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Miniature Tools That Really Work

Here are some teeny tiny tools to put in your teeny tiny toolbox.

What came first: the tiny tools, or the tiny tools that make the tiny tools? Last March, New Zealander Lance Abernethy 3D printed a minuscule, fully functional cordless drill, taking three hours to squeeze together and solder all the necessary parts.

Judging by the thumbnail-to-drill ratio, it's arguably even smaller than the miniature working drill posted by Flickr user s8 in 2009…

…but in terms of effort, doesn't even come close to the 1,000 hours of labor required to make this 18th Century Gentleman's Tool Chest, made by a certain Wm. R. Robertson in the late nineties. The two-inch long chest, jointed with dovetailed drawers and working lock, comes equipped with a fully functional collection: "the rule folds, the saw has 160 teeth to the inch, the dividers and calipers have friction hinges."

Via.

These days, the incredibly talented 24-year-old Marco Terenzi posts mesmerizing Instagram photos of miniature saws, hammers, even a 1/12 scale arbor press and 1/4-inch long hinges:

Via.

In the kitchen department, behold the wonders of Konapun: a line of Japanese toy kits that allow you to make miniature, inedible food dishes like ramen, pizza, and strawberry shortcake. A YouTube search of the term currently yields about 58,000 results—down the rabbit hole we go:

Astoundingly, some are even making real food with the kits:

 

And of course, it's only natural that tiny food creates a need for tiny toilets. Brad Green, otherwise known as YouTube user Pottymaker, has you covered, diminutive plumbing and plunger included:

If British architect Sir Edwin Lutyens were alive today, he might give all this a quick once-over and smugly mention he was already doing it in the 1920s. From 1921–1924 he led a team of no less than 1,500 artists, craftsmen, and manufacturers to produce Queen Mary's Dolls' House, which boasts electricity, running hot and cold water, working elevators, and flushing lavatories. Sadly, no videos of the amenities in action are available, so we shall have to settle for a photo tour instead.

Photo by Rob Sangster [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

While we could probably go on, we'll cut things off with these practically microscopic scissors, so small even the curator of the YouTube-based Museum of Working Miniatures struggles to operate them:

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