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How to dress a Haberman Hammer


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I've just ordered whats likely to be the most expensive hammer I'll ever buy, a 1.3 kg Haberman. I think I probably know how to dress a hammer but reckon it would be a good idea to ask you guys how best to do it - I don't want to mess up a $80.00 Hammer! I know there is a picture of the "original" on this site but it is an old hammer and has probably been redressed a few times?! Any suggestions, or better still pictures, much appreciated.


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Don't they come in a fit state to use for that price?

When making hammers on a commercial scale, ( and the company I worked for also hand forged the climbing items for the first succesful ascent of Everest in '53 ) the initial shaping and fitting was done before the items left the shop, and they were fit to use from receipt by the customer.

Dressing should only be necessary after it has been used, I have been using the same hammer I made for over 45 years now, and all I have had to do to it is occassionally polish the face, and replace the handle.

Some like to just increase the radius on the edge of the face, but try it before you decide what is needed for YOUR type of work.

You can take the metal off easily enough but its more difficult to restore when youv'e gone too far.

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I would say that whether a hammer is sufficiently finished for use depends on the opinion of the smith. At one guild meeting about 10 years ago, a vendor selling Peddinghaus Swedish Pattern Hammers showed up on the same day as a knifemaker. After the demonstration lines formed. First smiths would buy a Peddinghous hammer, then they would go over to one of the knifemaker's sander/grinders and reshape the heads. Nol Putnam used to give demonstrations on reshaping the heads of hammers. He would take off the handle and reforge the hammer to be more domed at the ends, and would ease and round the edges of each end, thus giving them a few of the features now found in Hofi hammers.

Often a hammer, that is not a Hofi hammer, can benefit from at least having the edges and corners refinished so that the hammer is less likely to leave marks in the surface that is being forged. Corners should be removed, and the face of the hammer should transition into the sides without angles and flat surfaces.

Maybe it will come ready to use, but it doesn't look like it in the pictures: - ANGELE Schmiedetechnik - ANGELE-SHOP

The corners look awful sharp to me?

The corners look very sharp and unfinished to me also! For the few extra dollar I would purchase a Hofi hammer instead. The Habermann hammer looks unusable to me, and looks difficult to fix it so it will not leave marks. But that is just my opinion and forging preference.

I hope that helps, but seeing is the best way to get the idea. Edited by UnicornForge
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I agree, it looks like it needs some dressing. I'd use it first before doing more than polishing though as that's how I determine what it needs to suit me.

Otherwise I don't see much that'd make me chose this one over picking up a cross pein at the hardware store or yard sale and dressing it to suit.


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I'll jump in on this topic. If you buy a hammer from a blacksmith that specializes in hammers, it will already be finished off and ready to use. If you buy from "factory" or "commercial" sources, the hammers will be mass produced and relatively unfinished, The face and pein will need sanding to get rid of the sharp or rough edges. This is easy enough to do with a belt sander/grinder, just extra effort. Also, the handle will likely need sanding to get a good fit to your hand. So when looking at prices, consider the extra work and time to get a "commercial" hammer finished versus one ready to pound from a blacksmith.

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Thanks for the comments guys. I bought this hammer as it seemed to be a good weight at 1.3 kg - my 1.0kg seems a little light now and the 1.5 is too heavy for me. I also liked the short head length on the Haberman and the handle shape - but we'll see when it arrives! Thanks again. :)

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