Bruce, Thanks for your interest, most poeple I've talked to about this hammer shun away from me once they hear the cost. Back in 1992 with my family we visited my wife's family in stockholm for agood month. So I had the perfect chance to visit many expos on of which displayed this hammer, so I bought one took it home and once I discovered how much I loved it I bought one for my dad and another carton of 12 for my employees. I can't tell what the handle is made of but the grain and color resemble Ash. It is a rip head and weighs 22 oz. The handle has a signature curve to it which is all the difference. Just my luck, with all the use I've put this through the name is worn away. Currently tearing through my office looking for the papers. Although I don't drive those beefy dock nails I do some heavy framing with my hammer and I haven't broke any handles. I know they make a 30 oz. from what I saw. I will post a message once I get those darn papers.