Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Pining for You

What do you use to pin models?

This came up the other day on one of the forums or face book groups that I follow and I was pretty surprised by how many different answers there were.

Put the paperclip down!

A lot of people use paper clips for pinning. I have used paperclips in the past and I will probably use them in the future. They are the right size, and they are readily available. They are also super strong. They are so strong in fact, that they will totally ruin your awesome model snips.
They are even pretty hard on heavy duty wire cutters. Paper clips are made from tempered steel because tempered steel is hard and tough it's great for things like springs, blades, and paperclips. It's not the best for cutting, shaping, or modeling.  You know what else? Paperclips don't take glue very well. I am not sure why, but it is another strike against using them for pinning.

These babies aren't going anywhere near a 
paperclip. Xuron Professional Sprue Cutters 
are for soft plastic only. 

A lot of modelers use brass rod for pinning. It is available in a huge variety of sizes and a lot of hobby and craft stores stock it. It also comes in diameters that are easy to match to drill bit sizes. This makes it ideal for fitting into the holes you drill. Another great advantage of brass rod is actually how soft it is. You can cut it with your snips, (NOT the Xuron Professional Sprue Cutters, thank-you-very-much) smaller brass rod can be bent without damaging your mini, which is great for getting those tough joints fitted just right, and it takes glue pretty good.

The folks at make brass rod 
and a bunch of other metal stuff for your hobby time. 
Aluminum rod? Could be useful! 

If you plan on doing a lot of pinning, say for a Forge World Salamanders army,  you can get rolls of brass wire at the hardware store and it's super cheap!

75 feet for $4!   

 Forge World makes their stuff out of resin
so it's a good idea to pin every joint that you can.

Using the brass wire made it much easier to do all of the 
pinning that these models required. A big time saver is to glue 
one end of the wire in place, then snip it to the length you want.


  1. You know those little plastic tags you get on your clothes when you buy them? those work great for resin minis too :)

    1. Like the little nylon(?) zip tie type things? That's genius! Maybe we should start selling nylon pinning rod!

    2. Yeah buddy! At $1 an inch we'd practically be giving it away ;)


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