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Mike

Rivet Marking Tool

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Rivet Marking Tool

Galaxy Model

 

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Riveting a model can make it look a lot more interesting and realistic, even though rivets in real life aren’t holes in the skin of an aircraft, but are either flush or domed.  It’s nigh on impossible to achieve that effect for your average modeller though, so most of us compromise and make tiny wee holes in the skin of our models to add visual interest, then don’t worry about it, as if we did we’d also have to be concerned about over-thick canopies, panel lines and so forth.  It’s best not to for your own sanity.

 

Re-riveting areas after sanding or other damage can also be a tricky job as you have to mimic the existing pitch and size of the rivets that were there originally, keep them in nice straight lines and stop them right where they’re supposed to finish.  That’s not all that easy to do well even with a riveting tool, but it’s a lot more easy if you have a good riveting tool rather than just a cheap pounce wheel or a needle chucked into a pin vice.

 

There are plenty of choices when it comes to riveting tools from the DIY options mentioned above to other commercial offerings from various companies.  This is one such commercial option, and from the time I’ve been examining it, it seems to be a good one.  The system centres around an anodised black aluminium handle with brass ferule and chuck that vaguely resembles an X-ACTO knife handle.  If I had one of mine to hand I would be able to tell you if the wheels fit the grooves in the X-ACTO chuck, but they’re still in storage so I’ll update this when I find them.  At this stage I’m 95% sure they’d fit, but please don’t take my word for it.  That said I like the handle, as it is high quality and well presented with the Galaxy Tools logo engraved through the anodization toward the back end and a bevelled rear edge, both showing off the bare aluminium.  A tip for long-term happiness of your handle is to add a little grease to the screw thread that attaches the chuck to the handle in order to reduce contact and dissimilar metals (galvanic) corrosion over time, particularly if you have to place it in storage for any long periods or in damp cold conditions.

 

The riveting wheels all share a common design but differ slightly between sets.  The common features are that they are Photo-Etched (PE) from varying thicknesses of metal with a nickel plating over the top, plus branding and size details etched into one side of the flat surface.  Happily the sizing remains visible when chucked into the handle, which is nice and rather practical.  The riveting part is attached to the shaft by a hex bolt with a nut on the back, with the necessary hex key and PE spanner included in each set behind the foam insert, and has a smaller diameter washer to spread the load over a wider area to help prevent bending of the wheel.  There are three types of set as follows:

 

Fan “Wheel”

This tool is at its most useful in tight places and for riveting ends of lines accurately, or riveting up to a perpendicular face or some other obstruction.  It contains less than a quadrant of rivets in a fan shape with the rivets going right to the edges and they are applied using a rocking motion from one end to the other.

 

Small Wheel

A full 360o of rivets for carrying out general riveting along a template or ruler.  It is capable of tighter radiuses if you require curved lines.

 

Large Wheel

This has a larger diameter and the shaft flares out past the edge of the wheel for a large proportion of the circumference to protect people and plastic from accidental riveting.  The larger wheel also helps staying against the line when riveting longer lengths.

 

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They are supplied in plastic boxes of three for each type, with the small pitch sets having 0.75mm, 0.65mm and 0.55mm, while the larger pitch sets have 1.5mm, 1.25mm and 1.0mm sizes.  You can choose which sizes and styles you want, and can also splash out on multiple handles if you feel the urge, as no-one’s about to judge you for your profligacy in search of convenience.  The wheels are held in place within the latched boxes by a close-fitting dense foam insert, and on first opening you need to remove a piece of tacky plastic sheet that holds them in their recesses during transit.  To get at the adjustment tools behind you’ll need to lever out the foam insert with a broad thin tool such as the rounded end of a metal rule.

 

 

In Action

 

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The wheels fit snuggly into the handle, which is comfortable in the hand, and you can use the wheels to tighten or loosen the chuck by holding the knurled section still, which I found quite helpful as I’m still recovering from hand surgery (again).  Some of the Nylok axle nuts were a little tight out of the box, but that’s easily remedied by the supplied Allen key and PE spanner, which is closed “ended” so you don’t slip off the nut.  It's also worth mentioning that the provision of Nylok nuts should prevent or at least reduce creep of the nut in either direction, which is again another nice feature.  Once you’ve experimented and got the rotation to your preferred tension it is advisable to take some time with pieces of scrap plastic or model to get used to using it and also using it in conjunction with a straight-edge or length of Dymo embossing tape.  When you’re confident, you can apply your new-found skills to an actual model, using the fan wheels where necessary with either a combination of the two other wheels, or your choice of either.  My experience with them was really rather pleasant, firstly running lines of each type freehand to experiment, and finding that they stay on track quite well even without a rule to follow.  To make the card demonstrating each pitch I followed a PE rule that was probably a bit too shallow but still stayed on line.  I slipped slightly at one point, which left a bit of a short line in the 0.65mm test but that’s down to a slight hangup on the guide that I didn't notice beforehand, not the tool.  I also noticed later that I can’t draw parallel lines for toffee, so you’ll have to excuse me!  The rivets are nicely formed, and once I had smeared a little ink over them to highlight them for the camera they really look the part and would blend in with pre-existing rivets if you pick the right pitch.  Looking at the numbers it’s easy to think that they’re hardly different, but looking at the finished lines its plain to see that they are, and it’s important to choose the correct one if you’re repairing or extending existing rivets.  It would be wise to rivet a small slip of styrene sheet and hold it up against the kit rivets for comparison, as once you’ve riveted something, it's more work to un-rivet it, which will slow your progress down.

 

Conclusion

I rate these riveting tools pretty highly and am pleased to add them to my tool kit.  Whether you’re riveting a whole airframe or just adding some back where they’ve been obliterated by the build process, they’re going to be a very useful tool to have around.

 

Highly recommended.

 

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Review sample courtesy of

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Great sets and they look pretty much the same as the Radu Brinzan riveters...

Thank you for the review👍
 

cheers, Jan

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Any approximate price for these to the UK? 

There are a couple of these little riveter tools out there now but this seems well engineered, and the inclusion of the fan wheels is a very good idea for getting into those tight wing->fuselage joins.  May just have to have a punt! 

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On 1/31/2020 at 4:20 PM, Kushan_Farsight said:

Any approximate price for these to the UK? 

There are a couple of these little riveter tools out there now but this seems well engineered, and the inclusion of the fan wheels is a very good idea for getting into those tight wing->fuselage joins.  May just have to have a punt! 

Pressing the "Available here" button takes you to their website for all the mailing options.  👍

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8 hours ago, stringbag said:

Pressing the "Available here" button takes you to their website for all the mailing options.  👍


i dont know if it is because i am on viewing on mobile, that page just seems to take me to their contact emails, and the rivet marking tool isnt in their current catalog. just a ballpark sans shipping would do me for now, as there are alternative versions of these on the market and i just want to know how these fare up price wise before blindly ordering some. 

just looking at the URL header, i cant see any specific 'trackback code' specific to britmodeller, which is unsusual as thats generally how they determine commission etc on products, so im all a bit confused :hypnotised:

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There is a link to Galaxy models , however on their catalog page where you can buy things this product is not listed. We will ask then about it.

 

Julien

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6 minutes ago, Julien said:

There is a link to Galaxy models , however on their catalog page where you can buy things this product is not listed. We will ask then about it.

 

Julien

It looks like they are available from at least one Chinese vendor on that certain well know online auction site.

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Anyone know if they have an "Official" Store on any of these well known auction sites? i have found the part in question, but from numerous sellers, and i always prefer to buy direct if i can!

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If you are cheap you can raid your local antique clock shop 😁 But seriously, this looks like a nice set.

 

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