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Old 02-02-2017, 07:58 PM   #1
sevt_chevelle
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My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Thought I’d share a few pictures of my latest project(s), body hammer restorations. I started collecting old body tools about 10 years ago, everything from magic dent erasers, pneumatic pick hammers to just plain old hammers and dollies. Currently, I own about 150 hammers from Fairmount/Martin, Porter Ferguson, Plvmb/Proto, Herbrand, Heller, Bonney, Streamline, Snap-on and God knows what else. As far as dollies and spoons am guessing that number is north of 100 as well.
I start with some of the tools used to restore these body hammers. The first tool is a bench grinder with a multi-tool attachment setup for 2x48 sanding belts. Useful for dressing the working faces of the hammers, removing rust pits, dings/nicks and prep for final polishing. I bought mine from Trick Tools in Pella Iowa. I use 80, 180, 220, 400 and 1200 grit.

Always need good PPE, face shield and dust mask are must haves.

Since I have one I opted to use my SAS “fresh” air system for the vast majority of the time. Place it in a clean area of the shop and it pumps fresh air to you, only downside is that you have to drag a hose behind you.


Wire wheel. All I’ll say is that after wire wheeling a few hammer heads I broke down and bought a bead blast cabinet. A wire wheel works for cleaning off paint and rust.
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Old 02-02-2017, 07:58 PM   #2
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

There’s a picture of just some random hammers I picked out to start with, a couple of Streamline, Fairmount, and Proto.


I’ll start out with this odd Streamline hammer, it’s big it’s heavy and it has by far the large working face of any body hammer I own, plus I’ve never seen another one like it. As you can see it started out rusty and the face was dinged up and pitted.


Somehow I missed the progress pictures of wire wheeling and dressing the faces, but here I am fitting the new handle to the semi finished hammer head. At this point its wire wheeled and dressed with 400 grit from the bench grinder. Once am done fitting the handle I’ll start sanding the faces with finer grit paper working up to 2000 grit. If you notice on the handle I scribbled a F with an arrow pointing. This is so when am fitting the handle I can keep the same orientation of the hammer head and handle.
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Old 02-02-2017, 07:59 PM   #3
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

The handle came coated with a lacquer or poly coating and had Genuine Hickory stamped into one of the flats. The coating actually looked good but the Genuine Hickory nameplate had to go so I sanded it flat with 80 and then 180. The handle came from Dagger tools, priced at about 6.50 is 13 inches in length and has IMO the preferred Octagonal sided shape verses the traditional oval shape.

For the handles I decided to try out a product for gun stock refinishing. I have a M1 Garand that I’m restoring and this product was highly recommended. It’s from Birchwood Casey and called Tru Oil and depending on the number of coats you can go from an eggshell sheen to a deep luster gloss.

These pictures really don’t show, but the replacement handles from Martin Tools part number HH42B which is patterned for the older Fairmount hammers came with a really crappy finish. It was rough uneven and just plain awful to look it, it sucked. The two outside handles are as they came from Martin, the two inner handles were sanded with 180 then had one coat of Tru Oil applied. One coat gave them a nice even eggshell sheen, you can also apply multiply coats then buff with 0000 steel wool to achieve a even nicer/smoother satin sheen.

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Old 02-02-2017, 08:00 PM   #4
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Fast forward a bit since I forgot to take pictures, but the head is painted handle finished and installed. This picture shows the fit of the handle and metal wedges driven in place. To get the finishing touch I took my 3 inch polisher with 80 grit then went to 320 grit for a nice smooth appearance.


Placed some sealant over the eye of the handle which helps keep the wood from drying out and the handle nice and tight on the hammer head.

Now the money shot, face sanded with 2000 grit and polished with a loose flannel wheel and white tripol compound. Overkill maybe, but the pictures don’t do this hammer justice! You could shave in the reflection and depth in the handle looks like its miles deep.



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Old 02-02-2017, 08:00 PM   #5
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

This hammer I have no idea what brand it is am guessing an import model and came in a package deal as I surely wouldn’t have paid money for it. I found it tucked away in one of my hammer toolboxes and thought what the hell why not take it to the prom. At first glance it appeared to be a cast iron hammer, not good, despite the words Drop Forged cast on the bottom. The faces were rough and pitted but not from rust, looks like it went straight from the mold to a sand blaster then out the door. Did a ring test passed, did a quick spark test on the bench grinder passed as well. Since the hammer passed the cast iron tests I knew it was a good quality steel. I didn’t want to spend a lot of time on this hammer so it got a quick and dirty sand and polish job. Somewhere in the sanding process I nicked the handle and put a gouge in the wood. At first I was just gonna let it be, this is supposed to be a quick and dirty clean up job. Needless to say that gouge got sand out the old finish stripped off and handle sanded baby smooth. With the handle stripped and cleaned I wanted to try something different. So I grabbed my torch and proceeded to burn the wood with a nice hot flame. Got the appearance I wanted and then sanded it again with 180. With the handle still warm I blew off the handle with compressed air and applied one coat of Tru Oil. I must say for something that was just a quick and dirty clean up job this hammer is probably my favorite, just turned out far better then what I thought.





Some random pictures of some dollies that I did, removed all the dings, rust, sanded with 2000 grit then polished to a mirror like sheen.



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Old 02-02-2017, 08:01 PM   #6
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

This is another hammer head I found just laying around. I don’t know much about the brand, ABC, I do have a few ABC branded hammers. They are what I will say a lower quality or tier but still good usable forged steel hammers. Am not one for modifying hammers but for this one I decided to make a clone of a discontinued Snap-on hammer a double reverse curve part number BF615.







To start went the bench vise clamped one end in and took my 4.5 angle grinder with a 36 grit flap disc. Once roughed out took it to my belt sander and smoothed out the heads up to 400 grit.



Cleaned up, rust and paint free. I masked the faces off but let a little exposed that way when it is painted I can come back with my 3 inch polisher and some 800 grit sand off the excess paint and have no tape lines.

Primed with Upol spray can acid etch#8. If you look at the upper right corner I have my heat gun keeping the hammer nice and warm.
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Old 02-02-2017, 08:02 PM   #7
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Painted.


Hammer handle installed, wedges driven in and sanded smooth with a coat of sealer applied to keep the wood from drying out and the handle nice and tight. I used one of the martin tools handles part number HH42B, the thing fit like a glove.


I also did a real quick torch flame job on the handle just enough to give some color. Also applied 4 coats of Tru Oil and got a nice deep gloss.

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Old 02-02-2017, 08:03 PM   #8
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Couple of progress pictures of a Fairmount 164. The face was rather pitted and dinged up, makes me wonder what it’s previous owner used it for.








Getting ready to sand smooth the remaining bits of the handle and nicked the fresh paint twice not even remotely happy with that one!
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Old 02-02-2017, 08:04 PM   #9
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Nicks sanded out and re-sprayed and sealer applied.

Handle on the Fairmount 164. I applied 5-6 coats of Tru Oil then wet sanded with 2000 grit then buffed the handle.

Along with a different Streamline hammer that I did at the same time.




Little group photo.

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Old 02-02-2017, 08:24 PM   #10
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Beautiful work.
Kim
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:51 PM   #11
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Nice work.
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:56 PM   #12
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Wow! Nice work. I like it when a fellow takes pride in his working tools. I can't do body work due to lack of patience. Great job!
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Old 02-03-2017, 12:04 AM   #13
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

DAAAAMN Eric, those are too nice to use now! They look like friggin art!

That one with yellow paint on it in this photo looks Craftsmen? Did it come with a fiberglass handle? It looks exactly like one I have.



Your bench and tools and stuff on it looks so much like mine it's scary! The cut in half 3M rubber block, the hammers, everything, you and I could be brothers from another mother?

Good stuff!

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Old 02-03-2017, 09:20 PM   #14
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Brian,
Yeah, those hammers will collect dust in my toolbox.

The hammer with the yellow paint and the two directly upwards of it are made by Streamline. You can tell a Streamline from a mile away with its distinctive football like shape and wide cast line running down the middle of the hammer. I have a tool catalog from Streamline that dates back to the early 50's. You can still buy Streamline today. http://www.shindustries.com/Default.aspx

But with that said, Craftsman body hammers were made by Streamline and painted blue in Color. Mac Tools also used Streamline until at least the 70's, they were painted dark red in color. The hammers were identical other then the paint job and logo stamped into the handle. Streamline also made hammers under the label Nuapla(sp?) that featured fiberglass handles.

The work bench...LOL. Typically when I work on something the area looks like a bomb went, but I know where everything is placed. At the end of day it all finds it's home only to be scattered about again.

Can't remember without looking but this catalog is late 50's I believe.


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Old 02-03-2017, 09:45 PM   #15
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

I won’t call this one a restoration more like getting a ladder out so it doesn’t fall the entire length of the tree. This sad hammer came in a package deal, am guessing the seller felt sorry for it or just wanted it gone. My first thoughts were WTF, what kind of butchers do this kind of stuff to tools, but like a sad puppy it grew on me. The more I looked at it and thought about it I really wanted to make this hammer shine again.




The day came for this hammer’s make over I was really looking forward to this hammer and then I found this and instantly my heart sank. A nice crack in the face, game over.

Well, came close to tossing it the dumpster but fixed her up instead. Not the prettiest girl at the dance but far better then showing up with your mom. Took it to the bench grinder and ground down til the crack was gone and wore out a 36 grit flap disc as well.



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Old 02-03-2017, 09:45 PM   #16
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Now with a spray bomb hammer tone finish, I kinda like it. Makes for a nice beater hammer better then becoming a dumpster baby.

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Old 02-03-2017, 11:35 PM   #17
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Cool stuff!

Brian
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Old 02-05-2017, 10:28 AM   #18
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Nice work and tutorial Eric. And a great save on the last hammer.

Up in post 5 you reference a ring test. Could you explain what that is?
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Old 02-05-2017, 11:10 AM   #19
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Doug good question. The ring test is used to determine if a part is cast iron or a steel alloy. If you strike a known cast iron object with say a wrench it will make a dull thud sound. Strike a high quality steel alloy piece and it will ring.

The grind test is some what destructive. If you grind a cast iron piece the sparks will be dull red in color and short in length. Cast steel will produce bright yellow sparks and contain what they call bursts at the tips.


http://www.knucklebusterinc.com/feat...fyMetal_01.jpg
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Old 02-23-2017, 11:45 PM   #20
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Wow those are really works of art. You could use one of those for a shift knob, that would be cool. I can't imagine ever hitting anything with them!
After the 2000 grit, what do you use to polish them?
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Old 02-23-2017, 11:53 PM   #21
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Just looked at their website. Nice stuff but way out of my price range. I might have to build my own belt grinder.
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Old 04-15-2017, 04:44 PM   #22
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Not much of a progress report, somehow life always gets in the way. Couple pics of some no name hammer, hammer head on far right.

Ground the square end down to a reverse curve shape using a flap disc and a 4.5 grinder, finished the shaping a belt sander and 80 grit.



Painted.

Handle installed. I once again burnt the handle with a torch then stained it with Red Oak stain and applied 4-5 coats of Tru-oil. I then wet sanded then handles with 2000 grit and buffed to a high gloss.

I also sanded the paint off the flats of the hammer giving it a Snap-on kinda look.

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Old 04-15-2017, 04:44 PM   #23
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration



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Old 04-15-2017, 04:45 PM   #24
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

There are some pictures of the hammers I’ve added since January 2017, if I counted right there are 42 new hammers. We have some Fairmount, Porter Ferguson, early and late Martin, Streamline, Herbrand, Mac, Williams, Snap-on.







Even added another elusive Snap-on BF 615 double reverse, this one will become my working hammer.
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Old 04-15-2017, 06:41 PM   #25
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Re: My latest project(s) body hammer restoration

Man, awesome collection of art/tools there Eric.

Brian
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