Back to Ganoksin | FAQ | Contact

Used hammers and stakes

hi all,

i hope i am not repeating a recent thread and apologize if i am.

i just learned how to raise a bowl – very cool!! and want to
continue learning and experimenting with the process, but am a bit
daunted by the pricing of hammers and stakes.

so i am looking for used stakes and hammers. does anyone have any
they are wanting to sell? specifically i’m looking for the basics:
round, domed top stake; forming and raising stake; a heavy rounded
planishing stake for bowls; a high domed stake; silversmithing
hammers: one with the round head and one with the sortof squashed
oval head; and a planishing hammer (with one flat and one slightly
rounded head).

thanks so much for any help you can offer. i am also open to
suggestions of where to buy or what to buy! you can respond to


Jocelyn Broyles
phone (011 506) 376.6417 (Costa Rica)
fax (253) 669.1679 (U.S.)

Note From Ganoksin Staff:
Looking for a hammer for your jewelry projects? We recommend:

Jocelyn, Yup those prices can be scary. I haven’t solved those
dilemmas either but I can offer some help with hammers. I went to the
Harbor Freight website and found a set
of tools for raising fender and body work on cars. At the time I got
them they were on sale and cost me about $15 US. The hammers can be
used as is but really need some serious elbow grease to be polished.
I started out with 80 grit coarse silicon carbide wet/dry paper and
worked down through numerous steps of paper grits(120, 220, 320,
400, 600, 800,1000) and eventually got a mirror looking finish. That
may be overkill, I don’t know, but I’ve got 3 different very shiny
hammers now that didn’t cost me much. One of them had a square cut
cross-peen side that I modified on the bench grinder to have a
basically smoother rounded form for forging things. Another had a
beehive type dome that came to a rather sharp point. That end could
be rounded somewhat as well I suppose, I personally left mine sharp
for purposes other than yours. There were also a collection of
different anvil shapes included in the set that I plan to polish up
eventually as well. I guess that I’m trying to tell you not to be
afraid of making your own tools or modifying existing tools to suit
your needs. It will definitely help in keeping costs down. Also, if
you are able to check it out, local scrap and junk yards are
excellent resources for finding items that might fill the bill as
well. Old dead cars have numerous pieces (tie-rod ends and so forth)
that might work well as stakes. Some of these pieces are made of high
quality steel specifically because they are expected to encounter
some wear and tear. Try taking pictures of the things you want to
scrap yards, welding shops, scrap metal dealers, machine shops
(including high school and tech school metal shops) and see if they
might not have items that will serve you well. I’d love to have the
money for a quality set of tools but I’ve learned thet there are
numerous ways to get similar results costing much less. I hope this
helps some. Be adventurous and use that creative eye of yours to see
new uses for old tools or other items. I’ve even disassembled old
maple furniture sets and created several tools from the pieces. Maple
is a very hard dense wood that works well for mallets, stakes, and even anvils.


I’ve recently been fabricating some of my own stakes. Just last
weekend I needed a stake with a very shallow dome on it. I found a
grade 5, 1 1/2 inch bolt 10 inches long and used my angle grinder to
form it to the shape I wanted. I finished it off on the buffer to a
mirror shine. It took about an hour to do and cost me less than 10
dollars. I plan to pick up some more bolts next time I’m at the


Jocelyn, As it has been mentioned most of the stakes are "homemade"
and hammers redesigned. I made my first raising hammer by grinding
down the head on a cheap ball peen hammer.

Anyway what I am trying to say is that most silversmiths have the
talent and tools to do a lot of fabrication on their hammers and
stakes. Therefore invest more into a good bench grinder, one inch
belt sander, files, disc sander, and a seven inch or 41/2 inch
grinder. Most silversmith books talk about the silversmiths making
that special hammer or stake from wood or metal. Even when you buy
new hammers general you change the face some and on a regular
maintenance schedule polish the faces. I just made a large stake from
a truck axle for $150, that would cost $390 new. If it wasn’t for
making the tools I probably wouldn’t even enjoy silversmithing.

Warren Townsend

I went to the Harbor Freight website 
and found a set of tools for raising fender and body work on cars.
At the time I got them they were on sale and cost me about $15 US. 

Mike, is this the item you were talking about? ITEM 31277-0VGA is a
7-pc set that includes hammers and some anvil-like surfaces - it’s
listed at 19.99 now.


Leah, Yup those are the ones. Here’s a disclaimer: I’m not
commercially affiliated with Harbor Freight in any way. I do a lot
of shopping there because I frequently find some really decent deals
on tools. Happy customer, that’s me. I’d heartily advise signing up
on their website to receive catalogs from them both by mail and
online. They very regularly have sales and send out discount coupons
that can save some bucks too. I have a couple of different tools
from them that I have modified substantially for jewelry work. They
also have cheap deals on forceps, tweezers, wax carving tools,
micrometers, calipers (digital and regular), hammers, anvils,and on
and on and on… Tons of stuff. It’s like going into a jewelers
supply store, hard to walk out without finding something you want or
need, but at a lower price. Also check and see if they have a retail
outlet in your neck of the woods. Most of their stuff comes from
China or India but I have yet to find a piece of copper or silver
that really cared about the origin of the steel smacking it. They’re
cheap but functional. In my last post I forgot to mention 2nd hand
stores, thrift shops and flea markets. Lots of times people are
selling things and they have no idea of what they have before them.
They see junk, you may find treasure.


Allcraft carries a nice selection of hammers and stakes.

Marilyn Smith

Allcraft carries a nice selection of hammers and stakes.

This is really about dampening vibration and sound. I used to get
unsolicited lead tape samples in the mail to fix rain gutters. That
seems to be gone but Golfers and tennis players seem to be good for
something after all. They still use a similar lead tape to
weight clubs and rackets :

There are lots of sources - search lead tape.

to quiet a stake. clamp it up , hit it and feel for the places with
the highest vibration amplitude.-- tape it there. repeat until it
sounds better. You could also use heavy wire solder.


Note From Ganoksin Staff:
Looking for a hammer for your jewelry projects? We recommend: