Re: Molded-on Grab Irons and grab iron bending device

Schuyler Larrabee

What is "misleading?" If you're making grabs with it, you need to know what the width is in full-size inch or metric measure, which isn't too terribly much to ask, or you can use your scale rule to find the right width. The world doesn't owe HO modelers (and I am one) everything marked to HO scale. I was (and still am) thinking that could be a very useful tool. I confess to being a toolaholic, however. I generally find the right place on my tapered-jaw needlenose pliers to place the wire to bend grabs to the right width. Mark it with a bit of tape, and I get repeatable results.



Your post is a bit mis-leading regarding the the Mission Models M10-06 "Grabhandler". It is a fanastic tool, but the
manufactured "spacings" are not HO scale and of little use unless you customize the tool as I have done.

Paul Lyons
Laguna NIguel, CA

-----Original Message-----
From: va661midlo@... <>
To: STMFC@... <>
Sent: Sat, Nov 21, 2009 5:46 am
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Molded-on Grab Irons and grab iron bending device

1. Grab iron removal:

I have used the #18 chisel blade from X-acto after rounding off the corners to avoid gouging. I started doing so in the
1980's, and presented several clinics at NMRA regional and national conventions on this process. I did not have any
problems with the blade being too flexible. It can be re-sharpened with a whetstone.

In addition to the Micro-Mark chisel, a very nice (and very sharp) chisel is made by Mission Models (M10-09). The
Mission Models chisel would be my first choice -- sharper replaceable blade with a smaller chisel face, and lighter
weight than Micro-Mark chisel.

For me, the trick to removing cast-on grab irons, ladders, etc., is not to try to remove every bit of the cast-on item by
using the chisel. After removing all but a fine layer of the cast-on item, I then used increasingly fine grades of
"sandpaper" to remove the remaining part of the cast-on item. Then, as another participant in this group suggested, use
0000 (4 zeros) grade steel wool to finish off any trace of the former cast-on item.

2. Grab irons.

Mission Models also makes a device for creating grabirons with varying widths between the ends. The part number is

Mission Models also has other tools for bending frets, etc. of etched brass. Their line of tools is impressive.

Mission Models website is: The company appears to cater to mililtary modelers as well as
model railroaders.

Ken Montero

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