Work with the power and precision of a drill bit and a hole punch combined.

By Alexandra Churchill
June 21, 2019
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japanese screw punch tool
Buy It: Innetoc Adjustable Screw Hole Punch, $10,

Whether you're a crafter or a home cook, it often feels like there are so many tools you can purchase to help you get a job done. Which ones are really worth investing in? Our editors are here to help. From everyday essentials to more obscure must-haves that will take your practice to the next level, we're breaking it all down. Each week Tool of the Trade will highlight one must-have crafting or cooking item you need to know about.

With a traditional hole punch, you can make holes only around the edges of paper; with a screw punch, you can make different size holes wherever you want, which makes this a practical tool to keep on hand for several projects.

What Is It?

Also known as a Japanese punch or a bookbinding punch, this classic tool can punch holes anywhere (regular hole punches only work near edges), and comes with several attachments for making holes in different sizes. Downward pressure on the hole punch causes the shaft to spin like a drill bit and make smooth holes.

How Is It Used?

Cover your work surface with a self-healing mat, then place a sheet of paper on top. Insert the desired tip in the punch (most come with several sizes). To use a screw punch, hold the tip perpendicular to the paper and press down on the punch firmly until you can't push any more, then release.

Why We Love It

A screw punch is more accurate than a hole punch: It can make holes in different sizes, create holes everywhere on the surface, and is comfortable to hold. We've put it to good use in a number of projects in different materials: no-sew leather bags, waterproof oilcloth dog bowls, towel hangers, even larger projects like a window perch for your cat.

Our Editor's Pick

We like Innetoc's Adjustable Screw Hole Punch. It comes equipped with six bits of ranging size from 1.5 to 4 millimeters. And made from steel and brass hardware on a wooden handle, it's made to last.


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