A hammer is a versatile tool with a range of applications that any DIY-er cannot afford to lack in the workshop. More so, air hammers, also known as air chisels. The tool enjoys multiple uses like driving nails, cutting metals, and carving stones. Based on versatility, air chisels are available in different sizes and types; thus, I will take you through their features, mechanisms, advantages and disadvantages and ultimately get the best air hammer for your toolkit.
If you don’t want to stay the whole day in your workshop, then an ordinary hammer will not do you good. Through our well baked reviews, I am confident that you will get an air hammer which is worth your time and money.
Below is a list of the top ten picks that will definitely serve your purpose.
Tool Aid S&G (91140) air Hammer
- Highly versatile hammer with a wide range of applications
- Excellent for body forming on frames, U-joints, fenders, panels, and hoods.
- Has a polished face with a diameter of 1 inch
- It has a long length that makes it easier to reach hard to reach parts.
- The tool has a 0.401-inch pneumatic chisel shank.
Tool Aid S&G (91140) Pneumatic Hammer is a vital necessity for rusty vehicle work. Manufactured by Hammer S&G Tool Aid Corp, an established company that has been developing innovative, general tools for over 40 years, is a must-have. What makes this piece stand out among its peers is the fact that this pneumatic hammer is developed to professional quality standards to give you years of service.
If you don’t have an effective air hammer for u-joints, fenders, panels, frames, and hoods, you need to acquire this. There are a lot of things you can accomplish with this tool and the attachments it comes with. With this, you can hammer the surface of a rotor, and the rust will be gone. Unlike its peers which fight rusts, this one simply studs them out!
- Professional grade pneumatic hammer
- Long pneumatic hammer
- Made in the USA
- Relatively costly
Performance Tool M668 Heavy Duty Air Hammer with 5 Chisels
- Produces 3000 BPM
- Rubber coated casing
- Presence of air regulator
- 3.1 pounds in weight
- 0.380 inches shank size
- Five heat-treated chisel
From the name, you will gauge that this tool is fit for your heavy-duty tasks. The tool is ideal for newbies and DIYers who enjoy their work. It is perfect for removing rivets, hole punching, exhaust work and general repairs. Besides, the tool is made of a hard steel barrel and a heavy-duty plastic casing for durability. Moreover, M668 model is pocket friendly.
The air hammer operates at a rate of 3000 BPM. Besides, it has an air regulator trigger that controls the pressure. The simple design hammer comes with a set of 5 heat-treated chisel extensions and a change spring safety retainer that allows you to change the chisels swiftly. Each chisel is shaped differently and has different power ratings.
The hammer weighs barely 3.1 pounds, allowing the user to swing with ease. Also, the rubber coating ensures a firm grip.
However, the performance tool M668 hammer’s shank size of 0.380 inches limits its use with many chisel sets. Be sure to get a 1-year limited warranty if you purchase this tool.
- Easy to use
- Has five set of chisels to choose from
- Has just enough power to maneuvre any job
- Pocket friendly
- Not compatible with other chisel sets
- You may not use all the chisels
Grey Pneumatic CH117-7 7″ Length 1″ Diameter Hammer
- The width across the shank is 0.401 inches
- The width across the hammer tip is one inch
- The overall length of the hammer is 7 inches
- Has a modelled tray that serves as a toolbox for the users
- Has a tool body with of 0.5 inches
- Weighs 0.01 ounces
This tool is intricately built to offer users an impact chisels in 0.401 inches and a shank of 0.498 inches. The tool is designed for use with pneumatic hammers, with every chisel designed for some predetermined application. The most significant selling point for this product is the set of chisels; its chisels are made of the highest quality steel. That means that they are designed to serve you for years before deteriorating. Besides, they are finished with a black oxide coating, which further enhances their quality and lifespan.
What’s more? Grey Pneumatic has a sturdy CH117-7 Pneumatic Bit, a one-inch diameter hammer—seven-inches long, a 0.401 inches shank, and fast shipping!
- Professional grade hammer
- Comes with multiple chisels
- The chisels are extra strong, made of high-quality stainless steel
- Fast shipping so you can acquire it on short notice
- Poor customer care service by the manufacturer
Chicago Pneumatic CP7150K Air Hammer Kit
- Long barrel
- 5.2 pounds in weight
- Comes with five chisel set
- 0.401 inches shank size
- Produces 2100 BPM
- Produces 4.5 CFM
Chicago pneumatic never disappoints when they decide to design a tool. The Chicago pneumatic CP7150K Air Hammer Kit weighs 5.2 sounds and is one of the best in the market. It has an integral muffler that limits the exhaust sound. With only a 3.5 inch piston, the air hammer produces 4.5 CFM which is efficient for any job.
Thanks to its effective spring-loaded change retainer that enables you to switch to any accessory with ease. Besides, its durability is well sorted since all the parts are heat-treated.
The hammer operates at a rate of 2100 BPM, producing an impact that will help you finish your task earlier. Also, the ergonomic design of the handle provides a firm grip and comfort during operation.
The set comes with 5 chisels and a sturdy storage casing. Plus, it has a long barrel that maneuvers tight spots.
- Excellent power to weight ratio
- Presence of integral muffler to limit noise
- Spring bit retainer enables smooth switch of accessories
- Standard in the industry
- You may need something with shorter strokes
BOSTITCH Palm Nailer, Mini Impact Air Hammer(PN50)
- 1 pound in weight
- Presence of 360 degrees swivel air fitting
- Presence of front air exhaust
The Bostitch palm nailer is an outstanding type of hammer with a weight of only 1 pound. The hammer is coated with a rubber grip at the handle to insulate and limit vibration produced during operation. Thanks to its 360 degrees swivel air fitting that enables it to maneuver through tight spots.
It has a wide range of applications, including driving nails into tight corners, metal connectors and joist hangers. Besides, it has a front exhaust that drives air away from the working surface for visibility and safety.
Also, be sure of getting a whopping 7-years limited warranty if you purchase Bostitch palm nailer mini impact hammer. Trust this mini hammer for accessibility and performance.
- Drive air away from the user
- 7-years warranty
- Ability to maneuver tight spots
- You may need more powerful air hammer
Ingersoll Rand 121Q Super Duty Air Hammer
- Weighs 4.2 pounds
- Presence of easy out throttle valve assembly
- Plastic blow molded casing
- Speed of 3000 BPM
- 3 CFM air volume
Ingersoll Rand 121Q Super Duty Air Hammer is ideal for heavy-duty tasks. The pocket-friendly hammer has no weak points since it is made of a one-piece alloy barrel, a factor for its long durability. You can use the hammer for different tasks such as chipping, hammering, pressing, ball joints removal, and cutting of metals.
Thanks to its limited air consumption that does not demand for a bigger air compressor. Also, Ingersoll Rand 120Q hammer operates at a speed of 3000 BPM with only 3 CFM. You can doubt its effectiveness due to the lightweight body but be assured of ideal performance.
The hammer comes with six chisel sets and a blow-molded case with a removable lid. The armature has proven easy to maintain and has an easy out throttle valve assembly. The hammer is barely 4.2 pounds but performs front end duty tasks.
- Standard shank size
- Easy to maintain
- Durable barrel
- Quality of retainer is low.
DEWALT Chisel Hammer, Pneumatic (DWMT70785)
- 4.5 CFM air consumption
- 4 pounds in weight
- Presence of a stringent control trigger
- Aluminium casing
- Produces 2200 BPM
- Rubber handle
- Comes with 3 different chisels
- Has ¼ inch inlet
- Lightweight design
- Accepts only 0.401 inch chisel shanks
This model boasts of being among the first hammers that have ever hit the market. Dewalt chisel hammer is a powerful tool with an aluminium body for durability. The tool is lightweight and has a rubber handle that reduces vibrations and for a firm grip. It also has a touch control trigger plus a subtle finish of black and yellow colour coding design.
The hammer is ideal for ceramics and less heavy-duty tasks. It delivers a force of 2200 BPM from a 4.5 CFM air consumption.
I am confident that this could be something you’ve been looking for. Thanks to the manufacturers for allowing a 3-year limited warranty on the DEWALT Chisel Hammer.
- Shock-absorbing handle
- 3-years warranty
- Some complain that the hammer vibrates too much.
Chicago Pneumatic CP714 Heavy-Duty Air Hammer
- Heavy-duty CP Hammer
- Comes with an easy to hold the pistol grip
- Has a positive action trigger with excellent control over speed and range
- The package includes four chisels
- Has a precise speed control
- 2000 blows per minute
- 0.401-inches shank opening
- Weighs 3.33 pounds
- 9/16 inches bore diameter
The Chicago Pneumatic Hammer is a heavy-duty, highly versatile item that’s a must-have for any handyman. What makes it the ideal tool is that it offers a full-body shop application including Kingpin bushing removal, front-ends, exhausts, riveting, bold shearing, and body frames, to mention a few. This air hammer offers you upwards of 2,000 blows per minute. The frequency of the blows can be varied, precisely, over a wide range of options using a spool valve positive-action trigger.
Considering that this is a handy tool, it’s impressive to note that the Chicago Pneumatic CP714 Heavy-Duty Air Hammer weighs just 3.33 pounds. The lightweight design together makes it effortless to hold in one hand for longer durations than you would hold heavier alternatives. If you’re a professional who wants the best, choose the Chicago CP714, and you’ll enjoy uttermost versatility and so much more. It’s the easiest to control CP Hammer, with very sensitive tease throttle and the only one in this list with a spool valve that controls the starting and stopping points.
- Easy handling
- Has a wide range of speed and range controls
- Highly versatile
- Operator comfort
- The piston is weak
- The pistons are costly to replace
- AIr consumption of 4 CFM at 90 PSI
- Operates at 2200 BPM
- 0.48 ounces in weight
- Includes built-in regulator
- Accepts standard 0.401-inch shank
- 5.7 lbs in weight
If you are in need of a hammer that integrates high power with lightweight, Sunex SX243 is your perfect choice. Imagine this tool producing a speed of 2200 BPM and weighing barely 0.48 ounces! The lightweight is due to the incorporation of aluminum casing as its cover.
The tool is compatible with most air compressors as it operates at only 4 CFM. The hammer handles various tasks including grinding, spraying, drilling, hammering and cutting more burdensome materials. Apart from these features, the hammer accepts a standard size of 0.401 -inch shanks thus compatible with many chisels.
The design also employs an ergonomic grip handle for comfortability. It also has a built-in regulator that enables you to adjust the speed. Besides, its long barrel is efficient in providing precision and power.
However, don’t expect it to come with any casing or chisel, but the price is reasonable and pocket friendly.
- Range of applications
- The hammer is a bit heavy
- Aluminium housing for durability
- Presence of comfort ergonomic handle grip
- Does not come with a casing
- Does not come with chisels
1.Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer 114GQC
- Operates at 3500 MPM
- Presence of retainer
- Has a three piece chisel set
- Ideal torque accuracy
- The brand weighs barely 4.1 pounds.
Ingersoll Rand Air hammer 114GDC tops our list as the best air hammer in the market. It is a popular tool that offers a range of applications. The tool is designed to perform medium-duty tasks. The model has an ergonomic grip design that reduces tension in the arm and wrist during vibration.
The model operates at a speed of 3500 BPM with air consumption of 4 CFM. You can see that this is the highest power in our list. Also, the piston is heat-treated to extend its lifespan. It comes with three sets of chisel attachments, panel cutter, flat chisel and tapered punch.
Ingersoll Rand air hammer is a good match because of its pocket-friendly cost and the ability to perform heavy-duty tasks too.
- Easy to operate and maintain
- Performs a range of functions
- Some complaint of the high vibration.
The Working Principle behind an Air Hammer
The fact that it uses air means that there is a pressurized air source, which is an air compressor. The pressurized air is passed from the compressor to the hammer barrel through a tightly fixed horse. The hammer, resembling a piston, has a trigger that controls the power output by regulating the air passing into the barrel.
Once you press the trigger, air passes through the hose to the barrel, thus pushing the plunger or piston at high pressure. Therefore, the piston exerts pressure on the hammer extension, which in turn hits the anticipated surface. The remaining air pushes the plunger back to its initial position.
The process repeats within a short time, exerting the force that can accomplish your set task. Ensure safety every time you operate your machine because the power produced can be high enough to make the hammer slip through your hand. Proper personal protective equipment is necessary.
Feel free to test every chisel extension in your set until you get the one that suits your task. The extensions perform the same job, but others are more precise in some functions, therefore, as a novice, try every chisel type.
Best Air Hammer Buyer’s Guide
You’ve got to the point of choosing the best hammer that suits your preference. What are you going to consider? How are you going to approach these tools if you are new? What power and size do you need? Say no more, and we have a well-detailed guide that will answer every question that lingers in your mind before purchasing your hammer.
I know you are looking into critical features like durability, efficiency, performance and manufacturer reliability, among others. We’ve got you covered. After the guide, take your time and run through all the hammers in our list to get the one that works for you.
Here are the aspects that you should consider when buying your hammer.
Does it come with a chisel set?
When choosing your hammer, make sure you’ve done your homework so well. The chisel set is not mandatory but a bonus that manufacturers consider. However, a hammer that does not come with its chisel set should be of standard size for compatibility with most chisels. A typical size has a shank of 0.401 inches. The hammers are packed with five or more chisels of different sizes. Others also have metal sheeting extensions that can handle more resistant materials.
Air power source
Before you go for an air hammer, you have to arm yourself with an air compressor. The tightly pressurized air in the air compressor is channeled through the hose pipe to the hammer. Be sure to check the PSI ratings of your hammer in terms of air consumption if it can match with your air compressor. Remember, if the air compressor ratings are below your air hammer ratings, then your devices are not compatible. However, the current air compressors are built to accommodate any powerful tool.
Hammer Speed Ratings
The hammer ratings depend on the kind of job you need to be done and the power it requires. Every hammer has a designated rating in beats per minute (BPM). The rating number defines the power released by the hammer. The standard hammer ratings range between 2000-3000 BPM and can handle any medium to cumbersome task effectively.
The Barrel Size
Every hammer comes with different barrel sizes, and there is no job specification relating the sizes. However, the longer the barrel, the higher the force produced by the hammer and the more the flexibility to hit tight spots. Therefore, you’ll prefer hammers with longer barrels if you are planning to work on heavy-duty tasks. Additionally, a short barrel hammer ensures you hit every corner but be ready to pay more on power consumption.
The trigger regulates the amount of air passing from the compressor to the barrel, thus determining the power produced by the hammer. There are two types of triggers, an instant power trigger and a gradual progressive trigger. The difference being that instant triggers apply pressure immediately you pull the trigger while gradual progressive triggers take some time to apply the pressure. Instant triggers work faster, thus saving time.
How to Use an Air Chisel
The first step is to ensure that your air compressor is functional and full. I advise you to check on the air levels to avoid unnecessary time-wasting.
Next, select and attach the chisel extension that is viable for your task. Excellent hammers are integrated with a perfect retainer to allow swift switch of the extensions. Remember to oil the chisel and tighten it to the retainer.
When done, connect and tighten your air compressor to the barrel through the hose.
Note that you should check every spot to avoid leakages. Another feature you should consider is the presence of a rubber handle for firm grip and reduced vibrations. The reason being that the vibrations put a lot of tension to the hand and can lead to tissue deterioration. You can buy new gloves to reduce tension.
The air hose should always be cleaned to remove the dust or debris that do stick on the sides. The debris limit air passage, thus affecting the performance of the tool. You can make a schedule of cleaning the horse after every two months. This will also help to prolong the life of the hammer.
These are some air leakages from the hose that do arise when a proper fitting is not maintained. Ensure that you check for any leakage before powering on the tool. In case of any leakage, the power produced by the hammer is limited.
Another essential maintenance tip is lubrication. It would be best if you lubricated the hammer frequently to maximize its performance. Lubrication reduces friction, thus limiting the wear and tear of the parts. Make it a habit to increase your machine life.
After ensuring that the air compressor is operational, control the air entering the hammer as excess pressure can damage the hammer. Regulate the air passage to correct measurements, as indicated in the manual.
FAQs on Air Hammers
What is the purpose of a quick change retainer?
We have mentioned the presence of a quick change retainer in most of the products above. It allows swift and smooth shifting of chisel attachments works with the air hammer. The retainer also holds the accessory in place to prevent it from falling while working.
What does BPM mean in air hammers?
BPM in full is the number of blows per minute. It is the number of beats or times the plunger moves in one minute. The compressor’s air pushes the piston or plunger, which in turn applies force to the chisel attachment for action. After that, the piston returns to its original position, making one cycle. Therefore, the number of cycles it makes in a minute designates the BMP. An air hammer with less BPM produces more power.
Can regular oil apply in air hammer maintenance?
Some hammers come with a specific oil that is suitable for hammer lubrication. It would be best if you stuck to that oil, and in case it is over, get another one. Never use regular oil on hammer maintenance. It will not serve its purpose perfectly and, in some cases, destroy the hammer.
How can you reduce stress on hand while using the hammer?
The first step is to choose hammers with an ergonomic design handle. You can add gloves with wrist support, and lastly shift hand positions to minimize fatigue.
What is the standard diameter of a hose used in air hammers?
The size of the hose will depend on the fittings that come with the air compressor. However, the minimum diameter of a hose required is 3/8 inches.
Now that you are well vast with the essential knowledge on air hammers, you are free to make informed decisions when purchasing the best air hammer in the market. I suggest that you revisit our list and choose the model that suits your needs.
Additionally, we have taken our time to test all the hammers in our list, and the results are positive. I am confident that the tool you choose will give you the best results that you hope for while saving tons of energy and time.
The air tools are more powerful and efficient than electric tools, and if you choose the finest product based on the buying guide above, you are set to accomplish your job as soon as possible.