View Full Version : Filework Files?


Osprey Guy
03-09-2003, 09:36 PM
For my fileworking, I've tried needle files from a number of places and have yet to be really satisfied. I realize that filing away at steel, especially stainless, is going to make short work of my files but it'd be nice to fine some that have a little longer life expectancy...

I use a three-side and a 1/2 round almost exclusively...always grind off one "safety" side...

Even though they're less than some others I've tried, I've had fairly good success with the needle file sets from Radio Shack...at just over $6 for a set of five they're not bad.

Does anyone have a brand that they strongly endorse? If price were no object what would be your "dream" files that cut great, and can take the punishment of filing into steel? (I spend an awful lot on needle and micro files...I'd rather put more into something that I don't have to replace so frequently).

Thanks,

Dennis Greenbaum

Osprey Guy

Osprey Guy
03-10-2003, 01:06 AM
Got the answers I needed...

Did a search...duh! You'd think I'd know better by now :rolleyes:


Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

SharpByCoop
03-10-2003, 09:47 AM
Ok, leave us hanging.... :(

Coop

Osprey Guy
03-10-2003, 10:30 AM
The subject was covered pretty well right here in this forum a while back.

Check this...looks like I have some choices:
http://www.ckdforums.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=10197&highlight=filework+and+files

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

ddushane
03-12-2003, 09:11 AM
Dennis, Have you tried the Nicholson needle files from MSC? I've tried alot of small needle files that you get in the packs but never really been satisfied with them, I do like the cut of the Nicholson's & they seem to hold up pretty well, I read an article back years ago about having files, drill bits, & end mills freeze treated, but Havn't done it yet; I'm really wanting to do it sometime but you know how that goes. Just got to get around to it. The one's I'm using are about $10.00 ea. but seem to last pretty good & I do quite a bit of file work & fluting. Talk to you later, Hope I've been of some help. Dwayne

http://members.cox.net/ddushane

Osprey Guy
03-12-2003, 10:04 AM
Dwayne-

Do you know if the Nicholson's are the same ones that come packaged in a set...I think I got them at Home Depot for around $16 for 5 or 6 assorted. That was really a rhetorical question as I can't imagine they would be the same quality as the ones of which you speak...how could they be when yours are going for $10 bucks apiece...

Maybe I'll give them a try as well.

Just because they're nearby, I'll probably try out the set from Sears also...

My friend Kelly Carlson has had good luck with some mini-files from Rio Grande...It's a set of 4 for around $32.

It seems that there is a point where it doesn't make sense to spend more...I have a feeling that the pricier files offer a cleaner cut, but not a whole lot more life expectancy...

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

ddushane
03-12-2003, 11:22 AM
Dennis, I hate to waste money as well, but I do want nice clean cuts on my filework. Any extra detail you can add helps in my opinion. And I've been using the same files for at least two years, so $10.00 is really not that bad for that amount of filework done. The ones I use are 6-1/4" long & usually use the round, marking, & triangle files the most. These that I'm using also come in 4 or 5 different cuts, from really course to very fine. Hope you have good luck in your filing, I love it. Talk to you later, Dwayne

http://members.cox.net

Osprey Guy
03-12-2003, 12:31 PM
Dwayne-

It's more than a little obvious that you love filework...it shows all over your work...

In case I haven't said it recently, you've been responsible for some of my favorite filework. I have quite a few sample photos of your handiwork in my "special filework" folder.

I love fileworking as well...it's just too cool to see it unfold right in front of you...One moment there's a plain piece of metal,...a short while later it's something of beauty capable of evoking emotion...I hope I never loose that sense of wonder I get every time I'm carving away with my files...;)

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah baby!:smokin

ddushane
03-12-2003, 02:04 PM
Dennis, Thanks for the kind comments on my work, I really love doing it & am always trying to get better each time I do it. I've got a couple of ideas I'm going to try one of these days if I can ever get caught up on orders enough that I can do some things I want to do instead of what people are ordering. Well, Talk to you later, Dwayne

http://members.cox.net/ddushane

SharpByCoop
03-12-2003, 02:32 PM
You guys from Texas and that amazing filework! Duane, you REALLY turned up the heat. :) I have a small folder due any day from Don Morrow--who is a disciple of Bill Ruple (?), and it's highlight is some real pleasant filework. According to Don, Bill was kind enough to share some patterns. There's a style from this state that rocks!

Thanks for the comments. I'm paying attention too!

Coop

ddushane
03-12-2003, 03:39 PM
Coop, Bill Ruple is an awesome guy & does awesome work. I'm glad to call him a friend. I've been to your photo page several times in the past. You've got some sweet pieces on there. Dwayne

http://members.cox.net/ddushane

ExamonLyf
03-29-2003, 03:29 PM
Wow.., some gorgeous filework on your site Dwayne! Really nice!

ddushane
03-30-2003, 09:08 AM
Thanks Pete

http://members.cox.net/ddushane

Omega
03-30-2003, 10:38 AM
i use black diamond files from my local hardware store on SS and they tore right in and keep a sharp edge.

Bill


Sweeet:evil

gwriffer
04-08-2003, 03:52 PM
Hey Dennis,

What is the safety side of the file you grind?

Thanks,
GW

Osprey Guy
04-08-2003, 04:29 PM
GW-

The very first thing I do when I purchase a new 3-side needle or micro file, is to grind off one of the sides* (Doesn't matter which side...It's an equalateral triangle so all three sides are identical).

This "safety" side enables far greater control. Primarily, it allows you to file with one surface or edge, focusing your efforts on one spot, without having to be concerned if the other side of the file is cutting away at an area you'd prefer to leave alone. This makes for much cleaner work.

When beginning a score or distinct cut, I'll use my (left hand)thumb nail as a guide. Place your thumb down on the workpiece aligning your thumbnail with the precise spot you want to cut with the edge of the file. Then placing the safety side against your thumb you can get an extremely accurate and controlled score as the file runs back and forth, the safety side secure against your thumbnail (and it won't file your nail in the process :p).

If you want to file a left side surface, you file with the right side of the file and keep the safety side to your left. Conversely, to file a right side surface keep the safety side to the right and file with the left hand surface of the file. If you're making an initial score you obviously have to use the right side cutting surface of the file, allowing the safety side only to come into contact with your thumbnail.

Do the same thing with your half-round files...grind off the flat side. I use the 3-side and 1/2 round almost exclusively for all my filework. Every now and then I'll use a barette, square, or round file, but those are exceptions.

BTW- I've had my Grobet's for several weeks now...they are way superior to anything else I've tried (better be for around $10 bucks apiece :rolleyes: ;)). I'm sure they'll need to be replaced fairly quick...cutting into stainless takes it toll.

Reminds me of another quick tip..."refresh" the safety side from time to time,...lightly grinding it down a touch further (use a fine grit belt on the grinder or just sandpaper on a block)...this helps keep your edges sharp and/or fresh again...I find this really helps extend the life of the file.

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

*I got this incredibly valuable tip about fileworking from Tim Herman in a letter I received from him shortly after he joined the CKD (he had sent a wonderful little hand-made gift for my daughter-Piper...I talked about this some time back in this very forum).

gwriffer
04-08-2003, 04:51 PM
Thanks Dennis, that's a neat little tip I did not know about and may not have ever realized.

GW

whv
04-15-2003, 07:40 PM
fyi -
.
ken mcfall (k&g supply) was at the eugene show this weekend with news that he is now carrying several sizes and shapes of the grobet files. little ones are in the $4-6 range. they are listed in the new catalog, but i don't see them on the website.

Osprey Guy
04-16-2003, 12:09 PM
I just picked up some small needle/mini files at my local hobby store...made by Mascot, which I discovered is just another name for Grobet!:p The were around $4-5 bucks apiece. Bought the three-square and half-round...they look to be very good quality.

I'll let you know how they worked out.

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin