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Micro Chisels - worthwhile or an unecessary gimmick


nheather
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The other day, reading the latest Airfix magazine, I learnt about micro chisels.  In the article, it used them to remove raised ejector pin marks on the new 1/48 Walrus.

 

So I did a little research and determined that they were neither cheap nor expensive, around £20 for a set of three sizes.

 

But couldn't really find anything about how useful they are.

 

Are they great

Do they need sharpening - if so how would you do that

Would they just end up in the drawer unused

Do x-acto chisel knife blades do the job just as well or better

 

Would appreciate your thoughts.

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

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@lasermonkey Makes his own, He said:

 

"I made my own micro chisels from knackered jewellers screwdrivers. I'd bought a set years ago and they were made of "monkey metal" and chewed up quickly. Using a Dremel drill with a grinding disc, I ground the tip to a small chisel shape. Works well enough, and very cheap!"

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I use a few types of chisel and find them very useful so use them all the time.

The ones I use are the Misson Models one and these,

http://www.modellingtools.co.uk/swann-morton-fine-blades--handles-147-c.asp

Which I believe are bone chisels I've never had to sharpen any.

Personally I like to buy a tool made for the job and always a good quality one.

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Never had any of the so called Micro Chisels, but I have a few X-acto chisel blades that fit into their handles. They at very useful for removing  ejector pin marks and detail which you might want to replace with etched metal. They do require sharpening every so often, so a stone is useful to have. One came with the X-acto tools that I have.

 

John. 

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They are useful, just not all the time.  I find mine lies about for a while, then performs a job that I couldn't really do as well with anything else, then goes back to the tray it lives in for a while again. :)

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Do you have a selection of sizes or do you find a particular size that works best.

 

@tank152 - you mentioned Mission Models chisels but then linked Swann and Morton blades - is that what you meant?

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

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I only have two widths of blade, one about 5mm and the wider one about 8mm. There are times though when you could do with one about 1-2mm wide for removing small detail. Bear in mind one thing. The ease with which these tools work is dependant on the hardness of the plastic. Some kit manufacturers use a styrene which is more akin to nylon, it's so soft, while others styrene is more like Bakelite (showing my age now). They should be used with extreme care as they can slip and cut into things that you don't want them to, like other parts of the model or worse still, your fingers (ask me how I know!!) 

 

John.

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4 hours ago, nheather said:

Are they great

Do they need sharpening - if so how would you do that

Would they just end up in the drawer unused

Do x-acto chisel knife blades do the job just as well or better

 

Do you mean the chisels in the image below?   If so, these are of a sturdy steel construction; approx. 170mm long with blade widths of 1, 2 and 3mm wide.  Being of steel means that they can undergo a fair bit of hammering (pun intended) as they can cut, scrape or sheer off most protrusions in or on a kit.  I also use them for shaping edges, as with the 1:350 ship scratchbuild on the upper left; or cleaning up tight corners as with those around the tailwing of the 1:144 Gannet COD on the left etc.  Basically, any protrusion which needs chiselling away, especially those in hard to get areas, can removed and cleaned up with these chisels.  They can be sharpened by using a sharpening stone or grinding wheel etc.

 

modelling_chisels_1.jpg

 

X-acto blades can do similar work but tend to be a finer and wider blade and probably would not be as robust at being used on stubborn stuff with a hammer.

 

I bought mine from Paul at  Little-Cars and use them regularly as I find them to be really useful.

 

HTH

 

Mike

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Yes, I have the three flat blade types in 1mm, 2mm and 3mm.  There are three more which are half-round and triangular types, for getting into corners.  I do use them all at varying stages, as each has its own use when it comes to what needs cutting away or shaping. I probably start wide with the 3mm and work down to the 1mm for really fine work or awkward corners. 

These don't replace my other cutting or shaping tools, such as my Swann-Morton handles/blades, they merely complement the range of tools I have to hand for most given situations during a build.

 

Mike

modelling_chisels_2_1024.jpg

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4 hours ago, nheather said:

Do you have a selection of sizes or do you find a particular size that works best.

 

@tank152 - you mentioned Mission Models chisels but then linked Swann and Morton blades - is that what you meant?

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

Hi, 

I never linked the Misson Models chisels as I noticed Paul was out of stock of them and I may be wrong but they aren't making them anymore but these are the ones

http://www.modellingtools.co.uk/mission-models-1ml-tip-set-9983-p.asp

http://www.modellingtools.co.uk/mission-models-2ml-tips-9982-p.asp

I do however find myself using the Swann Morton chesils more often.

They are approximately 2mm thick and are extremely sharp. As you can see they come in a range of ends so there is always one that can do a job. The only downside is that the handles are pretty expensive, but you'll only have to buy one once as they are a quality piece of kit.

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9 minutes ago, tank152 said:

only downside is that the handles are pretty expensive

These handles are a bit cheaper - £10.50

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Swann-Morton-Stainless-Steel-Fine-Handle-SF1-for-SM61-etc-Chisel-Blades-6051-/272287906822?hash=item3f659fbc06:g:Ve0AAMXQVT9S82iK

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True, but they wouldn't stand up to the types of extreme pressure that can be, and sometimes needed to be, used on some stubborn areas.

 

Mike

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4 minutes ago, tank152 said:

Hi Gorby, 

Thanks for that link.

Tim.

No problem Tim. I would thank you for the link to the Modelling tools site, but looking through there are things that I didn't know existed that I now NEED. You may have just cost me a fortune. :unsure:

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Hi Gorby,

 

Paul will be in attendance at the North Somerset Model Show, at the Helicopter Museum, Weston super mare tomorrow; Sunday, and Coventry is only a just up the road.  He's very helpful on giving advice on the modelling tools he has on show; and he does Airbrushing demo's to boot!

 

Mike

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10 minutes ago, bootneck said:

Paul will be in attendance at the North Somerset Model Show, at the Helicopter Museum, Weston super mare tomorrow; Sunday, and Coventry is only a just up the road

Don't tempt me.

Fortunately for my wallet, the M5 is quite a long road. 

 

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I've got a Master Tools chisel (Trumpeter) and find it really useful for cutting in side of awkward places.

 

Used it extensively on my recent Eagle build. Just needs sharpening every so often with a simple sharpening stone.

 

Karl

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1 hour ago, Karl said:

I've got a Master Tools chisel (Trumpeter) and find it really useful for cutting in side of awkward places.

 

I was looking at those on Paul's site the other day, and they look useful.  The Mission Models one is a bit expensive, and changing bits is a bit of a PITA with that fiddly little Allen key, which twists alarmingly when you tweak it up, due to the small size of it :unsure:

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50 minutes ago, Mike said:

 

The Mission Models one is a bit expensive, and changing bits is a bit of a PITA with that fiddly little Allen key, which twists alarmingly when you tweak it up, due to the small size of it :unsure:

I gave up using the handle just for that reason,  I now put the chisel into a pin vise.

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41 minutes ago, tank152 said:

I gave up using the handle just for that reason,  I now put the chisel into a pin vise.

Same problem...only I just spot-CA'd mine into the handle!

Use it all the time, love the control and finesse of the discretely-narrow cutting head, which will get where other blades can't. I've had mine for 3+ yrs, and haven't had to change blades yet.

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