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Though silver solder is designed mainly for bonding its namesake, it’s useful for just about any metal. The stuff ships in thin sheets which are designed to be cut into small pieces (pallions, for the picky), so you can pre-place exactly as much as you need in precisely the right location. The process is similar to brazing, but is less likely to damage fine or thin metals. A careful user can fuse two 0.025 in. copper wires end-to-end. The end result is also much cleaner than lead- or tin-soldered joints, and with proper technique, stronger as well.

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This 6″-long clamp holds small, irregularly shaped objects with steel pins rather than flat jaws.  The pins fit in 60 hexagonally spaced holes on the face of the clamp, allowing you to clamp almost any shape as long as it’s smaller than the clamp head.

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If you’ve ever spent 20 minutes fiddling with a watch band, trying to seat the spring pin before throwing it against the wall, then check out this little watch-band spring tool. It belongs to that class of tool that’s pretty useless 99% of the time — and totally worth the few bucks you paid for it 1% of the time.

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Microlux, maker of miniature tools, has come out with a filing machine. It won’t help with your taxes, but it’ll take the tedium out of filing metal, resin, plastic, or wood.

Though filing machines are usually heavy dudes, Microlux has made one for the serious hobbyist. The tool works like an inverted jigsaw, but with a file instead of a blade. The machine cuts only on the pull stroke and only on stock up to 3/8″ thick.   Just clamp it to the edge of your bench and begin filing.

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Evan writes: “I don’t really want to submit this as a good tool, but I think it’s time for another installment of ‘Why the hell is this at the tool store?’ from Harbor Freight.  I found this in the ‘miscellaneous hand tools’ section on the website.”

While I’d agree that HF sells their share of weird crap — their frog family statue comes to mind — a ring sizer can be handy, and even essentialy for jewelry makers.  Truthfully, this is the kind of tool that I’d imagine hanging out in the shop of a real toolaholic — the kind of guy who has a tool for everything, leaving nothing to chance.

And at $4, I might just pick me one up the next time I’m in the store.

Ring Sizing Stick [Harbor Freight]

 
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Lee of BenchNews — whose three-prong earring earring holder we linked yesterday — send along this pic and link to another tool mod he performed to simplify jewelry making.  It’s kinda hard to see in the pic, but essentially he took an articulated “third hand” and permanently mounted it to his bench.

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I’ve always been a bit interested in jewelry making — who wouldn’t love to be able to weld, braze, and otherwise work with such valuable materials on such a small scale? — but it’s something I know almost nothing about.  On the subject of homemade tools,  reader Lee wrote in with this cool jewelry-related find: a custom made tool to hold three-prong earrings.

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