Panel Scriber

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Posted · Report post

Hello everyone.

What are some of your favorite panel line scribers? I am thinking about cutting the doors out of my next project. What are some good tools and some good techniques to use for this project?

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Posted · Report post

My favorite so far is a worn xacto blade. I sand it with a coarse sanding stick on all 4 sides to form more of a point than a blade. Sand the spine, blade then both faces all in the direction from base to tip. Then use it backwards.

I have found this is very sharp and won't run up the sides on you. It removes plastic quickly. I often find I go through the plastic when scribing when I don't mean to.

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Posted · Report post

I bought a panel scriber from Bare Metal Foil . I am pleased with the results . I do have to use the Backwards X Acto blade to start the panel lines on slippery Styrene . I am talking the really slick stuff . I've used this method for decades . The scriber is a newer process too me . IMHO I like the tool better . Just seem to have troubles making a start on slick stuff . Thanx ..

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Posted · Report post

I vastly prefer the tip of a razor saw. The flat of the saw makes it easier for me to control exactly where the tip goes....scribers like to go their own directions sometimes...

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Posted · Report post

Thanks for the saw tip "tip" never thought of using it for scribing lines.

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Posted · Report post

I have two scribing tools that are indispensable. This first one is great for rescribing panel lines. I like it because it is very controllable and precise. I do not use it for opening panels though. It removes too much material.

http://umm-usa.com/onlinestore/product_info.php?cPath=21_105&products_id=474

These are a set of photoetched saws that I have been using for over 15 years. They are very thin are require a delicate touch to not bend. They only work on the pull stroke. Do not try to cut with a push stroke or you will bend them and destroy the tool. They make a cut so thin that you can actually put the panel back in place and reglue it and there would be no evidence of the cut. I get mine from HLJ not ebay but the photo on Hobby link was not good enough to post.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/HASEGAWA-Trytool-TP-4-Modeling-Saw-Scriber-Model-Tool-Free-Ship-/261027644888?pt=UK_ToysGames_ModelKits_ModelKits_JN&hash=item3cc675c5d8

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Posted (edited) · Report post

The UMM Scribing tool is supposed to be the shizzle* for various scribing needs. I have wanted one for years, but haven't pulled the trigger. I use needles and pins held in a pin vise, a Squadron scribing tool (similar to Bare-Metal's tool), X-acto blades, and various razor saws for different situations. The UMM tool is supposed to cover virtually any scribing situation.

link: http://umm-usa.com/onlinestore/product_info.php?cPath=21_105&products_id=474&osCsid=99rr3pf2rj8fhsi1pocur6ng56

For cutting through a body along panel lines, I'd have to say that an X-acto is probably the best tool. In the old days (when kits were cheap), the common thing to do was get two kits. You'd hack out the door opening in one kit and hack out the door from the other kit. This way you end up with an open door that would theoretically fit back into the opening with no gap. Any method you use to scribe out a door on a body will result in a door that's smaller than the opening by a scale inch or more because of the thickness (kerf) of the cutting tool. You can close up that gap with styrene strips fairly easily, though.

*sorry I went into Snoop Dogg mode.

Edited by Chief Joseph

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Posted (edited) · Report post

The UMM Scribing tool is supposed to be the shizzle* for various scribing needs. I have wanted one for years, but haven't pulled the trigger. I use needles and pins held in a pin vise, a Squadron scribing tool (similar to Bare-Metal's tool), X-acto blades, and various razor saws for different situations. The UMM tool is supposed to cover virtually any scribing situation.

link: http://umm-usa.com/onlinestore/product_info.php?cPath=21_105&products_id=474&osCsid=99rr3pf2rj8fhsi1pocur6ng56

For cutting through a body along panel lines, I'd have to say that an X-acto is probably the best tool. In the old days (when kits were cheap), the common thing to do was get two kits. You'd hack out the door opening in one kit and hack out the door from the other kit. This way you end up with an open door that would theoretically fit back into the opening with no gap. Any method you use to scribe out a door on a body will result in a door that's smaller than the opening by a scale inch or more because of the thickness (kerf) of the cutting tool. You can close up that gap with styrene strips fairly easily, though.

*sorry I went into Snoop Dogg mode.

I can tell you from experience(see the prior post) that the Umm tool is the best I have had for scribing panel lines and other things that need to be scratched. They are on sale and for $13 are a worthy addition to anyone's tool box.

The issue you mention with the X-acto blade is exactly the reason I use the second tool I mentioned. They are very thin photoetched saws and take very little material out of the cut. The trade off is that you have to have patents. They work quickly but need to not be forced. The thin set is right at about .005" and have very fine teeth. They actually saw through the plastic rather that scraping it away. You get plastic sawdust rather than shavings. As thin as they are you can cut around corners if you are careful.

Edited by Pete J.

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Posted · Report post

I use the tip of my razor saw mainly and photo etch saw blades. They make very fine panel lines and won't slip out of the groove and wander like the backside of an Xacto blade. The only time I use an Xacto blade is on really tight round corners and then I use a new blade or one that still has a fine point on it.

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Posted · Report post

I believe I cut panels and doors out differently than most folks. I have a small eXacto brand battery power drill. I use a very small drill bit and drill a series of holes...

34insideholes1-vi.jpg

Trunk coming out of the '34 Ford... view from inside the body.

34outsideholes2-vi.jpg

Same car - View from outside body. Note that I have drilled the holes in the panel line from the outside of the body.

34popout2-vi.jpg

Once the holes are complete, I carefully scribe the holes from behind with an eXacto knife. No real pressure, just create a line between them. Then carefully apply pressure on the part from both inside and outside. Scribe again as needed, look for a spot that's weak and ready to give. Once you have a start, the rest of it just breaks away like separating postage stamps.

34cutout1-vi.jpg

And here we are with the panel removed. Note my eXacto drill on the bench. I don't know if these are available, I haven't seen one in years. Now just sand the edges flat and the gap should be right. I believe I used a 78 or 80 bit to do this one.

I also cut apart panels this way for body sections and other surgery. In those cases, I don't sand down the edges but assemble the parts using those edges. It gives the Zap-A-Gap a good area to grip and sands down well.

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Posted · Report post

I bought a scriber called the Scribe-R. The website that has them is http://www.radub.com/

Look in His Shop, then Tools, then Scribing Tools. It's part number is RB-T019. Works great.

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Posted · Report post

I have a set of dental picks. They can be found at most surplus stores, and occaisionally at Harbor Frieght. There are several different tips and i've used the same ones for years.

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Posted · Report post

Here are my 2 cents I use the hobby knife and some masking tape to achieve the straight lines.You need to use both sides of the hobby knife as well to do a perfect job.One side to cut and the other to clean.

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