I made a quick hammer on the lathe tonight, out of some applewood I had lying around. It spent some time outside, so it’s got lots of checks and cracks, but it’s still pretty solid hardwood. And what I was making was intended to be used for hammering chisels, so it could be less than perfect.
Turned out pretty nice, all things considered. (No pun intended really.) I only finished with a hand rubbed walnut oil coat to bring out the color, nothing more. I would like to find some non-checked applewood to make a nicer one sometime, it does have some pretty grain.