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This Old Doll Hospital
Replacing a Missing Finger
Patient: 14" P-90 Ideal Toni
Here's a hard plastic Ideal Toni with a missing finger.
I begin by heating a paper clip and pushing it into what will be the base of the new finger. If this was a composition doll, I'd use a fine drill to make the hole and then insert a round toothpick.
Cut the paper clip so it extends only about a quarter inch out from the base of the finger. It needs to be long enough to help support the new finger but not so long that it will be longer than the finger or interfere with the shape.
I collect Toni dolls so I have another doll with a hand that has the finger this doll is missing. I'm going to make a mold from the good hand and put the mold on the bad hand and fill in the missing finger part of the mold.
Because this doll is hard plastic, I'll be using Plas-T-Pair in the mold to make the finger. I'll be using Alumilite to make a 2-part rubber mold.
First the mold. I take equal amounts of the two Alumilite putties and mix them together thoroughly until it's a uniform color.
Now I push the hand into the putty. In about ten minutes, the putty has formed a firm, rubber mold.
Now for the top of the mold. Again I use equal parts of the Alumilite putties.
I hold a piece of paper clip out from the tip of the finger mold to form a drain for overflow of the filler and then push the new Alumilite onto the hand and the other part of the mold.
Alumilite won't stick to anything; not even other cured Alumilite. So when the second part of the mold is firm, I can pull them apart and have my two-part mold of a hand that includes the missing finger.
I'm finished with the doll with the good hand so I put her away to keep her safe from what's next. I place my mold on the hand that needs the finger.
Mixing the Plas-T-Pair powder and liquid into a thick gel, I fill the finger part of the mold.
And place the other part of the mold onto the hand.
In about ten minutes, the Plas-T-Pair is hard and I can lift off the top of the mold
and the bottom part of the mold. There's my finger. It's a little crude so I use an emery board or nail file to trim and smooth.
It's hard to see the flaws in the shape of the unpainted Plas-T-Pair but after daubing matching paint with a sponge or an airbrush, it's easy to see where the shape still needs work.
So a little more sanding after the paint dried and then I airbrushed it.
And there's the hand with its new finger. I'll probably do a little more buffing with 0000 steel wool and airbrush again when the paint is perfectly cured a couple of days later.
Since making this tutorial, I can no longer find a source for PlasT-Pair but I hear it's still available in some states at Hobby Lobby. I now use Plastic Paste for this molding process. Actually, Plastic Paste is better for hard plastic because it cures to about the same hardness and texture as the 50s plastic. I've always used Plastic Paste for molding onto composition because the Plas-T-Pair was too hard and brittle. The Alumilite box lists several other media for molding that might be better for molding doll parts and accessories but I haven't tried them yet.