Definitions

Mallet

Mallet

[mal-it]
Mallet or Malloch, David, c.1705-1765, English poet and dramatist, b. Scotland. His best-known work is the ballad William and Margaret (1720). Although he wrote several tragedies, he is usually remembered as the author (with James Thomson) of the masque Alfred (1740), which contained the song Rule Britannia.
A mallet is a type of hammer with a head made of softer materials than the steel normally used in hammerheads, so as to avoid damaging a delicate surface.

Tools

Tool mallets come in different types, the most common of which are:

  • Rubber mallets are used when a softer blow is called for than that delivered by a metal hammer. They are typically used to form sheet metal, since they don't leave marks, as well as for forcing tight-fitting parts together, for shifting plasterboard into place, in upholstery, and a variety of other general purposes, including some toys. It is the most commonly used mallet.
  • Wooden mallet, usually used in carpentry to knock wooden pieces together, or to drive dowels or chisels. A wooden mallet will not deform the striking end of a metal tool, as most metal hammers would, but it also reduces the force available to drive the cutting edge of a chisel.
  • Copper and leaden mallets are typically used on machinery to apply force to parts with a reduced risk of damaging them and to avoid sparks. As copper is softer than steel, the mallet is deformed rather than any steel object it is hitting.
  • Meat mallets tenderise or flatten meat. Made from wood or metal, they are typically two-sided, one flat with slight bumps, and the other with more pronounced protrusions. Meat mallets can be made from wood, plastic, or steel, but their use has lessened with the invention of cube steak machines and other electric tenderisers. Meat mallets can also be used to crush ice. This is done by wrapping the ice in a fabric (usually a tea towel) and crushing the ice with the mallet until the desired size of the ice is achieved. Meat mallets can also be used to crush granola bars to mix with yogurt. This is done by placing granola bars in a plastic resealable bag and whacking multiple times with the mallet until desired texture is achieved.

Less common mallets include:

  • Rawhide mallets, which may employ rawhide covering a steel head, or simply consist of rolled-up rawhide, are used for leatherwork, jewellery, and assembling electric motors and delicate machinery.
  • Plastic mallets, made of nylon, polycarbonate, or polystyrene are used especially in leatherwork and jewellery.
  • Split head mallets, which have removable faces which can be changed to an appropriate material for the job.
  • Beedle mallet, a large wooden mallet with a circular pine head, with rounded ends about 18 inches to 15 inched in diameter, with a handle about long. It was used by paviours for punning paving stones into position when bedding. An illustration of the mallet can be found in Charles F. Mitchell's Building Construction,11th edition, printed in 1930 by B.T. Batford, Ltd, 94 High Holborn, London.

Beedles are also used in jobs such as timber framing to shift the bases of large wooden posts, fit joints, and drive in pegs.

  • Dead blow mallets, which have an internal cavity filled with steel or lead shot. This addition evens out the time-impulse curve of the impact, enabling a more powerful blow to be delivered without risk of marring the target.

Mallets of various types are some of the oldest forms of tools, and have been found in stone age gravesites.

Musical instruments

See Percussion mallet

Mallets used as drumsticks are often used to strike a marimba, xylophone, glockenspiel, metallophone, or vibraphone, collectively referred to as mallet percussion. They usually have shafts made of rattan, birch, or fiberglass. Rattan shafts are more flexible than the other materials. Heads vary in size, shape, and material. They may be made of metal, plastic, rubber, or wood, and some are wrapped with felt, cord, or yarn. Heavier heads produce louder sounds. Harder heads produce sharper and louder sounds and generate more overtones.

Toys

Mallets are commonly used as children's toys. Lightweight wooden mallets are used for peg toys. Toy mallets are also used in games such as Whack-a-Mole. Another type of toy mallet is a plastic mallet made of soft, hollow vinyl, with bellows and a built-in whistle, so that when the mallet is struck, it produces a sharp, chirping sound.

Sport

Cartoons

The accidents received from mistreatment of wooden mallets in the workplace became a classic gag in the Looney Tunes and Disney cartoons. Characters like Bugs Bunny, Donald Duck, Daffy Duck and Roger Rabbit made use of mallets as part of their arsenal in the Golden Age of animation.

In anime and Manga it is very common for an angry character to pull out a large mallet, via hammerspace, and attack the person or thing that is angering him/her.

Search another word or see Malleton Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;