How Everything Works
How Everything Works How Everything Works

Question 438

Is it true that striking two hammers together will release little splinters? If so, why?
The head of a hammer is made of very tough steel. Depending on the type of hammer, that head may even hardened tool steel. In that case, the head will not yield, except to the most incredible forces. It will instead deform elastically and then return to its original shape. However, if you smack two hardened hammerheads against one another, the forces that they exert on one another may become so great that the heads will shatter. The symptom will probably not be the release of a few tiny splinters but rather large chunks of hard steel flying off in all directions.

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