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I am going to purchase some good quality files (Vallorbe, Grobet), and would like some thoughts regarding the profiles and coarsness grade of needle and escapement files that are best suited to our work, particularly with regards to brass/copper.




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Brian, thanks. I have cheap files, they do have their limitations, so I'm thinking some good quality ones will be better.

Thanks for the link Frank. It is a good general guide to files. I'm after something more specific.




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I have quite a set of Vallorbe files that I've built up over the years.  I'm quite honestly not sure what grade they are - something medium - but I find the shapes I use constantly are barrette, round and triangular.



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In addition to the shapes that John recommends, I would add escapement files (flat files with teeth on edges as well as front and back).  They really help get corners clean.  I would also consider having both double-cut and single cut.



Double Cut— Diagonal rows of teeth run across the width of the file in opposite directions. Use with heavier pressure than single-cut style for faster, rougher-finish cutting and more rapid material removal.

Single Cut— A single set of parallel teeth runs diagonally across the width of the file. Use with light pressure for smooth finishes and to sharpen tool cutting surfaces. 

I buy files one at a time as I need them, rather than in sets.  I find when I buy a set I'm spending money on some files I'll rarely if ever use.
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