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  1. Hey gang, maybe some of you are like me and can't hold an awl straight to save your life. I can do ok on thin stuff, but 3 layers gets a bit cattywumpus. I made this awl that screws into the ram of my elcheapo harbor freight arbor press so it's always perfectly straight, no issues with torquing or twisting. It starts with a 3/8-16 hex head bolt (I previously drilled and tapped the end of the ram 3/8-16 for another project) Then I drilled an approximately 1/8 hole on the head of the bolt, and a cross hole that I tapped m4x.7(could use #6-32, #6-40, run what you got) Then I ground up an awl out of a slice of bandsaw blade, insert into the top, tighten the grub screw, and voila! No more wonky stitching. Also goes a lot faster than doing it by hand, mostly b/c I'm not trying to check my alignment. At some point I'll make up a foam backing block so I don't have marks from the steel plate behind the leather. Could probably also modify this to hold leather stamps.
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