I've had a few questions about reshaping vinyl doll heads, so thought I'd make this little semi-tutorial with some pics. I shrink the heads of all my dolls using acetone, so this page shows what I do from that point on. However, if you are not shrinking your doll's head, you can still reshape it. Just pick up from step 2. You can read more about head shrinking here: Shrinking vinyl doll heads tutorial
So, here's my personal process:
Step 1: If shrinking, after drying about 24 hours or so,
you can arrange the head in a compression set up to start out. There's only so much vinyl that you can
cut off obviously, since the heads are hollow, so compression is key for some drastic changes. Check it
every so many hours because as the head shrinks, you want to make sure it stays centered and doesn't go
lopsided and get mishapen. Leave it like this till it is dry and hardened. That can take anywhere from 4-14 days.
It's usually on the shorter end of that scale though.
Step 2: Use the coarse diamond coated gold dremel bits to do the shaping. This lets you quickly remove
large portions of vinyl. Remember to wear goggles! It really hurts if a piece of vinyl flicks into your eye.
Step 3: Use the finer diamond coated silver dremel bits to smooth a bit. This works faster than the hand
files, but isn't as gentle, so tends to still leave things a bit rough.
Step 4: Use the fine grit diamond coated hand files for the next grade of smoothing. This isn't
too much different than the silver dremel bits, but it's easier to control. Since you can control the pressure
more easily, you can sand gently for better smoothing.
Step 5: Use Fine grit sandpaper at this point. I prefer sanding sponges.
Step 6: Use extra fine sandpaper to finish. Again, I prefer sanding sponges.
And...DONE! Here's some pics of that finished Maddie next to an unmodified one:
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