Punch down tool, also called punch down tool or krone tool (named after the KRONE LSA-PLUS connector), is a small hand tool used by telecom and data network technicians to install wiring for telephone, computer and various audio network, designing for inserting wire into insulation-displacement connectors on punch down blocks, patch panels, keystone modules, and surface mount boxes (also known as biscuit jacks). Its name is derived from the method by which the tool pushes a solid copper wire between metal blades on the connection block and cuts off the excess by punching the tool, driving the tool blade through the wire.
Punch down tool is commonly used for termination works in the coppper network builted by twisted-pair cables like the Cat5, Cat5e, Cat6 and some newer standard Ethernet cables. With cables terminated with keystone jacks, cross-connect blocks or patch panels, networks run smoothly, enhancing working efficiency and reducing losses. For instance, it is widely used by IT staff to ensure successful connections between computers and data centre, maintaining a high level of transmission.
- Hold the wire in your hand and lace it through the correct slots on the connection block. Repeat with other wires that need to be inserted in the connection block.
- Hold the punch down tool with the blade facing down. Align the blades with the wires on the connection block.
- Punch down the wire by holding the wire and pushing the tool firmly into the block. This should connect the wire to the terminal and cut off any excess wire at the same time.
- Test the connection you just created. Pull on the wires to make sure they are attached properly.
Note: It is essential that the tool blade should not cut throughout the wire insulation to make contact, but rather the sharp edges of the slot in the contact post itself slice through the insulation. In addition, punch down tool is also used to cut off excessive wire in the same operation.
- Always wear safety glasses when using a punch down tool.
- Models with interchangeable blades will extend the life of your tool.
- Use the pressure adjustment screw or knob to set the tool to a comfortable level for your use.
- Never use a punch down tool to tighten flat head screws because this can break the cutting blade.
- Although the tool is usually made of plastic, there still is a shock hazard when working with electrical circuits.
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