My fingers are killing me!!!

Discussion in 'Ship & Watercraft Models' started by lgl007, Aug 8, 2004.

  1. lgl007

    lgl007 Member

    Ok... so I just started to cut out the skeleton pieces of my Halinski Bismarck. OMG... my figers are killing me... how the devil do you guys cut out such pieces in 2mm thicknesses? I'm using an exacto knife and I'm in pain after just cutting out two pieces :(

    I tried using my Dremel tool on a test piece and it didn't work too well :( So back to the exacto I went... I guess I'll just have to pace myself... and maybe cut out one per day giving my fingers a chance to recuperate after cutting out each piece...

    Any hints from you ship building experts out there?

  2. Gil

    Gil Active Member


    Get yourself a set of Friskars "microtip" scissors. These will cut slots right up to and including the tip. Curves are still an Xacto factor. Try getting the X2000 series handles. They are much more comfortable to hold.

    You can also use a Dremel tool buffing pad with fine buffing compound to "strough" an extremely fine edge on the Xacto or any blade (otherwise just buy an adequate supply of blades and change when dull). Keeping the blade extremely sharp reduces the amount of force required by a large amount. Remember that human nature just puts more force on the remote control button when the batteries are ow or have run out, same with dull Xacto blades. Sharp blades are much safer and also allow better control of the cut. Also don't try to make the cut all in one pass. Try using less pressure letting the knife do the slicing. After the first pass you'll notice that the blade will be steared by the previous pass making the process much easier and faster.

    Best regards, Gil
  3. Jim Nunn

    Jim Nunn Member


    Try a # 17 chisel blade for straight vertical cuts. I also will take this blade and using a Dremel abrasive wheel cut the blade to 1, 1 1/2, 2 mm wide this works great when you need to cut a small square hole or part.

    Jim Nunn
  4. barry

    barry Active Member


    I use a "Stanley" knife or scissors

  5. j77ason

    j77ason New Member

    I use a Griffold Hobby Knife with blades which are razor sharp and go down to a oint.
    The trick with cutting thick card, or for that matter, any card, is to take the first cut as precisely as possible - like scoring the card, if possible alongside a safety ruler - Maun make a great one and it keeps your fingers well out of the way of your knife blade.
    Then you take your time and do multiple cuts - the idea is not how quicly you get through the card, but how accurately you do it. After a while. cutting card is real easy.
    The Griffold Knife is held like a pen, so you are not applying the same pressure you might with a Stanlet type blade.
    Lighting is important. Make sure you get plenty on your work area, but not too harsh. If you don't your eyes will be the first to go.
    When you begin making a warship model, don't think in terms of how quickly you will get it made, but how accurately you are going to make it. When you build your next model, try to improve on your technique and learn patience - don't be distracted by what is going on about you.
    My 1/200 Bismark model took me 18 months to build. Other warship models average out at 6 months each, that is in terms of hours spent on the task - 8 hours one day, a few hours the next and so on. The trick is to make your mind control your body and get your head and hands on the model, then it becomes easier. sometimes it is as if your body is fighting you.........ever had that experience?
    hope that helps,
  6. lgl007

    lgl007 Member

    Thank you all for your tips,

    Well, the 2mm sections are now all perfectly cut out. Yes, I did take my time with it, and yes they are perfect cuts... I went for precision.

    Thanks for all your help. Regardless I think the best thing for my fingers was taking my time and not rushing it...

    I will post some pictures in my gallary in a few days so you all can see the work in progress :)


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