Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Every now and then I get annoyed/frustrated/whatever with some part of my toolbox, and go on a hunt to upgrade it.

Over the weekend, it was my stitchmarker that caught my wrath. What I have at the moment is the Excel brand 5/16" pounce wheel. It isn't too shabby, getting 21 dots per inch, but I know other hobbyists have found wheels that do more dots. (I believe some may do their stitchmarks by hand - I don't have the patience for that!) There was that one on MHSP one time that the seller said did 45 dots per inch! So I knew they were out there.

I scoured ebay for all the alternative names of a pounce wheel that I could think of - pattern marker, pattern wheel, ponce wheel (sometimes it's misspelled), tracing wheel, spike wheel - nothing I found came any smaller than what I already had. So next I turned to Google.

I often use google image search to help me find an international product, and to cut a long story short, I discovered some pictures that looked like stitchmark comparisons, and stumbled across a forum on the model plane hobby. On a particular thread, some forum members discussed making rivets (basically the hole/area/thing on the metal sheets used to make the planes). One of the members mentioned using 'Rosie the Riveter' - basically a glorified pounce wheel, but made with the wheels from watches and clocks to make smaller rivets. How clever!

 Apparently this is also 'Rosie the Riveter', according to google.

Unfortunately they are hand made by some guy in the Czech Republic, and though I found a US dealer, they are more expensive than I was willing to spend. So I kept looking.

Further searching with the term 'rivet maker' led me to this detailed review on a product called the 'Trumpeter Hobby Rivet Maker'. Go have a look, I'll wait.

The further I read, the more I liked this product - even if it was made from plastic, the last picture of the actual stitchmarks was pretty compelling! Still, I expected it to be pretty expensive, so I didn't get my hopes up as I searched for a dealer.

Lo and behold I found a dealer a) in Australia, b) with cheap shipping ($2!) and c) with the product at the cheap price of $8.30! Of course I bought it right away.

It arrived today, and it was with nervous apprehension that I opened the rivet maker, and gave it a go on a piece of cowhide.

Well! Are you impressed? Because I'm impressed. Here's the breakdown:

Excel (first on the left): 21 dots per inch

Wheel D: 23 dots per inch
C: 34 dots per inch
B: 28 dots per inch
A: 45 dots per inch

(Then at the end is a line of A next to the Excel - big difference!)

Aside from wanting to switch out the handle (the plastic feels cheap compared to the aluminium of the Excel), I love this thing, and can't wait to test it out!


  1. I've got this too. It's great for straight lines, but rubbish at going round corners! I think I put a post about it on my blog - I could have saved you all that research!

    1. Hush now, you would have ruined all the fun! :P

      Did you mount yours on a different handle, or use the one provided?