Sunday, April 20, 2014

Citadel Tool Set Price Comparison

I've seen the usual grumblings over Game's Workshops fancy limited edition tool set they're releasing. It's priced at $150 which, at first glance, seems a bit steep. It's a 10 piece set (9 tools and the bag) with nearly everything you'd need to launch yourself into the hobby.

It got me thinking a little bit about my own hobby tools. How much have I actually spent on these things? Not nearly as much as on models, for sure, but I honestly had no idea. I use them and buy new ones all the time, so I took a little time and priced out what I've paid for the comparable items in my arsenal:

My set of tools.
Clippers- $24.95
Pin Vise (drill)- $10.15
Hobby Knife- $3.19
Mold Line Scraper- $16.95
Dental Pick- $5.95
Other sculpting tool- $6.75 (I have the one Citadel used to make)
Spreader- $16.46 for set of 5 (I use Colour Shapers which I LOVE)
Files- set of files for $14.95

A couple prices are approximate, like the dental pick, but most of these things I have bought within the last 6 months or was easily able to look up what I paid [thanks, Amazon :-) ]. I did pay retail for most of them, as I bought many of them in my local game store. Why pay for shipping and wait on clippers when a store quite literally across the street from me has them in stock?

That all brings me up to a grand total a few cents shy of $100. That's actually more than I thought it would be. But I didn't throw down for them all at once, either. If you buy the new Citadel items separately rather than in the set, you're looking at total of $141.00. So, and I'm rounding here, you're paying about $40 more for the "official" ones, $50 more if you want that nice canvas case (which, honestly, I do). That's really not so much more that I think it's worth getting up in arms over.

In a house with two hobbyists, you can't have too many of these things, and we do have duplicates of most everything. I would shell out the $150 if not for that and the fact that two weeks ago, I bought new clippers, hobby knife, and drill bits for my pin vise (oh, and I spent all my money at Adepticon). So going in on the whole thing seems a bit silly when I already have all the tools.

They do look very nice and I like the all-metal aspect. GW did make this little video, showing the tools off in action, too.

Of course, it is entirely possible that these tools do end up being terrible. But I highly doubt it. The Citadel sculpting tool I have is very good quality, and I've been happily using it for a while now. Their emphasis on them being all metal helps assuage any thoughts on quality. Cheap plastic bits breaking off is half the reason I replace anything I buy, so this is a big plus for me. I will, one day, remember to buy a metal shafted hobby knife for this exact reason.

I'm very tempted to pick up the sculpting tool set, because I like the angle of their pointy needle tool (mine doesn't have that) and the spear end tool is actually a different shape from the one I have. I'm also interested in the spreader, because it has more surface area than my colour shapers. I use them a lot for the texture paints, but I think the spreader would work better. So don't be shocked if I review that set in a few weeks.

I do really want the damn canvas case. More and more, I've been taking hobby projects on the road with me, so something like that would great. It's definitely way better than throwing them into a plastic zip bag, which inevitably rips from all the pointy things. I'll probably just make one for myself. I could whip one up in a day, maybe two, when I have some of that magical "free time" I've heard so much about.


  1. I think the price is a bit much... When their previous hobby set came out it was $100. You got all the tools, a vice, and a hard plastic figure case with custom foam. The top layer of Foam was for the tools, the other two layers would hold a selection of paints and or miniatures. It is my go to case for traveling to painting events.
    These came out in 2006/2007? I am still using all the tools, I've only bought a second pair of clippers which I hadn't realized they had slightly changed from the first run... Later clippers had a snub nose, not the fine point the original had... Was very disappointed...
    The old Knife and Drill are my favorites. They fit my hands very well, which alleviates a lot of the cramping I get when I'm modeling... That new knife would be the death of me... Not only is it super thin, but you have to buy their blades now... The new drill looks ok, but again is thinner than the original... And the price for the new clippers? Holy crap! that's a bit much... They better be sharpenable at that price...
    $150 for a tool set... Limited Edition as well... wow... just wow...

  2. the price on these, just like everything GW as insane, over priced, and 'so' not worth it. You can get nearly exactly the same thing,more tools, for half the price. I love the modeling hobby, table top wargames and the friends I've made playing...I despise GW because they are the worst kind of business model. 'Look it says GW you have to buy it because you're a fanboy/fangirl of everything GW you must have it!


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