Home made hole/disc punch

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Hi guys

I thought I would share with you something I have added to my website - instructions on how made my own hole punch - or more accurately : a disc punch. For many conversions or scratch build projects we need small discs: buttons or rivets for instance. Some punches are available commercially but they tend to be for punching smaller discs up to 2 or 3 mm in diameter and limited to very thin plastic card.

Here is how I made a jig which can punch out nice, clean discs from 1.5mm up to 8mm diameter out of plastic card or soft metal up to 1mm thick.
HOLE PUNCH .JPG

Step 1:
The main body of the punch is made from three small pieces of 6mm thick acrylic sheet - available from a number of internet sources.
I bought a single, larger sheet and cut it down to the size of 8cm x 5.5cm.

HOLE PUNCH 1.JPG

Step 2:
Holding the three pieces together with masking tape I drilled a single hole in one corner, inserted a bolt which would hold them all together.

HOLE PUNCH 2.JPG

Step 3
With the single bolt holding the 3 pieces together I then drilled holes in each corner, inserting a bolt as a did.The three pieces should now be held firmly and squarely together.

HOLE PUNCH 3.JPG

Step 4
I bought a relatively inexpensive set of metal drill bits. The most important attribute is that the non-drilling end is flat and square. It is vital that the diameter or the shank of the drill bit is the same as the diameter of the cutting end. So far, every bit I have seen which drills holes larger than 8mm has a shank of a narrower diameter, but there is space on the jig if I do find any.

HOLE PUNCH 4a.JPG

Step 5
I drilled a hole in the three layers of acrylic sheet with each of the drill bits

HOLE PUNCH 4.JPG

Step 6
The 3 sheets were taken apart, the bolts re-inserted and a 1mm thick washer placed over each bolt. These act a spacers to allow the plastic sheet/ metal sheet to be inserted.

HOLE PUNCH 5.JPG

Step 7
The two remaining sheets are added, and using bolts, fixed tightly so that nothing can move. Construction is now completed.
HOLE PUNCH 6.JPG

Step 8 - to use:

The drill bit is inserted into the pillar drill upside down so the blunt, square end is at the bottom, and inserted into the appropriate hole with the plastic sheet slipped into the space made by the washers. By pulling down, the drill bit in lowered, punching out a disc of plastic.


HOLE PUNCH 9.JPGHOLE PUNCH 8a.JPG

As with all tools; take care making and using it - I take no responsibility!

Peter
 

Attachments

Allen Dewire

Proud Rabble Member
SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,135
Points
113
Location
Bamberg
First Name
Allen
Wow, thanks so much Peter. This is a great idea!!!

Prost
Allen
 

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Glad you like the idea. I made it in an afternoon.

I'm fortunate that my other hobby is woodworking so I have a pillar drill, but this tool could be used with a hammer, just not as easy.

Peter
 

John Race

Member of the Rabble and Pyromania Consultant
SMF Supporter
Joined
May 26, 2015
Messages
6,425
Points
113
Location
lincs
First Name
John
Hi Peter.
That's certainly a well thought out jig, and a easy to follow sbs.
Thank you for posting, certainly one to think about .
 

Laurie

SMF Supporter
Joined
Sep 8, 2016
Messages
365
Points
63
First Name
Laurie
Phew that is some imaginative work Peter.

Nice to see DIY often make up a thing or two or adapt.
All part of the rich part of this hobby.

Laurie
 

yak face

Wossupwidee?
Staff member
Moderator
SMF Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2009
Messages
8,171
Points
113
Location
sheffield
First Name
tony
I intended to do the exact same thing peter after seeing the exhorbitant price charged for punch and die sets , only problem is , after buying a couple of perspex picture frames and a cheap drill bit set I cant find the drill bits ! When they eventually turn up I'll make one , but mine will be a hammer version , cheers tony
 

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Glad you like the sbs.

Tony; I agree, this is a much cheaper option, and quite easy tp make. I found the most important step is drilling and putting the 4 corner bolts in place - once these are in, holding the sheets in place the rest is straightforward. If I were to build one to be used with a hammer. Would make the thickness of the acrylic sheet as thick as possible to help keep the drill bit aligned.

Peter
 

Jakko

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
3,712
Points
113
First Name
Jakko
If you have a table drill anyway, why not make the bottom from aluminium or steel instead of perspex?
 

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Hi Jakko

the base could easily be steel or aluminium. i used perspex because the 8x5.5 sheet of perspex was the smallest I could find and since I had it, it made sense to use it.

Petet
 

Jakko

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
3,712
Points
113
First Name
Jakko
I was wondering mainly because I suspect the perspex will wear out fairly quickly if you’re going to use this regularly. You’ll be pushing the material for the discs against the bottom plate until the material shears, after all, which can put a fair amount of strain on the bottom plate.
 
Last edited:

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Jakko

i think you are right, that over time the lower plate may wear and that metal would be better. My problem is that I have no tools to quickly cut metal - only hand hacksaws, and that would take ages, as well as far too much effort! I suppose a compromise would be to place a thinish peice of metal (1mm thick?) above the bottom place so that the material being punched sits on that rather than directly on the bottom perspex plate.

tomorrow I will dig around my workshop to see I have a suitable bit of metal.

Peter
 

SimonT

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,868
Points
113
Location
Yorkshire
First Name
Simon
The commercial metal plate ones do wear out over time - I‘ve worn out four Historex ones and part of a UMM one over the years. They did punch an awful lot of rivets though.

I seem to remember someone on MM making a punch that worked with drill bits and a pillar drill - was that yours Peter?

I drew up a full set of 2D and 3D working drawings for a multi punch - submitted it to a few small engineering companies to get quotes for making them and didn’t get a single reply!
 

Jakko

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 28, 2018
Messages
3,712
Points
113
First Name
Jakko
My problem is that I have no tools to quickly cut metal - only hand hacksaws, and that would take ages, as well as far too much effort!
Is there a school that teaches metalwork in your area? You might just be able to convince a teacher to have a student make you a suitable plate :smiling3:

A friend of mine had a big fantasy wargames figure that he’d bought second-hand without a base, and he didn’t have any suitable ones of 50 mm square. Him being a welder by trade, he went into to the metal shop of the company he worked for and made one out of stainless steel. That figure weighs a lot more than people expect it to :smiling3:
 

Mini Me

SMF Supporter
Joined
Jun 1, 2018
Messages
2,320
Points
113
First Name
Rick
What is critical in producing something like this is that the working surfaces ie. the punch and shear plate be of the same material in both composition and hardness. The guides are fine in Perspex however you must use very close tolerance drills and bolts as well as index pins to keep everything perfectly aligned. during the drilling process and final assembly. Failure to do so could cause unwanted shift in the plates and create a condition that will cause premature wear on the shear plate and punch. The design concept is excellent it is in the execution that all the bugaboos are lurking. Former metalsmith and machinist, Rick H.
 

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Rick

you are absolutely right. The limited tools I have at home mean compromises and a tool which may wear out over time, but it should last a few years and is easy enough to replace.

Hopefully the design overcomes some of the problems. By bolting the two plates together they should stay aligned and the 1mm washer gives me the space to put plastic card and foil betwen them. hopefully the issue of drill tolerances is solved by drilling the hole, and then Turnign the drill upside down and using the blunt, shaft of the same drill as the punch.

peter
 

Mini Me

SMF Supporter
Joined
Jun 1, 2018
Messages
2,320
Points
113
First Name
Rick
Pete, you are right in thinking this is a good solution with limited tooling on hand. I took the liberty of posting enough information so those that view your thread have the option of building the most effective tool with a little longer life engineered into the manufacturing and assembly process. Hope I didn't ruffle your feathers. Cheers, Rick H.:smiling4:
 

Peter Gillson

SMF Supporter
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
1,018
Points
113
First Name
Peter
Rick - don't worry, it take a lot more to ruffle my feathers, your post also gave md the opportunity to explain why I fixed the teo plates together, unlike the one I bought from Historex Agents a few years ago.

peter
 
Top