A commenter on a public modeling forum complained that the tools he was using were rusting and they had lost their keen edge as well as smooth action. Further discussion revealed that he lived in an area that was very humid year-round and that his workshop wasn’t well ventilated or air conditioned. This probably is the reason for corrosion on his tools, but it could have been easily avoided.
All tools, including Xuron® tools, require some preventative care to keep them in proper operating condition, regardless of environment.
Back in the days when I was in High School, we had to take Industrial Arts (shop) classes. The instructors always started off with a lecture on tool safety and care. “A sharp tool is a safer tool.” So, we learned about the proper care and sharpening of those tools we would be using. In fact, what we were taught about tool care was put to practical use and graded. To this day I can remember those lessons.
Xuron® tools can be cleaned using a rag or a soft bristled brush to remove dirt, debris and light corrosion from recesses and corners. Even a grain of sand can impact the performance of a pair of pliers, shears or scissors. If you don’t keep hand tools clean, wear and tear caused by foreign objects in the working mechanism can eventually lead to issues.
Anything metal needs protection from moisture. Periodically, use a drop or two of a light machinery oil (sewing machine oil) on a soft absorbent cloth, and wipe the entire tool down to give it a microscopic layer of protection. If the tool has a pivoting or hinge point, lube it to ensure it continues to move freely and smoothly.
Keep your tools in a place where they aren’t subjected to water condensation or pooling, overspray from paint, or debris from sanding or grinding.
Last, but not least, use the right tool for the right job. The #2175ET Professional Sprue Cutter was designed to provide a square, smooth cut on plastic sprue, not photo-etch or other soft metals. Using it on materials other than plastic will cause nicks in the blade and/or the blade to dull prematurely.
Likewise, the #9180ET Professional Photo-Etch Cutter works so well on photo-etch because of its thin blade and shearing action. Using it to cut sprue will result in a poor cut and bend the shear, rendering it useless for its intended use.
Our #2175 Track Cutter effortlessly cuts HO, N and Z scale model railroad track, but if used to cut nichrome or music wire, the cutting edges will dent. If you need to cut nichrome or music wire, use the #2193 Hard Wire Cutter instead; you’ll have an easier time making the cut and since that’s what it was designed for, no damage to the tool.
The chart below provides an easy reference to match the right tool to the right job. (Click on the image to enlarge.)
Protect your investment in quality Xuron® tools and they will continue to serve you well.