Saturday, April 19

Benchtop build Review: RP TOOLZ 13cm Bending tool

Need some good – straight “crisp” bent folds? There are a few tools on the market – now RP TOOLZ throws their hat into the ting with their new 8cm, 13cm & 18cm bending tools. We have the median sized 13mm bending tool to put through it’s paces today – let’s have a look and see if it keeps up or beats the opposition…

Review: RP TOOLZ 13cm Bending tool:
Set contains:
1 vice press for bending PE

I razor blade
2 bolts and thumbscrews
Instructions in both English and Hungarian
Price: Around AU$43/ US$35/ €30
You can get these sets from RP’s distributors on the RP TOOLZ website

 We have been ever striving for more realism on our models, the use of alternate materials to plastic have become pretty standard and one of those being almost standard on kits is the thin brass of photo etched brass. When bending photo etch there are a fair few types of tools available on the market – from flat pliers to a press and bend system which is becoming the norm on most people’s modelling benches. If you don’t have one you are probably in the market to buy one.

Enter the new RP TOOLZ 13cm Bending tool. The model we have today to look at is the middle of the range 13cm version. There being a longer 18cm version and the smaller 8 cm version also available. All three of these tools share the same make-up so saying it is the middle of the range tool is misleading – I simply mean size wise.

Our tool came in a white cardboard box which was full of loose styrene packing. The insides were all in tip top condition on their trip from Hungary.Instructions are also in dual English/ Hungarian as well.
The press is made from a laser cut 3mm thick piece of black galvanized steel. The black steel part looks and feels quality with sharp edges but not so sharp anyone get’s cut! The base plate is solid 4mm thick blue galvanized steel with two bolts poking through which also pass through the top plate. Two thumbscrews nuzzle this down to give a firm grip.

Both sides of this tool are usable – if you want a long straight edge to bend (in this case 13cm long) then the long end is great for you. If you want to bend smaller shapes of one to a few millimetres across then the toothed edge is what you will need.

The fingers the upper bending plate are - 1mm, 2mm, 3mm, 4mm, 5mm & 15mm teeth.

Let’s get bent!
Firstly we have a small bucket seat from the Eduard sheet of a 32nd scale Bf-109G-6. The stock seat can always be a little thinner even though it’s pretty good – but this photo etched seat is beyond comparison so let’s try it. Firstly we bend the first armrest.
Then the second...

Then using the small tooth to create a clean line on the seam of the chair.

The rounded edge was bent with a pencil after the seam line was created.
Some superglue will hold this in place whilst I look for a soldering gun. The result – a thinner place to put your pilot’s thick behind.
The second part is a median length straight line of the armoured support on a WGR 21 aerial rocket launcher on the Bf-109G-6 in 32nd using the longer flat part of the bending tool. Simply place it in there…

And bend away – It works easily and now we have a good right angle...

The next part I decided for something a lot more challenging – because this very very thin bend of PE from the wing of the Bf-109G-6 in 32nd scale is so small I thought it might test my mettle (metal)… 

The vice grabbed well, I had to do one readjust but screwed down the vice tightly to get a result so small you almost cannot see it in this photo but it’s a tiny 1mm right angle at the pointy end. 
Two things I think could improve this tool is a custom made longer bending implement. For the long thin strips, you need something that will not leave a possible crease. The other thing is some curves on the teeth on the back to make hinges. This would be an extra selling point.

Otherwise this is a very easily available tool – the price is good and the quality is great. RP TOOLZ has another great tool in their box...

Adam Norenberg

Thanks to RP TOOLZ for sending this set to review - you can get these sets from the RP TOOLZ website: