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The Stanley FatMax Curve Claw Hammer belongs to my boyfriend and was bought in order for us to hang picture frames and do general DIY activities. We have a number of basic tools that allow us to perform day to day DIY activities but when we first bought the house we didn't have hardly anything. We decorated the house from top to bottom and on the way we bought all the tools to do the job. A hammer is a home essential as at some point you will need to put a nail in something; whether to hang a picture or to fix a shelf.
==Price and availability==
The cost of this hammer is £20.99 and it was brought from B&Q who sell a wide selection of tools. You can get hammers that are cheaper and more expensive but this was averagely priced and it had some features that the cheaper tools just didn't have.
The hammer is made from steel so it is quite heavy, it is made from one piece of forged steel. This is something that the cheaper tools do not use but it is a sign of a good quality hammer. At the top it has a large strike face that allows you to easily make contact with the nail or surface you are wanting to hit. If you are hitting a nail in, there is an indentation that you can position your nail in that is magnetic on the side. This allows you to hold the nail straight, using the magnet to keep it horizontal and then propel it into the wood in a straight line. This is a really novel feature and one that allows you to start the nail off straight and then hit it in with the strike face. At the back of the hammer is the curved claw that is quite sharp so that you can scoop under most nails and pull them out.
The handle is straight and coated in a thick rubber that stops the hammer slipping out of your hand and makes it easier to hold. It is yellow and black with is typical of a Stanley product. The Stanley company have been around for many years and have a sterling reputation. They were founded in 1843 by Frederick T Stanley. In 1920 Stanley grew and incorporated another steel company, together they started making high quality hand tools and fast became leaders in the market. We have quite a few Stanley tools and most are superbly crafted items. The handle of the hammer is around 20 cm long. There is a slight flick to the end of the hammer handle that gives your hand something to rest on and makes the hammer a little easier to control and hold. The handle is supposed to be anti-vibration and this is down to the shape of the handle and due to the rubber coating. There are not any holes to hang the hammer up, so either keep it in the tool box or we hang it up on the various nails in the garage that my boyfriend put up so he can display his tool collection and make them easier to find.
This is a tough little hammer and the strike face remains in great condition despite the beating it gets. There are no chunks missing or splits and even the rubber handle has remained in excellent condition. The hammer makes a great DIY partner and is not too heavy that it gets too tiring using it but it is heavy enough to make small work of nails and plugs. I have used the hammer to hang pictures up and I find it really comfortable to use. I like the nail starter it is a useful feature as I find it helps the nail start off straight.
The claw is also a really great feature and is something that I would not really think about when choosing a hammer. It is really important though and after using it a few times you can really see the benefit of having such a sharp claw. It can be used to take out old bend screws, plugs or even to pull out the new nails that you put it wrong. With only a flick of the wrist, the claw has the nails pulled out and they remain between the prongs so you don't have them flying out all over the place. The whole thing weighs 560 g which is comfortable for a woman or man to hold comfortably.
I find the hammer comfortable to hold and knock. If you hold it further down, you can still control it but you can exert a great amount of pressure. Because of the size of the strike face this is easy to do. With a small strike face you have to hold the hammer closer to the head because you need to be more precise in your movement. This hammer needs less control as gravity keeps it straight and the large strike face has a larger surface area to make contact with.
In terms of anti-vibration, this is hard one to measure really but if I compared it with an old wooden hammer of my dads, you can tell the difference. Your wrist does take less on an impact and you do not feel the shake in your hands. I think that this could be mostly to do with the material the handle is made out of rather than the shape. However, the shape is quite important to the swing of the hammer, as it curves slightly; it prevents the impact travelling straight down the handle and dispels the 'shake' on the bend. This should have some effect on the impact you feel. I can imagine that there is probably quite a bit of science gone into designing the shape of the hammer and it is certainly an improvement on the old wooden hammer.
I would say that this hammer can be used for a number of DIY tasks and it really is a multi-purpose tool. You can buy cheaper hammers, but this one is certainly worth the money and should last an awful long time. I recommend this hammer completely.
"Anti-vibration one-piece forged hammer with anti-slip handle / Patented tuning fork design reduces torsion and vibration / 75% larger head gives larger sweet spot and increased user accuracy / Features: One-Piece Forged Head; Patented Tuning Fork; Anti-Slip Grip; Magnetic Nail-Starter for One-Handed Nailing."