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Newbie, specific questions regarding tools needed

Hi Neil,
I do not know the reasoning…but from personal experience with my 2.5lb forging hammer,

  1. my hammer head is too heavy for me…and the handle is too narrow…
  2. the bigger side is heavier and as i drop down, it leans over to one side…the handle is skinny and it spins in my grip…

i feel like the japanese style would be weighted on the one side, and fall down straighter…?…and the handle is stubby thicker and short…

i will email saign and ask!

he also sells a japanese kinko hammer for chasing
it looks like it is weighted at center…my little vintage stanley hammer is center weighted and works best for me with chasing…look how cute it is! i like that he has lighter sizes too…

i want the 3/4” 2.5 oz size…


I like my cheap hammers. I have had them a long time and modified the heads a lot to meet my needs. Maybe they are Japanese hammers and I just don’t know it…Rob


I would be lost without my sanding sticks. 220, 400, 600, 1000 grit. Next to the files they are my most used item. use masking tape to secure it to an 1" x 16" piece of wood and 8x11" wet dry sanding paper. attach masking tape to the long edges score it at every wrap point. (Art Jewelry - Make your own sanding sticks - YouTube) Have fun

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Hey, Rob, I’m with you…I have a good relationship with my hammers that I have bought at flea markets and ground and polished their heads and I am not bothered a bit by the fact that their handles are made of pedestrian woods like oak and maple. There is a lot of snobbery in the jewelry tools business and I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay $165 for a hammer when the one I got for $15 works about as well. My current 2lb steel headed hammer was a $2 item at a flea market. I will make it mine by tightening up the head, which is a little loose. Osage orange? We have some local trees with those funny looking fruits on them, but I have not been tempted to cut one down to make hammer handles. Thinking those handles are better than my hardware store handles is a little like believing all that crystal tripe…as to sanding belts, I spent a lot of time on some of the lapidary forums and I note that there are some old timers like me on there who still use the silicon carbide sanding belts instead of diamond. I don’t think you can tell the polish you get from cutting on one from the other. The SiC belts are about $2 each and the diamond belts about $30 each…if I were cutting corundum it would be one thing, but they both cut jasper and agate about equally well…if you doubt that there is jewelry tool snobbery, look at the prices for vibrotumblers at jewelry websites vs at gun supply ones (they are used to repolish and recondition brass bullet casings)…-royjohn

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Royjohn…I have made those gun shop comparisons and we, in the jewelry trade, do seem to be charged a bit more than if we just looked around the corner. I use a lot of SC belts, but I do like my resin wheels as well. Funny though, I seem to go back to basic cerium oxide on a tight felt wheel to get my final polish. As for hammers, for me it’s the head that does the work and if I keep it in good shape, it does what I ask it to. In all fairness, I don’t raise vessels, so I can’t speak to what a different, more expensive, job specific hammer might do for me. I just keep my hammers and anvils polished. thanks…Rob

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