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Wooden Mallets

Page history last edited by Jonathan McKinley 13 years, 4 months ago

     I noticed there were many broken wooden bats at baseball games because with even a very small fracture the bat becomes useless to a ball player and it is thrown away immediately. I started collecting these broken bats during baseball games when I discovered they were a good source of seasoned hard maple. I was hoping I could recycle the wood instead of letting it go to waste. I didn't exactly know what I could use the hard maple for, until one day I realized I needed to make a wooden mallet to use around my shop.


Broken Louisville Slugger baseball bat


My collection of broken baseball bat parts


     It turns out baseball bats are perfect material to make wooden mallets. The barrel of the bat is already cylindrical and has a very strong endgrain. By cutting off the last 3 or 4 inches of the barrel you make a very durable head for a mallet. Then you can use the remaining material of the barrel as turning stock for the handle. I used a lathe to reduce the size of the baseball bat barrel turning stock so that it would fit into the one inch hole on the head of the mallet. By turning my own handle I can create the best possible handle shape to fit my hand more comfortably. (The handle is very easy to turn because the turning stock is already round before you start.)


Picture showing how the broken baseball bat barrel can be used to make the mallet head and handle which is directly above it.




 After drilling a one inch hole through the middle of the mallet head I slid the handle into the hole and pinned it with a quarter inch dowel rod and some wood glue. (I finished the handle with a few thin coats of beeswax while it was still on the lathe.)



This mallet works perfectly all around the shop as it is very durable and it includes both a flat and a round end. 


Later I found several baseball bats with their handles still intact. I used these handles on other mallets instead of turning my own handle on the lathe.



This is an example of a metal smithing hammer I made with baseball bat handle that was still intact. For this mallet I turned a specially shaped head with the hard maple.





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