The First DAMMERR
Since I had
worked out what I thought would make the best drilling
hammer, I went ahead
and made one. I got a piece of 1-1/4” square 4140 steel and got to work. The first hammer
head was modeled after the McDevitt hammer by the Yosemite climber Dan McDevitt since
that hammer was one of the best drillers I had tested. I drilled two holes in the steel, one for the handle
and one for a carabiner. The carabiner hole allows for funking and carrying the hammer on
your harness. The face of the hammer was flat and a pyramidal pick was shaped on the other
end by means of a bandsaw.
Once the head was
shaped, I heated it with a propane torch and quenched it in
oil to harden
it. I then tempered it in a hot wired toaster oven. The toaster oven wasn't really up to the
temperature required and did not survive to do any further work.
I fitted the head onto a hardware store hammer handle and tried it out. It was the fastest hammer I tested.
Cutting the faces of the pick
After drilling and cutting
Heating before quenching to harden
The hardened head
Oven after tempering
My fist hammer (top) compared to a McDevitt
Now for the actual facts. The hammer featured above was the first hammer I made. It was called
"The Banquo Hammer." After trying it out and seeing how it worked, I lightened it by cutting about
1/4 inch off the face. Since I cut it down to match the second hammer I made, the first hammer became known as
DAMMERR #2. It is confusing, the first hammer was modified after making DAMMERR #1 to become DAMMERR # 2.
The original hammer known as "The Banquo Hammer" or "DAMMERR # 2"
was sent to a climber and I haven't heard from it since.
The second hammer I made was the first one I called DAMMERR. It is similar to the above hammer but lighter
and I think the pick is a little bit longer. I sent this the original DAMMERR out and let people use it but eventually got
it back and I still have it. When it came home the handle was split and I glued it back together. The handle split
because it had grain not parallel to the handle. This bad handle is part of what got me thinking about making my own
handles since I couldn't find good off the shelf handles. Here it is today:
The real DAMMERR # 1
The original posts about these two hammers on SuperTopo: