NEW-TYPE SD13 BODY - UNSTRINGING AND RE-STRINGING

See Also: Appendix regarding differences in the older-type SD13 boy body.

Today's project - Naoya's having a problem with his left knee so I'm going to disassemble him to see if I can find out what's wrong.
Naoya: If you had to go through this for a joint problem, you'd never go to the doctor . . .
Naoya is a school head but he is on an Isao Nanjou (2nd) body with the L-02 shin. I apologize for the not-so-great pics that accompany this, it was night and the lighting was bad, and I was trying to take pics with my left hand hahah. But I don't know of any tutorials for this type of body, so maybe it will be useful to someone. I can't guarantee I do everything in the best way possible, but I was able to take him apart and put him back together none the worse for wear.
First step is obvious - strip 'im. I laid down some fleece so that I know there's nothing that can scratch him and so I don't lose any bits in carpeting.

Take off the headcap by slipping the rubber band of the s-hook. Once it's off, you can see the s-hook sitting in its slot. This body was strung strangely - there should be a knot right next to the s-hook, but there's not. (Also don't set your eyes this way lol it was a temporary setting just for a photoshoot.)

To remove the head, you have to pull the s-hook upwards clear of the slot, and then turn it 90 degrees. I don't own a Volks tool for this, so I made one by bending 18-gauge wire into a narrow "u" shape.

The head is off and I set it clear of my working area where it will be safe. Next, I need to remove the feet.

The new Volks body features "one-touch" hand and foot attachment. By bracing the lower leg with my foot, I can pull his foot out so you can see how the system works.

To remove the foot, you need to pull on it as I've just shown so the parts separate. Then twist the foot about 90 degrees - this is so that the s-hook locks into place in a slot. You can see it here on the hand. This is the same system as the s-hook which holds the head on.

Once the foot/hand has its s-hook locked, the foot/hand dangles free and you can remove it from the s-hook.

Once the foot/hand is removed, brace the limb and grab the s-hook with your tool. Pull it out so that you have enough slack to grab hold of the elastic at the point where it enters the limb. Volks forceps or a pair of pliers may help you with this part. (If you use pilers, be very careful to keep them away from the resin!)

In this picture, the ball piece has already slipped over the s-hook on its own. If it's easier to remove the ball first by spinning it so it can slip over the s-hook, you can.

Once you've removed the s-hook, ball, and ring, if you are using pliers to help you, pull the cord out farther and grab it with your hand before you release the elastic. If you simply let go of it with the pliers, the force may cause them to hit the limb and damage the resin, so be careful.

Now you can remove both parts of the limb. It works exactly the same for the legs and arms, except that the rings are slightly different (the hand joint has a split ring similar to ones used in jewelry making, the ankle joint ring is closer to a washer).

Body with legs taken apart and hands removed. I followed the Volks instructions and removed the feet and hands before disassembling either the arms or legs. The new knee joint fits quite tightly together, so you may have to manhandle them apart. Pic also shows my Livewire (heh) and my ghetto s-hook tool with duct tape handle.

With the legs apart, I've found my problem. This picture is the shin pieces side by side. To either side of the joint slot are small ridges. This is the first half of the new locking knees.

Note the difference in shape; the pieces should be nearly exact mirrors of each other. The ball of the joint may also be deformed - presumably this was a problem in the casting process.

Or, I could just be overly detail-oriented.

By the way, don't panic if in the course of unstringing your doll, small bits of resin fall out. There is often "flash" (excess resin that occurs in the casting process when the material seeps outside the mold) that gets shaken loose from inside various pieces. You haven't done anything wrong and your doll isn't damaged.

This is the thigh piece. See the slot? When the leg is in the 180 degree position, the ridges on the shin fit into these slots. It's a very tight joint and on a non-defective leg, the joint will function even with the stringing removed.

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