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Disassembly is the worst, because you’re doing it much faster than when building. I just try to use a brick separator as much as possible when separating anything that’s hard to take apart.
For the most part it's do-able, but occasionally you'll come across a step that can be constructed but is impossible to deconstruct. It's usually where an axle has been pushed though multiple pieces, but there's no way of getting any purchase on the axle, or getting to an end to push it through. This means then just attacking the assembly in a random fashion, removing whatever you can until the offending part can be accessed. Then you (well, I), have to work through a number of steps in the manual to check off the removed parts to ensure nothing's gone missing.
The matter of sore fingers is a fair point. I often have to resort to a pair of needle-nosed pliers to remove pins or axles as my poor hands simply can't get purchase / hurt too much. It's usually at that point that I wonder why Lego can put a notch in the ends of the small red axle which makes it much easier to get hold of it, either with fingers or a brick separator, but they can't (certainly don't) do it with all the other axles.
Maybe one for the suggstion box, next time a new mould is required.
OUCH ... making a mental note to be extra careful of those dangerous pointy tooth plates!
Amen for this on the tiles/tile-like pieces, especially if you're working with old pieces before they put the little ridge in that made it possible to get off some of the pieces off at all... some of those old pieces hurt to take off even when you DO use a brick separator.
Edit: not sure how that became two separate posts...