Best Framing Hammers


Framing hammers are one of the most basic tools in any carpenter or home renovator’s toolbox. Their main use is driving large nails into wood to build walls, floors, and roofs. They are also used for removing stubborn nails that are stuck in the wood. If you need to know what makes a framing hammer the best, we’re happy to help you out. We’ve done the research for you and have all the information you need to know on framing hammers to make an informed decision on which one is the best for your needs.

A framing hammer is an indispensable tool, allowing you to work faster and easier on your projects. In this article, I will highlight the best framing hammers you can find online and the things you should consider before buying one. Since this tool is meant to be used daily and built to last for a long time, you should be making an educated purchase instead of buying the cheapest one.

Last update on 2021-04-11 at 23:18 / Affiliate Links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Our recommended framing hammers:

Real Steel 0517 Ultra Framing Hammer

This framing hammer is our recommendation for anyone looking to buy one with a steel handle. It comes with a textured rubber coating which is essential for shock control. It makes this hammer comfortable to use. The magnetic nail starter is a nice feature to have and many would appreciate it. It will allow you to use the framing hammer with one hand if you prefer. The hammer is forged as one piece which makes this steel hammer very durable. It will definitely last for a long time until you need to have it replaced.

It weighs 21 ounces which makes it lightweight and easy to handle all day long. Overall a great product that you can find at a reasonable price for its features. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a steel framing hammer and definitely worth a closer look while researching.

Fiskars IsoCore 22 oz Milled-face Framing Hammer

This is a great option for anyone looking for a long framing hammer for their needs. It is 16 inches long and will allow for powerful strikes. It comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer and features an insulated handle that can absorb the shock from your strike and reduce fatigue. The magnetic nail starter is great for the one-hand operation that many would appreciate. Overall a balanced product that comes at an affordable price and a limited lifetime warranty. If you are on a limited budget looking for a long, powerful framing hammer this one worth giving a chance. It does the job without breaking the bank.

Estwing Sure Strike California Framing Hammer

If you are after a durable framing hammer that features a wooden handle, this one is definitely one to consider. It can be found relatively cheap and has an overall length of 18 inches allowing for powerful strikes. The wooden handle can absorb the shock of your strike and the head weight of 25oz makes it ideal for large scale projects. If you don’t mind changing the handle in case it breaks, this is a great framing hammer that gets the job done. Just be prepared that eventually it will break and have to replace the handle after some time, depending on your use.

Estwing Framing Hammer – 22 oz Long Handle

This framing hammers from Estwing is quite popular mainly due to its attractive price and the long steel handle. It is forged as one piece of steel for extra durability, and it is one of the longest framing hammers on our list. The grip reduces the initial impact of the strike which makes working with it a breeze even after many hours. You can find it in various weights with 16, 20, and 22oz being the most popular options on the market. Overall a great option if you are after a steel framing hammer that won’t break the bank. It is built to last and the grip makes it a joy to use, so I can highly recommend it.

Martinez Tools M1 Titanium Handle 15oz

I felt like I had to include this framing hammer from Martinez Tools in the list even though it costs way more than its competitors. This one is a league of its own. It features a titanium handle with a shock reducing grip for maximum comfort. Moreover, this hammer features an interchangeable milled steel head and curved grip. This will allow you to create the perfect match for your application. The hammers come with a 15oz which is among the lightest on our list, making this a great all-around tool that you won’t struggle to use all day long.

This is a great addition to any toolbox really and essentially the replaceable head makes this a great option for anyone interested in expanding their toolbox. It’s not the cheapest option on the market, but it worth every cent if you are willing to invest in a titanium hammer.

Estwing Hammer – 20 oz Straight Rip Claw

This framing hammer shares the same design as the previously mentioned one from Estwing, yet this is the shorter version of the steel handle. Like any other hammer from Estwing, you can find it in various weights with 16 and 20oz being the most popular ones. The head and handle are forged as one single piece offering extreme durability and the shock absorption grip feels great. For its price, this is a great option for anyone on a budget. This is built to last making it a worthy investment. If you are after a steel framing hammer, this is a great option to consider.

Vaughan & Bushnell CF2HC California Framer

I decided to include this California framer since a lot of people like to work with a wood handle and this is a top-notch choice especially considering its low price. It has a milled face that can help minimize slipping of the nail and also has a magnetic nail holder. The head weighs 19oz which is quite a popular choice for framing hammers, yet the company also offers a variety of weights to choose from. Taking into consideration its price, I feel like this deserves a closer look if you prefer the wooden handles.

Estwing Hammertooth Hammer

This hammer from Estwing comes in a patented design that can be useful in your daily tasks. It features a shock reduction grip that can reduce vibrations by 70%, which makes working with it a joy. Like any other hammer from Estwing, this is also forged as one piece which allows for extreme durability. Overall a great tool to add to your toolbox, it might be a little pricier but can be found online at a price that seems right. If you like working with long handles and 24oz sounds good for you, this is a framing hammer you should consider.

Stilletto TI14MC Stiletto Tools Titan 14-OunceTitanium Framing Hammer

A friend recommended adding this one to the list as well. I was a little hesitant as it is a little pricier than the rest of the framing hammers in the list, yet I think it deserves a place in the list for anyone looking for a great lightweight option. This one weighs only 14 ounces which will allow you to strike hard yet not getting tired too easily. The wooden handle is great and minimizes vibrations from impact, while the magnetic nail starter is a great feature for one-handed operation. Overall, if you are after a lightweight option this is a great one to consider especially if it fits within your budget. After all, you can’t go wrong with products from Stilleto.

DeWalt DWHT51064 22 Oz. Framing Hammer

I decided to include this framing hammer from DeWalt as a great budget-friendly option on the list. You can find it at an attractive price which makes it a great option for anyone looking to buy a framing hammer. If you prefer a one-handed operation the magnetic nail starter is there and the 22oz head will help you get great strikes with less fatigue. A great all-around tool that gets the job done without breaking the bank. This is probably the cheapest option on our list, so if you have a limited budget you should probably start your research from this one.

What to consider when buying a framing hammer?

So, what makes for the best framing hammer? It all depends on what you are going to use it for. No one size fits all. What works for one project may not work for another. The following are some of the main features that you should look for when shopping for a framing hammer.

With the right features, a framing hammer can easily become the go-to tool for a variety of carpentry tasks. While it’s true that sometimes a nail gun or a crowbar will do the trick, it’s rare that a framing hammer can’t do something better. The most basic framing hammers come with a flat face and a claw that can pull nails, and are generally too heavy for anything but driving nails. Better framing hammers come with a nail setting, enabling faster driving than with a flat head, as well as a claw that can also be used for pulling or prying.

One of the first things to consider is the type of handle you prefer for your framing hammer. The most common options on the market feature wooden, steel, and fiberglass handles. It’s up to you to decide the best fit for you. Wooden handles wide popular since they absorb shocks better than steel, yet they are not that durable. 

Wooden handles are ideal for those who don’t mind changing handles every now and then. They offer maximum absorption of the shocks. If you are looking for high durability, steel handles a great alternative to wooden ones.

Steel handles are built to last forever yet the downside is they don’t absorb vibrations that well. Your best bet is steel options that offer a rubber handle if you decide to go this way.

Last but not least the fiberglass handle is the tougher and more durable option on the market. Even though they are not unbreakable, if you are looking for a framing hammer that would last a long time fiberglass handle is your best option. It features shock absorption in between that of wooden and steel. 

The length of the handle is also a determining factor to consider. You can find framing hammers ranging from 13 inches up to 17 inches. The longer handle will allow you to build greater momentum and eventually more power for your strike. However, the longer the handle, the more time it would take for you to get used to it. 

The weight of a framing hammer is also significantly greater than a regular one, ranging between 20 and 32 ounces. Ideally, in order to find the right weight, you should have a closer look at the available options preferably in person. Generally speaking a framing hammer around 20 or 22 ounces is ideal for small to medium scale projects, as they are light enough for all-day use. 

The best framing hammers are made from brands that are well-known for their hand tools, like Stanley, Triton, Estwing, Stiletto, Dalluge, or DeWalt. It is advisable to invest in a good framing hammer,  that would last for a lifetime, instead of going for the cheapest options. Going for the cheapest one is going to cost you more in the long run, when you have to upgrade.

In the world of framing hammers, there are several different handle types to choose from. The handle type you choose depends on your personal preference and the type of work you do most often. A good rule of thumb is to choose a handle type that is comfortable, gives you a good grip, and helps you swing the hammer with ease. If you’re in the market for a new framing hammer, you’ve probably noticed that there are a lot of options out there, ranging from cheap, poorly made imitations to extremely high-end tools that cost a small fortune. While the cheap hammers may seem tempting, they may not be worth the hassle. A better alternative is to invest in a higher-quality hammer that will last you years.

Framing hammers are made to withstand heavy impact and are usually made of steel or fiberglass-reinforced plastic. Unlike a regular hammer, the business end is usually covered in a cushioned material to protect the wielder from the hammer’s strike. The face of a framing hammer is generally smooth and flat, while the claws are designed with ridges and points to pull nails out of wood more easily. The striking face of a framing hammer is usually concave and is often designed to make it easier to pull nails out of wood.

Cheap hammers will simply bend or even break when you hit a nail. You’ll find yourself constantly replacing the cheap hammer and still staying unhappy with its quality. A well-balanced hammer is easier to control, while a hammer that’s too top-heavy or too bottom-heavy can be difficult to hold, and a hammer that’s too long or too short can make you tired and sore after just a few hours of work.