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Old 06-30-2006, 12:03 AM
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powerrodsmike powerrodsmike is offline
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Mikey's make believe punch

I needed some 3/8" x .035" slugs to fill some holes in a set of splash pans.
I know I could have backed up the holes with aluminum or copper and pounded some mig welder wire in it but I have to do things the slow stupid way.
So I made a punch.

I take a piece of steel 1/2 thick and put it in the vise on the mill. drill a hole 3/8" diameter.

I get a piece of 3/8"drill rod and sharpen it with a slightly angled concave end. I just hold it at a right angle to my bench grinding wheel, slightly above center. Put the drill rod in an end mill holder and install it in the spindle.

Lay a piece of sheet metal on the metal in the vise and punch away. A quick jab with the spindle works well.

I have used a setup like this to punch up to 7/16 dia in .035 steel. It works well on other materials like rubber and sheet teflon and plastics. I have been doing this for a few years and have not noticed any adverse effects to my mill downfeed mechanism or spindle bearings. I don't think I would use it to punch holes all day every day though. I'd buy a real punch. I never tried it in a drill press, but I'd imagine it would work. I'd add some weight to the quill to make it more hammer-like.

BTW- if anyone knows that this will mess up a mill, please post it and I will erase this thread. I talked to a couple of guys who didn't seem to think it would, but they are no final authority on anything.

I mainly use it to get the slugs for filling drilled holes in firewalls and other sheetmetal. I usually make a slug slightly oversize and ream the hole to fit the slug real tight. That way I only have to fuse the metal with my tig. Makes the bodywork a little less afterwards
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Last edited by powerrodsmike; 06-30-2006 at 01:04 AM.
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