Framing and hammer technique

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This thread reminded mw of an old tune by the Man in Black (John Cash):
"John Henry's pappy woke him up one midnight He said, "'Fore the sheriff comes I wanna tell you - listen boy! Said, Learn to ball a jack, learn to lay a track, learn to pick and shovel too, And take my hammer! It'll do anything you tell it to.
John Henry's mammy had about a dozen babies, John Henry's pappy broke jail about a dozen times The babies all got sick and when the doctor wanted money, He said, I'll pay you quarter at a time startin' tomorrow That's the pay for a steel driver on this line.
Then the section foreman said, Hey - hammer swinger! I see you brought you own hammer boy, but what else can all those muscles do And he said, I can turn a jack, I can lay a track, I can pick and shovel too (Can you swing a hammer boy?)"
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rec.woodworking:

My dad was a shop teacher for more than 20 years. Here's what he told me about hammering technique:
* Hold the hammer near the end of the handle. Don't choke up. You'll get a longer lever and the hammer will do more of the work. (Dad actually advocated holding the hammer with thumb and two fingers, but I never could get that to work. Maybe it was his little joke.) * Don't hammer by bending your wrist -- use your whole arm. This gives you more power, but it takes practice. * Watch the nail head, not the hammer. * Nails get bent when the face of the hammer strikes the nail at an angle. Don't do that.
I had a chance to teach a woman how to hammer just yesterday at a Habitat for Humanity work site. She was there putting in her hours so she can buy a house. She was proud of the work she was doing for someone else, and I was proud to help her. Please consider donating a few hours to your local Habitat project.
--
Steve B.
New Life Home Improvement
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I've heard of others doing this. If I try this, I'm definately going to put on steel toed shoes.

Nails get bent by the wood piece when you miss almost completely. They get bent about 1/8" from the head when you hit the head at an angle. Learned that one last night.

Take a step, overhead toss... and the cans go flying into Habitat's can bin.
Thanks (everyone) for the advice.
Puckdropper
--
Marching to the beat of a different drum is great... unless you're in
marching band.
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In my hands, it makes a big difference whether the "standard" hammer has a flat or a bell (convex) face. On a project where I was nailing shiplap siding on a garage all day long, the flat face was an enormous help. When your tired hands don't dead-center the hammer face on the nail, the nail still goes in nice and straight.
The waffle-face framing hammers, suggested by others, work well too; they are designed to have the same advantage. And for big nails they are much faster than a 16 oz hammer.
-George.
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