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nheather

Really fine miniature needle files - is there such a thing

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Hi,

 

I do a lot of wargame modelling which mostly involves figures in 15mm, 20mm and 28mm.  Mostly they are in white metal but there are some plastic.  To get into some of the difficult places like crooks of arms, I use a set of the smallest needle files I could find.  They are pretty good, no complaints about the size, just could do with a second set which was a little finer.

 

The ones I have are quite fine but still leave visible scratches - would be nice to have something to polish them out.  All my fine modelling sticks and paper is too big to access some of the more difficult areas.

 

The files I have are about 80mm long, nice and small at the business end, bought at a model show, no branding - would just love to have a set with a finer grit.

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

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I wonder if the Albion Alloys sanding needles are what you're after. They do a fine (320 grit) set.

 

Cheers,

Mark.

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You might speak to a jeweller or a watchmaker for where they get their supplies.

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9 hours ago, lasermonkey said:

I wonder if the Albion Alloys sanding needles are what you're after. They do a fine (320 grit) set.

Caveat emptor... I bought some at a model show, and the grit falls off them very quickly, leaving you with some pointed plastic sticks in different colours... YMMV obviously...

best,

M.

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9 minutes ago, cmatthewbacon said:

Caveat emptor... I bought some at a model show, and the grit falls off them very quickly, leaving you with some pointed plastic sticks in different colours... YMMV obviously...

best,

M.

I hadn't used them before, just seen them advertised. I doubt I'll be getting any now!

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Not sure what you understand by miniature, but dentists use some special needles to file the inside of the tooth (I'm not talking about the needles with spirals on them used for root canals, there's a different type). My dentist used some on me for filing in preparation for the "screw" that supports the crown. For the life of me I can't remember what he called them. A trip to your dentist's or maybe a supplier might help.

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You can get high quality Swiss-pattern needle files that are relatively small. I have mostly 5.5 in overall length (0-, 2-, & 4-cut), some 4 inch (0- and 2-cut), and 6 in (6-cut) files.  The 0-cut files will aggressively remove plastic while 6-cut files will produce an extremely smooth surface--ready for Alclad paint. The US-based MSC has examples. You probably want to find a local source since the files are Swiss and Italian made (Vallorbe is the manufacturer, Grobet is the US brand) and likely expensive shipping from the US. These are excellent files, not cheap, but they are oh-so-much-better than the cheap sets you can readily find. And, if you take care of them, you'll never need to replace them. After my JLC saw, they're my most-used tools.

 

And here's a good overview on needle files.

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1 hour ago, cmatthewbacon said:

Vallorbe are the ones that are sold by Cousins UK (the link I posted above)...

best,

M.

Then I recommend these files without reservation. If you want to start with just a few, perhaps focus on 2-cut and 4-cut files. Equalling file is most important. I find the crossing, round, and square files the next most important shapes, more or less in that order.

 

The pillar file definition is odd, as it should have a safe edge--well, both short edges--and they don't appear to show that...

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Here are 2 equalling files with my JLC saw. Bottom file: 4 inch overall length, 2 inch cut length, 0.14 inch width. Top file: 5.5 inch overall length, 2.75 inch cut length, 0.2 inch width.

BM-files.jpglength

HTH

-- 

dnl

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