Stone slabs are blocks of stone used for shock absorption underneath leather punching, stamping, and cutting tools. The density of the material helps absorb and distribute the hitting forces, while also providing a solid surface on which to perform these tasks.
When stamping, punching, or cutting, a fair amount of downward force is applied through the tools via a hammer, mallet, or maul. This concentrated force is great as it allows the tool’s blade to cut smoothly through the leather. However, if the surface it is being performed on is shaky, it could cause less than desirable results or even damage the surface.
Stone is a very dense material, and absorbs shock well. When a stone slab is placed underneath a cutting mat, it is a great punching combination. The cutting mat protects the cutting blades, and the stone slab absorbs the hitting force, evenly distributing it through the slab.
Stone slabs are available in a number of sizes and thicknesses, though they don’t need to be very large. 6” x 6” is fine, and 12” x 12” provides a bit more force distribution due to its larger size. they really only need to be a bit bigger than the punch or dir being used on top of them.
Quartz is a popular material for stone slabs. Granite also works very well too, as it is a bit denser than quartz, making its shock absorption performance a little better too. Stone slabs can be purchased, or one might be able to get discarded stone samples from kitchen remodeling or home improvement stores.