Needle files

C Craft

Well-Known Member
So the question is, is it just my brute strength or the cheaper needle files I have been using. I am constantly reminding myself light pressure, light pressure. Then I get into the grove of making the stroke and, OH SNAP. I broke another one!! I even broke the small cheap handle that holds the file so now I got to make a new one!!

So what brand of needle file do you use and why??

What about the handle you use with your needle files??

Are the expensive ones less prone to snap??

I am tired of about every third time I grab a needle file I get file, file, clean file, file, clean, snap!! So what am I doing wrong!!


"The Montana Bladesmith"
Sounds like your problem is way too much pressure. Many people try to make a file cut more then it's capable of, by applying too much pressure, and breaking a/the file is usually the outcome. I have several different brands of needle files in the shop, ranging from the super cheap imports, to my favorite brand Grobet.

The el-cheapo needle files will generally bend before they break, but in my experience, the higher the quality of the needle file, the easier it is to break them. My advice would be to retrain yourself and just keep in mind that ANY files will only cut so much in a stroke..... too much pressure not only breaks files, but it also causes a file to clog . Also do not "drag" a file backwards.... they are made to cut only on the push stroke, dragging a file on the back stroke will clog it, and it's very hard on the teeth.
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I use harbor freight needle, and they last long enough to make me appreciate the price. I don't remember breaking any but I sure lose 'em easy....

i don't use handles either. You get more "feedback" without a handle. That might be some of your problem.

C Craft

Well-Known Member
Well I kind of figured I was probably putting to much pressure but, I was hoping for another explanation!! I always cut in one direction and lift to make next stroke and card as often as the material demands.
Guess I am just going to have to learn to finesse the file and quit laying on it!!! :rolleyes:
The first set came with a baby handle!

So how the heck do you hang on to them without a handle??? My fingers get to cramping!!


Hold 'em light...they're very fine pitch will load if you use too much pressure...once they load you have to use even more pressure...thus the breaking. I always spray a bit of wd-40 on 'em so all I do to clean 'em is a shot of air or wipe 'em with thumb and index towards the tip.(quickest is wiping for obvious reasons)

I'm usually wearing magnifiers when doing tiny helps to see how the file is actually working.

C Craft

Well-Known Member
Yep, guess I just got to lighten up on the Adonis body I have been working on!!! Don't know my own strength anymore!!!

I guess this is probably one of those questions I knew the answer too before I asked it but, I was hoping maybe it wasn't me leaning on the files to hard!!

Frank Niro

Something to remember is they do come in different grits which will work very different on different materials. Softer materials will take the use of courser files.