Last updated: August 5, 2021

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The sledgehammer is an important tool for demolition work. It is also an essential tool for driving piles or for blacksmiths. But which sledgehammer is the right one for you? Reason enough to take a closer look at the sledgehammer.

In this sledgehammer guide, we want to help you with your purchase decision. We have compared traditional wooden-handled sledgehammers with modern fibreglass ones. We took a closer look at the supposedly indestructible ones. We also show you our favourites and recommendations. At the end of the guide, the decision for your right sledgehammer will be very easy.




Summary

  • The sledgehammer is a tool especially for demolition work, for example to knock down a wall.
  • A sledgehammer is a very heavy hammer that can weigh up to 15 kilograms. However, there are also lighter models from 4 kilograms.
  • The sledgehammer with a wooden handle is the traditional variant and is still well represented on the market today. The fibreglass handle is one of the more modern variants and much more stable than the traditional one.

The Best Sledgehammer: Our Choices

Buying and rating criteria for sledgehammers

Here we have listed the most important criteria you should look for when buying a sledgehammer. These include:

In the following, we have explained all the criteria in more detail so that you understand exactly what is important.

Weight

The weight of the sledgehammer is an important factor. This is because the weight also generates the impact force. However, this does not mean that high weight equals high impact force. The speed factor plays an even greater role. This means that you also need the strength to swing the heavy sledgehammer and build up speed. Otherwise you will not be able to generate enough impact force.

Therefore, when buying, you should go for a lighter sledgehammer, such as 4 to 6 kilograms. However, if you have the strength for a heavy sledgehammer, you can also buy a heavier one up to 15 kilograms. This way your impact will be greater with a heavy one.

Material of the handle

A good sledgehammer should have a handle that does not break easily. In the best case, it should not break at all. Many are made of wood, carbon steel or fibreglass. Carbon steel and fibreglass are usually stronger than wooden handles.

A good handle should also have low vibration and an ergonomic grip. This makes it easier and more comfortable to work with.

Handle length

The handle length is also decisive for the impact force. As a rule, the handle is between 80 and 90 cm long. Depending on the weight of the sledgehammer, you should be able to swing the hammer with two hands. The handle must be long enough to be able to grip it well with both hands, but not too long. If the handle is too long, it can quickly get in the way of the work.

With a lighter sledgehammer, the handle is usually not so long. With a light weight, it is sufficient to swing the hammer with one hand.

Range of application

There are different types of sledge hammers, depending on what kind of work is to be done with the sledge hammer. For example, a hammer with a lighter weight is more suitable for driving piles. Again, a high weight sledgehammer is more suitable for demolition work.

Here again, however, the strength of the worker must be taken into account.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about sledge hammers answered in detail

In this section, we have answered the most frequently asked questions in detail, so that you know everything about sledgehammers.

What do you need a sledgehammer for?

The sledge hammer is a hammer that has been specially developed for work in quarries or small demolition jobs. But the sledgehammer is also an important and essential tool for blacksmiths.

Vorschlaghammer-1

A sledge hammer is also called a clay hammer. (Image source: Sabine Schulte / Pixabay)

This means that if you want to knock down a wall, for example, you need a sledgehammer. But the hammer is also suitable for driving in piles. Due to its high weight, it can exert a much greater impact force than an ordinary hammer. Therefore, the sledgehammer can be used for any work that requires a high impact force.

What types of sledge hammers are there?

There are many different types of sledge hammers. Here we show you the most important ones and also tell you the respective properties.

  • Fibreglass handle: very stable, low vibration, not self-replaceable
  • Wooden handle: can break, can become brittle if stored incorrectly, self-replaceable
  • Indestructible: consisting of an iron handle, very heavy, very stable does not break
  • Soft-facehammer: low recoil, low vibration

How much does a sledgehammer cost?

You can spend little to a lot of money on a sledgehammer. Here is a table that gives you an overview of the price range and the expected quality.

Price range Available products
Low-priced (20-40 €) Mostly with wooden handle, no vibration damping, often unstable and unsafe
Medium-priced (40-100 €) Mostly with fibreglass handle, low vibration, stable and safe
High-priced (100 € and more) Mostly indestructible, very stable, vibration and recoil damped, special hammer

You shouldn't skimp on money for a good sledgehammer, otherwise it can quickly become dangerous. Most of the cheap models will quickly break through the handle or the head will fly off. But if you don't necessarily need a special hammer, a sledgehammer in the mid-price range will do.

How heavy is a sledgehammer?

A sledgehammer can weigh up to 15 kilograms. To use it properly, however, you need a lot of strength. Even 10 kilograms is quite difficult to handle. However, if you have the strength, the weight classes are good for you. This way your punching power is higher.

If you don't have that much strength, buy a lighter model. Sledgehammers are often available in weights of 4, 5, 6 and 7 kilograms. These are easier to handle.

Conclusion

To make small demolition jobs or driving wooden piles easier, you definitely need the right sledgehammer for you. It is important to assess your strength. How much weight can you use to swing the sledgehammer correctly? You should also think about the material. Do you prefer a traditional wooden one with a handle that you can replace yourself? Or would you prefer a more stable and modern one made of fibreglass?

You can buy a good sledgehammer for 40 euros or more. These are usually sturdily made and also usually have vibration and recoil damping. These are all things you should think about in advance. But we are sure that you have already found the right sledgehammer by reading this guide.

Image source: Dmitry Kalinovsky / 123rf

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