Treesner

best punching board for leather

Recommended Posts

I've just been using scrap baltic birtch plywood or kitchen cutting board. what would be the best material for punching leather? 

Was looking at this from Tandy that they say is used for clicker presses https://www.tandyleather.com/en/product/professional-cutting-board

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If in your budget, that is an excellent cutting or punching board.  I've seen a nice black rubbery one too that looked nice.  Tandy might sell it too.  One type is called a Poundo board.  Not as durable for sure.

check out this thread...

 

Edited by Tugadude

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I got a timber yard to cut me 3" lengths of 2x2, I then glued them side to side to make a punching block using the end grain of the blocks as the top surface.

The advantages are; 1. You don't take a chunk of wood or rubber out of the surface. 2. punching on the side of wood the wood compresses either making it harder to cut a clean hole or giving you a distorted one, but not with this 3. You need to change your punching surface frequently but not with this. 4. I've found my punches stay sharper longer

5c132bfd81717_Punchingblock01s.jpg.34aa5d53ff9f44a70be89c633f7c3870.jpg

The black marks are my alignment marks; so that no two blocks have the end grain pattern running in the same direction.

I've used this block for many years. The punches do leave circular ring marks in the end grain but have never removed any wood.

This cost me just a few ££ to make

Edited by fredk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, fredk said:

I got a timber yard to cut me 3" lengths of 2x2, I then glued them side to side to make a punching block using the end grain of the blocks as the top surface.

The advantages are; 1. You don't take a chunk of wood or rubber out of the surface. 2. punching on the side of wood the wood compresses either making it harder to cut a clean hole or giving you a distorted one, but not with this 3. You need to change your punching surface frequently but not with this. 4. I've found my punches stay sharper longer

5c132bfd81717_Punchingblock01s.jpg.34aa5d53ff9f44a70be89c633f7c3870.jpg

The black marks are my alignment marks; so that no two blocks have the end grain pattern running in the same direction.

I've used this block for many years. The punches do leave circular ring marks in the end grain but have never removed any wood.

This cost me just a few ££ to make

thats interesting and makes sense. could probably save a little time and just cut some 4x4 posts, less glue for you to hit with your tools, glue really dulls your tools (I know from woodworking with plywood and laminating). the tree stump is a cool idea too

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use a couple of 20cm ish square pieces of 3mm Veg Tan placed over one of those cutting boards, the punch never goes right through the leather, but only a hobby so might not work for professionals with higher demands

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, fredk said:

 

5c132bfd81717_Punchingblock01s.jpg.34aa5d53ff9f44a70be89c633f7c3870.jpg

 

Punching into endgrain is definitely the best. I have a 80cm-long section of tree trunk that I stand upright between my knees, so I'm punching into the endgrain. Works like a charm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with the end grain wood as a best surface. Another good choice is the poundo board, which I believe may be neolite sole material. It can have a fairly short lifespan and punches can go through it. My other favorite is low density polyethylene (LDPE). It is softer than the HDPE i like to cut on. The LDPE is softer and edges can penetrate without damage. HDPE is too brittle, can fracture, and can turn an edge on some finely sharpened punches. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think many moons ago some saddle makers in the UK used what they had on hand which was lead. they melted it into a slab and used that for punching. Once it got a bit beaten up they just remelted it and you had it new again. it also seems not to affect the edge of the tool. There is actually a video somewhere i think about a tour of the walsall saddlery museum and in the process of making a strap, the guy punches the holes on one of these lead slabs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, jimi said:

saddle makers in the UK used what they had on hand which was lead

certainly saw this when I was learning in the 1980s, never did it myself, have a few layers of medium density board glued together, and the flesh side of some veg tanned glued on top of that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What system makes it the quietist? 

I think I'm going to try the endgrain 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use a chunk of lead- works great. When it gets too dinged up, just smooth it out with a hammer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For quietness put the endgrain slab on a piece of foam insulation board.  It will help mute the sound.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, jimi said:

I think many moons ago some saddle makers in the UK used what they had on hand which was lead. they melted it into a slab and used that for punching. Once it got a bit beaten up they just remelted it and you had it new again. it also seems not to affect the edge of the tool. There is actually a video somewhere i think about a tour of the walsall saddlery museum and in the process of making a strap, the guy punches the holes on one of these lead slabs.

 

4 hours ago, Alexis1234 said:

I use a chunk of lead- works great. When it gets too dinged up, just smooth it out with a hammer.

I have a few small blocks of lead which I used to use for punching into. I mainly used them when I was on-site at a history presentation and I was doing a leather work demo. When heavily marked I just melted it down and let it set again with a fresh surface. But I found it still dulled the punches as it is still metal. I still occasionally use one of the lead blocks when I'm too lazy to move over to the big block just for one small hole

 

4 hours ago, Tugadude said:

For quietness put the endgrain slab on a piece of foam insulation board.  It will help mute the sound.

My block sits on a 6mm thick rubber slab on a special stamping/punching table I built. I do need to add extra rubber to the bottom of the table tho as it is still not quiet enough

Edited by fredk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Treesner said:

 could probably save a little time and just cut some 4x4 posts, less glue for you to hit with your tools, glue really dulls your tools (I know from woodworking with plywood and laminating). the tree stump is a cool idea too

1. My timber yard had no 4 x 4 in stock when I visited. Largest was 2.5 x 3. But they had some 2 x 2 off-cuts and they cut it down and the blocks cost me all of £2 [$3]

2. I used standard water-proof woodworking PVA. Gluing to about 1/2" of each end of each block. That should take care of the punch hitting a glued joint. No way is the punch going to go in as much as 3/8", maybe 1/4" but no more

3. The boards around the outside are mostly decorative - to make it all look tidy. Very little chance of a block coming loose and breaking away. They also make a grip for easy lifting and moving of the block. I made my block to fit the top of a special stamping/punching table I built

4. The roughness of the end grain on mine can leave marks on the leather sometimes. I usually punch from grain to flesh, but some times I need to go flesh to grain. To prevent wood grain marks I just put a thin bit of waste leather between the two. A harder wood than mine would probably have a smoother end grain. My wood is cheap framing white-wood. The cheapest one can get

Edited by fredk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a 12 in long pice of 8x8 timber that I use for various projects, including leather punching.  End grain for leather punching, of course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use a hockey puck on steel backing works great.  Pucks may not be available in all parts of the world but are plentiful here in Canada.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/14/2018 at 4:37 PM, fredk said:

1. My timber yard had no 4 x 4 in stock when I visited. Largest was 2.5 x 3. But they had some 2 x 2 off-cuts and they cut it down and the blocks cost me all of £2 [$3]

2. I used standard water-proof woodworking PVA. Gluing to about 1/2" of each end of each block. That should take care of the punch hitting a glued joint. No way is the punch going to go in as much as 3/8", maybe 1/4" but no more

3. The boards around the outside are mostly decorative - to make it all look tidy. Very little chance of a block coming loose and breaking away. They also make a grip for easy lifting and moving of the block. I made my block to fit the top of a special stamping/punching table I built

4. The roughness of the end grain on mine can leave marks on the leather sometimes. I usually punch from grain to flesh, but some times I need to go flesh to grain. To prevent wood grain marks I just put a thin bit of waste leather between the two. A harder wood than mine would probably have a smoother end grain. My wood is cheap framing white-wood. The cheapest one can get

thanks for the extra tips

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a limited work space and have found that gluing a couple 8/9oz or higher pieces of vegtan scrap together gives me a great punching surface. When it gets too many holes I just make another one with more scrap. I use it on top of my granite slab.

Edited by Chief Filipino

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now