Nail Removing Tool





I had a lot of pieces of wood from some pallets I had been given.

I wanted to use them for kindling but they had a lot of rusty nails in them.

It wasn't proving very easy to quickly remove them so I devised this simple tool which

meant I was able to recover almost all of the wood quickly.

Step 1:

Tools needed.

Grinding wheel

Electric Drill


Steel rule


10 mm OD steel tube with 1.5 mm wall thickness

6 mm steel rod


Cut a 100 mm length of 10 mm tube.

Fit it in the drill and grind one end at a shallow angle so it will easily slide onto the nail even if it is bent close to the wood.

Fit it in the drill from the other and and clean up the end using the grinder.

Cut a 150 mm length of the rod and clean the ends up as per the tube.

Step 2: How the Tool Looks Once It's Made

So you will end up with these 2 pieces. The clearance between the tube and the rod will be very small and the internal diameter of the tube will be small enough to prevent the nails bending while you hammer the rod down on them in most cases. See the second video to see how easy it is to recover if a nail does bend if you lift the tube away from the surface of the wood while hammering.

Step 3: Using the Tool Compared to My Old Method


Tools needed.

The tube and rod

Claw Hammer


Suitable surface to work on

Work gloves



Clamp a piece of wood so the end with the nails in are not restricted. Slide the tube onto the first nail working it so it gradually straightens up the nail. When it is as straight as you can make it. Hold the tube so the end is as close to the wood and as near perpendicular to the wood you can get it. Insert the rod and tap the end with the hammer. Keep tapping the nail until the point has disappeared into the wood. The nail can then be pulled out with the claw of the hammer.

Step 4: Final Thoughts

The videos show what I would have normally done to remove a nail as well as using the tool.

In the second video you can see that the nail had bent over and dug into the wood.

Because of the chamfer on the tube it was easy to correct the problem.



    • Gardening Contest

      Gardening Contest
    • Trash to Treasure

      Trash to Treasure
    • Tape Contest

      Tape Contest

    5 Discussions


    25 days ago

    Generally on softwoods and some hardwoods it is easier and less destructive to grip with wire cutters and lever the head right through . The wire cutters are the cutters at 90 degrees to the nail so parallel to the timber.

    2 replies

    Reply 24 days ago

    Are you saying that you pull the head right through the wood? What happens as it emerges from the other side? Doesn't it rip bits of the wood out?
    Or are you saying you grip the head with the wire cutters and lever it out that way?
    Surely then you have to gouge the wood around the head to be able to pry it out.
    This tool doesn't do anything to the wood.


    Reply 23 days ago

    Pull the head right through . It does less damage because the fibres have been pushed in that direction already . Try it it works.
    Backing the nail out as you are doing reverses the fibres and does pull the timber up.
    On difficult ones rest the cutters on a piece if 1/8th steel to avoid timber damage by the cutters. Lots of leverage that way.


    4 weeks ago

    Thanks, much appreciated.

    Penolopy Bulnick

    4 weeks ago

    Nice job on your first Instructable and this tool does look super handy. Much faster than the other method :)