Product Review: UMM-USA Item UMS 02; Adjustable Mitre Box; Price US$48.00
Advantages: neatly designed small mitre box can be set for nearly any reaso nable length of item to ensure both precision and duplication
Disadvantages: not cheap
Rating: Highly Recommended
Recommendation: for any modeler needing more precise control of parts for a project
Half the fun I get out of going to shows like the AMPS International or IP MS USA Nationals is seeing John Vojtech and the latest tools and items from his UMM-USA company. This year at the AMPS 2014 show he had a new fully ad justable small mitre box.
Even if you do not scratchbuild models, there are times when you need to c ut strip, rod or tubing to a precise length and with square ends. While too ls like the NWSL Chopper (or a similar product) is great for thin strip, it tends to cause slanted cuts among larger diameter round objects or thick s trip. This means it really needs to be cut with a mitre box and razor arran gement.
Larger (relatively speaking!) mitre boxes like the popular ones from Zona and Xacto are often hard to maintain control as the pieces slide around ins ide the box, and there is no provision for a "fence" or blocking end sectio n to ensure identical length parts.
Last year at AMPS 2013 I picked John's Micro Mitre Box, which is designed to work with their UMM-USA Razor Saw using .005" blades or other similar th ickness microsaws. The tool is 90mm long and has a gate in it 5.5mm wide fo r material, as well as a stop that can be adjusted at one end for either an gled or vertical stops for the material. Depth to the mitre section is abou t 50mm.
This tool is much larger and covers the gap between the Zona/Xacto boxes a nd the Micro Mitre Box. Machined out of three sections of heavy brass and a luminum, the tool is 150mm long when set at its lowest adjustment level and can handle materials up to 11.5mm wide and 5mm deep. As both halves of the mitre section can be independently moved, the mitre box can take materials up to 240mm long.
There is a millimeter gauge on the bottom of the track the sections ride i n and also a gauge on both halves of the mitre box. The box can be adjusted for either left or right handed use as well, as there is a screw mount for the end block on both sections of the mitre box. Adjustment is made by loo sening any of three Philips screws in the mitre box.
Overall this is a very handy item and something many modelers will be deli ghted to use as it fills in a gap between the Micro and the bigger mitre bo xes.