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Old 08-23-2012, 12:28 PM   #16
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


Thanks ratherbefishing, I never even thought of a nail gun before that sounds awesome! Do you need to have a permit to buy or have one of those? Just asking because I think I saw a guy using one once and it looked like he was loading some type of ammunition into it, it was really loud and sounded just like a real gun. I don't really want to have to apply for special permits or anything like that.

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Old 08-23-2012, 12:45 PM   #17
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


I'm not trying to rain on your parade but you need to learn many many things before even thinking of which hammer to use. If you plan to build a cabin from scratch you are in for some real work and real hard work at that. The kits are hard enough for someone inexperienced, but from scratch is another world all together. You have a long way to go before even thinking about a hammer. You need to do a lot of research and reading before starting.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:08 PM   #18
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


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Originally Posted by newcabinguy View Post
Thanks ratherbefishing, I never even thought of a nail gun before that sounds awesome! Do you need to have a permit to buy or have one of those? Just asking because I think I saw a guy using one once and it looked like he was loading some type of ammunition into it, it was really loud and sounded just like a real gun. I don't really want to have to apply for special permits or anything like that.
that sounds like a power nailer (ramset), shots nails into concrete, and no, you don't need a permit for those, at least not in my area
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:24 PM   #19
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


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Originally Posted by newcabinguy View Post
Thanks ratherbefishing, I never even thought of a nail gun before that sounds awesome! Do you need to have a permit to buy or have one of those? Just asking because I think I saw a guy using one once and it looked like he was loading some type of ammunition into it, it was really loud and sounded just like a real gun. I don't really want to have to apply for special permits or anything like that.

most important with a nail gun is safety glasses!

a 20 oz hammer is a great all around size to use for a hammer and standing in the hammer isle at the store and looking at them is the best way for you to determine which one, that is the fun of it!

youtube, how to frame floors, how to frame walls, how to frame roofs, and how to put on siding. that should give you a simple starting point for your how to...
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:42 PM   #20
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


These days I use a Stiletto. Light, powerful and it even has that magnet op wanted, $80 though.

Although I've always owned one I never liked framing with an Estwing, save that one for demo, your not going to break an Estwing.

Grew up using a Vaughan Rigging Ax, best framing hammer there is IMO.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:06 PM   #21
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


whatever you get make sure it is not too heavy for you, or else you could give yourself tennis elbow in a hurry (one thing I learned as an apprentice) Depending on the size of your cabin and the construction, a nail gun with a compressor really would cut your time down.

You may want to find a semi-retired carpenter to work with you a bit if you are pretty green on the tools. You will have to build a foundation of some kind (I have no idea how big your cabin is to be) whch must be built nice and square and whatnot for the structure above. You will need to build a roof, apply building wrap and roofing, siding, install windows and door, make sure everything is water proof, etc. .Is this place getting plumbing and electrical?
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:11 AM   #22
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


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Hi md2lgyk, actually I have no experience to speak of other than hanging a few pictures and I used a paperweight to drive the nails for that. I bought a few books on the subject but, they are pretty vague in terms of specific equipment. I figured that a hammer would be a good place to start and I just want to make sure that I have the "best" hammer for the job. I'm trying to stay away from the kits because I really want to get my hands dirty and feel like I did this all myself.
A kit still has to be put together, so your hands would definitely get dirty. What kit means, at least in my case, is that besides the logs, other things like exterior doors, windows, subflooring, sheathing, rafter lumber, joist lumber, etc. were all included. Nothing was precut, not even the logs. So the only real difference was I didn't have to figure out how much of the various things I needed or order them myself.

I admire your intention, but please take the advice given here and study up on what you want to do. You might also consider doing some volunteer work with Habitat for Humanity if there's a chapter in your area. Lots of their volunteers have little or no construction experience, so there's always a site foreman there to teach the fundamentals and ensure everybody stays safe.
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Old 08-24-2012, 06:09 PM   #23
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


Would like to thank everyone who donated their time to offer advice but, a special thanks to jiju1943, md2lgyk, and sdsester for pointing out that there is much more to this process than a simple piece of equipment. I guess sometimes we all just get so caught up in the gear we lose sight of what we're really trying to accomplish. And, it really doesn't matter whether we're asking questions or answering them, it happens just the same. I appreciate it the straightforwardness gentlemen.
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Old 08-24-2012, 06:59 PM   #24
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


You will always get straight answers here. Don't be discouraged---when you are ready we even have a timber framer that checks in every now and then.

About hammers---they are like a tennis racket---what feels good in one mans hand might not feel right in yours.

My assistant hates my hammer(a fiberglass hammer) and I can't stand his Estwing (steel handle)
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Old 08-25-2012, 10:51 PM   #25
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


We probably could in fact talk you through your entire project. You have an Incredible amount of experience here at your disposal. There are no stupid questions.

As straight forward as you've been you show great promise grasshopper,
Tham

You should probably start with some sort of foundation, probably concrete piers to build your floor on.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:18 AM   #26
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


I have used a 16 oz straight claw for framing for more than 40 years. I have tried most all of them and I cannot drive nails any faster, sometimes not even as fast, with a heavy hammer, and my arm is not as tired from lifting the extra couple ounces up for the next swing all day long. I have even driven 8" spikes into landscape timbers with it. I use a smooth face so I can use it for finish too. I like Vaughn, (Estwing, I did snap the handle of one once), fiberglass or steel handle. True Temper Rocket was what I started with, and wore the rubber down to the steel tube on a couple. It takes some looking, but I only buy American made hammers. Pick one that feels good holding it at the end of the handle, not up by the neck.
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:31 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by ratherbefishing View Post
First, I second what Sdsester says. Buy good tools!
You'll probably want at least two hammers; a framer and a trim hammer.
My framer is a 22oz waffle faced Estwing with a straight claw. My trim hammer is a 16oz smooth faced Estwing with a curved claw. Both have the blue plastic handles. I'd like to have a smooth faced framer for building decks, but it isn't that high on my list. Both my hammers have metal shafts. If I was banging nails all day with them, I might get something different; wood or fiberglass handles, maybe Titanium head. But these two have worked fine for 20+ years and I still enjoy using them.

Fact is, if you're really building a house, you'll probably drive more nails with an air powered nail gun than a hammer. And you'll end up with 2 or 3 of them. But that's a new thread, isn't it?
I use a 20 oz smooth face estwing framer. I use it for everything. Sometimes I wish I had a little more heft, but not as often as I'm glad I don't. I've had up to 4 of them at a time.

My BEST framing hammer though ...

http://www.lowes.com/pd_20385-67702-...ler&facetInfo=
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:35 AM   #28
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I have used a 16 oz straight claw for framing for more than 40 years. I have tried most all of them and I cannot drive nails any faster, sometimes not even as fast, with a heavy hammer, and my arm is not as tired from lifting the extra couple ounces up for the next swing all day long. I have even driven 8" spikes into landscape timbers with it. I use a smooth face so I can use it for finish too. I like Vaughn, (Estwing, I did snap the handle of one once), fiberglass or steel handle. True Temper Rocket was what I started with, and wore the rubber down to the steel tube on a couple. It takes some looking, but I only buy American made hammers. Pick one that feels good holding it at the end of the handle, not up by the neck.
A friend of mine feels the same way about his 16. I like my 20 - I'd hate to swing a 24 all day! Weight is personal preference. I've never EVER seen a broken estwing, and I've flogged all of mine, and been around a crew who's possibly the most tearing-up-of-gear crew I've ever seen. They're great guys and do good work, but I'd hate to pay their tool bill!
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Old 08-26-2012, 10:16 AM   #29
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What's the best hammer for building a house?


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I use a 20 oz smooth face estwing framer. I use it for everything. Sometimes I wish I had a little more heft, but not as often as I'm glad I don't. I've had up to 4 of them at a time.

My BEST framing hammer though ...

http://www.lowes.com/pd_20385-67702-...ler&facetInfo=

That is the nail gun I use. Wish I had gotten the hitachi with the ultra smooth bump trigger though, much easier to shoot...

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