Q-Max sheet metal punches - any good?

Has anyone any experience with Q-Max brand sheet metal punches? Are they a crap brand?
I'm looking at 1" diameter, manually driven as per:
http://www.diytools.co.uk/diy/Main/sp-1-2999-15350-q.max-punch-25mm.asp
It's a quarter of the price of the Green Lee equivalent in my part of the world, with 100 or so holes in .040 sheet metal are they worth a shot?
Any advice welcome.
PS - whats with all the cross posted crap thats been fouling the NG lately?
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I have had a full selection of Q-Max cutters (from 10mm to 3inch) for many years, still going strong. Just make sure you grease the bolt before use. Not worth getting the ball bearing thrust for .040 IMHO though well worth getting the correct long reach allen key. Alternatively a hex drive in a ratchet wrench works well. Main slowdown is fully unscrewing to remove the blank.
Good luck
Richard
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wrote:

Thanks for the reply Richard - it's good to hear from someone who has actually used them. I was thinking of driving via a hex drive & either rachet or making up a crank handle (as I've got quite a few holes to do). Are the thurst bearings something a bearing supply house would normally stock?
cheers
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It is a Q-max part so best ask your punch supplier. As I said debateable whether you need it for 25mm and .040 though it does reduce the torque needed. If you have a really torquey battery drill then a short piece of hex in the chuck would really speed things up. Think about the size of your pre-drill. If you drill to bolt size then you have alignment for the punch, however you may find it tedious getting each slug off the bolt and out of the die. I tend to drill well big say with a 16mm hole saw. Previously marked panel with horizontal and vertical lines to line up the outside of the diearound my required centre. In my mind you end up with more accurate hole positions and the slug is much easier to remove.
Of course a step drill is an alternative to punching, depends on what you need to punch/drill and what kit you have.
Richard
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wrote:

Some feedback in case anyone else wants to know....
Good advice Richard - I got a couple of Q-max 25mm punches, they work well cutting through what turned out to be 1.4mm / .055" sheet metal. 30 holes done so far with no noticeable wear on the cutting edges. My supplier didn't stock the thrust bearings so I'm using it plain with a fresh drip of motor oil on the threads and under the head for each hole.
It leaves a nice clean hole and has a smooth punching action. At about 1 minute per hole its not as quick as a machine punch but is cheaper & doesn't piss the neighbours off! The slugs come out easily unless you miss one and squish a couple up inside the die half!
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