Monday, August 4, 2014

Adding Detail - Photo Etched Parts

Hello plamo fans! I recently received this awesome metal detail sheet from Neo System Hobby. Doing a bit of research, I believe the correct term for them is photo-etched details, more commonly used for military scale models like tanks.  I've been getting a lot of inquiries on how it is used, so I thought I'd do a quick tutorial.

Here's what you'll need:

1. Photo etch detail sheet
2. Hobby knife
3. Pointy tweezers
4. Super glue
5. Toothpick
6. Pin vise with drill bits (optional)

Click on the Read More link for the rest of this post...

Step 1: Check your kit to see where you might want to position one of the metal parts. Detach the part from the sheet using the tip of the hobby knife. You might want to hold it down with your finger or some tape so it doesn't fly off when you cut.

Step 2 (optional): If you want the metal detail to look recessed into the plastic, find a drill bit with an equal or very slightly larger diameter. Drill onto the area where your metal part will go. The idea is for the metal part to look embedded or at least appear level with the surface of the part.  Be careful not to drill an actual hole where your metal part was supposed to go.

Step 3: Prepare a drop of super glue on a flat surface. Pick up a tiny amount of glue with your toothpick and apply it to where the metal part will go.

Don't put too much glue or it could leak around the sides of your metal part, messing up your paint job.

Step 4: Use the tweezers to pick up the metal part and position it onto the spot where you added the glue. This step needs to be done quickly because super glue dries very fast. Hold the part in place for a few seconds so the glue gets a good hold.

And you're done!

Some tips before we conclude:
  • If you're having a hard time picking up the tiny metal part, get another toothpick, dampen the tip with water and pick up the part with the tip.
  • Make sure you have enough copies of the metal details to do both sides of your kit.
  • Less is more. Some metal detail is cool, but too much can make a kit look gaudy.
Adding photo etched parts is a quick and easy way to add detail to your builds. Order a sheet now from Neo System Hobby!

Till next time, keep building plamo!

1 comment:

  1. Most military modelers tend to use metal decals before painting.