How To: Dress a Hammer

Always wear a respirator and eye protection when grinding metal

Never operate an angle grinder without the guard securely installed

Why should I do this?

Dressing your hammer face will prevent unsightly marks left by the edges on the faces of most commercially produced hammers. It is also a way to reprofile the hammer face, making it more (or less) convex and thus more (or less) aggressive in moving material.

You Will Need


  • Sandpaper, flap discs, or grinder belts


  • A hammer
  • (Optional) an angle grinder or belt grinder
  • (Optional, but very helpful) a vise (to hold your hammer while you sand it)

The Process

Make sure the flat face is actually flat

Sometimes commercially produced hammers have a very slight indent on the flat face. Grind or sand the flat face down until it is flat

Remove sharp edges

Most commercially produced hammers have sharp edges on one or both faces. These edges will add unsightly marks to your work and should be sanded or ground away.