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Scribing panel lines.before,during or after.
Auckland, New Zealand
Joined: October 25, 2005
KitMaker: 939 posts
AeroScale: 486 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 06:03 AM UTC
Hi all,
A query,I'm in the process of building the old Airfix bf 109f
It has a mix of raised fuselage and scribed panel lines wings.
With this build it's a moot point as Ive assembled the fuselage but for the future is it better to scribe replacement panel lines prior to construction, during or after?

Alberta, Canada
Joined: January 19, 2008
KitMaker: 6,739 posts
AeroScale: 6,147 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 06:22 AM UTC
Hi Chris ,

I also do my panel lines before construction as well as during . It is easier to line up curved areas once the parts have been joined . Straight are best done before .

New Jersey, United States
Joined: February 02, 2015
KitMaker: 262 posts
AeroScale: 244 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 04:58 PM UTC
terri what is your method for scribing lines neatly, especially with detail sanded away, without the tool slipping off and creating new panel lines that shouldn't exist. what tool do you use? my tool looks more like a dental probe and it will dig in and catch here ant there and cause it to go off in another direction. plus it does not scribe a line that looks or matches the look of the original.

Pennsylvania, United States
Joined: January 08, 2014
KitMaker: 406 posts
AeroScale: 382 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 06:57 PM UTC
My 2 cents...

I have only tried fully rescribing a kit once, but I found a method that worked very well for me. I enlisted the old Monogram OS2U Kingfisher into the Seaplane Campaign and wanted to rescribe it's raised panel lines. I haven't managed to finish it yet (I could be king of the hanger queens), but here is what I did:

1. #10 curved blades
2. Tamiya Scribing Tool
3. Sharpened sewing needle chucked into a pin vise
4. Dymo tape or some other stiff tape to use as a guide
5. Verlinden 1:48 scribing template set
6. Sanding sticks (600 & 1000 grit ought to do it, maybe something like 3200 for the final pass)
7. Some form of primer in a color that clearly clashes with the kit plastic (Tamiya grey for dark plastics, maybe Tamiya flat black for grey plastic)

I primed the parts BEFORE any assemby took place. Once dry, I took a #10 blade held perpendicular to the raised line and scraped it off by drawing the blade down the length of the panel line. This removed the raised line and left a flush line of blue plastic in my grey primer to act as a guide for where to put my tape next. It's important to use a curved blade like a #10 so you only scrap off the raised lines. I taped off this line with Dymo tape and ran the sewing needle down its length once to create a groove. Then lightly (as in no pressure applied at all) draw the Tamiya scriber down the groove to remove plastic and create an engraved panel line. Usually 3 passes with no pressure were enough to get a nice line engraved. Use the sanding sticks to clean up the surface after ALL of the lines are rescribed, then clean them out one last time and move to the next piece.

For curved or difficult areas I'd wait until you have some parts together so the lines match as Terri recommended, especially things like the fuselage halves. Also, I found through trial and error it helped if I used a #80 bit to drill the corners slightly at intersections or the end of a long line so my scriber wouldn't go too far and gouge the wrong plastic.

I used the Verlinden templates to replace shapes like hatches or circles. They are handy.

Like I said, I have only tried doing this once and the project is a hanger queen, but it worked quite well for me. I am very happy with how the new panel lines look so far.

I got most of the ideas from watching YouTube videos like the series Paul Budzik has produced. He has some excellent advice on techniques, I'd recommend you look them up in YouTube.
Staff MemberAssociate Editor
New York, United States
Joined: December 04, 2010
KitMaker: 9,799 posts
AeroScale: 7,326 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 08:36 PM UTC
Re-scribing, has to be the hardest modeling skill I've ever attempted to learn. I'm still learning, and still making beginner errors. It's important to understand that like every thing else in this hobby, there is usually more then one way, or even multiple ways of doing things.

I've never had to remove raised lines, then rescribe, but rather just deepen shallow lines, or replace sanded out recessed lines. I do remember that raised lines that are sanded off leave a dark line in the plastic where they used to be. So replacing them is some what easier.

For re-scribing, I prefer to deepen recessed lines prior to construction. Lines that I've shallowed or removed completely through sanding or putty work, are naturally replaced during construction which is just before the painting process starts. If I want to deepen a recessed panel line that will lets say curve around the leading edge of a wing, I'll re-scribe to the closest intersection line, then leave the remaining scribing till after the wing is glued, sanded, and polished. The more scribing you can do prior to build up, the better off you are.

As for what tools and my method, I use the UMM-USA #1 scriber, followed by the Tamiya scriber if I want deeper, wider lines. The UMM tool with the long knife surface is perfect for rolling it over leading and trailing edges, as well as the spine of a fuselage.

I use Dymno tape as a guide. I also use triple layered masking tape cut with a sharp knife if the convex or concave surface is to great for the Dymno tape.

As for how I scribe, I start off with the UMM-USA #1 scriber, kept at the lowest angle I can scribe that surface with, and very, very lightly scribe the line pushing so slightly against the tape. A few passes like that, then I use a little more pressure, and raise the angle slightly.

Scribing does raise both sides of the scribed line, so I knock it down with 600 emery cloth, then a coat of Extra thin, then the 600 again. The extra thin melts and cleans out the really small residue you just can't completely remove.

For repairing screw ups, I carefully lay a bead of Thin CA glue with a tooth pick, then follow that up with some kicker. I give it a few min. to cure, then polish it smooth with 600 paper.

For me, it sounds a lot easier then it is, and I try to avoid re-scribing where ever possible. But that's just me.

New Jersey, United States
Joined: February 02, 2015
KitMaker: 262 posts
AeroScale: 244 posts
Posted: Wednesday, June 03, 2015 - 11:15 PM UTC
joe, paul thanks for your tips. a few good suggestions i am going to try. i have a revel 1/32 corsair w/ raised panel lines i may try pauls method on and for right now i need to fix some lines on the hobby boss 262 i'm doing for that campaign.
joe, what is extra thin? a liquid glue? i have been using tenex7 when joining fuselage halves but for the most part i still use the old testors tube glue.
also i'm interested in your tecqunics. do you push or pull the scribing tool?

Auckland, New Zealand
Joined: October 25, 2005
KitMaker: 939 posts
AeroScale: 486 posts
Posted: Friday, July 03, 2015 - 11:02 AM UTC
Sorry Guys,
I forgot to post a Thank you for the replies so here it is now.


Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Joined: March 22, 2015
KitMaker: 607 posts
AeroScale: 577 posts
Posted: Saturday, July 04, 2015 - 12:42 AM UTC
Hallo altogether,
I have never tried to rescribe panel lines, but while reading this, I ask myself, if it is possible to take the old raised lines as a ruler for engraving the new ones? These lines will be slightly misaligned, but the raised panel lines are already there?