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Tips & Tricks
Ask about and post about tips and tricks you use while modelling.
Scale antenna tip
Knuckles
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Oregon, United States
Member Since: March 09, 2017
entire network: 525 Posts
KitMaker Network: 156 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 27, 2017 - 09:47 PM UTC
Hello modelers.

Most of us know the ol' E guitar string trick for antennas on our models. I recently discovered an awesome solution for "something more".

Spring handled acupuncture needles! You can get a box that will last you, and all of your modeling pals a lifetime for about $15. They come in many different gauges and lengths, and you can clip off the spring portion to suit your needs (the needle is a separate piece inside of the coil).

I still use the E string for the long whip antennae, but I love using these for the ancillary stubby ones often seen on armor.

Hope you found this useful!

Namabiiru
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
MODEL SHIPWRIGHTS
#399
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Rhode Island, United States
Member Since: March 05, 2014
entire network: 2,888 Posts
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Posted: Monday, March 27, 2017 - 10:24 PM UTC
Interesting idea. Are they any easier to cut than guitar strings? Those things wreck my diagonal cutters, but I love them since they don't break or bend the way stretched sprue does.

Knuckles
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Oregon, United States
Member Since: March 09, 2017
entire network: 525 Posts
KitMaker Network: 156 Posts
Posted: Monday, March 27, 2017 - 10:35 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Interesting idea. Are they any easier to cut than guitar strings? Those things wreck my diagonal cutters, but I love them since they don't break or bend the way stretched sprue does.




They're really springy and cut easily with wire cutters. I've never used sprue nippers on wire... (I bought a pair of cuticle cutters from the Dollar Store for snipping wire). I hear you on the guitar strings, they are hard AF.
RobinNilsson
Staff MemberDirector of Member Services
KITMAKER NETWORK
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Stockholm, Sweden
Member Since: November 29, 2006
entire network: 6,693 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 09:03 PM UTC

Quoted Text

...... I hear you on the guitar strings, they are hard AF.



Would it work to heat, anneal, the part where the cut should be ?
/ Robin
Knuckles
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Oregon, United States
Member Since: March 09, 2017
entire network: 525 Posts
KitMaker Network: 156 Posts
Posted: Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 09:05 PM UTC
I've tried that with mixed results. When I clip them when they are hard, I get a nice, crisp clean cut. When annealed they bend a bit at the point of the cut.
Namabiiru
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
MODEL SHIPWRIGHTS
#399
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Rhode Island, United States
Member Since: March 05, 2014
entire network: 2,888 Posts
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Posted: Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 06:32 PM UTC
Correct. Annealing, to the degree it works on stainless steel, tends to undo all the properties that make guitar strings so useful for this purpose. Uneven heating causes warping, and once softened the string is more susceptible to bending.

Best option with guitar strings is just to use a more or less disposable set of cutters that are used only for that purpose and just replace them when the jaws no longer get the job done.