Wednesday, 18 September 2019

The WHAMMER Deluxe

Watch out guys .... There's a new WHAMMER in town ... !

Beadsmith have manufactured it and brought it into the jewellery

The old Whammer with 3 heads, was specifically designed for
use with WIRE.

Whilst, the NEW Whammer Deluxe, is an all purpose Jewellery

It's every hammer you require for all your jewellery needs!

The new BRASS flat head is designed for metal stamping
(so that you can customise and decorate metal sheet), plus you
can use it for flattening wire. The new PICK head is for texturing
wire and metal, creating little rays, or cross hatching and can
also be used for riveting. The DAPPING head is another texture
head, providing little dimples on pre-flattened wire and on sheet
metal. The NYLON head is flattening and straightening wire and
metal, without marking the surface (especially good for plated
and coloured coated wires) and finally, the fixed STEEL head
is for planishing wire and metal - meaning you can flatten, spread
and work harden and you can even raise metal, when used on a
sand bag.

All these heads need to be used with a flat STEEL BLOCK.

The Steel planishing head, is a fixed general purpose
hammer and the four others are interchangeable.

So, follow me into my workshop and I will endeavour to show
you each of the different Whammer heads and their uses ...


If you are working with wire, you will be making your own
findings, such as clasps, ear wires, chain links, shaped frames,
etc... and these will need to be work hardened, so that they don't
misshape, remaining strong and durable.  In the image above,
I have created a wire 'doodle' charm, where the wire is still soft
and pliable ...

However, once I have Whammered it on the steel block - stroking it
out in the different areas that I want it to spread, it will end up as
a strong, flattened, charm which is perfect for use in my jewellery

Just spreading and flattening a short length of round wire on my
steel block, will provide a mushroomed end, which can be a
'feather' head pin (as the bell end prevents the bead from sliding off)
or, you could make lots of wire 'feathers' to create a necklace,
similar to the copper one below!

Brass is a soft metal and that is why it is more effective as
a metal stamping head, as it allows the steel punch design
to get better absorbed into the metal sheet below. Always
stamp on a sturdy, flat table top and don't put a pad under
your block ... it's all about getting the best imprint from the
steel punch and your metal blank is the sandwich filler
between the punch and the steel block.

Begin by getting a metal shape (either cut it with a saw out of
metal sheet, or purchase a pre-cut metal blank) and if you need to
create a suspension hole, you can do this with punch pliers, or a
screw down hole punch.

When metal stamping, it is advisable to use some tape to secure
your metal blank onto your block. This ensures it doesn't jump
around (or you will get double impressions, or potentially, not a
completely full impression). Just move the tape around and stamp
on the blank accessible areas, until you are satisfied with your design.

Don't be alarmed that the brass head of the hammer gets dented
and scuffed! It will! As brass is softer than the steel punch. However,
it wont affect your stamping in the slightest, it will just serve to
provide you with a crisp result as it absorbs the blow.

Once you've stamped your design, or if you wish to highlight
any texture on the metal, colour over the stamped, or textured
areas with a black permanent marker and let it dry.

Using either fine wire wool, a sanding block or fine sandpaper,
gently rub off the surface black colour to reveal the metal and the
ink will remain in the stamped indents. If necessary, you can use
a needle file to smooth off any rough edges on your pieces.

Finally, you can buff up the metal with some metal polish
and a polishing cloth to create a shine. Now the pieces are
ready to be used in your chosen designs ...

The copper shape on the left, was textured with the PICK and
DAPPING heads, as shown below:

The PICK head produces little ray lines on the metal surface,

and the DAPPING head produces little dents and dimples!

You can also choose to shape your metal blank in a doming block,
using the STEEL head. Do this after you have decorated it. Just place it
upside down in the wooden domed block and very gently tap it
into a shape - as you don't want to remove your surface decoration
on the opposite side!

If you're not doming or shaping your metal, you might need to
flatten it down, as the punching and texturing can result in
slight distortions. Use your NYLON head for any flattening,
as this will not mark or spread the metal.

Permanent marker pens and metal patina paints come in
many different colours, so you don't always have to stick
to black! Have a play with some colours!

This head is perfect for wire dimpling! You need to spread and
flatten your wire first with the STEEL head and then use the balled
end to strike the dents, whilst it's on your block.  It's very effective
for that extra sparkle!

The PICK head (above) has a sharp tip, therefore you don't
need to pre-flatten your wire to create the lines and surface strikes.
It can be used directly on chunky gauges, such as 1mm upwards.

As with stamping metal, you can also add colour to your textured

And whilst we are on the subject of texturing ... you will notice
that this moves the metal, causing it to lift and slightly distort. For
example, below is a wire doodle charm that has been flattened
(with the STEEL head) and then textured with the DAPPING

The dapping has lifted the metal (as it is now thinner), therefore
you need to flatten it down again. You can do this using the
NYLON head (as shown in the image below).


Place the textured wire on your steel block, either front side up
or reverse and stroke and tap down with your nylon head. This
will flatten the metal without marking or removing the surface

Whammer hammering does take some practice, but with plenty
of that, you will soon get a feel for how to stroke out the metal and
create the results you want! It's also incredibly therapeutic!
Welcome to Whammer Therapy ... where you can hammer away
all your blues!

I hope you can join me for the launch of the 
Whammer Deluxe, the multi-tool, all in one hammer, 
on Jewellery Maker TV on
October 5th at 11am to 12pm, UK time.

I am also going to be demonstrating all the Whammer
Deluxe heads at THE BIG BEAD show at Sandown Park
in Esher, Surrey on October 19th!

So do join me for some more inspiration as to how
to get the most out of your Whammer hammer Deluxe!

Below, is a little Gallery of images of some of the stamped metal pieces
that I have created with the new Whammer.


In the necklace above, I have used all 5 heads ... flattening,
work hardening, texturing, riveting and stamping!

And here are some of my Wire Jewellery Whammer pieces:

My 'Feather' necklace.

My 'Wiggle' necklace.

My 'Ripple' necklace.

My 'Heart' pendant with compressed Whammered wire.

My 'Rosette' design.

Some chunky chain links.

Some more chunky, compressed, circular chain links.

And to finish ... the Whammer Deluxe is also the perfect hammer for
making large wire home and garden decor designs, using chunky
aluminium wire!

I hope you'll become a Whammer hammer aficionado like me!

With the best 'hammer' jewellery inspiration from this book on


Tuesday, 3 September 2019


Welcome to September! Time to pick up those pliers!
If you're feeling a bit rusty after the long summer break,
I've put together a simple bangle project that should get
your fingers back into creative action!

All you will need is some 0.4mm and 0.8mm wire,
plus a selection of beads ...

To determine the length of 0.8mm wire to cut, measure your wrist for
size, plus add on about an inch and then double that amount and that
is your measurement to cut. I cut approximately 16" to 17" for my


Bend the wire in half, placing the centre around your bail making
pliers (or round nosed pliers). Using the tips of your chain nosed
pliers, pinch the wire where it meets into a circle.


Straighten out the rest of the doubled wire extending from the circle,
so that it runs parallel. Place the circular wire end on your steel block
and only hammer the circle, to work harden it.


Cut a short piece of 0.4mm wire and use this to bind just by the
circle.  Cut off any ends and neaten.


Go to the opposite end of your doubled wire and repeat this binding,
approximately 1" (2.5cm) away from the ends of both wires.


Place the wires around a circular mandrel (a rolling pin will do)
and shape the bangle into a circle frame.


Thread the ends of the wire through the circle and using your
round nosed pliers, curl the cut ends into a link to secure around
the hammered circular end.


If the frame has distorted in shape, just place it around a circular
mandrel again to re-shape and adjust.  Your bangle frame is now
ready for beading ...


Spread the wires apart on the frame (opposite the linked end) and
bind one side with 0.4mm wire.  (I cut about 10" of 0.4mm and
secured it at the centre, so that I could connect my beads within
the aperture opening).


Start by securing your largest bead at the centre of the bangle
and bind the top and bottom wire to secure. Keep adding and
binding in more of your chosen beads of reduced sizes to each side.


Once you've wired in all your selected beads. Cut off any excess
binding wire and neaten all the ends.


Finally, for extra decoration and weight, use some 0.4mm wire to
bind in one more bead that fits into the hammered circle at the
opposite end.

These bangles can be made with assorted beads in a variety of

On a smaller scale, you can also use the same technique, to create
large bead hoop earrings!