Some of the Best Wood for Mallet

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Choosing the best wood for mallet is a task that requires some knowledge and careful consideration. Several types of woods can be used to create a mallet, but not all of them produce the best results. This article will discuss everything about using hardwood, softwoods and provide you with an easy-to-use hardness chart so that you can choose which type of wood best suits your needs!


Differences Between Hardwood and Softwood

Hardwood and softwoods are two of the best types of wood for making wooden mallets. They both have their own benefits, as well as drawbacks. Softwoods come from evergreens (such as pine), and they’re typically softer than hardwoods because they grow more quickly due to faster cell division rates in these trees.

Hardwoods grow at a slower rate but tend to be denser and last longer since growth is slowed by cold weather or dry conditions; this means that there’s less water pressure on the cells during tree growth which makes them tougher when compared to softwood trees. If you want your mallet head or handle material to be easier on your hands while hammering, then it’s best if you opt for lightweight softwood such as white pine. If you need some strength in your mallet, then it’s best to opt for hardwoods like maple or oak that are heavier and denser than their softer counterparts.

List of the 10 Best Wooden Mallets

Image Product Details   Price
Wood Is Good WD205 Mallet Wood Is Good WD205 Mallet 18-ounce, Urethane Head, Maple Wood Check Price
Schaaf Woodcarver Mallet Schaaf Woodcarver Mallet 12-oz, Urethane Head, Redwood Check Price
UJ Ramelson Rock Maple Mallet UJ Ramelson Rock Maple Mallet 14-ounce, Rock Maple Body, 9.5-inches Check Price
Narex 9 Oz Round Carving Mallet Narex 9 Oz Round Carving Mallet 9-oz, Beech Wood, 10-inches, 2.5-inches Diameter Check Price
Narex 21 oz Round Carving Mallet Narex 21 oz Round Carving Mallet 21-oz, Beech Wood, 12-inches, 3.5-inches Diameter Check Price
IRWIN Chisel Set with Mallet IRWIN Chisel Set with Mallet 3 Chisel, 1/2-inch, 3/4-inch, and 1-inch,
15-oz Mallet, Maple Wood
Check Price
Bora Wooden Mallet Bora Wooden Mallet Beechwood, 9-inches Handle, 4.5-inches Head Check Price
Narex 460 gram 16 oz Beech Wood Mallet Narex Beech Wood Mallet 460 gram 16 oz Check Price
CROWN 4.5 inch Beechwood Mallet CROWN 4.5 inch Beechwood Mallet 4.5 inch Beechwood Mallet Check Price
C.S. Osborne Hickory Barrel Shaped Mallet C.S. Osborne Hickory Barrel Shaped Mallet Hickory Barrel Shaped Mallet Check Price

Janka Test/Hardness Measuring System

The Janka hardness scale measures the force needed to push a steel ball into wood until it falls out and then back in again; this indicates how well the wood holds nails or other types of screws. The higher the number, the more brittle and less tough it becomes- which means it’s best suited for lightweight mallet heads or handles.

For example, white pine (which has a Janka number of 450) would best be used in softwood hammers since they are softer but durable enough to withstand noise-making without breaking! On the other end of the spectrum, oak (with a hardwood ranking at 1760) can handle being hammered with heavy tools while also being able to create powerful, impactful blows making this type one of the best options for those that want durability from their wooden hammering tool;

Wood Category

Softwoods (0-900)

These trees grow quickly and have less lignin; they’re usually lightweight, but they don’t last as long. But when you want to hit a soft wooden surface with this hammer, this is the best option because this mallet will not cause any damage to the surface. But for hard work like hitting a chisel, best not to use this type of mallet. Softwoods are best for hitting on soft surfaces such as leather or fabric and should be avoided when doing any hard work like woodwork with your wooden hammer – because they may cause damage. Examples of softwood are pine, cedar, and fir.

Hardwoods (1000-1760)

These trees grow more slowly but have a higher lignin content that makes them durable; they’re typically heavier than their softer counterparts, but this weight can create powerful hammering tools like a perfect chisel mallet. It is best for hard work like whacking a chisel or making furniture with your mallet head because it will not break easily when you hit on a wood surface. It can also be used for light-duty, such as hitting on soft surfaces such as leather or fabric. Examples of hardwoods are maple, oak, and beechwood.

Extremely hardwood (1760+)

If you need some serious strength in your wooden mallets, then it’s best to use an extremely hard wood-like ebony that has the highest density out of any other type of tree on Earth! This means that no matter how much force is exerted on the material, it should be able to withstand any kind of hammering without breaking. Examples of these types of woods are ebony, cocobolo, and lignum vitae.

best wood for mallet

List of Some Common Wood and Their Janka Rating

There is a lots of wood available at the market but not all of them are suitable for making mallet. Here is the list of some suitable wood.

Ebony3220Extremely Hardwood
Cocobolo2960Extremely Hardwood
Lignum Vitae4500Extremely Hardwood
Red Oak1290Hardwood
Live Oak2680Extremely Hardwood
Osage Orang2040Extremely Hardwood
Riven Ash1340Hardwood 
Hickory1820Extremely Hardwood
Ipe3510Extremely Hardwood
Hornbeam1780Extremely Hardwood
Redwood3190Extremely Hardwood
Japanese White Oak1200Hardwood
Curly Maple1450Hardwood
Firewood1860Extremely Hardwood
Osage2040Extremely Hardwood
Bubinga2690Extremely Hardwood
Bloodwood2900Extremely Hardwood
Splattered Maple1450Hardwood
Black Locust1700Hardwood
Bitter Cherry995Softwood
Big Cherry995Softwood
Wood Grit Chart

Best Wood for Mallet

Every hardwood that’s Janka rating is above 1000 can make a perfect wooden mallet. But everyone has their personal choice regarding what type of wood they want for this project. Do you have only one kind of wood from the list with more than a thousand ibf? If so, then go ahead and use that for your purposes! You could also try using something below 1000 if you really wanted but keep in mind: The lower the number, the softer material will be allowed to hammering with this. 

If you want to invest in a new tool and have some money set aside to buy one, read this article. Not only will it help you find the best wood type for your hammer, but I’m going to tell which types are being used by professional carpenters everywhere.

wooden hammer with handle
  • First, I will talk about the most popular one. Almost 60% of woodworkers keep this wood as the first priority for making a wooden mallet. Lignum vitae, the super hardwood with a Janka rating of 4500, is one of the most popular woods for making wooden mallets. The pieces are very strong and will last longer than your lifetime if taken care of properly. It is pretty expensive and hard to work with this type of timber due to its hardness level. This requires special tools that may not be cheap or easy to come by. In addition, you must make sure not to use this on soft surfaces without risking damaging them because Lignum Vitae cannot be worked into softer materials.

Know More: The Best Chisel Mallet and Wooden Mallet in 2022

making wooden hammer
  • Ipe (3510) is an extremely hardwood for making wooden mallets. It’s durable and well-performing, but some people don’t recommend it for the handle because handles should be made of a bit of a bit softer wood that will make an excellent addition to your hand. You can make a superb dead blow hammer with Ipe wood.
  • Bloodwood (2900) is a long-lasting wood that can survive for more than 30 years. This sturdy, durable material will maintain its original shape and color throughout the whole life of your project without any significant damages to it!
  • Osage Orange (2040), Redwood (3190) are known for being two of the strongest and most durable woods in existence. These trees have a reputation for building incredibly powerful hammers that can be used to do any type of hard work with ease. Osage Orange and Redwood possess a number of qualities that make them perfect for making hammers.
  • Osage has such an enthusiastic following because it’s one of the hardest varieties around, so this tree species can be used to create very powerful hammerheads without any problem. On top of that, its wood also possesses some excellent shock-absorbent properties, which means they are a must-have when you want to get rid of pesky nails in hardwoods like Cedar or Oak! Meanwhile, Redwood trees provide yet another excellent option, with their heavyweight being able to pack quite the punch during construction as well as having relatively high durability levels too-making these two favorites among carpenters everywhere today.
making wooden hammer
  • Hickory (1820) and Bubinga (2690) are some of the most popular types of wood that people often use for making mallets. Hickory, however, is not as good at holding up with a handle because its heavy weight makes it break too easy.
  • Firewood (1880), Black Locust (1700) are also suitable for making mallets that will be long lasting.
  • Rivan ash (1340), Beech (1300) are suitable for making a handle for a hammer. You can also try them for making hammerheads.
  • The Red Oak (1290) can make powerful hammers that are tough enough to handle hard work. They will not damage softer surfaces while being used, and the wood is also quite strong, which makes it perfect for constructing tool handles or other projects where durability is required.
  • If you want to make a beautiful hammer for gifting anyone or for personal use, then you can use some wood-like Walnut (1010), Maple (1450), Ash (1320), splattered Maple (1450). These are hardwood but not too much hard. That’s why they make a beautiful hammer. But maybe ash will be a little harder to find out.
  • Some people like to make mallets out of Pine (420), Dong Big Cherry (995), Bitter Cherry (995). They are pretty good, too, being used for lighter work.

Some Important Factors about selecting Wood

wooden hammer tips
  1. Hardwood can be used to create a strong, durable head and handle that will give you years of use. Softwoods have more flexibility and strength needed when creating the thin but heavy-hitting area on the end of your hammer.
  2. Hickory has excellent durability and shock absorption abilities while remaining relatively lightweight compared to other hardwoods like ash or oak. Walnut also holds up well against impacts if properly treated with oils or linseed oil finishing before being put into service as a wooden mallet head.
  3. The best softwood options include fir, spruce, red cedar, or pine. These woods are best for creating a mallet that will be used chiefly for pushing and pulling tasks, as they can flex more than the hardwoods.
  4. For lighter duty purposes like poking or scraping, hickory is your best bet because it’s tough enough to take some knocks without splitting but not so heavy you cannot pick it up easily when needed.
  5. Ash has good durability if properly treated with oil before use. Oakwood is also great for hammers as long as you don’t need to hit anything super hard (which oak isn’t meant to do).
  6. Hickory naturally resists rot and insects while being lightweight in comparison to other types of wood, making this best wood for Mallets Head!
  7. You can make a useful dead blow hammer with these kind of wood by inserting some weight like sand of metal inside the hammer head. You just need to make some space inside the head and put those weight in there.


We hope this article has been helpful and that you now know what the best wood is for a wooden mallet. If you’re looking to buy one, we recommend getting a suitable one from your local hardware store or online store. As always, if there are any questions about the material or construction of these hammers, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

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