How to Fix a Craft Punch

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Paper punches make beautiful shapes for your craft projects.
Paper punches make beautiful shapes for your craft projects. (Image: Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Craft punches are useful for scrapbooking, card making and other types of paper crafts. You can purchase craft punches shaped like hearts, flowers and animals. Unfortunately, these punches are pricey and can suffer from wear and tear just like other gadgets. Sometimes the punches jam when you try to punch paper. If your punch jams, you do not have to get rid of it. Fix jammed punches with a few everyday items and a little bit of know-how, then prevent them from jamming again with regular maintenance.

Things You'll Need

  • Craft paper punch
  • Freezer
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Lint-free rag
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Aluminum foil
  • Waxed paper
  • Punch lubricant

Fixing a Stuck Punch

Wiggle the handle of the punch back and forth to see if it will pop loose. Do not try to tear the paper loose as this can cause more damage.

Rap the base of the punch on a table or other firm surface to try and pop it loose.

Place the punch in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour. This shrinks the metal in the punch and might loosen it up.

Turn the punch upside down. Use the screwdriver or a spoon handle to try and push the metal die back up.

Place the tip of the screwdriver into the slot on the underside of the punch and push until the punch comes apart.

Remove the jammed paper.

Clean each piece of the punch individually, using rubbing alcohol and a lint-free rag. Set the pieces down in the order that you take them apart so you can put it back together correctly.

Place the spring over the base of the punch. Put the die cut inside the spring, then place the button and cover over the top. Line up the notches in the die cutter, handle and cover/ Snap the whole thing back together.

Craft Punch Maintenance

Push the button down without paper at least 10 times to loosen a new punch.

Punch waxed paper after every 50 punches, or if your punch starts to stick. This helps lubricate the blades.

Punch sheets of aluminum foil after every 100 punches, or if you have trouble punching out shapes.

Use a punch lubricant according to the manufacturer’s directions to keep the punch in good working condition.

Tips & Warnings

  • Adhesive paper tends to make your punches jam. Avoid punching it whenever possible.
  • Store your punches in a cool, dry place to prevent them from rusting.
  • Only take your punch apart if other methods for fixing it fail. Be careful to not lose any pieces or your punch will not go back together correctly.

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