Part of the process for manufacturing polymer panels for exterior vehicle skin involves removing, forming, and sanding panel parting lines. This function is critical due to customer appearance expectations and painting requirements. Several issues including ergonomic and environmental concerns have made automation of this process attractive. Applying parting line design changes and force control technology, a robotic system has been developed to perform this finishing operation automatically. The benefits of this process include part to part consistency, a fifty percent reduction in cycle time and significant process cost reductions.