FatMax Graphite Hammer - Canadian Woodworking Magazine

A good quality nail hammer that provides excellent bang for the buck


FatMax Graphite Hammer

For the person who only uses one a few times a year, a nail hammer might seem like nothing more than a rock on a stick. But for carpenters, trades people and serious DIYers, a good hammer can be a thing of beauty. A hammer with good balance seems to swing itself, puts less stress on forearm muscles and tendons, and helps reduce the risk of a repetitive stress injury. The weight of the head in relation to the length and curvature of the handle contribute to the overall balance.
Over a four week period I put the FatMax Graphite Hammer (model 51-505) to nail and board. Apart from the bright yellow handle, what I first noticed on the FatMax51-505 was the oversized head. It's a full 1-1/4" in diameter, and has a slight crown ground across the face. With a crowned face you can more easily drive nails flush without marring the wood surface. In addition, a crowned face minimizes nail deflection and bending by helping to center hammer blows. The FatMax 51-505 also features a beveled edge around the face, which helps reduce the chance of chipping the face of the hammer with an off-center strike. The dual tempered rim also contributes to the overall integrity of the head.

Nicely crowned head and beveled edge
Double bevel on the claws
Another very nice feature on this hammer is the double bevel on the claws. A beveled claw makes it easier to get under nail heads, particularly if they are close to the surface. I found it just as easy pulling out a small 6d nail as it was to remove a 16d. I would have preferred the claw points with a slightly lower angle, which makes getting under embedded nail heads easier (but then again, that's where the flat bar shines).
The head-to-handle assembly looks to be well done. There isn't any visible wedge; Stanley uses a patented assembly design. Let's hope that the design gives long-life performance.

Stanley has a patented head-to-handle assembly
Graphite core, rubber grip flared handle
I've always preferred a wooden handle on a hammer, but this graphite core, rubber coated handle does a good job of minimizing vibration. I like the gentle flare on the end of the handle; it makes the hammer somewhat easier to hold onto, especially if I loosen my grip at the end of a swing. For general purpose work, a 16 oz curved claw hammer is a good choice. If you're looking for a good quality nail hammer that will give you excellent bang for the buck, then you really can't go wrong with the FatMax 51-505.


  • 16 oz curved claw
  • 1-1/4" diameter smooth strike face with dual tempered strike rim
  • Graphite core, rubber grip flared handle
  • 13" overall length

Available From:Tool and equipment suppliers nationwide
Retail Price:$19.99
Model #:51-505
Made In:China
Carl Duguay, September 2010
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