Great tools inspire us, and frankly, they're much of the reason we became infatuated with woodworking in the first place. The New Gramercy Tools Kings County Hammer combines elements of Victorian hammer design with exceptional contemporary manufacturing, to create an industrial work of art that you will be proud to own, and glad to work with.
For the New Kings County hammer we've upgraded our production processes, to deliver an even better hammer than the original. And just like the original, each and every Kings County hammer is still Made in the USA.
We've honored the tradition of naming hammer patterns after their region of origin, by naming ours the Kings County Hammer. Kings County being the name given to Brooklyn New York, by England in 1683.
The decorative, Victorian-inspired "file work" is carved into each head by a computer controlled milling machine. We worked at length with our machine shop to capture the look of the hand filed details found on our original Kings County Hammer, without exposing the wrists and elbows of our workshop staff to repetitive stress injury.
After machining, the heads are hand polished to a mirror finish, and the dome of the face is ground by hand against a series of abrasive belts. They are then hardened in an inert atmosphere, and tempered to relieve internal stresses, and add toughness. We further hand-temper the eye of each hammer over a flame. Do we need to do this? Absolutely not. But it has always been done on hammers of the highest quality, because it makes the hammer just that much more durable while leaving the business ends impervious to scratching.
After flame tempering, we patina the head, and then hand polish the entire surface again to a high luster, that highlights the decorative "file work" the chamfers along the peen, and the Gramercy Tools mark on the underside of the head. Even after this second polishing, the face is further polished to a mirror finish so you can confidently drive brads flush to the surface of your workpiece without fear of marring your workpiece.
Just before handling, a small flat is ground at the end of the peen, at a 1 degree angle. It's not a very large flat, and 1 degree isn't much of an angle, but this small feature helps to prevent slipping. The peen may be used for driving nails home into the cove of a moulding, or for starting nails shorter than ones fingers are thick. Simply allow the peen to slip between your thumb and fore finger as you gently tap the nail to start - with the nail set, you can remove your fingers and drive the nail home with the face of the hammer.
Once the finished heads have been inspected they are pressed onto the hickory handle and fixed in place with a poplar wedge. Poplar expands more readily in humidity than hickory, which keeps everything firmly in place. The Poplar wedge is crossed with an iron wedge, and ground flush with the top of the hammer which is again polished. The thin neck of the hickory handle is both graceful and functional. It protects the user from shock when striking hard surfaces, while the octagon striping allows the hand to intuitively understand the orientation of the head.
After each hammer is checked over one last time, we rub it down with polish, add the necessary instructions and warnings (you have been wearing your safety glasses this whole time haven't you?) and place the hammer inside a corrosion inhibiting sleeve inside our American made canvas hammer bag.
Having said all that - its only fair to point out that you don't need
our hammer. In fact, we'll be the first to say that the Kings County Hammer is a luxury; something to be savored and enjoyed, and trotted out when you want to feel like a boss. But we're also the first to say that the Kings County Hammer was never about
need - it was about love of craft - and we hope that when you hold our hammer in your hands you will feel the same way.
9.5 oz head, 11 1/2" Overall length. Each hammer comes packaged in its own canvas bag.
The Gramercy Kings County Hammer is Made in the USA
"I put both hammers through their paces driving a bunch of wire and cut nails into dry and hard yellow pine. I found both hammers to be well-balanced and responsive. The domed faces are absolute perfection. And the decorative filework on the heads is over the top and gorgeous." - Popular Woodworking Chris Schwarz's Blog 1/1/2012 -