The fiberglass on this model has great detail molded in so we want to take full advantage of that. Unfortunately a model fuselage can’t have very deep panel lines like the full size aircraft, so to make them look deeper we darken them up a bit. I’ve read other modelers use a wash technique whereas they wash a thinned down mixture of black and then wipe it off leaving it in the cracks. I don’t know what I do wrong, but my wash doesn’t stay in the cracks which defeats the purpose. For me, I use a very thin brush and paint a grimy black mixture of paint (Model Masters Black, Leather, Blue and Dark Umber all mixed together. I almost never use straight black right out of the bottle or tube) into the panel lines and any that runs out of the line, I wipe off. I’ve got a pretty steady hand so this goes fairly quick.
Here you can see the type of brush that I use. It is called a “liner” brush. Go figure. Check out ALL THOSE FREAKIN' RIVETS!!!
The panel line coming out of the Star is partially completed. See the difference?
Here is the right fuse before painting in panel lines. I also paint a thin line under hatches and anything that breaks the surface of the fuse. This gives the hatch or panel an exaggerated shadow. The reason we exaggerate shadows is to make up for the fact that this airplane is not full size. The full size aircraft would have a darker shadow under hatches and the like, but the small size model can’t have that dark of shadows because of everything is smaller and doesn’t produce as dark a shadow as its full scale counterpart.
This is the left fuse after panel lines and shadows are painted in. The shadowing and painted lines gives it a little more punch.
More detail of the fuse side. What the heck is the red rectangle?! That was a fire extinguisher hatch. Definitely adds color to the model and it is accurate. I wonder how handy that fire extinguisher really was on the actual aircraft when it was needed??