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What is the correct technique for bending PE grills?

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Hi Everyone,

I am building a challenger 2 which has 4 grates around the top turret.  These have some photo etch that needs to be bent in a zig zag shape, part A2 in the image below. I have the trumpeter PE bender (M) which only bends to 90deg.  I am finding it really hard to make this shape on the bender.  What is the correct technique (so i dont keep over bending and destroying the part) ?




Edited by Sunny
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Just now, dnl42 said:

By substituting with Evergreen Clapboard Siding? :shrug:


That's the way I'd go, or something similar.


TBH, there wouldn't be an easy way to accurately do those bends, even with a bending jig. It seems an overly complicated construction method to me.


If I was doing it, I'd probably cut individual strips of styrene sheet for each shutter then add small blocks below each one to set the angle.



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The 'grates' are Combat Identification Panels' (CIP). They are designed to show up on thermal imaging cameras. As others have said, go the Evergreen clapboard siding route and build the frame around the panel before you attach the whole unit to the tank (much easier than trying to build the holder and then slot the panel in afterwards).




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They're the ID panels that I first saw on vehicles during 1st Iraq war.

They're included in Tamiya's 'Modern US Accessory Set' 35266 (although they could be a different size)

They are quite easy to scratch build



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  • 1 month later...

I do that same shape lengthways with (money) bills waiting in line at the grocers or coffee shop. if it's an exceptionally long wait,  i'll start folding the folded bill into a zigzag from one end to the other.


pretty similar to this:  


Edited by s.e.charles
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