How to Create Plaster Copy of an Action Figure




Hi all,

I've been planing to do a scale model of a human figure, or some scifi/fantasy character for some time. But as it goes my modelling skills just weren't up to the task. That's why I decided to duplicate existing one and then build and model on it. On the firs model You can see the figure i used.

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Step 1: Dismantle the Figure

The next step was to dismantle the figure using the screwdriver. If You are using some of the good old GI Joe figures You wont have problems with it. Just remove all the screws on the joints and that's it.

Step 2: Filling Out the Openings on the Parts


Before starting to make the mold you must use some modelling clay to close all the openings on Your model. It will be easier later to separate it from the mold

Step 3: Making Thee Stands for the Models

It is good to improvise little handles / stands for your models before you start making molds, like in this picture.

Step 4: Making of the Molds

Now all you need to do is to dip the figure parts into liquid latex milk or some other one component form moulding paste. Before starting read the instructions carefully.

I dipped the figure parts five time every three hours

Step 5: Removing the Molds

After all is done you should have quality moulds ready for removal. They should come of easy from the figure parts, you just have to do it carefully. If they get damaged just use superglue to fix them.

Step 6: Filling the Molds

Now it is time to fill the molds with plaster. When you mix it be quick with the filling of the molds because plaster hardens quickly.

Step 7:

I left plaster to dry out for a day. Now the removal of the molds can be tricky. You have to be careful not to break your copied figure. The best way to do this is to cut the molds sideways and remove the figure parts. After that you can fix the molds with super glue and use them again.

After i done all this steps I will put together the figure to which I will add new features with modelling clay and then repaint it. But this time customisation will be easier because I have a completed figure to work with.

But more on that in the next tutorial,

Have fun ;-)

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    9 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I found this so incredibly interesting, I signed up just to comment and follow threads. I've been customizing figures since I was a kid, and now that I have a son, I make guys they don't officially put, that I'd think he'd like. It did finally dawn on me, while reluctant to actually sell the originals, I could figure a way to duplicate them. I use amazing sculpt right now, and soon hopefully I will be able to do just that. Thank you, please, keep me updated.


    7 years ago on Step 4

    Nice idea with the liquid latex!

    I tried making a copy of an action figure before, and it is tough. This idea seems to work a lot better than my attempt did. I made a plaster mold and tried to fill it with liquid plastic.

    I'll have to remember to try using liquid latex for future mold making projects.

    5 replies

    the trick with molding stuff is this: if you are going to cast with something hard, you need to use a flexible mold. if you are casting something flexible, use a hard mold.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Well, filling the latex mold with plaster gave me solid object to work on with modelling clay. You just have to dip the original into latex at least 5-6 times. And getting the plaster copy out of the mold can be a little bit tricky.

    But you can cut the mold with scissors and glue it back together.

    The main problem is that the plaster copy can be fragile. I also wanted to ask you what type of liquid plastic did you use?


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the info on that. I will try it out. If you will try to copy a figure with the procedure from my Instructable, take care with the figure's hands because they are simply too fragile.

    My figure is missing only hands and right now I am making them for the fifth time :-(


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Yeah, you have to be careful with the thin parts. Especially when dealing with plaster.

    Maybe you could use your molding technique with wax instead. It is flexible and easy to cast, so it might work better for your hands.

    (Of course wax does not work well with other materials, and you can't paint it. So it may not work for the parts that you will be customising.)

    Your welcome for the info. I would suggest using a trial size at first. If you decide that you will be making a lot of these type of projects, the bigger sized containers will save you some money.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    you should link to your next Instructable on how to "add new features with modelling clay and then repaint it" in the bottom of this Instructable when you're finished.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    The next Instructable about painting and adding new features is coming soon. I started a couple of days ago so it is still work in progres.