The 20 Types of Hammers and when to use them

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  June 20, 2021
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The hammer is among those tools that have a variety of roles besides doing carpentry and simple construction.

Hammers consist of three parts, a weighted head, a handle made from wood or rubber and the back. They are used to create an impact on a small area.

Hammers are used mainly to drive nails into wood or steel, to shapen metal sheets or solid metals and also for crushing rocks and bricks.

Some hammers are highly specialized for the tasks traditionally held by axes. Besides, the rest of the hammers are versatile and are used in any workshop.

There are different types of hammers according to size, shape, uses, and materials. Here are some hammers for your betterment to choose from for your work.

The 20 Different Types of Hammers

Types of Hammer

Ball Peen Hammer

It’s the hammer having rounded peen and mostly used by engineers. The handles are made of wood, especially ash or hickory.

Mostly used for shaping metals and closing rivets ends. Also used for rounding edges of fasteners and for “Peening“, a fabrication method.

 Cross and Straight Pein

These hammers are mainly used for shaping metals. The pain can be at right angles to the handle or parallel with it.

The cross pein can be used for starting panel pins and tacks. Also used for light joinery and cabinet works. Handles are made of wood, usually Ash.

Claw Hammer

It’s the most recognized hammer for general works. Have wooden, glass-fibred or steel handles.

The back of the claw is curved, a forked claw of “V” shape to draw out nails. Used to lever up floorboards or where other places where a lever is required.

It’s a versatile hammer for different types of works and a common member of every workshop.

Club Hammer

This hammer is also known as a lump or drilling hammer. The double-faced head is good for light demolition works.

It’s also used for driving steel chisels and masonry nails. The handles are made of wood, synthetic resin or hickory.

It’s not well-suited for commercial works rather best suited to domestic work.

Sledge Hammer

This double-head metal hammer has a long handle similar to a mallet. The handle may be made of wood or non-slip rubber coating.

It’s used for heavier jobs like breaking up concrete, stone or masonry, driving in stakes. Also used for lighter jobs blowing the head of the hammer.

But for heavier work, the hammer is swung like an axe. It’s used for commercial works as well as household works.

Dead Blow Hammer

For minimal recoil and soft blows, this hammerhead is designed specially. The head is either made of solid rubber or plastic or sometimes semi-hollow filled with sand or lead shot.

From woodworking to automotive applications, these hammers can be used everywhere. They aid in dislodging parts, fixing small dents and knocking wood together or apart without marring the surface.

These hammers are found in every workshop as well as in woodworking projects.

Framing Hammer

These hammers provide heavy heads, longer handles, and milled faces in order to drive large nails quickly into dimensional lumber.

It has straight claw to carry out heavy-duty ripping jobs and also for removing nails. To prevent slippage while driving nails, the heads are made waffled.

This hammer is mainly used for house framing as it’s found in carpenter’s tool bag.

Tack Hammer

This hammer has two long, claw-like heads, one of which has a magnetized face and is used for holding and driving tacks.

It’s a lightweight hammer that is often referred to as an upholstery hammer. The non-magnetized end is used for driving the placed.

Rubber Mallet

This is the most common type of mallets for simple works. It has a rubber head that allows softer blows to any irregular surface and also increases the service life of the conformable anti-slip tape.

The wooden handle reduces vibration during the stroke and increases comfort. It’s used on sheet metal, in woodworking and upholstery.

It’s also gentle enough to force plasterboard into place without damaging it. These hammers are preferable for simple woodworking projects.

Piton Hammer

This hammer is known as a rock climbing hammer. It has straight pein containing a hole for removing pitons.

Anvil style head is whether heavy or lighter with a hollow handle that depends upon the type of rock climbing intended.

To drive more pitons quickly with less fatigue, heavier models are used whereas the lighter models are used when driving fewer pitons to reduce weight loads.

Some of these hammers have interchangeable heads for a wider range of climbing methods.

Blacksmith Hammer

The blacksmith’s hammer is a type of sledgehammer where the second head is slightly tapered and rounded.

These hammers are designed specifically for forging white-hot steel against an anvil to make different tools.

Brick Hammer

The brick hammer’s claw doubles as a chisel for scoring, on the other hand, the narrow head is used for splitting bricks.

This design makes the hammer useful in bricklaying and masonry projects. Also used for making brick chips for concreting purposes.

This hammer also referred to as a masonry hammer.

Drywall Hammer

Straight peen hammers are specially designed for drywall works named as drywall hammer. It has a specialized end that closely resembles a hatchet with a notch in the bottom.

It’s important holding nails in place without damaging the drywall paper and the notch does so. In order to chop off excess bits of drywall safely the blade of the pein can be used.

Engineering Hammer

The engineer’s hammer features a rounded head and cross peen and a handle made of either wood or rubber.

This hammer was traditionally used for locomotive repair and also for shaping metals.

This hammer also commonly referred to heavier ball peen hammers and hammers which have a rounded double head.

Blocking Hammer

These hammers feature a flat, square head on one side and cylindrical head on the other side. These are commonly used by blacksmiths for metal works and for making tools.

It’s used for shaping metal on a block or anvil.

Brass Hammer

This type of hammers features a thin, cylindrical double-head used for pounding steel pins without damaging the surrounding surface.

Both automotive and woodworking shops, these hammers are used.

Hatchet Hammer

The hatchet hammer is one of the more unusual types of hammer used. These hammers sometimes referred to as a half-hatchet that have axe blade instead of a peen.

This hammer can be used for tasks of various types. For this, it is well-suited for survival and emergency toolkits.

Joiner’s Mallet

The head of this traditional mallet is made of a solid, slightly tapered wood block instead of metal.

It can be used for driving chisels or gently tapping wood joints together without marring the surface.

Electrician’s Hammer

This electrician’s hammer is a variation of a claw hammer. It has an extended neck on the head.

This extended part allows electricians to target nails embedded in hard to reach places.

Mechanic’s Hammer

This hammer features a flat head and a long pein tipped with a conical die. It sometimes referred to as a body mechanic’s hammer.

It is used with a curved type of anvil in order to remove dents in car panels.


Here are some frequently asked questions and their answers.

What is the most basic type of hammer?

Claw hammers are the most common type of hammer. The head is smooth for clean finishing work.

How many types of ITI hammer are there?

1- HAND HAMMER:- 3- It is mostly used for machine shop and fitting shop. 4- It is made by drop-forged carbon steel. 5- The major parts of a hammer are Head and Handle. 6- The hammers are specified by weight and the shape of the peen.

What is a big hammer called?

Related. War hammer. A sledgehammer (like these choices) is a tool with a large, flat, often metal head, attached to a long handle.

What type of hammer should I buy?

For general DIY and remodeling use, the best hammers are steel or fiberglass. Wood handles break, and the grip is more slippery. They’re fine for the shop or trim work but less useful on a general-purpose hammer. Other things being equal, fiberglass handles are lighter; steel handles are more durable.

What is the most expensive hammer?

While looking for a set of adjustable wrenches I stumbled upon what has to be the world’s most expensive hammer, $230 at Fleet Farm, a Stiletto TB15SS 15 oz. TiBone TBII-15 Smooth/Straight Framing Hammer with Replaceable Steel Face.

Why are Estwing hammers so good?

Estwing hammers succeed because they perfectly deliver everything you could want in a hammer: a comfortable grip, great balance, and a natural-feeling swing with a solid strike. As a a single piece of steel from tip to tail, they’re also indestructible.

What is a California framing hammer?

OVERVIEW. California framer® style hammer combines features of two of the most popular tools into a rugged, heavy construction hammer. The smoothly swept claws are borrowed from a standard rip hammer, and the extra large striking face, hatchet eye and sturdy handle are a heritage of the rig builder’s hatchet.

What is Hammer use?

For example, hammers are used for general carpentry, framing, nail pulling, cabinet making, assembling furniture, upholstering, finishing, riveting, bending or shaping metal, striking masonry drill and steel chisels, and so on. Hammers are designed according to the intended purpose.

What is the name of Hammer?

A large hammer-like tool is a maul (sometimes called a “beetle”), a wood- or rubber-headed hammer is a mallet, and a hammer-like tool with a cutting blade is usually called a hatchet.

What is an engineer’s hammer?

Sometimes called an engineer’s hammer, the ball peen hammer is used for many metalwork tasks. Rather than having a claw, the ball peen hammer has a flat striking surface on one face and a rounded one on the other. … Unlike claw hammers, which come with a variety of handles, these are usually made of hickory.

What is a cross peen hammer for?

The cross peen or cross pein hammer is the hammer most commonly used by blacksmiths and metalworkers. … They are ideal for spreading, and the hammer can simply be flipped from the flat end of the head to the wedge end of the head when more precision is needed.

What is a straight peen hammer? : a narrow round-edged peen of a hammer that is parallel to the handle.


Hammers are widely used for carpentry works, blacksmith’s works, metal works and so on. Different types of hammers have different applications.

It’s important to use the hammer according to work for a perfect result. There are different companies in the market for the manufacture of hammers.

Before buying any, check it’s compatibility, durability and also the price. It will help you to carry out your work easily.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.