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James H

Cutter/Mitre Tool

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Cutter/Mitre Tool
RP Toolz

Catalogue # RP-CUTR
Available from RP Toolz for €85,00

 

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RP Toolz’ Cutter Tool (or Mitre Tool) isn’t really a new idea. There are of course a few manufacturers out there who produce fairly similar tools, and I used to have one of them myself, so when RP Toolz announced that they were releasing their own, I was pretty keen to see it for myself. A mitre tool is designed so that the modeller can produce mitred plastic junctions of specific angles on strips of either flat styrene or shaped section stock. If you’ve ever tried to make a 90-degree angle frame, you’ll know how difficult it is to get right if you don’t have the correct tools. The Cutter Tool is designed to ease all of your woes.

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This tool is packaged into a robust, corrugated box with a colour product label on the lid. You’ll also notice the weight. There’s some heavy metal in here, and some of the best you’ll see from a tool manufacturer. Unlike some contemporaries who may mould their cutters in some form of plastic, this one is precisely CNC-machined from a very hard grade aluminium, which has also been given a tough matte red anodised finish. The box fits the tool almost perfectly, with an insert used to support the cutter arm. A hex key is provided for changing the blade, as is a second blade with a finer cut. The tool is fitted with a 0.3mm thick blade for regular cutting tasks, with a slightly thinner (0.25mm) blade for something a little finer.

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The first thing you notice when exploring this tool is that there is no playin any of the parts. That is, there is no looseness or wobble in either the arm pivot or the two adjustable fences. Those fences are also neatly engraved with degree graduations and the base is marked with a reference point too, in order to align the fences. The bottom edge of the fences is also marked, but in centimetres, with ZERO being at the actual cutting point of the blade. With the fences in their neutral position, an end stop can be positioned so you can cut precise and equal straight-edged lengths of strip. This stop can be removed of course so the fences can be adjusted. It can also be switched to the opposite side of the cutter for maximum flexibility. The stop and both fences are tightened using plastic thumbscrews that cover the metal fixing bolt.

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Now, a cutting area really needs a cutting mat, and this is what is fitted to this tool. A self-healing and graduated mat, sits flush with the upper surface of the tool, and proved a hard yet non-damaging surface to the cutting blade. 

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I made a small number of cut tests with this tool and found it both precise and effortless. 

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Conclusion
RP Toolz’ arsenal of quality modelling tools is certainly expanding, and like those before it, the sheer quality of this really does demand the price asked of it. This is no flimsy or inaccurate tool, but one with which you can work with total precision in producing either angled lengths of styrene, or equal, multiple lengths too. If you like to scratch-build or even just improve on what a kit supplies, then this could well be of interest to you. This is the very best of the mitre cutting tools that I have ever seen, without a doubt.

My sincere thanks to RP Toolz for the review sample seen here. To purchase directly, click the link at the top of the article.

 

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This one could in fact be the best one on the market thanks to it's sturdiness. I'm extremely tempted to get one for myself.

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2 minutes ago, McCoy said:

This one could in fact be the best one on the market thanks to it's sturdiness. I'm extremely tempted to get one for myself.

I've seen decent mitre tools and really cruddy ones. IMHO, this is the best, beyond doubt.

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Thanks Jim for taking the time to write a review. i bought a similar cutting jig few years back from another manufacturer but i keep noticing the cuts have started to become a bit oblique where the blade slices, so to say, due to the blade flexing. Those thicker blades do look the part and i am seriously considering the RP one...

thanks again

Karim

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24 minutes ago, karimb said:

Thanks Jim for taking the time to write a review. i bought a similar cutting jig few years back from another manufacturer but i keep noticing the cuts have started to become a bit oblique where the blade slices, so to say, due to the blade flexing. Those thicker blades do look the part and i am seriously considering the RP one...

thanks again

Karim

If you do, let those guys know you read my article :thumbsup2::thumbsup2:

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47 minutes ago, nichenson said:

Do normal American blades fit in that?  Looks like the holes may be off.

I honestly can't say as I'm European and not seen US blades. They do sell blades separately too.

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I have a mitre cutter on the bench, and it is an invaluable tool, especially for repeat cuts.

It is not this one however (mine is « The Chopper »). But this one looks sturdy built, with a number of cool features. My only concern would the way the blade protrudes from the arm. On « The Chopper », where the blade is set more deeply in the arm, there is already a tendency for the blade to deflect from the vertical on thicker plastic. I’d have the same worry on this one, but maybe this is not justified...

Hubert

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1 hour ago, HubertB said:

I have a mitre cutter on the bench, and it is an invaluable tool, especially for repeat cuts.

It is not this one however (mine is « The Chopper »). But this one looks sturdy built, with a number of cool features. My only concern would the way the blade protrudes from the arm. On « The Chopper », where the blade is set more deeply in the arm, there is already a tendency for the blade to deflect from the vertical on thicker plastic. I’d have the same worry on this one, but maybe this is not justified...

Hubert

Well since Hubert said it, i use the chopper too and the blade seems to deflect too on it... this is why i mentioned the thickness of the blades on the RP one seems to be more useful and probably would tend to have less bending i reckon...

Jim, will do if i get one!

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Hubert, Karim, I wonder if you have a different Chopper to the one I recently bought. 

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I see several similarities between mine and the RP Toolz version. I certainly like the mitre function a bit more on the RP Toolz one.

Carl

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No, it’s the same.

The one from RP Toolz seems to have a more precise fitting, and, yes, the mitre function looks sturdier. The ones on The Chopper are thick stamped iron pieces, with rounded corners, and unfortunately their production process means you cannot expect their edges to be perfectly square to the surface. I have finally ended using mine just for square cuts, and not angled ones.

Finally, from what I see on the pics, the RP Toolz one has the good idea to have the cutting in the middle of the blade, rather than at its extremity like The Chopper. I have a steel ruler set permanently against the edge of The Chopper, to guide the parts and to move the cutting to the middle of the blade. 

As I mentioned, one of my concerns is the deflection of the blade on thicker plastic. It may be caused by the thinness of the blades, but also by some give of the arm’s axle.

Hubert.

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Thanks for the info Hubert. I haven't tried cutting any thick styrene yet which is why I haven't experienced the deflection you mentioned. I'll have to keep that in mind and maybe down the road upgrade to the RP Toolz one. 

Carl

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I used my "The Chopper" 3 times , producing 3 different cuts , examining the tool shows some flaws in the mechanics of it. Mostly the blade deflecting within its own height.

Having spent that money , and 15 mins of work , to immediately and permanently shelve the tool I think that a very definitive answer will be needed prior to my purchasing the RP Toolz offering. 

An update or repair set for The Chopper would go a long way...

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Hi Steve,

Are you referring to the RP Tools reviewed here, or to « The Chopper » I and others have ?

Hubert

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21 hours ago, HubertB said:

Hi Steve,

Are you referring to the RP Tools reviewed here, or to « The Chopper » I and others have ?

Hubert

My answer should be clear now.

 

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