The 10 Best Center Punches
This wiki has been updated 8 times since it was first published in February of 2019. These tools really pack a punch — a center punch, that is. They create a dimple where you intend to drill a hole in a piece of metal or other material, so the drill does not wander off from the intended spot for a hole. Many can also break through vehicle glass, making them a useful part of a car's emergency kit. Here, you'll find a selection of both automatic and manual varieties. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
March 17, 2021:
It was an easy round of updates for us, as all of our existing choices for this category continued to be superb selections, leaving us with no real need to make any new omissions or inclusions. We did give some thought to replacing the Mayhew Tools 62213 with the company’s new 62215 model – an alternative four-piece kit that Mayhew is now offering – but it didn’t seem sensible to us that they’d be charging more for a kit that offered smaller hardware, and since the scope of which sizes you need will depend largely on the nature of the work you’re doing, we didn’t know that our users would be any better served by this new choice. So, we decided to leave things as they were, at least until the next time we revisit this list.
February 28, 2019:
We started by looking at options from top names, including Starrett, Rennsteig, and Mayhew. Although we added automatic models from both Starrett and Rennsteig, it's tough to say which one truly comes out on top, as they're both crafted from durable materials to high quality standards. For example, it's true that the Rennsteig has a handle that's designed for comfort, where the Starrett's is plainer, but some users don't like the extra bulk. So, in the end, the choice is subjective. We also selected a few budget models, such as the Neiko 5-Inch, the Forge Industrial Brass, and the Horusdy Spring Loaded 2-Piece; they're fine for DIYers and light use, but if you rely on your tools to make a living, then these may not be heavy-duty enough.