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Maybe these aren't "the best value in the world", but here are some things I've found in the UK which (I feel) give good savings and which I use all the time:

Machine Mart (hardware store) =
Sells good quality hobby vices, hobby lamps, very good needlefiles and also HSS drill bits for pin vices/hobbydrills. They also sell airbrushes, but I've not bought these from them yet...I'd recommend finding out what you want before going in, though, as they mainly sell to car repairers, etc, and not to hobbyists.

Wilkinson's (homeware store) =
Sells larger scale files (3 for £5 I think?), cheap saws, much cheaper glues + filler, vast quantities of play sand + gravel + stones for basing (seasonal availability though), sideclippers/pliers, tweezers sets (from the make-up section), cheap paintbrushes + acrylic paints for boards (I've not used them on miniatures, but I wouldn't recommend trying this). They have their own brand Dremels + glue guns too and one of their A3 cutting mats is £5-£6.

B+Q (hardware store) =
Boards, door edging for hills/ridges, filler, glues, stones/sand/gravel/slate available pretty much all year 'round and in huge bags for cheap £.
 

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Australia; again in Bunnings they sell small drill bits for around $2.50 each. The 2mm is perfect for magnetising, and the 1.5mm is perfect for gun barrel holes. I got the 3mm for magnetising tanks, but it doesn't fit in the hand drill.
 

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Hobby Knives - Games workshop and other modelling companies will wittle your money away just with simple things like the overpriced hobby knife. A quick drop into your local $2 shop will hold the answer, just ask for a hobby knife, and if they don't speak very good english, ask for a clay knife. I got a 20-piece set, with 3 different handles and 17 blades for $5, what a bargain!

Hope that helped you, good luck bargain-hunting!
 

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Hobby Knives - Games workshop and other modelling companies will wittle your money away just with simple things like the overpriced hobby knife. A quick drop into your local $2 shop will hold the answer, just ask for a hobby knife, and if they don't speak very good english, ask for a clay knife. I got a 20-piece set, with 3 different handles and 17 blades for $5, what a bargain!

Hope that helped you, good luck bargain-hunting!
If it came in a small red box, beware! They break very easily.
 

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There are some good eBay sources for modelling materials!

http://myworld.ebay.co.uk/thetrolltrader

This guy sells Green stuff (£3ish for 6inches or £8 for 36!!!), Army Painter spray for £6 - £8, £4 for 50 dice, £12 for instant-mold ect ect... Quite possibly my favourite eBayer ever.
 

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For things in the U.S.
the green stuff i go here most the time: http://www.thewarstore.com/product18832.html
Never had a problem with these guys and they do sales often if you keep an eye out.

For brushes i go to dickblick.com or HobbyLobby. Hobbylobby has sales every once in a while and you can really go hog wild on some really nice brushes without spending alot of cash.

Never Under estimate wal-mart to have something you can use in the hobby either, they have cheap drill bits, foam board, paper clips and other things that you can find useful and cheap.

In the 30 some odd years of doing this on and off the thing that irks me the most is spray primers. Back when i started primer was around 3$ for the really expensive. Now they are from 15 to 20, so i have been checking alternatives. Going back to mentioning Wal-Mart, i noticed Krylon now has "colored primers" with colors oddly enough to the army painters range (though not as many varieties). I bought a few cans of different colors and have tried a few experiments with them. So far so good especially for only 5$ a can.
 

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so i got a late christmas gift of brushes. now my inlaws are not teh smartest when it comes to hobby paint brushes so i got some crayola brushes. now at first i was a bit iffy on them but after some uses of them they work great. and for only like $2 it wasnt a bad deal eather.
 

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Man I came in here for the topic, which has great ideas, but I feel like this thread alone could shut down a "does GW overcharge for models" topic.
 

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I using the Swann Morton brass knife handle, not so cheap but will last forever, into it can be put any scalpel sharp bit you want. I using tools for stuffing dead animals for sculpture, the same with the files and special snow effect for diorama...
 

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I'm done with GW's shitty paint pots. I need to get some decent dropper bottles to replace all my Citadel paints in. Anyone have any recommendations for dropper bottles that'll stay nice and air tight once sealed back up after use? What I'm looking for are ones big enough for me to put probably 2 Citadel paint pots worth into & (as I mentioned a sec ago) sealed nice enough to help maintain the paint inside so they don't dry out fast.
 

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Not sure if it's been mentioned;

Idea for paint stand;

For a painting stand - I made a Lego base using lots of hole slotted Technic beams - I then use the Technic axles and joiners as paint stands - blob of Blue tac on top and that's how I separate detail paint all parts
 

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Hey, I 'm not sure, if we are talking about alternative tools you can buy, only, or something that we can customly make, should be added here. If so, I could share, how I made my air-compressor to suit my needs in airbrushing and in casting resin. Just tell me if this is the right spot, and I could give you the details on how to make one.
 

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You could do it here but that honestly sounds like something that could use a tutorial thread itself.
 

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Ok, I 'll do it on, modelling and painting board, as a new thread, but I won't make a tutorial, as from the last time I tried to do so, on this forum, I couldn't follow the instructions correctly so it was a waste of time both for me and for that poor mod trying to correct my thread..
 

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Super glue.
I use a dollar shop brand of super glue called tikey extra strong.
it's prices varies depending on where you get it, but so far it's cost me about $2-$3 for about 2g of the stuff and I'v stuck most my imperial guard together with it.

Now it's not going to give the best results, as it's not the best superglue out there, but if you're treating your models with a bit of respect it works fine.

Cutting Mats.
Bunnings warehouse, Miter 10/MEGA, Countdown supermarket, dollar stores all sell them from GW size up at much cheaper prices.
The proper hardware stores sometimes have large matts for covering enter workbenches.

Misc items
Geoff's Emporium is great for this, as the stores buy up stock from business going under they have a lot of random iteams from clothing/fabric to power tools and art supplies at less the manufacturing costs sometimes.
 
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