Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Grace USA Steel Punch Set as we continue our gunsmith kit project for 2017. If you are new to guns or working on them beyond the most basic cleaning you might wonder what punches are for.
These are for driving out pins for various reasons but generally due to a need to disassemble a gun (or reassemble) beyond very basic maintenance. Sometimes this is just to clean at a deeper level, sometimes to do a repair and at others to do a modification like say changing out a trigger set.
Punches are another tool I learned about from my grandfather. One day I was taking down my 870 shotgun and he caught me using a nail as a punch. At first he said some four letter words and mumbling about the right tool for the right job. The old man was a miner and a tough son of a bitch, but he was also a grandfather, so he quickly went soft and praised me for figuring out how to get by, but then took me to his work bench and pulled out an old wooden box and explained what a punch set was.
When it comes to punches in the gun world, you have four options.
- Roll Punches – best for roll pins (hollow)
- Steel Standard Punches – which these are
- Brass Punches – a soft metal to be more gentle on what you are punching
- Nylon Punches – the most gentle as to marking things up
The reason I recommend you start with a very high quality standard steel punch set is it will do anything you ever really need. With care you can punch out roll pins with a solid punch, it is really bad idea the other way around.
Brass and nylon have a place too but again, steel will get any pin out that can be gotten out anyway, brass and nylon will both bend and fail at times. And think of it this way, that time the old man caught me with a nail was not the first or the last time I have improvised a nail successfully to remove a pin. So if you can get it done with a nail, you can get it done with a punch.
There is something small I really like about these punches as well, they are marked with sizes. You may see this as a small thing but many gunsmith punches are not, and when you have three on a bench they start to blend together. These are also made with a very hard steel, if you bend one, frankly you are pounding too hard, something is wrong.
This punch set includes sizes 5/64″, 1/16″, 3/32″, 1/8″ and 5/32″, 1 center punch, and 1 starter punch. They come in a vinyl pouch to keep everything organized and are made in the USA. There are a lot of cheaper options in punches, but these really are a case for buy once cry once. A good set of punches properly used have a longer shelf life than a human being. So if you don’t have a good set of punches in your kit consider adding the Grace USA Steel Punch Set to your kit today.
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