Originally Posted by silverbear
The tool for making small bends is in the three pictures which follow. They are hand powered miniature versions of a brake and you can see in the design of a couple of these that there is a longer run in the front of the tool and also a shorter run on the end. I forget what Dan called them, but they are something like running pliers in glass work. While these are the right tools for the job, you and I will need to figure out how to accomplish the same thing, maybe not so easily or quickly, using what we have... pliers?... don't know, but will give it some thought. If you run across a pair of these at a farm auction... now you know what they are and can pick them up.
Most commonly these are called hand seamers and are available as a modern version from Wiss who makes a full line of sheet metal tools for about 50-60 dollars, I think Harbor Freight has a straight pair for around 25 bucks:
Link to Hand Seamers
As for a Polish for Plated tin look into a product called FLITZ
, It is a non abrasive and will clean and protect uncoated metals well. I don't think I would try to put a clear coat over Flitz without washing it well though and maybe following that with a wiping of denatured alcohol to remove its protective coating.
Another thing to keep in mind if you are using Top Flite Airplane Dope is that if there is extremely high humidity like on a rainy day it can cloud up and look milky when applied. It is best to cure it under a heat lamp if you are using it under these circumstances, just don't let it get too hot or it will blister especially on metal.