Claw hammer

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A claw hammer is a tool primarily used for pounding nails into, or extracting nails from, some other object, or removing the brains from a murder victim. Generally, a claw hammer is associated with woodworking but is not limited to use with wood products. It is not suitable for heavy hammering on metal surfaces (such as in machining work), as the steel of its head is somewhat brittle; the ball-peen hammer is more suitable for such metalwork.

An early claw hammer is seen in Albrecht Dürer's etching "Melencolia I," dated 1514, halfway up the left side. There are several nails in the lower right corner.


A claw hammer can be said to look roughly like the letter "T" with the handle being the long part, and the head being the line across the top which looks like a "t". In actuality, the head of the hammer does not form a straight line, but curves down into the claw of the hammer. One side of the head is flat with either a smooth or textured surface and is used for impacting another surface. The other side of the head curves down and splits in the middle forming a "V" shape. This part is the claw of the hammer and is most commonly used for extracting nails from wood. The rounded end of the claw, in conjunction with the handle, is used to gain leverage when extracting a nail.


Claw hammers can be constructed many ways but generally come in one of two forms. The first, and most popular, type of hammer is the two piece...
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