Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by hiscopilot, Jan 15, 2007.

  1. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    What are a few of the items or tools you would be lost without when it comes to MRR? Think in terms of stuff you always have on hand, or if its tools people normally would have in their house, do you own extras that are specifcally for this? Please share! :)

    AND since I am fairly new to this if its not a common knowledge type pf thing, a pic or link would help!


    I look forward to reading the responses:D
  2. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Tiny screwdrivers, small pliers and nippers, long thin needlenose, a dremel, and old, clumsy fingers need a magnetic screwdriver.
    These would be necessities for me.

  3. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    If I had to select just 1 tool for my N scale layout, it would be a bright boy track cleaner.
  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    • Sprue cutters (the "tweezer" type, not plier type)
    • Xacto knives with variety of blades (workhorse is a #11)
    • cross lock tweezers (the kind that stay shut on their own)
    • Contact cement (I use Walthers "Goo")
    • Crazy glue (instant Jet)
    • Cork with a needle stuck in it (for applying glue, oil, poking stuff... ;))
    • Single edge razor blades (box of 100)
    • Micro clamps (clothes pins are good too)
    • Self healing cutting mat (from my wife's "retired" selection - she's a quilter)
    • Tweezers in several sizes
    • 6" steel ruler
    • HO scale ruler
    • NMRA Gauge for HO
    • Jeweller's screwdrivers
    • MIscellaneous paintbrushes (cheap-o dollar store kind for weathering, glue - cheap so it doesn't matter if I forget to wash them)
    • Plastic paint as a "pallet"
    • Plastic cup for water
    • Paper towel
    • Magnifier light ($20 at harware store)
    • Set of micro files and fine (400+ grit) sandpaper
    • Set of railroad colour paint from Poly S
    • Set of "weathering colours" paint from the dollar store
    • Screw picker (a little device that has a claw at one end activated by pushing the other - for grabbing tiny parts)

    Most of this stuff is in one of those little "roundy-round" office supply carousels that sits on my desk (not the light and the paper towel, of course ;)).

    I have a set of those rolling plastic drawers that holds my scenicking stuff, and shelves above the desk that hold magazines, reference materials, and unfinshed projects (lots of those).

    Hope that helps.

  5. Alan Bickley

    Alan Bickley Member

    At the moment I'm working on modifying some old Lima tank wagons for British outline, so I would say my knife, ruler, razor saw, needle files, emery boards, and some plastic-weld for putting all the parts back together!
  6. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    Thanks for the lists. I am compiling my "tool box" and "supply boxes" and these ideas are helping a lot!

    The photo storage boxes for 4x6 pics are on sale this week at Michaels for 2 for $3. I have found that by folding some cardstock I can make nice dividers... now just to kow what all I need to put in them! :))
  7. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    Something very useful for organizing your tools and instruments: A fishing tackle box like this one:
  8. Cannonball

    Cannonball More Trains Than Brains

    Beer and old Johnny Cash tunes.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Now we're into the "absolute" essentials list...! ;) :D sign1

  10. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    I find my soldering gun to be quite handy in wiring. You can get by without a hammer, but anything beyond a simple oval will require the purchase of a soldering tool. I enjoy my soldering torch the most, but my 40w iron is the most useful.

    I also love my Black & Decker Wizard and my razor saw.


    The single most important thing by far is more bottle of fingernail polish remover! It has spared me from trips to the emergency room several times when working with super glue!
  11. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    I love tackle boxes for organizing. I used a great one for my scrapbook stuff.

    I am going to organize most in my photo boxes since they look nice on my bookshelf! :) But I have a small tackle box down there right now!
  12. CCT70

    CCT70 Member

    A------men! :thumb:
  13. CCT70

    CCT70 Member

    TAP plastics makes a very nice little box that is about 12" x 18" x 3" and is all sectioned off with dividers and a lid. Makes a great storage place for couplers, springs, wheels, detail parts, etc.
  14. Jim Krause

    Jim Krause Active Member

    You can never have enough tools. Buy a huge toolbox and try to fill it up. Don't forget the woodworking equipment. You can always justify it by using it for home remodeling occasionally.
  15. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I do demonstrations at railway shows (for free admission!) and I used to pack almost all MasonJar's stuff in boxes to take. I've weeded it down a lot.
    Added to his list:
    toothpicks -flat and round.
    a magnifocuser or other pull-down magnifying lenses.
    safety glasses.
    a comfortable chair.

    I found a set of rubber/plastic triangular things that fit over pencils; I think they're supposed to be combination eraser and comfort grip. I put them on the handles of my Xacto knives to keep them from rolling off the table.
  16. FiatFan

    FiatFan Member

    Another handy tool is a third hand soldering aid.

  17. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    MasonJar did a fine work at compiling the essential tools list.
    I like LongIslandTom suggestion about the tackling box.

    Of course, the ideal toolbox is function of the user's experience. Maybe we should start an "essential tools" sticky thread for the newbies. A newbie being someone who just run trains: no painting, no soldering, no scenery, no kitbashing or scrapbuilding.
  18. hiscopilot

    hiscopilot Member

    I like all of it! Since I am known for jumping in and cmpletely immersing myself in anything I do, having ALL tips for tools helps me A LOT! :)

    Thanks for the replies everyone!
  19. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    A # 9 crochet ( don't laugh people ) , to separate the shell from the chassis on N scale locomotives.
  20. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    If you add a Dremel to Andrew's (Mason Jar) post on page one of this thread you have a pretty good essentials list. The following tool is not what I would consider an essential, but it is a great tool set to have for forming handrails on locomotives or industrial buildings in any scale.

    This plier set is top quality, and capable of making any size bend needed for any wire you are likely to work with for model railroading.

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