Mallet vs Hammer | Difference Between Hammer and Mallet

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Last Updated on January 15, 2023 by John Patterson

Mallets and hammers are some of the oldest hand tools used in carpentry, home remodeling, woodworking, metalworking, handymanship, and whatnot!

And in this article today, we are up to know the real differences in structure and uses of a hammer and a mallet. If you are in a dilemma about choosing one of these two, this article is right for you.

In the piece, we’ve discussed the definition, structure, types, and uses of hammer and a mallet. Later on, we put a head-to-head comparison between them.

Sounds interesting? Keep reading-

Mallet vs. Hammer: Comparison

Mallet vs Hammer

Preview
Best Mallet
TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
Best Hammer
ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
Title
TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
Editor's Rating
4.9/5
4.9/5
Prime Status
Best Mallet
Preview
TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
Title
TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
Editor's Rating
4.9/5
Prime Status
Best Hammer
Preview
ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
Title
ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
Editor's Rating
4.9/5
Prime Status

Here we have described the detail of the hammer and a mallet for you. 

What is a Mallet?

a mallet

A mallet is a predominantly used tool in carpentry and home improvement. It has a straightforward structure containing a wooded head and a wooden or metal handle. The wooden head will be a bit inverted for operational purposes. In some cases, there also is a hold of a rectangular shape that goes through the center.

The wooden or metal handle fits into the hole at the bottom section of the head. To make it a secure fit, some wood or metal glue can be placed between the joint.

Recommended Best Mallets on Amazon: 

TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
12,639 Reviews
TEKTON 16 oz. Fiberglass Handle Rubber Mallet | 30603 , Black
  • Double-faced solid rubber head delivers a softened...
  • High-strength fiberglass handle core helps absorb...
  • Exterior poly jacket protects handle core from...
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  • Made for construction, woodworking, and automotive...
TEKTON Double-Faced Soft Mallet | 30812
4,815 Reviews
TEKTON Double-Faced Soft Mallet | 30812
  • Soft faces deliver a solid strike without damaging...
  • Lightweight tubular steel handle shifts the weight...
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  • Chrome plated finish resists corrosion and easily...
Sale
Wood Is Good WD205 Mallet, 18-Ounce
508 Reviews
Wood Is Good WD205 Mallet, 18-Ounce
  • Quiet yet transmit maximum blow
  • Made in USA

Uses of A Mallet/What is a Mallet used for

mallet uses

There can be several fields of use for a wooden mallet. As they come up with a gentle striking force that doesn’t break the structure of the workpiece, it’s primarily used in putting together things or shaping them properly.

Here is a list of uses that are made out of a wooden mallet-

Mainly, mallets made of wood are utilized in carpentry. Mallets are used to secure pieces of wood and drive chisels and similar tools into wooden surfaces.

It is also used to strike and shape metals and tools. That’s because it doesn’t damage the surface but still helps to shape it.

The best mallet is also used as a shock absorber. That’s because mallets can take much impact force without deforming or breaking. Usually, you can see it with the dents in the wooden fibers.

What We Liked
    • Lightweight, easy to use.
    • A simple structure to make use of.
    • It shapes, reshapes, organizes, and puts things together.
    • A day-to-day tool in carpentry and home improvement.
    • A quite budget-friendly price.

What We Didn't Like
  • Not able to deliver high-impact forces.

What is a Hammer? 

hammer

A hammer is a hand tool used to drive objects with a blunt and hard force. Usually, it contains a metal-made head and a metal or wooden handle. Apart from these two, there are micro-level parts that we want to list down for you-

  • The face.
  • The neck.
  • The eye.
  • The claw.
  • The handle.
  • The handle grip.

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ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
9,247 Reviews
ESTWING Sure Strike Drilling/Crack Hammer - 3-Pound Sledge with...
  • FORGED STEEL HEAD – Maximum strength and...
  • BALANCE AND TEMPER – The most durable, longest...
  • HEAVY HITTING HAMMER – Perfectly balanced to...
  • FIBERGLASS HANDLE – Lightweight, durable handle...
  • VERSATILITY ON THE JOB – Use with chisels,...
EFFICERE 8-oz. All-Purpose Stubby Hammer with Magnetic Nail Starter,...
6,097 Reviews
EFFICERE 8-oz. All-Purpose Stubby Hammer with Magnetic Nail Starter,...
  • Drop forged and heated treated alloy steel head...
  • Sharpened and curved claw ends generates maximum...
  • Finely polished finish with rust-preventative...
  • Built-in magnetic nail holder for easy start with...
  • Ergonomically designed anti-vibration handle...
ESTWING Hammer - 16 oz Straight Rip Claw with Smooth Face & Shock...
3,538 Reviews
ESTWING Hammer - 16 oz Straight Rip Claw with Smooth Face & Shock...
  • FORGED IN ONE PIECE - Forged using one solid piece...
  • RIP CLAW VERSATILITY - This Estwing hammer...
  • BUILT FOR THE PRO - For those who want a tool that...
  • PATENTED SHOCK REDUCTION GRIP - Reducing Impact...
  • AMERICAN MADE QUALITY - Using only the highest...

Uses of A Hammer/What is a Hammer used for

hammer uses

Talking about the uses of hammers, different kinds of them should be considered. Here is a type-by-type discussion on the hammers and their uses-

Claw hammer: Mainly used to do handyman tasks around the house. Also, used rapidly in garages.

Ball Pein hammer: Helps mainly to shape metals and close rivets. Therefore, this best hammer is better suited for professional applications.

Straight pein hammer: It’s another product used to shape metals. It is also suitable for starting panel pins and tacks.

Cross Pein Pin hammer: These are used to improve the previous type’s comfort. It is mainly used in cabinetwork.

Club hammer: Almost shaped like a mallet, used in driving masonry nails and steel chisels.

What We Liked
    • It can be used in household and professional work.
    • With durability for repeated strikes.
    • Shaping, sizing, and destroying are being done by it.

What We Didn't Like
  • Quite heavy and risky to use.

Difference Between Hammer and Mallet

Mallet or Hammer, which one is better? In a head-to-head comparison between mallet and hammer, we notice several differences. Here you go with a point-by-point discussion-

The material

Both tools have a mismatch with the material, mainly the head section. While hammerheads are usually made of forged metal like steel, iron, or so, mallets can be made of metals, wood, and rubber. And with the difference in metal comes the difference in uses as well.

The Head Structure

The hammer has a rounded head on one side. On the other side, it has a pointy and angled back. On the other hand, the mallet is rounded on both sides of the head. The diameter of the rounded head is also more significant than the hammers.

The Striking Forces

As hammers are made of metals and mallets are usually made of non-metals, the striking force of the hammer is more than the mallets. If you want to break something or crash them anyway, you will go with the best hammer. On the other hand, if you’re going to level something or apply firm pressure, the best mallet is the tool to go with.

The Purposes

Lastly, the purpose sets these two hand tools apart from each other. The purpose of a hammer is to pound nails on any wooden or similar surfaces. Also, to break bricks or walls, hammers are used. The other side of the hammer is usually used to pin-point applied force on any object.

On the other hand, the sole purpose of mallets is to put the pieces together by applying firm pressure on the subjects. Also, if you have to drive chisels or dowels, you would also go with mallets.

In Conclusion

Alright, guys, that had been the head-to-head comparison between a hammer and a mallet. Hopefully, you have been informed enough to choose from these two powerful tools. Good luck with your venture with the tools!

Related Reading:
#1. Dead Blow Hammer and Rubber Mallet Differences
#2. Peavey and Cant Hook Differences

About the author

John Patterson

Hi there! My name is John Patterson. I’m a meticulous guy who loves to deal with the perfect tools for various needs. No matter if it’s a woodworking tool or gardening tool or anything else, I don’t compromise the quality and usability. Since 2010 I’ve been testing different tools for different DIY and professional tasks. Later in 2015, I decided to share my knowledge with the world. I started by answering people in the forums and several Q/A sites like Quora. Then I founded this blog to aid others like you with my knowledge and experience.