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JustinJ1982

So I got my first hammer...

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Just a local hardware store bought cross peen made in Mexico with a wooden handle. 2lbs.

My question is should I file the grooves down on the face and smooth off the sharp round edge too?

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Yep, you should smooth the face and the edges too so when you will hit the hot metal, you won't leave sharp dents on your work. The grooves your are talking must be very small circular line on the face i guess? Mine also had these grooves but I sanded them down. If you don't do this, you will have the impression that you have many digital prints on your work...

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Many of us like a rocker face---think of the rocker on a rocking chair. You can do it incrementally and just stop when you feel the hammer isn't leaving edge dings anymore.

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most likely the pien is way too sharp also. when you use it you want rounde inpressions not a sharp gouge. Without seeing the hammer maybe 1/2 inch needs to be taken off to get a good radius and you will not be able to do that with sand paper in one day.

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Think belt sander or angle grinder with sanding disk, try to keep the face cool while working on it too.

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Hand file would work better than sandpaper by hand. File to the shape you want it and polish out the file marks with the sandpaper.

Expect it to take a bit of work. Without power tools, it isn't going to be an easy task.

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A dremmel tool will put in more imperfections in the face than before you start. The file would be your best bet since you have no other power tools. Is there a machine shop in your area or a friend with tools?

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I have the hammer your talking about. Mine is a 3 pounder but its the same company I'm sure of it. I just used sand paper and time. It worked out great and its one of my best all round hammers now. It won't take that long. I had mine polished to 600 grit in a few hours. The peen I did by hand too. I put the hammer between my knees peen up and polished like I was doing my shoes till I got it to about a 1/2" radius. If I remember right I did that with 50 or 60 grit then polished like the face to 600 grit. The whole process was a full days work. But it was fun to me.

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Attention young whipper-snappers! Take some advise from one of the old and decrepit: (me). Conan was wrong, that which does not kill you, makes you reach for the ibuprofen upon awakening when you get old.

Do a job once, by hand, so you will know how, and appreciate how much work it is. Then, hie thee to the marketplace and buy the best power tool you can afford that will do the job, even if it is just a $10 Horrible Freight grinder. Your joints will thank you when you get old. And you will accomplish so much more in a day.

A good grinder and a selection of accessories (which will easily cost more than the grinder) is an essential in a modern metal shop for cutting, polishing, shaping, rust removal, sharpening, the list goes on. Starving ragamuffins who will word for pennies being so hard to find these days.

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I know many who hate to think that Horrible Freight tools are bad....but I have used many of their $15 grinders until disposal time. Most time the cord went bad first is what I have found. If you add a flap disc to the above the hammer the guy wants to perfect the whole job will be over in about 15 minutes...easy.

Look at other forum information on the shape of the rounding die (head) and the profile of the pein. For me I want the face to NOT be flat but into a variable sphere. That way a minor tilt brings about a new shape. For my cross pien I do not want it flat across the face...but with a slightly rounded contour.

Learn to control your hammer...and your body. Make good work from your tools. Do not waste good money on bad tools.

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One of my students is draw filing a knife and last Tuesday he came to me and said he really needs to work on his hammer control as now he *realizes* why I kept emphasizing how bad hammer control equates to *MUCH* more work filing...

A cheap angle grinder can save you tons of time. Also scale is hard on files and abrasives. Removing it with a quick buzz of the grinder will make files and belts last a *lot* longer!

I've been told the secret to extending life of HF grinders is to never let them get hot; have several and rotate use to keep them cool. I wouldn't know I buy used top of the line grinders cheap and use them *hard*---often for decades!

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best value and most useable tool is a 2x42" belt sander, next is an angle grinder with flap disks. Those two will save you the most time and work in sharpening, cleaning, finishing off new hammers and other tools.

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Beau I just last week got a 2x72 Grizzly belt sander. Now I wished I had purchased it years ago. Not that it replaces any of the 7 small grinders I have plugged in at all time, but it certainly will sharpen a slitter, hot cut, and fingernail very effeciently. I have not used one of those expensive 2x72 bladesmithing devices to compare quality. My Grizzly is satisfactory with a purpose built stand.

Carry on

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