Panel seperation lines molding?

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Posted · Report post

I am greatful for the model companies molding new and reissuing some great models but, what is it with them that they seem to not be able to model the seperation line between the the front fenders and rocker panels? Is it me or does it seem like more cases then not the don't have the panel seperation molding into the bodies? It's a fairly easy scribe to do but it would be nice if they would do it. For instances look at the new 1970 Cuda that Revell has done. I am on my 3rd one (2 Stock and 1 Sox kit) and have had to scribe it into the bodies. There have been many others here of late that I have notcied that don't have all panel line molding in. It's not just Revell thats doing either.

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Posted · Report post

Just another example of not paying attention and not sweating the details.

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Posted · Report post

Yep we jokingly had a saying when I was in the Navy back in the early seventy's, " Close enough for government work. Mark it with a piece of chalk, cut it with an ax." worked really well on the aircraft we were repairing.At least it seemed that someone thought it did. :blink: I'm sure the pilots never liked hearing that. :(

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Posted · Report post

That missing panel line between the front end of the rocker panel and the front quarter panel has been a bit of a peeve for me ever since I finally realized that virtually every model kit of a 1949-later car lacked this very visible little detail.

I've never had a problem scribing those in myself, frankly--I generally take care of them (when missing) with a few gentle strokes of an Xacto razor saw blade.

Art

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Posted · Report post

........What I find a "worse" pet peeve is the vertical mold lines on the chrome bumpers i.e. Revells '57 Ford Custom .......

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Posted · Report post

Some have them, most don't. It is annoying. But, pretty simple to scribe in with a razor saw. I've seen some otherwise beautiful models missing that one simple little detail. Others that bother me are the missing cowl and header panel lines.

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Posted · Report post

I thought that all those panel lines were left off of promotional models because those lines are air brushed out in most old car brochures and advertising of the period. I guess auto makers found the lines distracting from the overall flow of the vehicle. I guessed that the panel lines missing on kits was just a carry over from the promo origin of them.

I have no explanation why they'd be missing on modern kits, especially ones geared at our picky adult market.

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Posted · Report post

I thought that all those panel lines were left off of promotional models because those lines are air brushed out in most old car brochures and advertising of the period. I guess auto makers found the lines distracting from the overall flow of the vehicle. I guessed that the panel lines missing on kits was just a carry over from the promo origin of them.

I have no explanation why they'd be missing on modern kits, especially ones geared at our picky adult market.

Quite probable that the companies making promotional model cars were having to work off of automaker-provided pictures of approved styling clays, which for the most part had only the essential panel lines modeled into them (hood, trunk lid, doors, gas filler door).

Art

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Posted · Report post

Not really mold lines but what I don't like is when people build the 71 GTX or the Cuda or Challenger that Monogram did they don't mold the front pan in and

cut new lines where the factory had them on the front of the pans...They didn't have mold lines on the sides where the panels met the body..Some GMs and Fords

might but not those Mopars...

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Posted · Report post

Quite probable that the companies making promotional model cars were having to work off of automaker-provided pictures of approved styling clays, which for the most part had only the essential panel lines modeled into them (hood, trunk lid, doors, gas filler door).

Art

That doesn't explain modern tooling however.

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Posted · Report post

I guessed that the panel lines missing on kits was just a carry over from the promo origin of them.

I have no explanation why they'd be missing on modern kits, especially ones geared at our picky adult market.

Exactly. The only reason I can figure is the "good enough" mentality that so many times seems to be the guiding principle behind a kit.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Remember when Hasegawa released a number of high detail auto kits, a Jaguar XJ-S being one of them and one of the first things I noticed was, that the cowl to fender lines were absent...so scribing I went, but didn't do an all too well job of it and the kit, never was finished...think I still have it...

Edited by Luc Janssens

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Posted · Report post

........What I find a "worse" pet peeve is the vertical mold lines on the chrome bumpers i.e. Revells '57 Ford Custom .......

X2. I might not notice a missing sheetmetal seam painted body color on the real thing, but you can't miss that big old mold line on the front bumper!

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Posted · Report post

X2. I might not notice a missing sheetmetal seam painted body color on the real thing, but you can't miss that big old mold line on the front bumper!

I feel that a lot as well.

However (and trust me on this one), once Detroit began producing chrome plated bumpers that moved beyond making bumpers that were little more than simple curved partial round or channel section steel bars, going instead to bumpers requiring multiple die strikes to wrap them around body corners, with bulbous, rounded ends, it's just impossible to mold such complicated bumper shapes in plastic injection molded dies without mold parting lines in highly visible areas.

Now, of course, it would be possible to tool say, 1955-early 60's Chevy "California" bumpers in multiple sections just like the real ones, with separate bumper guards--but imagine the squeals of dismay from a lot of modelers at having to assemble all those fiddly parts, without getting a glue smear on the plating, or even scraping just that little bit of chrome off the plastic in order to have the added component adhere solidly.

It's mostly one of those things which, in tooling up a model car kit with readily assembled parts that's almost unavoidable.

Art

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Posted · Report post

Exactly. The only reason I can figure is the "good enough" mentality that so many times seems to be the guiding principle behind a kit.

Of course, one might consider the rather thin cross section of a lot of modern model car body shells. Given that a lot of rocker panels, and rather prominently so on even such as early Camaro's, could well present a cracking or breaking problem were there a recessed panel line, vertically at the bottom edge of the body shell.

Consider that in the demolding of a model car body shell, while the generally-used 5 sliding core molds simply back away from their respective styrene surfaces, the body shell itself must be pushed (that's what ejection pins in the tooling do, BTW) off the larger core mold that creates the inner surfaces of a one-piece styrene body shell. Enough "tumblehome" (the curvature inward on otherwise vertical panels) in that shell, the solidified styrene body shell has to literally flex outward to come off that core mold. As such, that does create stress on the plastic, with the result being that a vertical groove which of course creates a weak place in the otherwise solid body shell--which in some body shapes could well crack, or even break significantly, the body shells.

So, there quite probably can be an engineering issue that has to be considered.

Art

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Posted · Report post

Then how do you explain the often missing panel lines on the cowl of so many models? And on the "tulip panel?"

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Posted · Report post

As far as the little 1/8" long line in the rocker panel missing,,,,I don't really care. I build model cars ,,not million dollar museum pieces

If I can look in my display case and see that the finished product looks like the car I am trying to replicate within a reasonable distance ( lets say 3 or 4 feet )

Then all is good with me and I will buy more of said product.

As an example ,,,,I just ordered a half dozen of the S+M Cudas btw in hopes the aftermkt will take it and run with it doing multiple decals to replicate different cars. About the only thing I'll do is try my best to correct the hood scoop and make it look a bit more accurate to the 1/1

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Posted · Report post

Then how do you explain the often missing panel lines on the cowl of so many models? And on the "tulip panel?"

Harry,

In a sense, with the advent of "envelope" style body shells in the late 1940's, there were panel lines, and then there were panel lines: For example, the really prominent panel separation lines pretty much are those which surround parts that are either movable (hood, deck lid, doors) and those the are the edges of sheet metal panels that are solidly attached permanently together, and the joints between a tulip panel and the adjoining rear quarter panels are almost always at least pinch-welded together in 1950's through at least the 1970's practice. Given that this would be a bad place for rainwater to leak in, from what I have seen (certainly on my '59 Chevy Biscayne) those two seams were filled (early on) with body lead, but not necessarily ground and smoothed out for a "one-piece" appearance. However, those panel separation lines on my '59 were truly very faint indeed, perhaps no more than 1/16" deep, with the surface of the lead being rounded as if it were formed that way. That's a panel line that would barely show up if properly done on a 1/25 scale body shell, even if it could be done properly.

Sometimes, but not on all model car bodies, the mold separation lines between the mold portion that creates the roof, and upper surfaces of the front fenders, the cowling, and the entire rear deck have had to be placed pretty much where the separation line between cowl and front fenders is on many cars. That would be pretty hard to do, put a mold parting line on, or in that panel line, and have be anywhere near correct, or ever decent looking. This is not always the case of course, but it is a very possible scenario.

Just looking at one of my Revell '59 Impala Convertible kits, and here's what I see that was done, and what is missing: The body shell has, of course, the door and trunk lid lines, with the trunk lid lines cut through (across vertically) the chrome trim cap strips on the fins where they create the lip of the trunk itself. The rear valance is clearly scribed in, across the back, around the rear corners, and into the lower rear of the rear quarters. There are separation lines engraved between the rocker panels and the front fenders. Missing are the separation lines between front fenders and the cowling, and demarking the front valance below the front bumper (interesting that they got it right in back, but not up front). Also missing is the short seam at the front corners of the "hooding" over the headlights, which is quite visible on the real car, until you realize that this is precisely where the mold parting line between the upper mold surface and the front mold has to be, for proper separation the mold slides to demold the body.

Here's a pic of an unrestored, very faded, surface-rusted '59 Impala Sport Sedan (flat roof). The separation line between rear quarters and tulip panel does not show at all in this image http://www.ctcautoranch.com/Parts%20Cars/Chevrolet/Full%20Size%2058%20-%2066/Full%20Size%2058%20-%2066/1959%20Chevrolet%20Impala%20Parts%20Car%201/1959%20Chevrolet%20Impala%20Parts%20Car%201%203.JPG

On other cars, where that may not have been as finished off as Fisher Body Division must have done with 59's, it is quite possible that in restoration, the restorers have filled and ground down tulip panel joints for that "Concours" look, be it right or incorrect. With any older car subject today, it's more than likely that those researching them for a newly done model kit, are going to be working with restorations, as opposed to "survivor" originals. In product development, the staff person(s) who will go out, photograph the real things are pretty much stuck with what they can find, within the limits of budgets (not very often do they go clear across the country to do that!).

With those almost "iconic" annual series 3in1 model kits of the late 50's on through the end of such kits, in order to have the promotional model body shells done in time for "new car introduction" (and back in the day, within days, or at most a very few weeks after next year's new models were in dealer showrooms, the promo's were showing up. Now, with the development of any new model car kit taking at minimum, at least 9 months or so, those cars were referenced off of photo's of either styling clays or pre-production cars, along with such drawings as the styling department might be comfortable letting out of their studios--and styling clays almost never have fixed panel lines carved into their surfaces--just the movable ones of doors, trunks, hoods and any other hinged panels (probably not even the panel line between front fender and rocker panel either.

So there, I think you have it: There are panel lines, and there are panel lines. Many are quite visible as mentioned, others may be either partially or completely filled and smoothed down to invisibility.

As a bit of trivia here: On every 1959 and 1960 Chevrolet, the rear quarters are joined to the back fascia (the rear panel of the trunk area) at a 45-degree angle, but you never see that panel line, do you? Not until you duck your head down, look at the underside of the rear corners of the "Bat Wing" fins do you see any at all! Fisher Body workers leaded in the seam on top of the fins, smoothed it down flush, and did likewise on the upper surface of the quarter panel where it forms the outline shape of the taillight area, up to just where the sheet metal curves outward to form the underside of the fin! There is almost no body lead on that part of the seam, and the edge of the filled area was often quite ragged in the bargain! No model company has ever created that bit of detail either! ;)

Art

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Posted · Report post

Tulip panel lines should just barely be visible after painting. They certainly shouldn't be scribed deeper or given a black wash. Same goes for panels that are bolted together. Still, you'll see models with every panel line scribed and or black washed just because it's there. :rolleyes: A few minutes of research can clearly show which panel lines need to be more visible and which ones don't.

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