About 2 months ago, I got God Hand nippers I can tell you now, they are worth the money. Before we continue, I want to give a massive, MASSIVE thank you to God Hand for providing me with the SPN-120 and Mr. Hobby/GSI Creos for providing me with the file for the this comparison.
This article is by no means biased, this is an honest opinion from someone who has been building and painting miniatures for over 7 years.
This is coming from someone who paints models. The price for a pair of regular clippers runs between $10-$20 CAD depending on where you purchase them, a God Hand would run between $80-$100+ for a pair depending on the model you get. The one I will be comparing is the SPN-120, which goes on Amazon for $80-$120.
Left: Regular hobby clippers Right: SPN-120 God Hands
The model I used for demonstration is Jay, the Jesta Cannon intern who will be giving me a hand (hehehe) on my GBWC 2018 entry.
So let’s get cutting!
The first one I will review is the basic hobby clippers. I did not carelessly clip the chest piece, I was very careful with the chest piece and it still left a stress mark. This wouldn’t be a problem if I was painting Jay, but ultimately I decided to do my very first straight build, but, if you don’t plan on painting then you have to sand/file the marks until it is clean. I will get into that in this article.
Now let’s look at the God Hand nippers. It still left a stress mark where it got cut from the runner. It was actually flat to the point where I just used a 1000 grit sand paper and it was gone. One thing I also noticed is the amount of force I had to use between the two. The basic clippers, I had to use some force which is what left the stress marks. With the God Hands, they cut through like a hot knife through butter.
With that being said, BE VERY CAREFUL WHEN YOU ARE CUTTING! You can actually dull the God Hand nippers and damage the blades if you squeeze too hard.
Now onto files.
For files, this is my new favorite tool. I do use a cheap triangular one, and it is still useful for small hard to reach areas. The GSI Creos diamond file is very fine compared to the standard file. Now it is great for filing large surface areas instead of sand paper due to the width of the file, and is easy to hold as well with a rubberized handle. Yes, it did leave some scratch marks, but that was due to my own ignorance for not wet sanding/filing. It was an easy fix by using 1000 grit sand paper and gradually working my way up to 1500 grit until it was smooth.
Above photo: Before using tooth brush
Above Photo: After cleaning with a tooth brush
Pro tip: Clean your files with a tooth brush, preferably a brand new one. I learned this trick in powerlifting, how? We use scrub brushes to clean the chalk off barbells.
Verdict? If you are doing straight builds AND painting kits, then I highly recommend God Hands. Why? You spend less time cleaning kits, the God Hands shaved around 20-30min of cleaning and sanding. Not all the parts I cut had stress marks, some had none at all.
How about beginners? If you are first starting out in the hobby, and God Hands are out your budget, then there is nothing wrong with getting a basic pair of hobby clippers. Learning the basics and mastering them is what makes a great builder. Clip, file, sand, repeat until you become efficient and ready to take that next big step. Remember, these are only tools, you, yes YOU, the builder are ultimately responsible for how clean your builds turn out.