Tuesday 4 May 2010


I was chatting with Steve Duckworth a couple of weeks ago at Scalefour North. We were comparing various tools and techniques, and the ways that we can model better. I commented on a little change that I have made, and Steve suggested that it was worth sharing.

How many times have you picked up the wrong file? You know the situation - you're doing some heavy-duty removal of whitemetal from a wagon underframe, you reach into the box or rack and pick up your very best fine-cut needle file, usually only reserved for stroking the olive-skinned thighs of Sicilian virgins, and High Level Kits' hornblocks...

Usually you only notice about five milliseconds after you've used it... There is a cry of "oh dear" and an attempt using file-combs/heat/scalpel tips to remove the shiny stuff that you've just clagged the teeth up with. A waste of modelling time, and never fully successful. I did this several times until I hit on a simple approach that won't prevent it, but will make it much less likely.

This is the box that my needle files live in...

Files 006.jpg

And this is how I tell them apart...

Files 007.jpg

I picked up a bottle of Tippex correction fluid, and now the white-handled files are the ones for WHITEmetal (and solder, lead and other clagging materials)

A Black permanent market pen indicate the file is for Brass, as well as nickel silver, steel and so on.

And the yellow handled one? Not for gold, but my scriber. Because it *looks* like a needle file, I kept picking it up by mistake to file things, and used rats-tail files inadvertently as scribers...

As Aleksandr would say, "Simples!".

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