Where the weight goes

 

This page discusses the effect of adding weight in various places in a croquet mallet

 

Where is it best to insert weight?

 

The answer to this is easy: as near to the extremities of the mallet head as possible.

 

In theory, the perfect configuration would be to place the weights in eight equal, tiny packets: one at each corner of each face.But in practice, of course, no material has an infinite density, and so the required weights are bound to have some volume.The material with the highest density that is practical (note) is tungsten, which has a density of about 17.Other materials are as follows:

 

Tungsten

19

Lead

11

Brass

9

Steel

8

Water

1

Hardwood (typical)

.8

Softwood (typical)

.4

Balsa wood

.12

 

Are there downsides in placing the weight immediately behind the striking face?

 

Not in terms of moment of inertia.But placing the weights hard up behind a striking face can mean that it is harder to achieve a satisfactory bond between the striking face and a wooden head material.Alan Pidcockís solution in his 2001 mallet head of using the weights (in that case, brass) as the striking face is elegant, but enthusiasm for a metal striking face is not universal.

 

Does it help to put the weight on the sides?

 

From the point of view of moment of inertia, a little, but not much.Depending on the materials used, a more important advantage of putting the weights at the side is that it facilitates a more efficient transfer of the shock wave through the mallet head if the material(s) immediately behind the strike point is/are as homogeneous as possible.

 

What happens if the weight is placed away from the extremities?

 

The weights need to be at 57% of the way from the shaft to the face before they start doing anything useful at all; see note for the calculation of this.