For making largish holes in leather and book board you can use a hollow punch (shown at left), which has a sharpened tube shaped hole on one end, and a flat head on the other end. Ours has replaceable tips for different size holes, but some hollow punches come in sets with a different punch for a different size hole.
To make a hole, place something underneath your material, something soft but dense, such as a scrap of book board, or an old phone book or catalog. Make sure it's thick enough to allow the punch to go into without going all the way through. You may also wish to avoid punching holes anywhere that if it does go all the way through it won't leave a hole where you don't want one (kitchen table, etc).
Next, place the hollow end of the punch on your material where you want a hole, hold the punch vertical, and hit the flat head with a hammer. Hit it hard. Repeat as needed. It can be a chore, but, as it requires wielding a hammer, it can also be satisfying.
The Crop-A-Dile comes in three flavors, designated by a I, II, or III, only two of which are for hole punching. (The Crop-A-Dile III, or Main Squeeze, is not for hole punching, but for die cutting, embossing, attaching corners and setting squeeze tabs. What's a squeeze tab?)
There is one style of book, a quasi-longstitch, for which we use the Crop-A-Dile I to punch holes in signatures (a group of pages). But, for most styles of books we use an awl for this job. However, it could be used to punch holes in pages of other book styles too. Just depends on what you like.
With our Crop-A-Dile I we have punched tens thousands of holes in book board and leather. And it's still going strong.
|Japanese screw punch|
|Leather hole punch|
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