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Dave Deval

Dave Deval

Mar 5, 2009

Mallet design

This article written by Howard Cohen appeared in the 2009 March issue of Chips & Chatter.

Our guest presenter this evening was Dave Davel, owner Mar, 2009 of a business in San Carlos called San Francisco Woodturning. He said he was intimidated by some of our turnings. Dave turns on a Conover and a General, 16’ and 8’ bed lengths, respectively. His primary business is architectural pieces. He was in a club with some of us 20 years ago. Also our member Dave Feind’s new business is in Dave Davel’s shop. Dave demonstrated turning a mallet.


Dave brought maple as an example of a good wood for mallets. Other woods he likes are hickory, white ash, and general scraps of hardwood.


He uses two pieces one for the handle and one for the head. The head piece or mallet already had a hole drilled.


The mallet design is pretty much out of his head as he begins turning. He marked the center then used dividers to mark equidistance from the pre-drilled hole.


He then makes tenons on each end and marks off 3/8” for pads. The hole is drilled about a 1 inch deep. He glues the handles in even though it is fancier to employ a through hole, a v groove, and a wedge.


On the handle, it is important to get a good fit in the mallet hole. Based on a 7/8” hole he then uses a 7/8 wrench to size the diameter of the handle. Then what remains to be done is to make it look good and feel good in your hand. Dave puts grip marks in the handle and uses dividers to mark equal spacing then a skew to make the v grooves.