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Cat’s Paw: The Purrrfect Nail Puller

A cat’s paw nail puller

Drive the cat’s paw around the nailhead using a hammer.

It’s easy to see where the cat’s paw gets its name. Made of steel, a cat’s paw is a round or hexagonal bar that curves at one end to form a pointed, cup-shaped tip with a V-slot for gripping nailheads.

You hold the tool’s shank with one hand and drive the claw around a nailhead with a hammer.

When the V-slot is firmly seated around the nail’s shank, you rock the bar back to raise the head and then finish pulling the nail with the hammer’s claw.

The cat’s paw, also called a nail puller, is invaluable for demolition work but, because it tears up the wood around the nailhead, cannot be used for finish work.

About Don Vandervort
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Don Vandervort developed his expertise more than 30 years ago as Building Editor for both Sunset Books and Home Magazine. He has written more than 30 home improvement books and countless magazine articles. He appeared regularly on HGTV’s “The Fix,” and served as MSN’s home expert. Don founded HomeTips in 1996.

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