AUTO BODY HAMMERS 101

We will try to show what to look for in a good body hammer versus a cheap $20 body set ..... There is a difference!!!....The hammers on the left [to right] the 1st is for shrinking,  the middle is a standard faced hammer used every day, the last one is a high crown........The handles come in wood, or fibreglas.....I personally prefer the feel of wood.....I feel it gives me more control and better sensitivity of the panel I am working on....The fiberglass absorbs more shock , but at the expense of feel....the Fiberglas is less prone to breakage

The first hammer face of the above 3 is flat.....this is used in the shrinking process .......Used with a shrinking dolly, or a hardwood dolly will cause the metal to shrink

The middle hammer of the above group is the proper face of a true body hammer.......To properly work metal over a dolly the face of the hammer must have a slight contour, otherwise when striking the metal the hammer will leave a ring in the shape of the hammer face.....This is where the cheap $20 body tool sets cut corners, they do not have the proper face contours!!!!    

This is a hammer face every body man should have in his tool box and most don't.......This is the face on the Fiberglas handled hammer above......Where this hammer face is necessary is on areas such as wheel well arches where a flatter faced hammer would hit in its sides and make flat spots in the metal......Another area I find is when knocking out a dent from the concave backside of a panel..... A flatter contoured hammer face will hit on its sides and leave rings in the panel

One problem with any wooden handled hammer is that the wood dries out and gets loose......Most peoples solutions is to pound down on the wedge, or hammer in another or worst yet a nail.......Here is  a solution I learned from a couple of old school bodymen......These guys at night instead if putting their hammers in their tool boxes they soaked the hammers in a water antifreeze solution [ over the weekend]....The water antifreeze solution causes the wood in the handle to swell tightening up the hammer like new......The antifreeze is a rust preventer and does not evaporate like water......All my hammers I use often get soaked once a week.......Unfortunately this trick does not work with Fiberglas 

This is where the sales pitch starts....The hammer and dollies we sell are for the most part manufactured by MARTIN TOOLS,or T&E.......A good hammer and dolly is forged steel not cast iron like the $20 throw away sets.......It is tough to stretch metal when the cast iron hammer and dolly  are softer than the metal you are working........   WE WILL NOT AND DO NOT SELL THESE TOOLS!!!!......THEY ARE DANGEROUS AND ARE JUNK !!!......Here is a little trick to see what you have......If you tap a forged hammer and dolly together you will hear a ring .......... Do the same with a cast hammer and dolly and you will hear a dull thud......The last advantage to a forged hammer and dolly is that the tool faces do not ding or mar as easily, therefore not transferring the imperfections to the panel you are working........Lastly the hammer handles in these cheap $20 sets are so poorly attached they not only come loose easily, The heads turn into projectiles causing damage to your project or serious injury.