Rabu Brinzan is consistently one of the most ingenious designers of new modelling tools, but I think he's excellent himself with one of his latest products - the Scriber-R File.
In effect, Radu has re-invented the scriber. The Scriber-R File builds upon what was almost a bonus feature on his existing Scriber-R - the lightly abrasive back edge of the blade that has proved immensely useful for restoring panel lines across fuselage seams and around the edges of wings etc. With the Scriber-R File, Radu takes this and develops it into a fully-fledged scriber in its own right - but one with a radical difference that instantly has the potential to change your whole approach to scribing.
Let me explain. The way any conventional scriber works is to gouge out material. This can often leave a raised burr on either side of the resulting line that must be cleaned up. But the biggest problem comes when scribing grainy material, where the scribing tip can snag and create a ragged line - filler or wood being prime culprits.
The Scriber-R File is totally different because, as its name suggests, it actually files a fine slot with its minutely serrated edge. So, there's much less chance of a raised lip being formed - and no problem whatsoever working with grainy materials. It even works on paper and card.
The Scriber-R File arrives as a set of three photo-etched blades that offer a useful assortment of shapes. After cleaning up any sharp burrs left on when you remove the blades from the fret, they will fit a standard "X-acto-style" modelling handle. The entire edge of each blade is a scribing surface, and they are well chosen to allow you to work in tight spots as easily as on open areas.
You can use the Scriber-R File just as you would any ordinary scriber, drawing it towards you to create a beautifully fine engraved line, but a novel feature is that you can also push the tip away from you - which I find can be particularly handy working across seams on curved surfaces, or into wing roots etc.
As well as normal scribing jobs, the tool promises to be ideal for refining details on items such as undercarriage legs or removing the mould-lines between the fins on the cylinders of radial and rotary engines. The serrated edge also makes a very useful scraper - and is really good for gently removing moulding/casting blemishes.
I've no doubt Radu is already dreaming up new variations on this excellent tool, but I'll offer my two-penny-worth with a couple of suggestions: versions etched from thicker metal to scribe a range line-widths (and profiles) could be very neat, and a slot to attach the blade to a scalpel handle would be rather handy.
From the moment I tried the Scriber-R File it just felt "right", and I knew it would be an essential part of my modelling toolkit from now on. It's really versatile and, at just 6 Euros for three blades, it's also fantastic value for money compared with conventional scribers. Unreservedly recommended.
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Highs: A really versatile tool that's easy to use and perfect for working with a range of materials. Great value for money.Lows: None that I've found.Verdict: The Scribe-R File has instantly claimed a place amongst my most useful modelling tools.
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About Rowan Baylis (Merlin) FROM: NO REGIONAL SELECTED, UNITED KINGDOM
I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...