Hammer dents

What kind, options, etc.

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Big Boat Guy
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Hammer dents

Post by Big Boat Guy »

I feel like this is a noob question, but what are your tips to avoid hammer dents when nailing in ring nails. I’m having a hard time getting the nails close to flush without some sort of mark. Please don’t say use screws.

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Re: Hammer dents

Post by Roberta »

Hopefully you are pre-drilling holes. That will make driving them in easier.

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Re: Hammer dents

Post by galamb »

Get 'em close and then last couple whacks using a punch that is smaller than the nail head - just don't let the punch slip off the nail head :)

Yes, Plywood is "real" wood :)

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Re: Hammer dents

Post by acflynn »

Agree with combining the above comments. I pre-drilled my nail holes. I wasn't too worried about the plywood gussets, but going through the Sapele mahogany (very dense) was worth it. Especially with the softer silicon bronze nails. I also bought a relatively inexpensive nail set kit on Amazon. Look up "HORUSDY 8 Pieces Pin Punch Set" - around $10 for 8 punches and a pouch. I didn't find that variety at the big box stores - typically only 3 sizes. Worthwhile, as each of my frames had a total of ~80 nails (10 per gusset x 4 corners x 2 sides = 80 nails per frame).

I went with a punch that was the same size as the nail head. With the punch I was actually able to get is somewhat countersunk so that the nail head was level with the surface of the ply.

If you end up with some "elephant footprints" you can also use filler like Famowood. I had a few on the plywood. It was much harder to dent the hardwood. However, if it's not going to be visible on the end product (such as on the frames, etc) you may just forget about them - no one else will see them even though they will nag at you for a while :D
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Re: Hammer dents

Post by JimmY »

I just took a 3/8" carriage bolt, and ground down the tip to match the head of the nails.

If you do get a hammer dent, wet the area with water and apply a hot iron. The steam will expand and push out the dent.
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Big Boat Guy
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Re: Hammer dents

Post by Big Boat Guy »

Agree with the pre drilling. Learned that on the first nail.

The carriage bolt worked great as a punch. The treads made it easy to keep a grip on it and stay over the nail.

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Re: Hammer dents

Post by TAB »

you can try steaming them out by taking a damp towel and placing it over the dent and taking a warm iron too it. other wise a punch that is just smaller than the head works great.

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