Effective December 31, 2023 the Small Shop has closed. We have retired! You may be able to find some of our products at our Authorized Dealers. Please check the list - link is at the bottom of each page. HAPPY NEW YEAR! Hopefully soon, the Small Shop will be back under new ownership!

Customer Feedback

We always ask permission prior to using any customer comments!

Text shown in Italics has been added by Kalama Precision.

We love receiving compliments from our customers - here are a few. 

Email received April 20, 2023

Dear The Small Shop,

Simply outstanding in quality of products and customer service. I bought both the SMS015-Photo Etch Cut Off Set and the SMS004-Photo Etch Bending Tool 5.5 inch Hold and Fold (The 5 Speed). The workmanship in both tools is magnificent and will last a lifetime. 

I strongly recommend all products made by The Small Shop. Your customer service, and website, are user friendly and shipping was very, very fast and I am glad I purchased from you. I will highly recommend you to all I know. Thank you.

With sincere appreciation,
Ken D


Email received October 26, 2022

Package arrived today, both folders look great! You folks make really great quality products! Appreciate you being in business for modelers like me. 


Reese ordered our SMS001 2" Hold and Fold and our SMS002 Bug tool

Email received June 28, 2022

I am very happy with the quality and functionality of the tool. Having worked in the aviation industry before retirement I can recognize good workmanship when I see it.


Peter ordered our SMS002 Bug tool

Email received January 19, 2022

The package arrived.  I couldn’t be happier with what was inside (SMS002 Bug & SMS005 8" ).  In my opinion your tools are small works of manufacturing art.  Thank you!  Now I know what the Gold Standard really is.  

Eli W.

Email received June 23, 2021

I’ve been wanting an official Small Shop photo etch bender and a photo etch roller for the longest ever since reading my first modelling guides from Tony Greenland. I thought I was out of luck when the site said the rollers were out of stock, but thanks to a separate error I made, Julie reached out to me and let me know that there was actually one in stock still! One amended order later and I can’t wait to feel like a legit modeler now, thanks Small Shop a million!!


David R.

 Thank you very much David! It was a great pleasure doing business with you!

Email received February 27, 2021

I just received my photo etch rolling set. The shipping from Washington to Louisiana in 3 days is awesome. I assemble a lot of metal earth photo etch sets. I also use various aftermarket photo etch sets for plastic model kits. I am always searching for easier and more efficient ways to complete the process. Your product is A-1 in accomplishing this task. Thanks to all involved in producing your products. I will definitely recommend them to others in my modeling community, as I am an IPMS member. Well I have to go now. My latest project is calling. It will be so much easier to complete. 



Email received August 25, 2020

Yes I received it and I think it is a formidable product.  I am using it and I love it. Thank you guys.

Marwan H.

Marwan ordered our SMS004 5.5" Hold and Fold

Email received June 5, 2020

Hi.  I just received my recent order.  I just wanted to take a moment to say I'm very happy with both the products and the service.  The products were well-packaged and arrived quickly.  Best of all, they're made in the USA.  I'm glad I waited for the "bug" to come back in stock; it's a very high quality tool that should last forever.

Greg S.

Email received January 3, 2019


Just a quick note to say that I received the “Photo Etch Bending and Rolling Deluxe Brass Assist” earlier during the day and I am once again pleased with the quality of your tools! Thank you for making such fine products!

Please have a Happy and Prosperous New Year!

Jim N.

Email received September 28, 2018

I have received my order and am so glad that I now have the right tools. Finally and at long last. 

I had long been trying to live by with EtchMate by Mission Models since the early '90s.  The "Bug" and the "Hold & Fold" are perfect for my use, efficient and make it a lot easier to bend PE upgrades.

Thanks very much! 

The items were packed securely, and they arrived on-time. 

More power to you and The Small Shop.

Best regards,

Roel R.

Please note:  The Etchmate was not manufactured until early 2003 and the Hold and Fold ® is the original photo etch bending tool and introduced by The Small Shop ® in 1998.

Follow up email: It would be my honor if you would accept my comments as a testimonial on the quality and the excellent  product design of both tools.

Email received July 23, 2018

Package received. Contents in good shape. Very impressed with your quality.

Thanks for the fast delivery.

John N.

Email received May 18, 2018

Thank you for your fast shipping and excellent service! The quality of your products is outstanding, and I look forward to using them for many years. The wire bender will be my next purchase when I begin that project.

I have enjoyed this fine hobby for over 60 years, and I know a fine product when I use it. Your craftsmanship and tool quality is outstanding!


I appreciate your sincere dedication to quality tools-
Berry B


Email received April 10, 2018

To all at 'The Small Shop'

The cost of postage to me in New Zealand was a big ouch!!

Other than that the item I ordered was well packed and so received in good order.

Time from order placed to goods received was I thought more than acceptable. So, overall I'm a happy chappie!

Thanks to all of you and my best wishes


Email received February 15, 2018


Got your “Bug” yesterday.

I used one last week that a friend loaned me and I just simply had to have one of my own. I have a couple of larger PE tools but yours is the best one I’ve used.

Best regards,

Jerry L.

Email received November 7, 2017


I am new to modeling with PE. Coincidentally, I had received a Metal Earth Tiger tank metallic model from my wife, Christmas 2016. Over the past couple of evenings, I have been using my 5 speed hold and fold to complete the model. I am very impressed with its metallic, quality construction and without it, my little Tiger model would have been a mess.

I recommend your company and products without reservation to all my friends.

Thank you very much! Dennis M.

Email received October 27, 2017

your product is fantastic

very pleased and service was exceptional

made in USA and not China

Very pleased

Fred P.

Email received November 9, 2016


My order arrived today. Thanks very much for the quick turnaround.

This thing is fantastic! I've been fabricating some 1:35 scale brackets for a vehicle and the Bug makes it a snap. I can tell it is going to be a much-used tool.

Rex W.

Email received October 27, 2016

Hi: I placed my order on Tuesday, it took till noon today (Thursday) for it to arrive here in North Carolina. What took so long? Thank you I was going to say” just kidding” but you already know that. Thank you. Your tool will make my hobby even more enjoyable. Thanks again!


Email received December 7, 2015

Thanks for the quick turnaround. I've been using it tonight. Awesome tool.

Steve L.

Steve bought the SMS002 Bug.

Email received August 24, 2015

The Bug is excellent--perfect for my purposes, much better than my prior frustrator (Mission Models, as I recall). May have to later buy one of your larger ones. Thanks.

John R.- USA

Email received August 14, 2015

Hello Small Shop Crew,

Yes, my order was received... quickly and in perfect condition.

The Bending Tool 5.5 is everything you claim it to be! I've been trying it out and can't believe how precise and clean bends are using this tool. Could kick myself for not springing for one of your bending tools before this.

You know as soon as you see the tool that it's a quality product. Well designed and excellent machining. And thank you for making it in the USA.

A Very Satisfied Customer,

Dave G. - USA

Email received July 28, 2015

Great service. You are now on my favorites list for small tools. I was worried about using PE details on my 1/350 cruiser Prinz Eugen, but after trying your PE bending tools, I am good to go.

Robert A.- USA

Email received July 16, 2015

The items I ordered arrived in good order. After inspection, I am very pleased at the quality and craftsmanship of the tools. They will be very helpful as I build the two models I presently have. Both are WWI aircraft; one in 1/48 scale and the other in 1/32 scale. Thank you for your service.

Guy P.- USA

Email received April 14, 2015

Just letting you know, I have been using "The Bug" from my first order from your company quite often, and am extremely happy with it!!! It makes folding PE too easy. With my last order from you, I ordered the 5 speed 5.5" photo bending tool just to bend some fenders. WOW is all I can say. Perfect, straight folds on the fenders of my early war German tanks. By the way, did I mention I am a novice just getting back into modeling after a 20 year USMC career? These tools make photo etch much less daunting of a task, and I expect I will be ordering the 8" Mk R Multi-head Hold and Fold some time in the future. On top of this, the Photo Etch Bending & Rolling Deluxe Brass Assist was used tonight for the first time, and again, I am happy with the results!! I still need to practice with it, but I expect great things from it!! Thanks again for such great tools! I really look forward to future business with you!!

Brian E

Email received March 4, 2015

The Small Shop,

I wanted to send an e-mail and rave about your products and service. I can't give enough praise. The quality of your products are second to none. I did some research on photo-etch tools and "the Small Shop" kept coming up as the best products used by any buyers I contacted. They were right! Awesome craftsmanship of your tools! Worth the price and more! Couldn't be happier! If that were not enough, I placed my order and it practically appeared in my mailbox instantly! Super fast shipping! Thanks again, and you just made another loyal customer!

Cheers! Joseph - USA

Email received February 18, 2015

Sir or Madam,

The package arrived yesterday and the items are awesome! Please keep inventing great modelling tools and keep me on your mailing list too. Thank you!

fjy - USA

Follow up email received February 19, 2015

By all means go ahead with my comments. I cannot say enough about the service I received and how great your products are!

Frederick j. Y. - USA

Email received February 10, 2015

Hello Small Shop,

Wanted too let you know. That I used your products over the last weekend... And I must say. What a joy they were to work with. I made a purchase in 2014 for SMS014 Rolling Set, SMS002 "Bug", and SMS003 4". The "Bug" was great everything was there for me. My piece bent nicely. :) I also used the rolling pin it was SMS014 on a Detail Master air cleaner. Made the piece, beautiful round. Nice.. :) I must admit, I'm looking forward to using your products, over and over again. Job well done.

Big Fan,

Michael B. - USA

Email received January 27, 2015

The service and products are excellent. Thank you for supporting this aspect of the hobby. I look forward to doing business with The Small Shop again. Thank you!


Mark S.

Email received January 15, 2015

Thanks for the prompt service!! Received my order yesterday, and could not be happier!! Love "The Bug", had some time to play with it last night, can't wait to use it for real!! The other items were great also. I already know what my next order will be from you guys. Looking forward to doing business with you all again real soon!!

Brian E.

Email received September 9, 2014

I received my goodies this morning, all in good condition. The tools are nicely made!

Roger D. Canada

Follow up email received September 16, 2014

Good to deal with a company that produces an excellent product and has such good customer relations.


Roger D. Canada

Email received July 21, 2014

Very satisfied!! Quite a quality tool....

Thank you.

Tom V.

Tom bought the SMS002 Bug and will be folding Z and HO scale brass!

Email received July 11, 2014


Wanted to say, Biggest Thank you too all at The Small Shop. I was excited to receive my order. Your product is not only beautiful, functionable and I can't wait to use these items. Packaging was superb. I'm really glad I was able to find you on the internet. I was going to use another company for the small brake's (folding jig's). With this company, I placed an order with them back in early April...... still waiting for my order with them, bad business for them. Anyway.... You guys are the best.

This has truly been one of the better experience I have had with aftermarket company.

Thanks sooo much,

Michael B. - USA

Email received July 9, 2014

Hello, Wanted to say. Wow, you are awesomely fast in filling and shipping your order’s. I made a purchase yesterday and it's half way here. Keep up the excellent work. Hope you have a awesome day. Many Thanks.

Michael B. - USA

Michael should receive his order tomorrow July 10.

We almost always ship the same day the order was received and thanks to USPS Priority mail packages arrive at most US destinations in 1-3 business days.

There may be a delay if we need to contact you about your order. Please always check the email used to place the order. We LOVE to have happy customers! Thank you.

Email received June 29, 2014

Hi, I'am very pleased with your product and fast delivery. I will be ordering again for sure.

Alan B. - USA

Alan already placed another order and USPS expects it to be delivered tomorrow July 3. Thank you Alan!

Email received June 29, 2014

Got in. I really like it. Great customer service. Thanks

Terry B. - USA

Terry ordered several items through our website. Unfortunately, at the time of his order (Wed June 25), we were out of stock of the Bug. Fortunately, we had them back in stock the next day and were able to add one to his order by sending a PayPal invoice for the additional item. No additional postage was required to add the Bug and he had his complete order delivered by the USPS on Saturday June 28.

Email received January 10, 2014

The instructions and packaging are excellent, the Nutter itself looks and feels highest quality. The same applies to the bending tool. I already took the chance to recommend the Nutter to a member of the Largescaleplanes.com forum who wanted to make reflectors. Thanks for this beautiful product.

Roy vd M. - Netherlands


Email received December 29, 2013

The 5.5" tool is gorgeous ... .. I feel I should have ordered two - one to ogle and one to work with . And I think it arrived before I ordered it !

Frank - USA

Order shipped USPS Priority Thursday December 26 and was delivered Saturday December 28. Excellent service by USPS!

Email received November 11, 2013

Hi Julie, yes I did - thank you very much for checking. I purchased it due to all the positive reviews and they were definitely on the money! It has cut my time in half folding these little fiddly bits :)

Lyle S. - USA

Unfortunately, the USPS tracking for Lyle's order didn't do a final update to show delivered. Fortunately, when we sent an email to check on delivery, his SMS004 5 Speed had been received!

Email received October 21, 2013

I received my order last Friday here in Australia and I was so grateful. It was really well packed and came earlier than I expected.

Then when I tried the products I was instantly in love! You guys are awesome.

You have great products, great service and I am more than happy to spread the news about you guys to all my model building friends!

Warm Regards,

Daniel - Australia

Email received October 16, 2013

Just a quick note to let you know that I received "The Bug" in the mail yesterday and put it to immediate use. It worked perfectly on my AFV Club 1/700 Knox class destroyer. I used it to fold mast #2 from Flagship Models and was able to select the correct position for the mast via your instructions! I've enclosed a few pictures and I will recommend your Hold & Fold's to my fellow modelers tomorrow night (and do a demonstration) at our monthly club meeting. Great tool and keep up the great customer service!!


Dan R. - USA

Email received September 17, 2013

My order arrived yesterday. I am extremely satisfied with the service and the product, I had it put to work last evening and it works like a charm. Thank you very much.


Ken ordered our SMS004 5 SPEED Priority mail from Kalama, WA to Alberta, Canada took 5 business days.

Email received February 11, 2013

Hello, I recently purchased one of your "Bug" tools - just writing to say it's great! Just as advertised - thanks!

Nick H. - USA

Email received December 22, 2012

Everything was perfect. Your service was impeccable and extremely prompt, so prompt I was surprised at how fast it got here.

Can't wait to use my BUG.

Orrin F. - USA

The US Postal Service does an incredibly great job considering they handle several hundred million pieces of mail every day (618 million estimated on Dec 17, 2012).

Email received April 13, 2012

I ordered the ``Bug`` on Tuesday and it was in my hand on Thursday. This is incredible service. The product is superbly done, amazing for the price. It is one of those tools that is a pleasure to have and I am anxious to begin using it. My work is mostly ships and I anticipate a marked improvement in the quality of the PE work I have been doing.

Many thanks for the prompt response and the quality of your product. Best wishes for your continued success.

Hardy G. - USA

We are very thankful that the US Postal Service makes us look great!

Email received April 12, 2012

Your Bug is a jewel of a tool, beautifully machined, well considered and a very satisfactory addition to my toolbox, PE is difficult and demanding but I am certain, that my Bug will be a tremendous help in accurate and effective PE detailing.

Hardy G. - USA

Hardy sent us this email before we even received the delivery confirmation. The email on April 13 was received after our delivery status update. Thank you for the wonderful compliments!

Email received March 12, 2012

Great tool and phenomenal service! I ordered on a Friday and got it on the next Monday!

Gregg B. - USA

Email received February 4, 2012

Some of the finest tools for modelers I've found. Thanks for the great job & quality invested in these tools and the super fast shipping I've always received. Although I don't need to use these tools all the time when I do they are invaluable.

Gordon C. - USA

Email received January 8, 2012

Excellent service and extremely fast shipping. I've been using the product(s) for approximately a week and appreciate the quality and ease of use!

Joe K. - USA

Email received October 10, 2011

Thank you for the fast delivery of the 4" Hold and Fold. It is a tool that definitely helps in working with Photo etch parts and is a must have for hobbyists.

Thank you once again for the product and fast delivery.

Mike H. - Canada

Email received August 3, 2011

Hi, I've used your product already and am very pleased. If only I'd known about it years ago, it would have made model-making so much more fun and produced better results. Thanks!

Richard M. - Canada

Richard ordered our Bug Hold & Fold. Priority mail from Kalama, WA to Ontario, Canada took 7 business days.

Email received March 21, 2011

Many thanks for your very quick delivery of the bending tool. The item is a superb instrument and I have no doubt it will assist my poor skills in model making.

John B.- Australia

John ordered our 5 Speed Hold & Fold.
Express mail from Kalama, WA to Bomaderry, NSW Australia took 4 business days.

Email received April 27, 2011

I am very happy with your products and services. I LOVE the fact that it's made here, and appreciate the design and workmanship.

I haven't used PE since the late 80s and am now getting back into plastic modeling in a big way since my grandsons are liking it a lot. I just ran a 9-week, "Grandpop's Scale Model Workshop" for 10 year-olds. It was a big hit and I just got four more kids interested in the hobby.

Myles M.

Email received March 2, 2011

Just wanted to drop a quick note. Thank you for your fabulous service, I was quite surprised to find the PE tool in my mail box this evening. Wow, all the way from the west coast to the east coast in 2 days!

I am quite pleased with the quality and how well the 5.5 inch Hold & Fold is designed. I had just finished doing a major modification to a table top mill by adding digital readout quills for all 3 axis. Being a watchmaker and former prototype maker for a small electronics company I have a somewhat better understanding of what is involved sometimes to make a nice tool like this! Before I heard about The Small Shop, I had thought about making my own version of a tool like this. It just wouldn't have been as well built and the design would have required some trial and error. The hard anodize as well as all the surfaces for shaping PE would have cost more to do myself than the purchase of your tool.

One of the touches not seen in photographs is the small undercut machined on the bottom of the plate. This makes it easier to pick up the tool. There are too many little details that have been added to really make good comments on. Let's just say I will probably be finding new uses and techniques for doing things far down the road!

Thanks again for making a quality product! Paul S. Tennesee

Email received December 24, 2010

I'm glad I found your company. I feel it is the best PE bender on the market. The workmanship is superior and the quality of the materials used excellent.

I would recommend this product over others I have seen. I will pass this information on when/if I get a chance to show my work on some forums. I am somewhat of a neophyte right now and hopefully the quality of my work will improve as time goes on. I'm sure it will with the help of your very fine product.

Bluesguy NY

Email received November 13, 2010

I just received The Nutter. What a great product! Thanks for the speedy delivery that kept me informed all the way through the process.

Lincoln M. New Zealand

Email received November 7, 2010

Satisfaction? Very much so. And I am very impressed with your service. It is fast, accurate and did I say FAST. Thanks. Now if I can just master photo etching...

You are the “Small Shop with Big Service”.

Bob H.

Email received October 26, 2010

Thank you for your excellent customer service on my order. Your products are outstanding and a true value for the money. I look forward to doing business with your excellent company in the future. Again, your products are among the best I have found on the market.

Robert M.

Email received August 13, 2010

Hi good people at "The Small Shop".

I recently purchased a four inch "hold and fold" from you folk. I just want to say what a great little instrument this is. It works brilliantly and has made working with photoetch a pleasure and a"breeze" for me.

Thank you so much.
A pleasure doing business with you.
Kindest regards
Colin S.
New Zealand

Email received July 28, 2010

Compliments to you on the pronto shipping and on the quality of your Bug. I am a happy new customer.

Jeff G.

Email received April 5, 2010

I'm glad I purchased the Hold and Fold instead. It's quality is even better in person (photos on the website don't do it justice). Talk about precision machining and versatility...it's sure to run circles around the Etch Mate.

Words cannot describe the beauty of the "Hold and Fold!" You guys rock!!


Carl ordered our 5 Speed Hold & Fold.

Email received January 25, 2010

I have already been using "the Bug" repeatedly and it is just fine - my ship's railings are finally looking like railings rather than the bundles of bent wire that tended to be result when I used pliers!

Best regards,

Per S.

Email received December 28, 2009

I can't believe how fast the RTH got here! That is amazing coming from Washington. I guess you guys must have worked the weekend. Well thank you very much.

The RTH tool is very well made to say the least. I'm a licensed aircraft mechanic and have lots of tools and have worked around machined parts all my life so I say this from experience. This tool is really a great value for what you get.

Now I have to build one of the models that I have PE for so I can learn how to do it and use the tool.

John M.

John placed his order for a Bug on Christmas Day. Shipped Saturday morning at 10:37am and the USPS delivered John's order from the West Coast to the East Coast in just over 48 hours - delivered 11:28am! The USPS is the best!

Email received November 18, 2009

You guys are top notch, many in this hobby/business could learn from you!! I bought the second PE holder for a buddy in the UK for Christmas (dont tell him haha).

Keep up the good work, I have your hold and fold, your roller set and the pe holder great stuff!!

Brad B.

Email received August 26, 2009

Julie, I received the tools today. I am very impressed by the quality of these tools. I have a few brand-x tools that will be posted on EBay today. Hopefully some sucker will buy them. I will not buy photo etch tools from anyone else, ever again. I will recommend you to everyone I know who models.

Dennis M.

We apologize in advance to whoever buys the brand-x tools. Hopefully, Dennis can recoup some of his $.

Email received August 8, 2009

Yes, the package arrived here on Wednesday. To be honest I can sum up this whole transaction in just one word...OUTSTANDING!! Your Website is crisp, clean and well designed. The ordering and payment process is straight forward and worked flawleesly. The five inch hold-n-fold is just outstanding...very impressive! The order confirmation, shipping and arrival confirmation e-mail notification process you have set up is top notch. Overall an A++.

Phil N.

Email received July 30, 2009

Thank you very much. It was a surprise to get a (partial) refund for shipping on my second order. That’s a first for me who has bought hundreds of items on the internet.

I almost bought a competitor’s product , when I decided that the price required a little more research on my part. Nothing worse than getting a product, especially a tool, that only kind of does the job.

I am really pleased with the quality of your product and great customer service. It will be my pleasure to share my experience with other modelers.

Andy P.

Andy bought the 5 Speed first and then our Large Cut-Off Set.

Email received July 10, 2009

Delivery received and I am thrilled out of my mind. I have tried the Bug out on aluminum and brass raw metal for some cool results.

I look forward to getting your brochures, and handing them out on the 30th of July. We (IPMS Great Plains) are having a 1 hour speed build and I am adding photo etched extended cowl flaps to a 1/72d F4F using the bug. Should be a hit.

I believe in your stuff, and the more I use it, the happier I am becoming. By the way, the Made in the USA label really turned a friend of mine on yesterday.

Now, back to the work table.

David P.

David bought the Bug, Practice PE and Photo Etch Cut-Off Set

Email received June 14, 2009

Started using them right away. Easy to use with excellent results. Makes me wonder why I didn't buy these tools sooner!

I liked that the simple instructions worked, and that the 4" Mk IV doesn't move at all while you work. It's easy to position various PE pieces. I've never worked with extensive PE folding before but managed to fold a 13 piece PE storage bin for a 1/72 scale Sherman! I used the Rolling Set to form the curved headlight guards. Awesome results. In the past, I would have skipped the PE altogether. --Frank, VA Beach

Email received May 14, 2009

I found your products on a link from Gold Medal Models, I mostly model 1/350 ships, I subscribe to Fine Scale Modeler and was about to upgrade my Mr.Foldit to an etchmate c3 when (fortunately for John and us) I discovered your great products, my MK 4 tool it's the best! I plan on ordering a Bug for my modeling buddy...a happy modeler John

John placed his order on Monday, May 11 and had his order on Wednesday, May 13. Thanks to our fantastic United States Postal Service!

Loren Perry owner of Gold Medal Models has been using Hold & Fold tools since 1998!

Look for our ad coming in the July issue of Fine Scale Modeler Magazine

Email received May 4, 2009

I first became aware of your products when I picked up some back issues of AFV Modeler at my local hobby shop. Issue 10 had a review of the hold and fold, and issue 14 had a review of the rolling system. The local shop didn't carry them so I searched Squadron and Internet Hobbies and was disappointed that they carry little or nothing in the way of tools to work with PE. So I searched and found your website, placed my order. I was amazed and delighted at the speedy delivery of my order! At last I have a means of accurately holding and bending these tiny detail pieces.

I primarily model 1/35 armored vehicles, mainly what I lovingly refer to as 'obscure' armor. These being the vehicles that are never seen in documentary footage such as the Polish, Italian, and Russian tankettes. My current project is a Renault UE with detailed interior, using a Mirage kit and Azimut update set. Next month I plan on obtaining and building a Russian T-27 available only in PE.

In closing I wish to say thanks for the excellent products and the amazing turn around on my order.


Dewey placed his order on Thursday April 30 and had his order on Saturday May 2. Thanks to USPS for the speedy delivery!

Email received April 10, 2009

My Bug arrived today and this tool far exceeded my expectations. I just started building the Blair Line HO Street Elevator and made my first "bend" with great success.

Thanks for your help.


Post on ScaleAutoMag.com February 11, 2009

I got back into the hobby after several decades away, primarily because of all the cool details you can add with photoetch. While I'm far from experienced with it all yet, I got a Kalama 4" Hold and Fold, and really like it. One of the first things I folded was the wiper arms for my DTM CLK Mercedes, and it made a very stressful job (to me) simply enjoyable. I have used the hobby knife and razor to fold some parts, but the tool makes the process a lot more fun.

Gene B. Texas

Email received January 25, 2009

I received the 5 speed folding tool yesterday. I found your products while surfing the internet and I was looking for a replacement for the Etchmate C-3. I model mostly 1/72, 1/48, and 1/32 scale aircraft but last summer at the Experimental Aircraft Association fly-in held here in Oshkosh every summer I found a book on German WWII armor, I got a few 1/35 scale half tracks with the cannons they pulled. I regularly read Fine Scale Modeler and Amazing Figure Modeler. I have had a chance to use it already and I am quite impressed with it, much, much better than the Etchmate C-3.

Thank you,
Clifford W. S.

Email received January 16, 2009


I recently got "The Bug" (arrived yesterday), and I have to say, I really like it. I used it last night to make some bends I had been unable to make well before, working on Railflyer Model Prototypes' photo etched GMD locomotive step sets. They are for a HO CP Rail locomotive I'm kitbashing. The Bug is perfectly sized to be able to handle, pick up, examine parts, etc. I am glad to have it in my modelling arsenal! I will certainly recommend this product to others, and in fact have already recommended it to the owner of Railflyer Model Prototypes.

Doug A.
Fair Haven, Vt.

Email received January 14, 2009

I read about your tools on several forums, Agape Models and Fine Scale Modeler. They led me to your site and then I went thru all of your reviews that you have linked.

I just have to say...fantastic speed of processing and delivery on my order. Then to top that off the tool is fine piece of design and machining. It's a high quality product. This is just my first purchase!

Bill S. Iuka, MS

Email received January 7, 2009


First off I want to say great response with the mail, here it is Wednesday and I received the items I ordered and I ordered them on Monday, FAST!!!

Second, what a fabulous product, beats "Mission Models Etch Mate" all to heck! I am spreading the word to fellow modelers about your products and a local hobby shop will probably get a hold of you.

I stumbled onto your web site through Gene Fusco's "Rail Yard Models" web page (no longer available), no sooner did I click off the page I was onto yours and ordered the 5.5 and Bug with site on seen. I am a model railroader of 34 years and I work in HO Proto 87:1 scale for the past 5 years.

Ever since I started to build with photo etch I have built my own jigs and fixtures and settled on the Mission Models product and wish I never did when I saw your items.

Stan S.

Email received December 22, 2008

I model N-Scale (1/160) trains. I found your company doing a google search for photo-etch tools. I don't regularly read any specific magazines. I do however visit and participate on the following web forums.

I'll be using my 5 speed and cut off set to build a Canadian National caboose kit from Athabasca Scale Models Limited   This is my first photo-etch build.

I'm planning on doing a write up of the build, if you would like when I'm finished I can send you a link to it.

I do have to say that your 5 speed is one of the best tools I have ever had my hands on. When you can hold something in your hand and feel the quality and attention to detail that is a good thing. Some products just give off a feel that tells you what the company stands for and how it runs it's business. This is one of those products. I can't begin to tell you how happy and impressed I am with it.

Also the customer service you provided was the best I have ever seen from any company I have ever dealt with. Thank you again for the follow ups and email to make sure I got my order.

Tom S.

Unfortunately, due to what we are fairly sure was weather related problems, Tom's order took longer than the estimated 2-3 business days. His order placed on the 15th wasn't delivered until the 22nd. Winter storms are wreaking havoc on traveler's and deliveries.

Email received December 20, 2008

I received my "Bug" today, and can't wait to use it. It looks to be a superbly engineered, & manufactered tool which should last a lifetime. I primarily model N & Z gauge trains. I heard about the Bug on Reynard Wellman's website, Micron Art, and look forward to adding some etched brass, and stainless details to my layouts. Thanks for the super fast shipping !
John R

Email received December 1, 2008

Thanks for the quick turnaround. All to many web based products are quick to order but take forever to ship. I'm looking forward to using my new Hold and Fold "5-speed" workstation.
-- jim

Jim's order shipped on Friday and was received on Monday - the United States Postal Service is Great!

Email received November 5, 2008

Purchased an old all-aluminum model from you back at an IPMS nationals 6 or 7 years ago, I build everything in all scales. I purchased one of your smaller PE units for a friend to keep him from borrowing mine! He's new to photoetch and this will keep him occupied until he's ready for a larger one. Processing and shipping went quickly and smoothly.
Gary T.

Gary owns one of the original 4" tools (our tools are still all-aluminum and since 2002 are anodized). Gary was very kind to buy a 2" Mini for his friend!

Email received October 14, 2008

Just thought I'd follow up with you. Got my "Bug" on June 12, and was so impressed I wrote to you then about the tool and the SERVICE. That's such a lost element today. How refreshing. And with a sense of humor as well. After that I ordered the four inch hold & fold, the small & large Cut off stations and the rolling set. I've just got back to the bench after a busy summer to use these items and I have to tell you, the dreaded PE work is now enjoyable. 1/700 ships rails, radars, man does that stuff look good now with fewer hassles for the big carpenters fingers and 68 year old eyes. The 1/350 stuff is so much more realistic. The rails were so strait I had to deliberatly bow the top rails down so the look like the rails on the ESSEX I served on. Thanks for your products and service. I will reference your stuff any time.
Gene S.

Email received September 17, 2008

Thank you for the info you sent me. And, thank you for your kind words. It was such a pleasure to purchase from you. You are Great folks, the products that you carry are Outstanding, and your Customer Service is Fantastic! I'll be a customer for a long time, thanks so very much for everything, you are very sincere, very kind and caring, I only wish there were more people like your self, and boy, am I glad I had the pleasure to meet you!! And thanks so much for the info on the putty,

The putty is Apoxie® Sculpt by Aves Studio

this stuff looks great to work with, less sanding, oh, thats music to my ears! Looking forward to hearing from you, about how to order, and where. Many Thanks! Please keep me in mind for any future products!
Sincerely, With Best Regards,

Craig builds 1:350 scale US Naval Warship models. He purchased an 8" Mk R; 5 Speed; Rolling Set and Large Cut-off set

Email received September 16, 2008

Thanks for the items - very beautifully manufactured!
Kind regards
Nick H.

Nick is very busy building a 1:350 scale Bismarck (using White Ensign Models PE kits and other additions) and a 1:72 diorama around a US WWII air base in Italy with a B-17 aircraft (lot of Eduard photo etch) as well as support vehicles (GMC trucks/jeep/ambulance, etc) and various personnel. He is also finishing off a UK Chieftain tank in 1:35. Nick purchased a 5 Speed; Brass Assist Rolling set and Practice Photo Etch

Email received September 11, 2008

Got my 4" Mk IV Workstation today and could not be Happier ! Works like a Charm !
All the Best
Tony from Canada Pro Patria !

Email received August 6, 2008

Howdy Gang,
Great service and products! I read about your company through one of the web sites (the Diesel Detailer, etc.) I frequently visit. I am a model railroader who scratch builds and I use a lot of photo-etch parts from different companies. I also own and use Mission Model products, and I find your products superior in construction and ease of use. I patronize local hobby shops (Spring Crossing in Spring, TX and Papa Ben's in Houston, TX) and typically buy Model Railroader and Railroad Model Craftsman magazines. However, most of my contact with new products, and purchases, are made on the web. You are welcome to use my comments and I look forward to buying from you again.
Robert Tomb
Spring, TX

Email received July 21, 2008

I will primarily be using this tool for working on etched metal details for 1/48th scale models. By the way, I am very impressed with The Small Shop's service. I ordered my "Bug" on Friday and it arrived today (Monday) here in Tennessee.
Thank you for your great service and I look forward to doing business with you in the future.
Don M.

Email received July 19, 2008

Amazing! Received and tried out within a few hours of getting it. It works as advertised!

The toothpick is pointing to a piece I just bent with the Bug near the parts and cockpit of my FW190A-5. I am more than 100% satisfied and highly recommend the Bug.

Don MacIntyre
Member at large
Great Lakes Scale Modelers

Feel free to use my letter anyway you see fit! Thanks for a great product and greater customer service.


Email received June 27, 2008

I decided to buy your product after it was highly recommended on the www.modelwarships.com site. Thanks. This thing is so well made I believe I will be buying additional tools in the near future! David Y.

Email received June 27, 2008 in response to our request to add David's email to our feedback page

No problem using the comments. I meant them! I typically model in all genres including 1/48 and 1/72 aircraft, 1/35 armor and 1/350 and 1/700 ships. Of late, I have been orienting my building towards naval subjects. Everyone likes to look at ship models! Thanks again for your marvelous and reasonably priced products. I have grown increasingly weary of overpriced tools made with cheap materials. Thanks to you, I can now get the quality tools I crave that allow me to produce quality results! David Y.
David bought the Bug, Standard Rolling Set & PE Cut-off Set.

Email received June 24, 2008

Dear Small Shop, Got your delivery as promised, and the little "Bug" works great. Also the cut off set. For almost 50 years, I am a collector of 1: 1250 model ships, mainly warships. My collection consists currently of 1500 models. Through the addition of free time caused by my retirement and my wife's illness, I have started recently to assemble plastic model kits in 1:350, 1:450 and 1:700. The "Scalehobbyist" has been very helpful with my new venture. They forwarded to me a website about photo etching, and that website had a detailed article about your products, with reference to your website. Without your tools, I was ready to give up on photo etch parts. But now it is fun and exciting.
Thanks Harald S.

Email received June 12, 2008

Thank you for your prompt service. "The Bug" was recommended by someone on a Fine Scale Modeler site. Got my Bug and the PE cutout kit today (ordered online on the 10th, recd on the 12th) and already tried it out. WOW, this thing really helps my 68 year old eyes do the job. Outstanding product, outstanding service.
Eugene S.

Email received June 4, 2008

I build craftsman resin steam era freight car models in HO scale. More and more the kits are including etchings, brass or stainless. Bending some of them accurately without a tool is difficult. I think the "bug " is going to do it for me. I tried it on bending the stiles on a ladder and the 2" length was just right and the way the tool held the ladder both for filing the sharp bits off and for bending worked just right. I think I'm going to be happy with my Hold and Fold "Bug".
Jim H.

Email received May 22, 2008

Hello, I model 1/35 scale armor 90% - 10% 1/48 aircraft. Thanks for your wonderful customer service & fast shipping.
Tom H.

Tom bought the 5 Speed, Standard Cutoff Set & Practice PE

Email received May 13, 2008

I really like the tool and the workmanship is very very good. I wish there were more American manufacturers producing this good quality instead of goods from offshore that are so so and worse.
Thanks, Jim W

Jim bought the "Bug" Workstation

Email received May 6, 2008

Thank you very much! Very happy with this handy little tool. Cheers,


Chris bought the 2" "Mini" Workstation

Email received May 5, 2008

Thanks so much for the speedy shipping and great communications. I wish all companies had such good customer service!

Brian H

Email received May 02, 2008

Thank you for the fast delivery time on the order. I appreciate the great service and products, people are fast to complain but not always so fast to compliment when it is deserved.

Take care,
Dave T.

Email received April 26, 2008

I just thought I would send you an email. I purchased a couple of your products a while ago. It was the photo etch cutoff kit and the bug. I am very happy with your products. I wish I had found your products before I bought from your competition. The first bending tool I bought was the etchmate. What a piece of junk. Trying to use the small finger is worthless. I've been using yours on two models so far and have had flawless performance. The cutoff kit has become my work surface and has improved my PE skills and appearance.
Once again I am very happy with your products and will buy from you again.

Thank You
Kim M.

Email received April 26, 2008

I just received your "Bug" photo-etch tool that I ordered earlier this week. First, thank you for the very fast service! In answer to your (survey) question, I saw the Bug demonstrated last Saturday at the IPMS Region 4 show, at Kirtland, OH, during a seminar on using photo-etch sets. I was very impressed with the quality of workmanship, ease of use, and versatility of this little tool. There was a vendor there who had a few for sale but was sold out by the time of the demo. Therefore, I placed my order with you as soon as I could.

Thanks again,

Eric L

Email received March 28, 2008

I heard about your product in a Group Build I am participating in on Fine Scale Modeler web site. A fellow out of Canada Highly recommended your product over the others. After web searching and reading other favorable opinions about the bug ~ I bought it. Also because it is Machined out of Good Old Fashioned Aircraft Grade Aluminum instead of a composite. Thank you for such Quick Service
Sean D.

Email received January 19, 2008


I just wanted to say, that I am still amazed, at not only the quality of your products, but of your service also. I've been modeling for almost 50 years now and have dealt with many companies over those years, and must say that yours is one of ,if not the finest I've ever had the pleasure to do business with. Thank you for bringing back that type of feeling into our hobby, it's been sorely missing. I love my brass assist, and could NOT believe how quickly I received it. There were updates sent letting me know the status at all times, WONDERFUL! I just wanted you to know it's service like this that make modeling the hobby we love so much. Reminds of the "good ole' days" of the neighborhood model shop. Anyway enough ramblings from another old man, again, thank you for the service!

Sincerely Bob L R.

Email received September 27, 2007

I've been using the bending tool for a couple of months now. It has really sped up my photo etch work and given me much more precision in bends. I am getting my money's worth, Thank You!

Steve O. – Steve’s primary focus is on building 1/350th scale ship models.

Email received June 26, 2007

Hi Julie & Sam,

This is to advise you that I received the "8 INCH Mk 'R' HOLD & FOLD MULTI-HEAD WORKSTATION".
It surely is a beautiful tool and I look forward to using it sometime soon. Thank you for your care in packing and for the speedy delivery, I do appreciate it.

Thanks again,

Email May 24, 2007

Dear Julie,

It is here, right in front of me, and it's just a beauty! Thank you ever so much for the super fast service.

I suspect I'll be back for something else in the not too distant future ...

With kindest regards,

Steve bought the 5 Speed Workstation

Email April 12, 2007


Thought you might like to see the results of using the Hold & Fold I bought a couple of months ago.

As you can see from the two photos of the engine frame, the two tanks mount on either side of the engine and just forward of the rear wheels. You might notice that the completed tanks are slightly different from the construction photos because of last minute changes needed to eliminate interference with the body frame.

Each tank is approximately 2.5" long, 1.5' wide and 2" high, but complex in shape since the frame underneath the tank slopes from center to edge and rear to front!!!

The workstation gave me very clean, square edges despite the fact the bend lines were merely scored in the 0.010" brass sheet. I think it's virtually impossible to get such clean lines any other way.

I am, needless to say, very happy with my purchase.

John Haddock - John bought the 5 Speed Workstation

Email March 28, 2007

My order just arrived, and I’m ecstatic with the two items! (Steve bought both the BUG & The 5 Speed)

I first saw a review at the like below on your tool.

I was ready to order a Mission Models unit because I saw one in a Chicago area hobby shop-and thought they were the only one! I am sure glad I took a little more time and researched folding tools.

Steve Misah

Reply from Steve on March 29, 2007 to use the email above.

You have my full permission. After using it last night, you also can forward my name as a reference. My email can be posted for this use. Contact Steve

I have been a model railroader for 30+ years and the community is just now getting etched detail models and products. I used your products on a new HO scale fire truck made by Micron Art last night. It was SO FUN!!

Keep in touch!

Steve Masih

Email March 13, 2007 – Tool received in Ottawa Canada in 3 business days – Global Priority!

The Hold 'n Fold arrived in this morning's mail in pristine condition - first ladder folded perfectly after crumbling three sets of rails before. Look forward to working with it. Thanks for the prompt service.


Emails February 3 4, 2007

I received my order today (5-Speed Workstation, PE Cut-Off Set, and Practice PE Sheet), thank you very much for such speedy service! Michael's order was placed on 2/1/07 and received on 2/3/07. We love Priority Mail!

I'm very pleased with my purchase and the extreme quality of your products. I will be posting some pics of my tools with a link to your site shortly and will send you an e-mail so you can check it out :) Regards Michael A.

Michael is an avid model car builder.

Email January 8, 2007


I received my 8" Mk 'R' Hold and Fold this afternoon and must say I am very impressed. The quality of the machining is excellent. Just wanted to thank you.

Thanks again,
David Catherwood

Email September 14, 2006

I received the "kit" in the mail yesterday (thanks for the incredibly quick service) and am very pleased with the three tools. These are great ideas and very unique. The "Bug" will be the most frequently used. As a builder of 1/43rd F1 cars and the array of photo-etched pieces in those kits this will be an
extremely useful tool.

I'm going to bring the tools to our October model club meeting and show the folks what you offer, with my highest recommendation.


Additional Email from Bill

That would be fine to use my comments. Your array of tools modeling gadgets are really unique. "I love the PE Parts Cut Off Set and the clean, precise way it clips photo-etched pieces from the tree."

I also build in 1/24 and occasionally larger, such as 1/12th.

I'm also going to recommend to our club webmaster that he add your web site to our club site:

KC Slammers (WOW – there are some great models in their gallery)

Thanks for your great ideas and products. Your products are well designed and very useful.


Email July 3, 2006 – PayPal order received June 29, 2006

Thanks for following up. I received the kit (Bug Kit) on Friday so you must have made
the early route!

I have already used it and am very satisfied.

I researched a lot of these products before deciding what to get. Yours seemed to have exactly what I was looking for and at a reasonable price. Happy to say, I still think so.

Regards, Bob Elton

Email June 30, 2006

My order arrived today, and I must say -- those are excellent tools. Superb fit and finish -- exactly what I wanted. I have a couple projects on the workbench, and I'll put them to work immediately!

Thanks for the great service, and you'll probably be hearing from me again for one of those rolling tools.

Rob Geiger

Email June 8, 2006

The new Hold & Fold and Brass Assist arrived today---all safe and sound. I have an older H&F from years ago, a 2" version, that I have out-grown. Boy, have you ever improved an already outstanding product. The screw-adjust is much easier to handle, the "fingers" have improved design, and I really
like the ability to "spin" the top without removing the whole piece. And the brass assist looks really great too---no more "squared-off" machine jackets on my WW I aircraft. Thanks again for the very quick, professional service.

Mark Tomasik

Email May 18, 2006


During the IPMS Seattle Show in April, I purchased the "Bug" etch station. After I got home, I couldn't wait to try it. I was awe struck! You gave myself and another gent a demo on using the tool that was pivotal to my success with it. I quickly and cleanly folded boxes and other items that I thought I would never be able to do.

The thought of the expense to purchase a bending tool was difficult. She who must be obeyed insists on an inspection on my return from a trip to the hobby shop or contests/ swap meets. The minor expense ($40) for the "Bug" exceeded my expectations and passed her inspection too! I worked with it for a couple of hours and was confident enough to give the miss's a demo. She thought it was great and gave me a list of projects that she wants in the display case. She also says that it is the best tool I have ever purchased. And I have a lot of tools.

Thank you for the taking the time on instructing me how to properly use the tool, and for taking the time to design and make a truly excellent product. I work with high end marine grade, clear anodized aluminium. Your products are the standard to which all others are trying to compare in design and quality.

Keep up the excellent work and thank you again;

Drew Hatch

Email March 14, 2006

You were absolutely right when you wrote that I'll be happy with the station! That's it. I admired the 5-speed instead of starting working in the morning (I unpacked the parcel at work after visiting customs). Late in the evening I did first tries - it works excellent! It's a real time saver and it allows to work with comfort and dramatically improves the quality as well. The 5-speed - that's quite something and a good value for money!

The same words about the Cutting Kit. Poor-poor carpet gnomes - they will be starving to death from now. :) The transparent holder is very handy and it really secures tiny parts from flying away. As a slight improvement I polished the splayed side. (Note: This is now done on all press bases – Thank you to Kirill for the suggestion)

In conclusion I may repeat again and again: It's really a perfect tool! As more time I spend working with it I realize how handy it is. I’m afraid of those tiny PE parts no more. And it's a real challenge to devastate PE frets and place all details on a model. When I did this for the first time, I was amazed with the 5-speed and with myself.

Many thanks to The SmallShop and personally to you, continue doing your wonderful work!

Kirill Pataki

Email March 1, 2006

Local hobby store got a nice restock on the 5-speed workstation kits- a buddy and I each picked up on this last weekend. It's beautifully made. I also consider it an exceptional value. Immediately realized it's a scratch-builder's dream after playing with some brass and copper scrap sheet. Used the rolling set as well and was very pleased with the quality of machining and ability to produce precision shapes. Even made a tiny hinge. I'm looking forward to plenty of expanding the scope of my scratch-building with these tools as well as making more use of the PE kits widely available.

Really glad all of the extra functionality is built in to it, for example, the contours and shapes on the upper surface. It's very unique in that regard.

Congratulations on a great product. I hope you enjoy much success from its sales.

Tom Naylor

Email November 28, 2005 - Order placed Nov 23 the day before the Thanksgiving holiday and received Monday Nov 28.

I received my order today and all I can say is that the items look even better in the hand than they do on your web site. I don't know how soon I'll use them "in action" as it were, but more often than not, the right tool makes the job easier and with better results. I now when I start working those complicated armor model photo etch, you're tool will make the job so much easier.

Thanks again for the fast service. (order placed Nov 23 the day before the Thanksgiving holiday)

Steve Jantscher

Steve ordered a 5 Speed Kit w/Brass Assist + a Bug – his last email stated he uses the Bug more than anything else – “Small size, big idea!”

You can learn more about Steve’s model building by visiting his club’s website and select “Meet the Members” - His “Wall of Doom” is a sight to behold!

Twin City Aero Historians

Steve has also submitted some of his models to our customer display page. Customer Display Page. Customer display page is now under construction.

As it happens, I'm in the midst of a PE how-to and how-come article for my editor now (it's only about two months over deadline, which is pretty good for me). But the best part has been getting to try out all these tools for bending, folding, curving and curling. IMHO, Hold & Fold is the hands-down winner on all counts. Their tool for making round bends and cylindrical parts, the Brass Assist, is outstanding, and their little 2-inch "Bug" folding tool, I find, is the most useful of all the tools I've used so far for handling PE parts. Those of us who model aircraft in 1/72-1/32 don't need big folding tools that cost a small fortune. And even better, the four-sided Bug is also the least expensive of the folding tools.  Oh, and despite what you might have heard or assumed from the marketing campaigns, Hold and Fold was the original. The Etchmate's folding tools are nice, though expensive, as are most of these things. However, for making curves and cylinders, especially small ones like cooling jackets, the same company's Multi-Tool is just not in the same league as the Hold and Fold Brass Assist. TOM 

T.E. Bell

Email March 11, 2004

Thank you for the the quick delivery and excellent service. The Hold and Fold tool works great!

Mike Casullo

Email Feb 27, 2004

The H&F got here today and all I can say is WOW! Light years ahead of the old H&F. And that's because the previous model was top-notch. And delivery time, excellent. Thanks again and hope to do business with you sometime soon.

Satisfied Customer!

J Segundo

Email Jan 4, 2004

Your companies great tool arrived today!! I can hardly wait to get using it. Again thanks for your help.
Andrew Hill.

Original Hold & Fold Model

I just thought you would like to know that it made an almost insurmountable task much easier. I am finishing up a Pavla Kit of an H-13 (Mash Helicopter) in 1/72 scale. The majority of the kit was photo etched, including the tail boom. Your tool was easy to learn, and easy to use. It was versatile enough to do some folds I had no idea I could actually do. It helped me to finish a kit that was about to go onto the limbo shelf. It is a great idea. I'll be raving about it as I show off my finished kit at the next Model meeting. I'll be happy to get back to plastic kits again, but will have no second thoughts about adding photo etched and scratch parts anymore. Keep up the good work

Barry Brown