There are several surfaces we recommend to punch on. The most stable and consistent is a piece of veg tan (8oz) over a punch pad like this one, over a granite slab. In lieu of that setup, we like a punch pad on a stump or solid surface. You may use a stump like we have at the school, but if you drive prong punches too deep into the wood, the tool gets bent up. Our small punch pad ~ 2″x6″ can be used for a long time on both sides.