These little dolls were a huge hit for Christmas, but I have since learned their hip joints are not the strongest. When "Cheer Captain" lost her leg during a competition we were surprised (without the LOL part) and thought she'd be confined to her cardboard chair.
Fortunately, I found a simple solution that required minimal tools and a total repair time of less than fifteen minutes.
This is a series 1 doll, and the materials are sized accordingly. The website for the magnets will most likely have other items that can fit the smaller dolls--should you need them.
Step 1: Supplies Needed:
- Hot glue gun
- sharpie marker
- precision needle nose pliers (standard sizes might be a bit tough to fit in the joint)
- Dremel rotary tool with engraving bit (though I'm sure you could find another way to do this with a small, regular, drill bit and some patience).
- 3/16" diameter x 1/8" depth disc magnet (see below)
- 3/16" diameter x 1/16" depth disc magnet (see below)
- mp3 player with motivating pop music for the doll
- cardboard box & scissors (to make a surgical viewing room for her companions)
The magnets were found by the amazing CMS Magnets in Garland, TX. The two magnets were $.23 total and although the $3 in shipping far exceeded the magnets I did buy extras--just in case the LOL's added MMA to their list of activities. The have a high gauss rating and a pulling force of 2lbs.
Step 2: Prepping the Joints
The joints are molded plastic, snapped into the sockets.
We are going for flush mounted magnets:
Use the Dremel engraving bit to carefully grind out the joint in the leg. Caution: The leg joint isn't very deep; the 1/16" depth magnet is going there. Be careful not to grind through to the other side of the leg.
The body joint is a little different. There was the ball-joint piece left over in there when the leg broke off. I used the Dremel to grind it down somewhat, removing the piece with the needle nose pliers. The body cavity should be deep enough to not need grinding
Use the needle nose pliers to pull out the "ball joint" that was broken off in the body cavity.
Ensure both magnets sit flush with the surrounding plastic.
Step 3: Inserting the Magnets
CAUTION: Ensure the magnets' polarities before gluing them in. Join the magnets together and use the sharpie to make a mark on the sides that will be glued to the leg and body.
The amount of glue needed is MINIMAL.
Apply a single drop of glue into the body and set the magnet in place. It's hot glue and plastic--made for each other. The set time is VERY quick. Use the tweezers to clear away any of the residual glue around the edge of the magnet.
Apply the same technique for the leg's magnet. Use tweezers to clear away any residual glue on the leg and magnet.
Step 4: Assemble the Leg to the Body
You've got two magnets. I'll let you figure out this last step on your own.
The pulling force of the magnets is strong enough that the doll's leg can be positioned just fine. She can stand and sit without the joint failing.
AND... she also now has this awesome running-flip-move where she cartwheels by and does a "Jedi force-pull" to attach her leg before going into battle or whatever Cheer Captain feels needs done at that moment.