What I Shed Today

lightening up a little at a time

sledge hammer handle replacement

on February 11, 2014

This evening I shed some two millimeters, maybe more, of material from a hickory tool handle.

It seemed good to do while waiting for the onset of an ice storm our National Weather Service forecast office is calling “of historical proportions.” And appealed as a reasonable project to follow upon repairing my wheelbarrow’s flat tire earlier this week. With the wheelbarrow rolling again, I can move the sections of trunk that have been sitting where they fell since we lost a mature black cherry (Prunus serotina) in a windstorm. I’d like to split that wood, because the chance the storm will cause extended power outages is high, and if so, the fireplace will be our only source of heat. But I’ll have to drive wedges into the sections to quarter them, and for that I need a sledge hammer. Which I own, but some time ago (measured in years), I missed what I was swinging at and cracked its handle.

"Let me fix your sledgehammer" ... no, that's not how the song goes!

“Let me fix your sledgehammer” … no, that’s not how the song goes!

I felt like I received a gift when I discovered (and then remembered) I had obtained a replacement already. It only waited on removing the stub of the old handle, then shaping the new one to fit the hole in the head before pounding wedges in to lock it in place. The job sounds easy, and isn’t hard … but hickory is (1820 on the Janka hardness scale). Before I was done, tools littered the sitting room floor and garage and I’d abandoned the rasp for a belt sander.

At last the handle fit, and with a few mallet and hammer blows to seat the wedges, I’d finished another stalled project—perhaps just in time.

ready to report for wood-splitting duty tomorrow!

ready to report for wood-splitting duty tomorrow!

shedding style: repair

Comments welcome … what might you shed today?

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