RP TOOLZ is a Hungarian based company making specialized tools for the modelling community. The tools offered by RP TOOLZ range from Photo Etch (PE) Benders, Rollers, Punch and Die Sets and more. Recently I came across an interesting alternative to bending photo etch parts. RP TOOLZ offers a three Photo Etch Bender tools; 18cm (7 3/32in), 13cm (5 1/8in), 8cm (3 5/32in). I will take a close look at these Benders and give my review as to quality, value and use. Each of these PE Benders is packaged in sturdy cardboard boxes with a small instruction sheet and a razorblade.
The basic difference between the three Benders is essentially the length and number of locking knobs to tighten the bending plate down. Each one has fingers on one side of the bending plate for aiding in bending various sizes of photo etch and one long flat side to the bending plate. Looking at the largest version of the Photo Etch Benders, the 18cm, there is two knobs used for tightening down the bending plate, two Spring washers beneath the bending plate to assist with lifting the plate and a work surface which all else attaches to.
Handling these benders I noticed the weight first off. There is a bit of weight to these tools as they are constructed from steel. The bending plate opens and closes with aid from the spring washers nicely. This is the same with either the finger side or the flat edge side on the work surface.
The work surface is not completely smooth. This does tend to have the small pieces somewhat stick when placing the on the work surface and slide under the bending plate. This is not necessarily a bad thing, just something to be aware of when working the small pieces into the jaws of the bender. Some of the drag can be alleviated by simply removing the bending plate, cleaning the surface with furniture polish and replace.
Today, the almighty dollar needs to be stretched as far as it can, especially when enjoying the hobby of modelling. RP TOOLS Photo Etch Benders are priced very well in the market.
- 18cm long Photo etch bender tool – $53.75 US
- 13cm long Photo etch bender tool – $44.75 US
- 8cm long Photo etch bender tool – $35.80 US
I feel these Photo Etch Bender Tools from RP TOOLZ are quality made modelling accessory. There are plenty of options for bending various sized photo etched and scratch built parts. Pricing of these tools are surprising nowadays as a great value. Take into consideration what the average uses you will use the tool for when deciding which size you would purchase. If you bend small pieces occasionally as with the small sheets of PE added with most kits today then maybe the smaller 8cm bender would right for you. This mid-range size of the 13cm bender has a slightly larger work are to accommodate the average fender sizes on the market today and giving you just more overall work surface for bending. The largest 18cm tool will pretty much cover all the bending needs of any sized bending job and with the added different sized bending fingers your options for piece movements while bending are increased.
I would like to thank RP TOOLZ for these reviews samples