Introductory: Tightening Loose Joints

Discussion in 'Tutorials and How Tos' started by Superquad7, Sep 26, 2005.

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  1. Superquad7

    Superquad7 We're only human. Super Mod

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    Hey guys, this may sound like a very simple topic to some, but realize that there are many folks out there who are very nervous about modifying their toys.

    Thanks for all you do and share guys; it's greatly appreciated!

    SureShot, that's a very good method, however it's good to keep in mind that superglue can make a piece of plastic very brittle. I did this same thing with my G1 Snapdragon the other day (front of the cockpit), and the piece ended up just continuing to break. Now, granted that one area is a source for a lot of weight, but I think my example is an extreme one just to stress a point (no pun intended).

    I think for this area, one would be fine though. I need to do this as well to my Overlord and some other figures. :) 

    I have used nail polish all of the time on my TFs and it's somewhat effective. You just apply the nail polish to the joint and let it dry.

    Keep in mind that superglue actually melts the plastics it comes in contact with on a molecular level. This is great for adhering two plastics together, but personally, I'm just not cool with that while nail polish works just as well!

    Grendel, that's the stuff! Pledge bought the rights to produce Future floor polish.

    I've been using the same bottle for a little over 3 years now, and am starting to get just shy of half a bottle. It's been some of the best $5 I've spent.

    I was just working on a BT Ironhide custom tonight and some of the pins are loose. I'll be using some of the above methods to fix it, as well as the ball joints.

    When discussing super glue and tightening joints, someone else posted this link ; it looks like a good, basic overview: Tech Tips - Good to Know About Superglue

    It's always good to know what's happening with what you're doing :) 

    I've used both super glue and Future floor polish and they each do pretty well. Super glue is, of course, a lot more permanent as it melts plastic on a molecular level to adhere to it.

    Again, I know this is a pretty basic topic, but I figured that it would be a great resource for someone looking to fix a figure as well as hoping it may get someone who would otherwise never consider altering their toys experience with chemicals and such. Also, I figured someone may have other resources they'd want to share :) 

    Yeah, Future floor finish needs a good 8 hrs to fully cure. I'll often paint a coat of Future on something, then go to work (for an 8 hr shift). When I come home, anything I've used Future on is good to go.

    That link will be really helpful if I ever need to tighten a ball joint, but it doesn't really help in this situation. The reason I originally posted this was because I don't have the customing experience to know best how to fix these joints, or the income to afford a botched attempt. From the info you gave me, I have an idea of how to fix Brawl (I can live with Skydive's loosness). If I used a small flat-ended paintbrush to apply a thin layer of superglue/nailpolish/future finish (I have glue/polish but would need to hunt down FF. Is it worth it?) to this area of the peg:
    View attachment 27168413
    Would this work? If not, what would?

    For that particular joint, you may be better off fixing both the joint and the item it hinges.

    Superglue or Future Floor polish would both work. Honestly, my experience with nail polish is that it doesn't last well. I may just need to inspect more kinds, but I still don't think it's the better solution of the the three (superglue, Future, nail polish).

    Also, with your quandary, just remember that Future is essentially clear, acrylic paint. Paint can be removed. Superglue bonds on a molecular level to the substance it's applied to.

    I hope that helps :) 

    Just to answer your question on Future floor, it's not precisely the same as just a clear, gloss coat of say Testors clear coat. One of my favorite things about Future is that it is self-leveling, which alleviates brushstrokes a LOT. Also, it dries a lot harder than just other clear acrylic paint.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 22, 2011
  2. TILALLR1

    TILALLR1 'Til All Are One

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    Not sure if this has been asked before, but, I have a few G1 figures, namely MEGATRON, BLITZWING, SANDSTORM, who's legs will not extend when standing up. They simply fall back into their transformation more. Obviously its because they have been played with alot, but I was wondering if there was an easy way to repair them. Thanks for any suggestions.

    My shrapnel and Astrotrain also suffer from it, but I managed to pull them really tight and they will stand without falling back ... for now. Would love to permanently fix them as well thou.

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 25, 2010
  3. MegaMoonMan

    MegaMoonMan www.megamoonman.com TFW2005 Supporter

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    Take the legs apart, and put a layer of clear nail polish on the "rails" that the parts slide into.

    Anything that will thicken the parts that have worn down will work, really.
     
  4. Savage590

    Savage590 Cybertronian Werewolf

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    Yeah, and if you're not too confident about apply stuff with a brush, there's always clear tape, not the wimpy scotch tape, the clear glossy 3M tapes do wonders. Cut off a small piece and stick them between the contact surfaces, it's surprising how tight it'll make things. Especially do wonders on ball joins and hinge joins. Damn I sound like a Junkion. Order now! Operators are standing by! :stick: 
     
  5. Rodimus Mike

    Rodimus Mike I Drank What?

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    What I do to make joints tighter is I cut a little off the screw peg on the inside
    about 2/8ths of an inch (maybe less),and put the limb back on,and the screw.And
    thats it,makes it tight again.But what the rest said are good choices too.But to
    each,his own,as they say.
     
  6. Altercron

    Altercron Well-Known Member

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    The knee joints on my HEAVILY played with Soundwave are tight as the day he left the factory. Yet he still likes to lean. So I just rotate his legs outwards a bit that way the hips are facing in different directions and less likely to try to tilt.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 25, 2010
  7. Optimus Scourge

    Optimus Scourge Arcee's boy toy Veteran

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    yes.

    I use clear nail polish exclusively. I can't tell you how many of my troops are wearing nail polish :lol 

    I tried tape before, but its messy and leaves residue if you need to replace/remove. It DOES work, but I think that the nail polish is much better. I used to tape my G1 prime hands and always hated the way the tape looked, mostly when the part is exposed like a weapon peg or G1 Prime's hands...any accessory. Nail polish is almost unnoticable, and it thickens any said area.

    make sure you let dry completely, then test tightness.
    repeat until joint/slide/whatever is the way you want it.
     
  8. SharkyMcShark

    SharkyMcShark Hi. I'm better than you

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    Right, so I just picked up my Alt Mirage for the first time this year (I think. Its been on my shelf for god knows how long...) and noticed the same problem as last year is still bugging me.

    Straight out of the box, ever since day 1, the joint where his leg meets his hip (the joint allowing forward and backward motion in his leg) is extremely loose, flopping all over the place. The joint in question is on his right side from the position of looking at him (see diagram below).

    [​IMG]

    Is there any way for me to fix or tighten this joint without a)breaking or damaging the toy or b)having to buy a new one? Usually I wouldnt ask but I have been supremely impressed with this mold so far and wish to have more 'hands on time' with it, as opposed to just putting it in some form of action pose and relegating it to my display shelf.

    I've taken the crotch piece apart already and tried to use some of my mothers clear nail polish top tighten the joint, but even after adequate drying time the joint has re floppified within minutes.

    Any other suggestions?

    Thanks in advance
    and thanks to bwtf for the pic
     
  9. REDLINE

    REDLINE longer days, plz? Veteran

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    put a thicker coating on, and let it dry overnight (sure it dries faster, but it'll cure after more time)

    clear nail polish, future floor finish, superglue all work wonders.

    why I like future floor finish. its acryllic, and after you give it a day or two to set, its tough as nails as its intended for being able to walk on, or drag furniture across, etc.

    or you could use future floor finish. there's no risk with the stuff. With super glue you have to take the joints apart, smear some on one of the surfaces that rub in the joint, then either let it dry before putting it back together, or popping it back together right away and moving the joint until its had enough time to cure.

    If you decide to use future, you can do it that way, or you can just drip some down into the joint and walk away from it for 24 hrs.

    I just drip future floor finish into the joints. There's no risk of gluing parts together, nor melting of plastic.

    I simply use Future too. It's a non-reacting Acryllic that is also super tough.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 25, 2010
  10. Pun-3X

    Pun-3X Well-Known Member

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    Mine seems to have very loose shoulder joints. His hip joints on mine seem fine.

    But yeah, you can always use superglue. You have to be careful with it--what you do is apply it, put the parts on, then swivel the joint for a good five or so minutes. That will keep the superglue from setting, but it'll spread it evently within the joint piece. I've used that trick before too, but like just about everything else, it will eventually fade off. It just seems to last the longest of everything else.

    You could always jam a piece of folded paper in there too. Never took the hips apart, but that might help.
     
  11. Grimwing

    Grimwing Scientist Supreme

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    I have a similarly related question actually. How do you loosen up tight joints that just won't move? The spring claw on my rid build team grimlock won't budge.
     
  12. Prowl_Delta_31

    Prowl_Delta_31 Eating your donuts

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    I use nail clear nail polish on loose joints and just play with the tight joints till which seems to get them loose. Some TF's just stay tight no matter what you do.
     
  13. defstar

    defstar Autobot...

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    I use the Delta Ceramcoat acrylic gloss varnish...both to seal paint jobs on customs and to tighten loose joints...you can buy the stuff at walmart in the craft section...very cheap...

    When applying to a ball joint...pull the joint out and put some varnish on the inside of the ball cup then let it dry completely...pop the ball back in place and you're ready to go...

    PS: and the stuff has no odor and won't hurt the plastic...
     
  14. Psychrome86

    Psychrome86 Well-Known Member

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    after a minute of rotating the joint it did seem to get loose again. i put more on and just put it in a pose and left it like that. the polish is pretty easy to rub off. maybe it was too cheap. i'll try the other stuff when i get a chance.
     
  15. Paul Prime

    Paul Prime Well-Known Member

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    Superglue works fine for me. They joint never got loose again.
     
  16. Fretburn

    Fretburn We need Instrument TFs

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    Clear nail polish is not very good. It is not designed to take physical abuse. Redlin'es right with the Future Floor Polish. Same deal with the crazy glue. That chemical, once dry, is very very hard.

    Use caution when using the glue. It is a solvent and WILL melt plastic. apply it to one part, let it dry one hundred percent. If no0t, it will fuse the two plastic parts together and the joint will not move again.
     
  17. mr_soundwave

    mr_soundwave operation: tidalwave

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    aurascope offered this in the thread where i ask the sameish question, it sounds solid too :) 

    tamiya's thin cement will help.
    it is very fluid and flows like water.
    it will fill and seal the gap.
    it's a must for every kitbasher to have.
     
  18. ComicGuy89

    ComicGuy89 Well-Known Member

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    Hi, I'm not sure if they're pin joints but I've taken photos of my ROTF Sideswipe for you guys to confirm. In case the pictures don't show it's the one at his elbows. His pin joints are rather loose lately, and I was thinking of purchasing this to tighten it: Tamiya Extra Thin Non-Corrosive CEMENT 40ml MODEL

    Would you recommend it? Thanks.

    (Edited to add pictures)
     

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    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 25, 2010
  19. hXcpunk23

    hXcpunk23 The Chaos Bringer

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    I've always just used a drop or two of superglue on the pin, then kept it moving to allow it to run down into the loose area, and after about 5 minutes, it was good to go. The trick is to keep it in motion so the glue doesn't dry and lock the part(s) in place. Once you're done, it should be a little tighter than before and still allow movement.

    ONLY try this at your own risk though. I'm just sharing what I've used in the past that worked for me (most recently on my G1 Dinobots to tighten up some joints and pins). Good luck, man.
     
  20. eisen

    eisen "CUT ME SOME SLACKS!"

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    mampy suggested before, using a layer of future finish. (jeepers! is there anything that stuff can't do? :D )
     
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