Sunday, September 27, 2015

Friday, September 25, 2015

Metal Wires Used For Armatures

Doll artists have their preference about which wire they use. As you read their tutorials you may learn what wire they are choosing and if they twist strands together or not. We have gathered some very basic information about the different metal wires many doll makers use for small scale doll armatures. The gauge of wire you choose depends on many factors, such as height and pose of figure, or if the doll will be poseable after completion. It is up to each individual doll maker which wire they prefer.

Copper and Brass Wire. When pressure is applied to the clay with a sculpting tool, a copper or brass armature tends to give and then spring back instead of holding stiffly in position. Brass is stronger than copper or aluminum.
Aluminum Wire. Aluminum has almost no spring when pressure is applied and it bends easily. It also breaks from bending easier than steel wire. To compensate. you may have to use a slightly thicker gauge than you might with copper or brass.
Galvanized Steel Wire. Steel is stiffer than copper. brass or aluminum. It will break when repeatedly bent. Twisting several smaller gauge strands together makes an armature wire that is stronger and resists breaking.

Wire is available at hardware stores, home improvement stores and many web sites. Gauge refers to a wires thickness. For information about gauges, click on the topic Armatures on the blog's Index.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Problem: Glue Leaking From Syringe Tip

Here are several solutions to try:

  • Never put more than 1 inch of glue in syringe.
  • Pull back the plunger just a tiny fraction each time you are done placing a line of glue.
  • Place a stainless steel pin in the tip or use a rubber tip from the smallest knitting needle to cover.
  • Place syringe upside down with the tip stuck into a piece of close density foam (the kind used for packaging) as you are gluing a seam.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Bulking Out An Armature

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Applying Glue To Fabric Without A Syringe

When you glue a seam either with Tacky glue or Fabric-Tac glue, the trick is to use very little. A syringe is a tool that is used to keep a continuous, very thin line, of glue along the edge of fabric seams. If you don't have a syringe try this: first squeeze out a dot on a hard surface and use a needle tool or toothpick to lightly, and I do mean lightly, touch the glue along the seam line trying to make a continuous thin line of glue. Then allow it to dry until it is opaque. Once the glue gets to that stage, line up the fabric pieces and lightly tap them together. When tap, do not press hard. Once the seam is completely dry, then finger press. Some doll makers take the seam to the ironing board to press the seam. We find that sometimes that makes the seam slightly shiny but you should have no glue marks. Try it. See if it works for you.
Check the Index for more information about glues and using syringes.

Thursday, September 3, 2015