitre saw and cut it down to its final dimensions.
Step 4: The Part That Didn't Work...
I tried to ebonize the oak with a mix of steel wool and vinegar, I first added masking tape to the beech to try and protect it from turning black.
This didn't work the way I'd have liked as the solution bled through the masking tape. I had to sand the head back to remove my mistake, to see more of this issue please check out my video.
Step 5: Fitting the Handle to the Head
Now that I have cut the head of the mallet to the correct dimensions I will attach the handle.
This was done by cutting a slot in the tenon of the handle to accept a wedge ( my wedge was made of oak), I did this over on my band saw. I also cut a wedge at a rough 2 degree angle and put it to the side for later use.
I then put a layer of masking tape around the bottom of the mallet head. I did this to stop the glue squeeze out from getting on the surface.
I then inserted the tenon into the mortice of the mallet head and tapped it into the correct position (using another mallet I had made on my CNC machine).
Finally I added glue to the wedge and drove it onto the slot until it was flush with the top of the handle.
Once the glue has all dried I gave the mallet 2 coats of wipe on polyurethane and left it to fully dry.
Step 6: Final Words and Plans
Thank you for reading my Instructable. I hope you have enjoyed my process of making this mallet, if you make a version please post it as I would love to see your version.
I've uploaded my version of the plans for the handle and head. please feel free to modify them and alter them to best suit yourself.
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Thank you for your support!
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Scraps Speed Challenge
1 Person Made This Project!
- Kink Jarfold made it!