GUESTBOOK ARCHIVES 07
08/09/00 - 02/24/01

Forward in time    GUESTBOOK    Back in time


Saturday 02/24/2001 11:12:16am
Name: Star Collector
E-Mail: star_collector@hotmail.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: After reading your earlier comments about the Azone products I did a little digging and have a URL to their site.

www.azone-int.com

They have many pics there and it appears that the accessories are made to fit a volks type body.

just thought I'd say something,...

-SC-

Thanks for the URL, SC. Although I haven't been able to get through on my browsers, something's there and I'll have to check it out using a different ISP connection. By the way, your site has some very nice work! --Jimbob, 02/25/01


Wednesday 02/21/2001 11:18:20pm
Name: Jared
E-Mail: frendafoe@earthlink.net
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey Jim,
I got a 21st Jacqueline figure the other day and through up a quick review of the body with pics. I thought you'd be interested in seeing this. Just check out my site under "new girl in town"

Hey, thanks for the very thorough review Jared! I should have mine up tomorrow, which I'll link to yours (but then I'll have to find something different to say...dammit! ;^) --Jimbob, 02/22/01




Sunday 02/18/2001 8:22:03am
Name: Sean
E-Mail: jaime_respirer@yahoo.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey, I finally got a website up and running. Updates aren't frequent, but I'm working on that.
Anyways, I snagged the Jewel Girl Barbie, which is thus far the only one with the 'ever flex' waist joint, and have a quasi-review/article up on my site. I need to add some pics of the everflex waist in action: It looks really good, while she's clothed normally anyways.
I also need to add a comparison of the various Barbie doll bodies I've found: the uberarticulated version, which has the ball waist, full action arms, and the workout hips; the generation girl model, which has the full action arms but crummy rubberized legs and no ball waist; and the Everflex model, which has straight arms, the uberwaist, ball/socket?! hips, and rubberized knees. Ideally, you'd have the full action arms, with added wrists joints and gripping hands, the everflex waist, and the workout legs/hips. Attempts to create this are forthcoming, once I snag another everflex doll to take apart. I don't know how it's put together yet, and don't want to destroy my only one...

Cool Sean, I look forward to it. Y'know, with as big a thing as Barbie is, I couldn't find any websites which actually discussed the doll from a reference/technical point of view. Plenty from the collecting, historical and sociological angle though. Leave it to a Joehead, eh? It's unmined territory; go for it! And congrats on the website. --Jimbob 02/18/01



Saturday 02/17/2001 2:56:06pm
Name: Omar
E-Mail: dial_tone1@yahoo.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Love the article on BBI's CY girls. Question- How do I attach a Barbie head onto the Cy girl torso? The barbed spear-thing has broken in half and is now missing. All there is is the torso, which has a hole in it (similar to IAM Action Man), and the Barbie head.

(I've bailed on the CSR gig, but if anyone wants to help Omar out, he's left his addie, or you can post a message here and I'll append it to his Q. --Jimbob, 02/18/01)

(Omar wrote on Tuesday 02/20/2001 5:02:09pm):


I fixed the CY! Yay! Just thought I'd let ya'll know that. I used a joystick from a radio control car's controller. I broke it out of the base of the controller, fliped it upside-down, and jammed it into neck hole of the CY. I then tok the controllers tiny ball-thing at the now-top of the stick, wrapped duct tape on it a bit, and stuck Barbie's [actually Teresa's -I like her face beter :)], head and viola -it's done. If anyone wants a photo, please email me about it. Thanks!

...Obviously, you're beaming with well-earned pride ;^) Which just shows to go ya the value of the "do-it-yourself" approach. Congrats, Omar! --Jimbob, 02/22/01



Saturday 02/17/2001 10:02:44am
Name: pablolobo
E-Mail:
Homepage URL:
Comments: What are your thoughts on the AZone clothing that is coming out of Japan these days. I see they have what might be some rocking fantasy wear?

??? I like Oak trees. :^) --Jimbob, 02/18/01

(from pablolobo, Monday 02/19/2001 2:53:24am -- thanks for the heads-up, pl!):


I like oak trees too. Too bad about the oak wilt in South Texas.

Here's a link:

http://www.hlj.com/cgi-local/hljlist.cgi?Series=Azone+Fantasy&Category=Fig&Dis=2

They also have "regular" clothes.



Saturday 02/17/2001 4:54:02am
Name: Jimmie Berryhill
E-Mail: DarkAngel_Azreal@yahoo.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Concerning your "mini-chisel" delima:
Have you tried using a jewler's screwdriver ground sharp? The head width is usually only about 2-3 mm in width.

(reference to the Artie skeleton-conversion article) That's a good idea Jimmie. There are 1 mm screwdrivers, which is what you'd need to make the main cut across the digit and leave enough for the sides (on this particular skeleton). You'd still have to grind away the side profile to make it thinner (approx 0.3 mm) for about 3 mm up the tool-- the depth of the cut. That's so the tool's thickness doesn't drastically splay the plastic as you cut it (when you cut, the blade acts like a wedge pushing the cut plastic aside-- A thin wedge doesn't push it as far).--Jimbob, 02/17/01


Thursday 02/15/2001 7:01:22am
Name: Jace Calloway
E-Mail: jcalloway@kscable.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Heya Jimbob,
I would just like to say that seeing your site inspired me to undertake a project of my own and I must say that doing it is true bliss! I have collected action figures (1/6) forever and have attempted modfications of my own but they never turned out quite the way I would have liked. But since I have perused your site I have gained much insite and am actually diggin the results of my labors ( sounds like a testimonial eh?) anyways I would like to thank your for the "help" and I am sure I'll have plenty of questions for you very soon so keep your ears open ^_-. Ps once I get these fellas done Ill send you some pics.
Jace-

Thanks for the testimonial, Jace, and glad I could help. I look forward to the pics. FWIW (generally), I'm still pretty slow with my e-mail processing, but it's not intended as a slight. I feel guilty about every piece of mail I receive that grows mold in my inbox. --Jimbob, 02/17/01




Wednesday 02/14/2001 9:10:08am
Name: pablolobo
E-Mail:
Homepage URL:
Comments: Thanks for the info on the Max Steel figure. I really like these figures except for that damn head articulation.

When are we gonna see pictures of the neo-eve? I gotta know, are they real or silicon?:-)


(Soon after this, I posted the Neo Eve review and on Friday 02/16/2001 1:59:59 am, pablolobo posted this:)


Great review on the Neo-Eve. Well I guess hoping for a miracle was a bit much. Looks like I'll have to stick to the Volks Excellent dolls for well rounded bodies.

Well durn! At the time, I didn't realize that I was being so negative about the Neo Eve figure, but that's the way it reads. I'd rather you decide for yourself though because we all have different tastes and priorities. For example, I prefer the Cy Girl to the Volks figure but that's just because I like big butts. ;^) Eventually, there'll be enough variety to serve everyone's fetishes...--Jimbob, 02/17/01



Wednesday 02/07/2001 7:12:58am
Name: pablolobo
E-Mail:
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hello, brilliant site. Can you tell me, this Max Steel Superbody, was it ever released?

Thanks Pablolobo. But huh? If you're referring to the Max Steel figure ("Ultra"?) I converted to a demon guy; Yes, that Max Steel figure was released to the TRU where I bought him (and I assume elsewhere as well), and No, the demon version is still trapped in my house. Beyond that, you should check with Mattel for their product releases. --Jimbob, 02/07/01



Tuesday 02/06/2001 7:22:55pm
Name: Conor
E-Mail: conman13@usa.net
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey Jimbob, do you have any tips on how to make some really good joints? (like the ones on the Samurai figure)
thanks

Yeah, you convert your labor into hard cash and convert that into an Alfrex figure! That's less sarcastic than it sounds because I've never totally scratch built a figure before. Some traditional doll artists do it with wood or porcelain, and perhaps you could use resin, clay or putty. However, the plastics the toy manufacturers use are strong and have better wear characteristics, which give long-lasting tensioning. Plus they're pre-made so you don't have to muck with creating your own parts to the tolerances that smooth-working articulation requires. I consider store-bought figures to be a source of parts that I can't make, or that I'd rather not even try to make; I guess that's why it's called Customizing? --Jimbob, 02/07/01



Monday 02/05/2001 11:20:36pm
Name: Johnny Sokko
E-Mail:
Homepage URL:
Comments: It's been awhile, Jimbob.

I've been visiting the site rather frequently-- perhaps *too* frequently-- reading your articles on the art of the 1:6 kitbash, and I think that I've contracted whatever sickness it is that you have. You see, I'm attempting to muster up the courage to (gulp) create my very first headsculpt! It's madness, I know!

From what I've gathered so far, you sometimes grind down the facial features from an existing doll's head and sculpt new features. My question (you knew there had to be a question) is this: do you ever sculpt heads "from scratch?" That is, do you ever start out with a hunk of clay and pare it down to a head?

I also had another question about sculpting (and you knew there was going to be a follow-up question, didn't you?). What tools do you normally use when you sculpt? Obviously, you must use more than a dremel. I know that you'd rather not turn your site into a correspondence school, but maybe a brief article about sculpting basics wouldn't completely corrupt its artistic integrity. Did I just say that your site had integrity? I must be rambling...

Come on, Jimbob! Talk me from this ledge!

(combined from a second message)

Uhh, you know what? I'm an idiot. You pretty much cover sculpting basics in the "How To" section of the site, but I'd still like to see an article that condenses your two-plus(?) years of observations about the sculpting process. It gets rather frustrating to hop from article to article, trying to remember where I read this or that.

Okay, I'm through.


Johnny, get off that ledge! The approach I take depends on what I have available and what I'm working on... there's no set pattern per say. For example, the grinding down of facial features worked with Hasbro's Jane heads because the heads were already mounted with a neck and were a good size. Grinding down the facial features made it smaller and allowed me to concentrate on sculpting the outer layer. The last two figures had Barbie heads where the size was a problem--waaay too big-- so in that case I chopped off the head right above the neck ring and built up the rest of it. In both cases, my basic intention was to preserve the factory neck-head connection because the soft-plastic/hard plastic connection works well and it's easier than devising it from scratch using O-rings and such. I used to use casting for this: the head was sculpted to fit a modified design vintage neckpin, molded and cast hollow in hard resin. I stopped doing this because I started using figures with different sized neckpins but mainly because I figured out that I didn't need to do all this extra work for one-of-a-kind figures.

As for tools, fingers work well for general shaping but you can use just about anything for detail. I still mainly use that same ragged burnisher with the spear on the other end that I've always used-- it's just a lot dirtier now. Every so often I'll use an Exacto blade or whatever happens to be lying around that seems like it might work better, depending on what I'm trying to do. Finally, I use a water (or spit) dipped brush to smooth out tooling marks.

I've recently had to go back and tweak website pages that I hadn't seen in years-- gaaaa! There's some embarrassing stuff that once I must have thought looked okay. The point is that you can talk about the technical side-- that's pretty cut & dried-- but the one thing you can't impart is the development of your eye. That's a doing thing. As you do more of this kind of thing, you naturally become more critical. It's not due to new techniques or a prior lack of time. Simply, my eye is now better trained to evaluate and identify corrections that I didn't recognize as necessary before. You have to recognize flaws in order to see that they need to be fixed! You can read articles till the cows come home, but that only gives you an intellectual understanding of it. I'm not in a better position to write an improved article now-- hell, it's still about pushing clay around. Specifying the 3D mapping of the surface works for computers, but we humans have to rely on our sight to tell us about symmetry, contours and proper placement of features. I think the best advice is: Observe...Do...Be critical...Be patient. --Jimbob, 02/06/01


Friday 02/02/2001 11:51:45pm
Name: VM
E-Mail: valsboy@home.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: I truly enjoy your site. Your humor amuses me, your talent impresses me, and I find myself checking in everytime I hit the net. From your site, I have learned much about the 1:6 scale genre, which I have come back to as an adult--(only by age). I know you get tons of email but I thought you should know.

Thanks VM-- The latest "Livia Gets The Bone" page is probably as far as I'm gonna take the sexual innuendo thing. In that case, the dirt's in the mind of the beholder, cuz the dolls certainly can't do anything pornographic (even though they look like they could). But it's definitely adults-only stuff, and I'm glad that you're of legal age. If you're old enough to die protecting our national interests, you ought to be entitled to see some doll nakedness. But not drink alcohol??? Oh well... --Jimbob, 02/03/01




Friday 02/02/2001 11:20:05pm
Name: Scott
E-Mail: thatgijoeheadguy@hotmail.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: You once called me Recasting Zealot, or something like that and flicked, or threatened to flick a booger at me. And you told me not to bother you until I did something original. Well Check out my site and you'll find lots of original work, although I still do copy a few select popular items. Guess I'm just a pirate at heart! All the Best.

Yes, I remember that... Actually, you wrote to me about your stuff, I called you a recaster, was apalled that you wanted to link to my site given my position on recasting (the booger comment), you called me an anti-recasting zealot (or something like that). I see that you've moved on to capitalizing on characters that others have created. Some of the work at your site is actually pretty good. But given that I've got a right to harbor a grudge, and that I don't feel 100% about steering others to your site, I've removed your homepage URL from this message. --Jimbob, 02/03/01



Wednesday 01/31/2001 3:11:16am
Name: Aaron B.
E-Mail: aaron@spiltmilkltd.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Jim-Bob...

Very nice work! I presume you are a pro sculptor or modelmaker....no?

Nonetheless, how DO you find the time?

Is there any "one stop" source you know
of for "blank" torsos, hands, legs, accessories, clothing, bubbles, etc?

Or do you have to scavenger everything?
Doesn't that get expensive?

Best regards,
Aaron

Thanks Aaron- you make the time if you're hard core enough (the device looks kinda like a pasta maker). But no, I'm not a pro or con artist; the time comes at the expense of my life, my wife & my sleep. It's powered by my ego, and the website is a manifestation of that. By conventional thinking, it would be smarter to spend the energy making money so I could raise an army to subjugate people and force them to build a giant pyramid. Expensive? Let's face it-- 1/6th is an expensive hobby, period. I've got a deep parts bin by virtue of having "deconstructed" a lot of figures & things. But it's a matter of how you look at it: I suppose I could have bunches of factory fresh figures (that I don't have room to display), or I can have fewer, but Frankensteined to my specs. Even though it may take a Barbie and a Jane to create a BarbieJane (with lots of wasted parts), I appreciate the BarbieJane more than 1 Barbie & 1 Jane, the combined cost seems worth it to me (since you can't buy a BarbieJane any cheaper), and she takes up less room too. (Another bonus: Figures take up less space when they're hacked up.) But I do explore other options: The CY Girls offer a cost-effective alternative, if you want a decent-looking femfig. However, it's not exactly what I want and not real easy to modify, so I'm still looking. --Jimbob 01/31/01



Sunday 01/28/2001 9:49:27am
Name: Leviathan
E-Mail: jsheen@leviathanstudios.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey, in one of my last "blow several hours going `wooooh!'" sessions at
your site, I saw your design for a compact "Bi-directionally-rotating
wrist joint" in your review of the Sideshow Frankenstein.

Have you actually made any of those yet? How hard -- or easy -- is it?
I'd like to try that, to see if I can give that kind of articulation to
my James Bond's wrists.

Of course, given my miniscule skill level, I may be better off trying to
find such a joint already in existance, and buy some. Do you know if
such a thing is out there anywhere? (Hey! Now that I think about it... A
"Famous Covers" female's shoulders might do it!)

Funny you should mention that, Levi (that's Jewish, right? ;^)... my latest project, Livia, has something like that. The pic's mid way down the page, before the dirty pics (if you see nipples, you've gone too far). I'm not entirely sold on the idea though-- the off-position look is ugly (because wrists aren't round in cross-section), but that may not be a big deal to you. The most important thing is to slice the hand exactly perpendicular to the axis of the rotation. If you don't, you'll get a "wobbling" rotation, which exposes big gaps and looks even worse (I know this from experience). --Jimbob, 01/28/01



Monday 01/22/2001 3:22:25am
Name: michael
E-Mail: 1badassdude@prodigy.net
Homepage URL:
Comments: You are a f***ing genius. Your creations were freakin awesome!!! You have inspired me.

Thanks Michael. I'm not a f***ing genius and f***ing a genius would probably be a turn-off, since it would probably bring up feelings of inadequacy. Or result in some really boring bedroom talk. But I'm glad to have inspired you-- provided that you're inspired in a good way! ;^) --Jimbob, 01/28/01


Monday 01/15/2001 12:35:51am
Name: Lewis
E-Mail: kalew1@home.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Excellent site (or what I have seen so far!) This little tidbit of info: I was recently able to use a hair dryer to cure sculpey. It took a while but I didn't have to bake my Jane figure. I'm not sure if it hardened all the way through but it served my purpose. Have you ever tried this?

Yo, Lewis, & congratulations. A heat gun will do the job more quickly, but you do have to be very careful -- it can easily blister and char the clay and make nasty smoke! Boiling is another alternative, but it's more difficult to localize the heat. Unfortunately, greatest strength comes from polymerization at the recommended 275 degree Fahrenheit (which you ain't gonna get through boiling). That always seemed too high a temperature to me (too near that blistering temperature). Lots of people swear by the boiling technique. --Jimbob, 01/15/01




Saturday 01/13/2001 4:03:04pm
Name: Adolfo
E-Mail: mitocondria@alo.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: hi im from mexico city, your site is too interesting, tanx 4 sharing your knowledge

Hola Adolfo, and thanks for stopping by from so far away! --Jimbob, 01/15/01



Saturday 01/13/2001 0:56:56am
Name: Jimmie Berryhill
E-Mail:
Homepage URL:
Comments: Excellent work! Have you considered doing races from "standard fantasy", i.e. Elves, Dwarves, Big hootered gnomes? 8>)
Keep up the great work!

Howdy Jimmie. "Standard Fantasy" is a funny concept, although I think I know what you mean! One of the attractions of fantasy is that you don't have to worry much about "realism", because it's not. But AD&D has defined a standardized and authoritative vision of that world so that it's become somewhat more real and than it actually is. There are experts who know that stuff... I mean, I'd probably call something a "troll" which was actually a goblin! ;^)
--Jimbob, 01/15/01



Tuesday 01/09/2001 11:33:42pm
Name: Don Milinkovich
E-Mail: Dante2000@aol.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: As a person just getting back to collecting and customizing, I find this to be the best page on a wide array of topics in this hobby! Great Stuff! Love It!! Hope you keep it going!!

Danke, Don. I aim to maintain a full-service inferno, and occasionally even do Windows! Seriously, though... uh... man, I forgot! --Jimbob, 01/10/01



Tuesday 01/09/2001 4:00:38pm
Name: Daktari
E-Mail: redflaguk@btinternet.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Loved your site and am still digesting it! Some comments on your German para... VOR GEBRAUCH SPRENGKAPSEL EINSETZEN means "For use set the fuse" or don't forgit to set the fuse your idiot. Also, that bag you call a scrap bag is actually a gas mask bag that was issued only to the paratroopers (it was one less metal thing to land on when jumping out of an airplane. Bread-bags are prodominantly green-ish (like a german rucksack) although a paratrooper could have been issued a luftwaffe blue one. If you already know this stuff... sorry!


Thanks Doc (you don't mind if I call you "Doc" do ya? ;^). Some of the older articles are too embarrassing for me to review, so they go without revision... Ah, yes. The gasmask bag myth is widespread and been mentioned many times. However, a highly reliable source states that the bag was actually issued containing a month's supply of splinter pattern condoms. This cushioned "hard landings" and provided countless man-hours of safe fun. Yadda, yadda, yadda. Sorry, I link everything to sex for cheap laffs! It takes the edge off the serious real-stuff of war. It also sells cars. Hitler only had one ball, but Catherine the Great was not crushed by a stallion accident. It was actually a commode accident. Believe it or not; I wasn't there! I know NAAA-THINK! --Jimbob, 01/10/01


Saturday 01/06/2001 9:31:10pm
Name: David Vance
E-Mail: Mlatch221@aol.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey Jimbob:
Since there's no e-mail link here, I thought I'd use the guest book to let you know that I found the Sideshow Toys "Spinal Tap" three pack of 12in. action figures. They seem to use the same body as the Frankenstein figure you reviewed. I found them at a Suncoast Video store and they retail for around $70 for the set of three, including two guitars and a bass that look like they might be from Resaurus. I hope you'll pass this along.

Thanks for the word, David. I'd probably be mightily chuffed if I actually knew what that meant. I'll supplement the Frankie article to add that info. It's probably easier to customize a human-toned base figure (unless you happen to be making beings who roam the Crisco plains of Xondaria's inner core). --Jimbob, 01/07/01




Friday 01/05/2001 9:06:20pm
Name: David Paxton
E-Mail: Lysander@albion24.fsnet.co.uk
Homepage URL:
Comments: Truly excellent site- I still haven't seen half of it yet- I'll be sure to check your 'how to's' in detail when I come to making some Potatoe Heads- if I can manage 30% of your standard of craftsmanship I'll be well chuffed.
As another Jock, I hope indeed that your Lang Lum is Reeking!
Cheers,
Dav


Uhhhh...bloody hell! I can tell when I'm whupped! The only Transatlantican I know are words like "lift", "water closet", "colour", "bugger" and "wank". Thanks for expanding my vocabulary; promotion of learning has always been a big part of JBWID! (Now can somebody translate for me???) --Jimbob, 01/07/01



Friday 01/05/2001 10:51:08am
Name: Steve H
E-Mail: hilbyf@earthlink.net
Homepage URL:
Comments: It's sure a pleasure to see you're in action again! How about a Green Martian woman?

Well Steve, I don't know about Green Martian women. Seems awfully unlikely that Mars, being the red planet, would evolve green women! As you know, I'm keenly interested in keeping things realistic and plausible. Which is why I'm much more likely to make those buxotic green women who roam the Crisco plains of Xondaria's inner core. --Jimbob, 01/07/01



Tuesday 01/02/2001 9:25:21pm
Name: Ransome Chua
E-Mail: rcda@pacific.net.sg
Homepage URL:
Comments: Hey Jimbob,

I've been out of commission for sometime but now seems to be the best time to touch base with you, so I figure why not? Happy New Year to one of the best and gutsiest customizers in the world ... by the way, is that cat still around?

I've got my revamped website up and running, it's lots more lighter and hopefully more inspiring!!!

Cheers

Ransome

Well dammit, Ran! Where's my Birthday present? Where's my Christmas present? Oh... I guess that would mean that I owe you too... awwww, nevermind!

This must be a Scottish kinda day; fabulous job on your WWI Scots Guard Tommy! It's an overlooked customizing area, and as usual, your work is top-notch! And your site is too damn pretty, as if it were designed by someone with design sense. Yeah, that's it-- embarrass the rest of us hacks.

Congratulations, Happy New Year & welcome back to the saddle. And yes, el gato is still around... we put him up in the freezer as leftovers.

--Jimbob, 01/02/01


Awww ... Jimbo, gosh, you say the nicest things! And thanks for reminding me about your Birthday present too, I've about 5-6 months to work on it right?

BTW, we did the same freezer thing with our cat, she didn't thaw too nicely though! Catch up with you later.

Ran (01/04/2001)

Ran's reply was digitally manipulated to give the appearance of a running exchange... because I have that kind of POWER, hahahahahaaaa!!!--Jimbob, 01/07/01



Tuesday 01/02/2001 1:40:23pm
Name: lorne campbell
E-Mail: lorne@argonaut.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Jim, I've just come back from safari in the cold Highlands of Scotland, and am so glad that you are back updating your website. I was really worried that you'd croaked or something! Or that in a fit of election fever, that you'd gone doo-lally with one of your guitars and slain some democrats.


Anyway, I'm glad that you are in one piece. Phew! The world needs Michealangelos of the art like yourself to remind us all not just to tow the line, and to keep questioning 'authority'.

As we Hairy Scots would say, 'Lang may yer lum reek!'.


Hey! Watch where you point that thing, Lorne! But thanks for your concern; I did in fact, croak, but I'm much better now. As for the election, I'm just glad it's over so that now we can have more politicians making more laws. You can never have too many laws, for that is why paper was invented.

I must confess that I am surprised to hear that Scotland is safari-able. In "Braveheart" they must have omitted the scenes of the wild Scottish Hyenas & Cheetahs. (Ha ha) You lucky SOB; such a beautiful country, with such a rich history & culture!

I hope I can come up with some interesting projects to live up to your lofty expectations. Sheesh, I'm not desperate enough to make triple-boobed freaky chicks yet, but I'm getting pretty close! I briefly considered adding a section to the "Bull" project, displaying a collection of Henshin Cyborg-style alternate genitalia. What a gag! That's an idea no manufacturer would touch with a 10-foot condom... I may have to go ahead with the "Customizing with Chicken Bones" article.

--Jimbob, 01/02/01


Friday 12/29/2000 2:23:01pm
Name: Randy
E-Mail: Randy_Davidson@jims.co.harris.tx.us
Homepage URL:
Comments: I would like to discuss the possiblity of you creating a head for me from a pic, if I provide the org head and pic

Later


Randy, there are companies on the 'Net who offer this service. I haven't been following too closely, but I believe Andgor.com does this. You also might want to put a feeler out on alt.toys.gi-joe (Usenet) since there are some great sculptors out there who haven't (yet) turned their talents into a full-fledged 'Net business, and who might be willing to take on a commissioned job. Good luck!

--Jimbob, 01/01/01




Friday 12/22/2000 10:04:40pm
Name: scott joslin
E-Mail: scottj@firstva.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: Jim bob" I love your work and have been
reading your page since the begining"
any way here is a link to some pic's of
my predator dolls you have helped inspire me to make, and thanks for all
the tips and tricks you have posted over the years, the doll I made is based
off of a max steel body that I love to customise do to its build and articulation. thanks again..Scott
here are the pic's...
http://albums.photopoint.com/j/AlbumIndex?u=1263253&a=9597635


Thanks Scott; for those who haven't seen Scott's kickass Predator conversion, here's the link in clickable html: Scott's stuff. Check it out!

Jimbob, 01/01/01



Tuesday 12/19/2000 2:27:31pm
Name: Tim Rogers
E-Mail: TIMTIEACE@AOL.COM
Homepage URL:
Comments: Greetings, Your work is a Masterpiece
all on it's own.

I customize just the 12-inch action
figures from Star Wars. I created the
Wedding Scene of Luke & Mara Jade, by
using the head of Padme & the body of
the Princess Leia in Cermonial garb.
The wedding scene that I used was from
out of the Dark Horse Comic of "Union"
in issue-6.

I have customize request, how much would
it cost me if I were to have you
to customize a G.I.Joe to look like
Manfred Van Ritchtrofen A.K.A. The
"Red Baron". Dressed in a Black Leather
flight Jacket, Jack boots & cap. Also wearing the "Blue Max" meddalion around his neck.

Also on the Customizing tab, Bat Girl
& Cat Woman from the original T.V. series from the 60's. With moveable
Cowls & Masks!

Keep Up the Good Work!

Tim

Hey Tim, you happen to have the winning numbers for tonight's Texas Lotto? Darn... ;^) Okay, okay... I don't do this stuff for money (unless you happen to be a big company who can give me big bucks and lifelong security, ha ha). Besides, you wouldn't want me to make you a leather jacket-- I'm persistent and skilled in the art of trial-and-error, but that's really the realm of a master tailor like Francis Tavares! I've been thinking for years that some big company is going to do the obvious thing and come out with a Richtofen figure. It's like... such a no-brainer! (Especially since a 1/6th Fokker is probably already available in R/C form.) Anyway-- have faith: We're finally getting our Rommels from the big boys.

Bat & Cat girls. Pow! Well, Ms. Newmar of the '60s is certainly worthy of a serious effort, IMO, no matter what she's wearing (or not).

--Jimbob 12/19/00




Monday 12/18/2000 5:58:50am
Name: Sean
E-Mail: jaime_respirer@yahoo.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: [Note from Jimbob: I've turned Sean's message into an article (without his permission, of course!) with pics, which can be seen at http://home.flash.net/~jimbob1/art23.htm.]

Okay, if there's one thing I've learned from JimBob, it's this: in order to be more comfortable with anything past superficial alterations to a figure, you have to know how it works. I find it very helpful to take apart at least one figure in each line that I have any intention of doing work in, to see how they're put together, so that in the future I'll be better informed when I try to work on them.
To that end, I picked up an extra of the new Jakks Pacific dolls and tore it up. The results were fairly interesting... (I'll have to compare them to the new Jewel Girl Barbie to see if Mattell did things any better).
The underlying skeleton is a cheap, thin plastic figure with horrible clicky hinge joints at the elbow, knee, and hip(no ball hip? sacrelige!) The hips attach to a hard plastic pelvis peice, which is connected by a length of stiff but somewhat bendy wire, with a frame of loose ball/sockets for a spine, to keep it from bending too sharply or losing it's shape. The 'rib cage' connects to the spine, and has standard ball jointed shoulders. The neck is a smaller version of the spine, bendy w/a ball/socket frame.
The arms, legs, and upper torso are all covered in a soft rubber 'skin', which rides over the skeleton underneath, with some foam tossed into the gaps to keep it's shape(doesn't work). Arms are fully sealed and solidly embedded into the stuff: the plastic hasn't bonded, but there are holes in the skeleton so that the rubber is connected through it. Removing the insert w/o slitting down the arm would be a lot of work, if it's even possible.
The legs are solidly attached up to the knee, then have hollow thighs that are connected to the pelvis and to each other: it's all one peice below the waist, w/a hard plastic pair of panties over that(wierd effect).
While this means horrible hip articulation, as all those who’ve bought one have noticed, she has a new feature, previously unseen in any toy: real action Booty. Legs posed back, buttocks compress and stick out. Legs swing forward, buttocks stretch and smooth out with thigh curve, becoming less defined. Just like the real thing! That’s even wierder than the squishy boobs.
The torso skin is again one piece up to the neck: the boobs are separate from the inner skeleton, so they’re flexible: you could theoretically use this to advantage in costuming: add cleavage, wonderbra them, etc…
Recipe for fixing the articulation: take the plastic panties off, and there’s a seam under there where the torso and lower body skin connects: seperate them, and use a screwdriver to take apart the pelvis. Seperat the torso, remove the pelvis and set aside.
Cut the hip joint off, and replace with bendy wire, firmly attached to the legs' skeleton. Give it a frame of some kind, with a loose ball/socket at the hip to give it shape when it moves. Run the wire through the pelvis, connecting it in place as you go. Run it down into the other leg adn repeat. Thus you could get bendy/ball-socket hip joints!
If you’re feeling industrious, remove the entire leg assembly and replace with stiff bendy wire: this will allow more knee range, possibly. Removing the arm skeleton and replacing it with bendy wire as well might work: I don’t know about the swivel arm: you’d have to redo the shoulder entirely, I think. Then you’ll have a nicely posable, if oddly proportioned doll. At this point, I’ll stick with $3 uberposable Barbies at Goodwill: easily fixed up, better articulation, and more durable. I’d worry about the proportions, but I’m making anime girls, so Barbie matches. I’ll have to find another option for ‘real’ girls…



Monday 12/11/2000 5:23:29pm
Name: Randy Riker
E-Mail: rriker11@hotmail.com
Homepage URL:
Comments: HEEEEEEYYYYYYY!!!

(Hope that got your attention.)

Hope all is well with you, and that you haven't completely dropped off the face of the earth! Your expert, humorous commentary is sorely missed, and we of the Web would love to see ya come back to work!

As for me, I've just about completed my second custom female figure, based on a GI Jane body. The first one turned out pretty cool, but the second one....wow!

Here's what I did- first, I gave her some chest, ummm... enhancements, using Squadron Green modelers putty. Next,
I ground down the crotch, tapering it inward, in both the vertical and horizontal axes. By doing this, the notches on the inside of each thigh can be filled in somewhat, and the horrible squareness of the crotch area's likewise eliminated. Next, using more Squadron Green putty, I built up the upper thighs, giving them shapeliness and tone, as well as building up that flat butt Jane's got. After sanding with a Dremel two-speed cordless moto-tool, I used polishing films to take out any burrs left by the tool, and prepared the surface for paint. Next, I painted the reworked areas, using a mix of Liquitex artist's acrylics, matched to the flesh tones of the body plastic color, and thinned with water, for a thin, even coat. After painting several coats, I'll seal the color in with two or three coats of Testors Dullcote clear enamel. Jane also has a new headsculpt, ala Mike Cherry, that wound up being a dead ringer for actress Gillian Anderson (Agent Scully, "The X-Files".) Send me your e-mail, and I'll send along some photos as soon as I can get them scanned onto a diskette for ya!

Randy Riker


Heeeey Randy! (And generally everyone who's written but not received a reply)

Thanks for writing. Sorry I've been such a butthead for not keeping up with correspondence and generally blowing off stuff like that. There's no excuse for that kind of rudeness, but guilt is easy to get over if you've got a short attention span, har har... ;^)

Your customization projects sound cool! If you email .jpgs of your babe to j i m b o b 1 @ f l a s h . n e t
(minus the spaces, or click the link), I'll put the pics up for all to see.

Thanks for the other input & feedback too; I'll try to do better about keeping on top of this stuff (but cain't promise nuttin'!). Life is just so full of interesting stuff, and there just isn't enough time to do everything, and that sort of explains why there are probably over 100 messages sitting in my inbox... [One of the interesting things to happen lately was linking up with members of my old high school band... Big deal, huh? Well, we're talking about folks who live on the other side of the globe!]

--Jimbob, 12/13/00


Saturday 11/25/2000 0:06:43am
Guest: Conor O.
Email:conman13@usa.net

Homepage:
Date: 25-Nov-00 01:06 AM
How do you make some of the joimts like the waist and other such joints? By the way nice work on all of your figures.



Thanks Conor O. As for making joints and articulation, I know I've been kind of glib: I think the step-by-step approach is kinda dorky, but besides that, I believe that modeling is about using your problem solving skills-- not learning which button to press. (It's probably from teaching folks how to use computers.) The actual mechanics of articulation are pretty self-evident: I've provided pics, but it's clearer if you just examine any of the figures out there. You get a feel of the force & tensioning issues by manipulating them, and I think it should be pretty intuitive.

I've mentioned some modeling materials in the articles. The only thing left to do is put the two together (Which means you've gotta do). Bear in mind that when you do things the homebrew way, you're not likely to achieve factory production results. They have different materials at their disposal. However, you can get around some of that, which is part of that gratifying problem solving stuff that I keep harping on. For example, to get the friction of PVC parts, you don't need to mold entire pieces out of PVC: You can attach materials that provide that type of friction at the point of contact. Other things, like the contouring of interlocking parts, are common sense issues. Manufacturers don't produce those funky stylized torso sections because they're deluded into believing that they look marvelous. They do it because the parts work best together mechanically. If you sacrifice that to an aesthetics approach, the result is funkier, less efficient mechanics. I didn't make that up, it's just the way physical reality works!

The bottom line is that ya gotta do, because that's where you learn stuff. I learned that by cutting back on how-to's and by coming off as a grouchy old SOB, I've scared off 90% of the "how do I?" email I used to get! ;^)

--Jimbob, 12/14/00




Monday 11/13/2000 5:03:46pm
Guest: Rajiva Seneviratne
Email:rajiva@intelos.net

Homepage:
Date: 13-Nov-00 06:03 PM
Hi Jimbob, It appears you have taken a sabbatical from your figure modeling...that's OK. I'm sure you are just taking a "creativity break" and will soon return with many more creative ways to skirt the boundaries of toy pornography. I was just wondering if you'd come out of hiding to give us a good "inside and out" review of the "Neo Adam" and "Neo Eve" figs when they are released. Please do!-Raj


Howdy Raj,
This is waaay after-the-fact, and by now the "neo" part may be "middle aged" for many folks... I haven't seen either his or hers to date, but am expecting an "Otto" shortly. Dunno if I'll cut him open though, since he looks to be a really nice figure! Before that, I'll prolly do some sort of thing on Blue Box International's "Cy Gals", in keeping with the degenerate direction this site and civilization has been heading (heh, heh). Anyway, thanks for the kind thoughts!

--Jimbob, 12/14/00



Saturday 11/04/2000 6:57:24pm
Guest: SCOTT JOSLIN
Email:scottj@first va .com

Homepage:
Date: 04-Nov-00 07:56 PM
jimbob thanks for your all the great info at you site,you have been a true inspiration. any way heres some pic's of mycustom predator doll based upon a max steel body, the pics have gone over so well alot of people are asking me for one so I might make a kit out of it. Anyway thanks for beeing there and all your tips and tricks...Scottpic's-http://albums.photopoint.com/j/AlbumIndex?u=1263253&a=9597635


Great stuff, Scott! (Here's a clickable link to Scott's Predator pics.) Converting Max Steel to the Predator shows what can be done with imagination, determination and hard work. (but uhhh... I'd approach the sales issue with some caution if I wuz you... legal stuff, y'know? ;^)

--Jimbob, 12/15/00



Monday 10/09/2000 1:07:25am
Guest: cody
Email:mfbjcody@erols.com

Homepage:
Date: 09-Oct-00 01:07 AM
Enjoyed your site. Great work. Inspiring. Makes me want to try it.


Hey Cody... on the other hand, I look at all this stuff and think of the all the starving children that I could have fed if I'd used that time and money more productively. Or all the barbecue chips I could have eaten... or that Porsche Boxter... or...or... zzzzzzz.




Tuesday 10/03/2000 7:14:29pm
Guest: Dan
Email:gigpit@prodigy.net

Homepage:
Date: 03-Oct-00 07:14 PM
Hello,Can you tell me what happened to Seiji Sawatari's website in your GI Joe section? About a year ago I purchased an absolutely fantastic figure of Admiral Yamamoto from a gentleman named Hirokazu Tabata, who was featured on Mr. Sawatari's website. Mr. Sawatari was very helpful in this process. Does he have a current website? Thank you.


Thursday 09/21/2000 6:19:03pm
Guest: Jon Vogel
Email:vogel@icx.net

Homepage:
Date: 21-Sep-00 06:18 PM
Jimbob,Bummer about the e-mail, but I understand. I was dropping you a line to tell you about my Klaus.He originally had the perforated abdominal spring problem which I fixed with hints from your site. This morning, I discovered that he had developed a broken neck. So, I replaced the entired plastic axis down his middle with a 2" 1/8" screw. Worked like a charm. I noticed later that this was one of your observations on the "fix a Klaus" part of your site. Just wanted to let you know that it's a very viable and effective option.Regards,Jon Vogel




Friday 09/08/2000 1:36:30pm
Guest: Randy Riker
Email:rriker11@hotmail.com

Homepage:
Date: 08-Sep-00 01:35 PM
Dear Jim-bob- Glad to hear your creative energies are doing well, even if you've laid off the figures for a bit.My energies work much the same way- first models, then Joe/Jane/Sam-type hobbyist stuff, and sketching, drawing, or the never-ending list of "honey-dos" around the house.Anyhoo, my current "thang" is a customized Jane, adventuress, kind of a "Bond...Jane Bond" sorta deal, with enhanced bust(cuz she didn't have one) enhanced butt (think"Stairmaster" here) and much-modified hips and crotch (cut down the cross-thickness of the crotch, increase its inwardslant, and taper it downward as you go- amazing how much plastic you can grind away, and still have something workable!) and add tone, thickness, and definition to the upper legs, also doing away with those horrible notches just below the hinge pins, and giving her a much more natural look! It's really amazing what one can do with two tubes of Squadron Green putty, Dremel tool, sanding films, and about a week's worth of work, nonstop.With a Mike Cherry- inspired hairstyle, makeup, and some much-needed clothing, she's just about ready to hit the road.I've been taking pics, and hope to get them posted on some websites soon. I'm not online at home yet, and would like to post some of my Jane's photos on the "guests" section of your website! Once developed, can I send you a few color glossies for your own review?Let me know, along with your mailing address, so I can get them out to you ASAP!For more on my project, go to the general discussion forumat the "Joe World" website, and follow the thread, titled, "All About Jane." (I might add, there's more than a couple of references to YOU that come up here, too!)E-mail me at rriker11@hotmail.com.Hope your hiatus/vacation/other diversions give you much enjoyment!TTYL,Randy Riker



Monday 09/04/2000 5:00:04pm
Guest: Eric Tetangco
Email:derict@freedsl.com

Homepage:
Date: 04-Sep-00 04:59 PM
I don't know why it's taken me so long to come around for avisit again. Somehow I'd forgotten how funny and cool yourwebsite is. That, or I'm just incredibly bored right now,and anything will entertain me. *8) Just kidding! Keepthe cool stuff coming! I love you, man. In an asexual non-gay way. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Of course not. Piece out.



Tuesday 08/15/2000 11:22:02am
Guest: Randy Riker
Email:rriker11@hotmail.com

Homepage:
Date: 15-Aug-00 11:20 AM
Yo once again, Jim! Glad to see your guestbook's up and running again! Love the Jim-Bob Joe in your latest "Minx"installment-ha!I'm working on a "FrankenJane" customizing project of my own, using a spare 82nd Airborne Jane I have, and so far it seems to be doing pretty well. Which is pretty amazing, since this is the first time I've EVER customized a Jane.I'm using Squadron Green Putty, layered, for the...ummm.."enhancements", yeah, that's the word I was thinking of...LOL! She's getting a new Stairmaster butt, hips, a complete reworking of that thick, horrible pelvic cavity,and is sporting a near-perfect set of mammaries, which hang nice, are well-defined, and need no help from Silicon Valley, if you catch my drift. The hairstyle's gonna be handled in a Mike Cherry-type of fashion, but with a twist-her hair will actually be a series of snug-fitting, interchangeable Sculpey/Fimo wigs, of varying lengths, colors and styles, so's I don't have to create a new headsculpt every time. More on my project can be found on the "Joe World" website's discussion forum, under the thread, "All About Jane"- do check it out, and hopefully, I'll get some photos posted, somewhere. (A real challenge, since I don't have my own website, and I'm not online at home yet.)Oh, and one more thing- on the same thread, "ScottE" has a great tip on dressing Janes- he uses balloons for every thing that needs to be skin tight- miniskirts, tank tops,tank dresses, etc. I thought I'd pass this on, since youdefinitely hold the philosophy that "less is more, and skintight's the only way right!" Too cool!Randy



Wednesday 08/09/2000 7:06:02pm
Guest: Adam Bosse
Email:abosse8740@aol.com

Homepage:
Date: 09-Aug-00 07:05 PM
Hilarious update featuring your likeness! Love the banter and the behind the scenes stuff (brought me back to 'Moonlighting' which stole from Hope & Crosby).Glad to know you have the confidence not to enhance your own figure.:-) I have a 'me' figure in my office on a CC, but my home 'me' head is on a (factory-packaged) SS body.Adam


Wednesday 08/09/2000 7:05:13pm
Guest: Adam Bosse
Email:abosse8740@aol.com

Homepage:
Date: 09-Aug-00 07:03 PM
Hilarious update featuring your likeness! Love the banter and the behind the scenes stuff (brought me back to 'Moonlighting' which stole from Hope & Crosby).Glad to know you have the confidence not to enhance your own figure.:-) I have a 'me' figure in my office on a CC, but my home 'me' head is on a (factory-packaged) SS body.Adam
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