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dead blow hammer vs rubber mallet

posted in 10/19/2023
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A hammer or mallet is a handy tool whenever you need to hit something with a good amount of force. But what if you want to strike something hard without the risk of seriously damaging it in the process? This is where dead blow hammers and rubber mallets come into play.

As a chinese manufacturer of blow hammers and rubber hammers, CRESTONE’s dead blow hammers and rubber hammers are designed to be simple and a great alternative to ordinary hammers.

Choosing the right hammer can greatly help your project, so it’s important to understand the difference between a dead blow hammer vs rubber mallet. They allow you to hit objects hard without causing damage like a traditional hammer, but are these tools the same, or are there some differences? Read on to find out the details.

dead blow hammer vs rubber mallet

What is a dead blow hammer?

So, what exactly is a dead blow hammer? Even though these items have the word “hammer” in their name, they are technically classified as mallets. They are usually made of a relatively soft compound, such as rubber around the head, with a more rigid material, such as lead shot or steel shot inside the head.

This means that dead blow hammers are soft enough on the outside that they won’t seriously damage anything you hit but still have enough weight and power inside the head to give a severe blow with every swing. Also, the “dead blow” part of the name means these hammers won’t bounce back when they hit something.

Advantages of using a dead blow hammer

  • It has a high weight, which makes it able to work hard.
  • It does not bounce back.
  • Distributes the kinetic force evenly over the contact.
  • It will not damage the surface.
  • You will gain more control over this hammer.

Disadvantages of using a dead blow hammer

  • It will break soft surfaces like glass and fiber.
  • More power is required when striking.
  • More expensive

What is a rubber mallet?

So, what is a rubber hammer? A rubber mallet is another tool you may like to have in your kit. As the name suggests, these tools also have rubber heads and fall under the mallet category. Their handles, meanwhile, are usually made of wood. Also, unlike dead blow hammers, rubber mallets have no other material inside the head.

In practice, the rubber mallet recoils considerably when it hits an object. So, if you swing it with a good amount of power against a piece of wood, for example, you must be prepared to deal with the bounce or rebound after each impact.

The advantage of using a rubber mallet

  • Lighter than any other hammer.
  • Fast working speed.
  • It’s easy to strike.
  • Does not damage the surface.
  • Does not rust.
  • Requires zero maintenance.
  • Inexpensive

Disadvantages of using a rubber mallet

  • Too much bounce.
  • Does not provide complete control over the strike.
  • Lower Impact Force
Our four dead hammers.

dead blow hammer vs rubber mallet: what’s the difference?

What is the difference between a dead blow hammer and rubber hammer? Dead blow hammers are known for their shock-absorbing properties that reduce recoil and damage, making them a popular choice for delicate operations. Rubber hammers, on the other hand, have a softer impact, making them ideal for jobs such as carpentry or upholstery that require a light touch.

application of force

One of the primary differences separating dead blow hammers from rubber mallets is the force behind each swing. Rubber mallets are very light, and the entire head is rubber. When you swing it, you won’t get a lot of force behind impact, but a dead blow hammer has a lot of weight. Also, a bullet or sand in the head increases the impact force. You can get the non-damaging benefits of a rubber head when hitting with power like a mini sledgehammer.

no bouncing or bouncing

The other significant difference between these two tools is rebound. When you attack with a dead blow hammer, there is no rebound. The force is all transferred to the object you are hitting. But not so with a rubber mallet, which will bounce back with the same force as your initial swing. If you strike hard, the rubber mallet will bounce back almost as hard. When this happens, it can kill the user or cause unintended damage elsewhere.

damage to work surface

Dead blow hammers are designed to produce a powerful impact without causing damage. This type of hammer is ideal for tasks that avoid damaging the work surface, such as carpentry work that requires finesse. While rubber hammers also do not produce friction, they have a weaker impact and are suitable for very fine work, such as positioning tiles or working with thin metals.

Similarities between dead blow hammers and rubber mallets

Dead blow hammers and rubber mallet hammers are similar in that they are spherical at one end, making them easier to grip and producing more impact when striking hard objects. Another similarity is the length of these tools. They are usually 18 inches or 24 inches in length, so there is not much difference in size.

neither is precise

While both of these hammers work well for their intended purpose, it is important to note that neither is an absolute tool. Both of these hammers have fairly large mallet heads. Neither of these hammers is practical if you need to strike something small with precision while trying to avoid damaging it.

Two rubber hammers

Choosing the Right Hammer: Dead Blow Hammer vs. Rubber Mallet

When choosing dead blow hammer and a rubber mallet, it is important to consider the task at hand, your comfort level, and the performance of the tool. Here are some factors to consider:

Consider the task

Dead blow hammers: If your job requires a powerful, controlled impact with minimal rebound, a dead blow hammer is the right choice. This is particularly useful in automotive work, sheet metal forming, and woodworking where precision and power are needed.

Rubber mallets: If you’re working on a project that requires a gentle touch, such as upholstery work, fitting parts together, or working with delicate materials, a rubber mallet will be more appropriate. It delivers a soft blow, reducing the risk of damaging the material.

Consider your comfort

Dead blow hammers: These tend to be heavier, which might lead to fatigue during extended use. However, the reduced vibration and kickback can make them more comfortable to use for some people.

Rubber mallets: These are generally lighter and easier to control, which can reduce user fatigue. However, they may have more rebound, which could potentially lead to less control and accuracy.

Consider the tool’s performance

Dead blow hammers: These hammers offer a consistent and controlled impact, making them ideal for tasks requiring precision. They’re also non-marring, so they won’t damage your work surface.

Rubber mallets: While these deliver a softer blow, they don’t provide the same level of impact as a dead blow hammer. This makes them ideal for tasks requiring a gentle touch.

In conclusion, the right hammer for you depends on your specific needs and preferences. By considering the nature of your task, your comfort, and the performance of each tool, you can make an informed decision between a dead blow hammer and a rubber mallet. Remember, the right tool can make all the difference in the quality of your work and your overall work experience.


In this comprehensive analysis, CRESTONE provides an in-depth look at the differences between dead blow hammered and rubber hammers.

Sometimes, you can use a dead blow hammer or a rubber mallet. However, in most situations, one will be better than the other. Ideally, you’ll have both on your hands, so you’re ready for anything! Neither will damage the surface you are hitting. So, figure out how much force you need to apply and whether the rebound is acceptable, and you’ll know exactly which tool to use.

CRESTONE: hammer manufacturers

CRESTONE is hammer manufacturer China, we put our expertise and professional insight into every product we produce.

CRESTONE invites you to explore our extensive product line or learn about our factory customization services. Choosing the right tool can greatly affect the quality of your work, and we’re here to make sure you have the best tool for your needs. Contact us today.

dead blow hammer vs rubber mallet, people also ask:

The soft head of a rubber mallet helps prevent damage to your work surface, but it will not be as effective at driving nails into hard surfaces. If you are working with delicate materials or are concerned about damaging your work surface, a rubber mallet may be your better choice.
Hammer weights typically range from 0.5 to 22 pounds, so getting the right one to meet your project needs isn’t difficult. A dead blow hammer is your best choice if you need a precision tool that can handle lightweight and heavy-duty jobs.
These mallets offer a softer impact than metal mallets. They can be used to remove dents in metal as they leave no marks. They are also used in construction to fasten tight-fitting parts together.
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