How To Make Opening & Functional Doors, Hoods, and Trunks
Posted 04 December 2006 - 02:15 PM
So I got a kit of a IH Scout II. I have spent a very long time looking for the tires I needed. and now have those.
I am ready to start. MY scout I am building in based on the one in my back yard. its a 197x scout II built from 5 scouts and various other rigs. I am running 36 in TSL tires and using springs from Fords. the pieces of the scout are from many different rigs.
so on to my question. I want to cut out the doors and make them work. in the old days I would have a hot knife xacto style and cut them out. But I read about one guy who used sewing thread. what is the best way to cut the panels apart???
Posted 05 December 2006 - 03:53 PM
If anyone could give a suggestion for holding the body still while using the thread, I myself would like to know what you came up with.
Good luck and have fun!
Posted 05 December 2006 - 05:37 PM
I've yet to try this, but it sounds like it'll work great.
Posted 06 December 2006 - 04:47 AM
I have used this type of soldering iron before. The biggest issue I remember was the material would mushroom and you would loose the shape of detailed items. But I do remember it worked pretty well.
I have also used the knife edge like described above - but this kit I am doing does have a couple of spots I think would prove to be problems. Thanks for the ideas - I will keep looking at all options. After all I have been sitting on this kit for almost 2 years looking for the tires. a little more time will not kill me.
Posted 06 December 2006 - 04:57 AM
The method that offers the most control and maintains the parts best is the "X-Acto blade turned over" method. It takes some time, but is worth it. Billy's suggestion of buying a second kit is also a good one, especially since the Scout II kit is so widely available right now.
If you have some curves around the doors that the X-Acto can't do, think about using your smallest pin vise drill bits to drill holes next to each other to weaken the styrene and loosen it. Good Luck, sounds like a neat project!
Posted 06 December 2006 - 08:28 AM
the scout interior is a lot smaller than it should be if you're opening the doors; i would cut the floor pan out of it and glue it to the chassis, then build up the sides of the floor to the width of the inside of the body less the thickness of the inside panels. otherwise, the scout is a cool kit and interesting in it's execution.
Posted 06 December 2006 - 10:14 AM
Its funny you say to attach the floor pan to the frame. it comes that way and I wish it was not. I have made so many frame modifications to my truck, I am not sure how I am going to replicate them on the model.
so you all are saying to use the back side of the xacto blade. like the big flat side? that confusses me. But I will try many things.
Posted 06 December 2006 - 10:51 AM
the method we're describing is fairly lightly dragging the blade backward along the panel line you wish to cut out. starting with the point of the blade in the end of the line, slowly scribe until you break through. some bodies are thicker in some areas than others, so you may break through earlier in one place than another; just keep going until the piece falls free. don't force the blade down, and don't rush it. some builders do this with scribing tools alone, but i use #11 most of the time.
another tip; if you're working on an irreplaceable model, mask off the rest of the panel where you're not cutting so if the blade slips you're not as apt to put a deep gouge in the plastic. putting wadded paper inside the bodyshell will help support it while you're cutting, and putting tape over the inside seams you've already freed will keep them from breaking while handling.
having said all this, i don't do many functional opening doors or trunks; i leave them in the open position for display and take out the hinges to show them closed. actual working hinges are easily done, but add more risk of damage by spectator handling than i wish to repair!
Posted 06 December 2006 - 01:30 PM
The reason for this is that the cut removes material instead of spreading it apart like using the sharp side would. One also needs to hold the handle at a very high angle with regards to the surface to be cut.
Scale Race Cars makes a photoetched blade that fits the standard Xacto handle just for this use. It actually cuts a finer line than the back of a #11 blade and sells for $8.00. You get 9 cutting blades called "Scriber blades".
Check them out at:
Posted 06 December 2006 - 08:16 PM
I just made a little U shaped handle to tie the thread around, and started cutting.
Posted 06 December 2006 - 11:22 PM
Here's my Mercury Comet using the thread method.
Posted 27 December 2006 - 06:56 PM
Posted 01 January 2007 - 06:02 PM
ok i want to do some opening doors on my tahoe and i have heard a bunch of talk about thread to get the doors off..... how do you do this? all i have ever done is exacto knife them off but apperently this is smoother? Any help will be appreciated
Posted 04 January 2007 - 01:43 PM
I like cutting with thread. It cuts very thin - no wider than the pane lines. It will "tend" to follow the panel lines but it can get off if you rush it. The thread broke frequently, but less so as I slowed down and reduced the pressure on the thread. It will still break now and then, so you just get more off the spool - thread is cheap.
Posted 07 January 2007 - 05:52 PM
I use a small battery powered drill to open panels. I drill a series of very small holes, I like to use a number 72 or smaller bit, as close together as I can, using the panel line as the guide. Here's the trunk lid with all the holes drilled.
Here's a view from the inside of the body. Once the holes are drilled, gently score the line, both inside and out, with your exacto knife. Don't use pressure. Soon enough you'll break through the remaining plastic, just like the perforations on a postage stamp.
Soon enough, you'll feel confident enough to start wiggling the part out of the hole. You can coax it along with the knife as needed.
Here's the panel all cut out. Since we used a very small drill bit, just sand the edges flat and you have your scale jambs. The drill you see here has an exacto brand name on it, but I understand they discontinued it.
I've cut open a lot of panels this way, following curves and even cutting the door frames on sedan doors. It works well for me!
Hope this helps someone!
Posted 08 January 2007 - 06:10 PM
Posted 10 January 2007 - 09:25 AM
Posted 21 October 2008 - 08:22 AM