Again, please note that this is just a documentation of how I assembled this kit. There may be better ways of doing it, so be creative and figure out what works best for you!
Step 1: Clipping
Clipping the joints
Using craft wire clippers (and clipping AWAY from you), clip the joints according to the instruction sheet provided with the figure set. (It's as easy as matching up the numbers.) Please note that there may be duplicate parts, but in fact, the large major joints only have *one*... so please work with caution.
The clipped joint
Feel free to trim away the extra bits using the wire clippers. I had started off sanding down the excess plastic, but it's really not necessary. (In fact, it was a waste of time. ^_^;;;;)
One other important note: I don't suggest making all the joints at the same time unless you can keep track of which goes where. There are many similar pieces... so I only made the joints before drilling the appropriate holes.
Step 2: Fitting the joint together
Piecing the joints together
Clamping them together
This part caused me some grief. I highly suggest not working on this if you are impatient or stressed out... and having an extra DM set might come in handy. Fitting together the plastic joints is very straight-forward. Some pieces may fit better than others. Having a lubricant like a bar of soap works and possibly sanding down parts of the tip help~ Be careful not to bend the thin plastic tube when piecing the parts together... I inadvertantly squished it and warped the tube part... and straightening it and refitting it was a pain. (I didn't purchase an extra DM kit~) Also, before clamping the parts together, be sure that the joints can click-rotate. If you are having a hard time adjusting the joint parts, it's going to cause you problems down the way. (Trust me. >_>;) Clamping them together too tight might restrict the rotating later~
Part 3: Drilling
I think I used a dollar store drill bit set... maybe you can find something that works better.. but unless you have a very low speed dremel or have super steady hands, I suggest doing this manually. You will need a 2mm and a 3mm bit. I used the tubes that came on the joint pack to gauge the size and depth of my drills. (I'm sure this is not the right way of using them, but they worked nicely for me. ^_^;;;) The diagram tells you the depth of each of the drills. To check my work, I inserted the joint to see if it would stay and thus hold a pose.
Part 4: The finished product~
Voila~ in a sort of haphazard way~
Now that I've more or less successfully completed my first CF kit, here are some final thoughts~
This kit was a decent amount of work! I thought that the hard part would really be in cleaning up the joints and all, but it ended up being the precision work of drilling the holes for the joints. I find that my pieces don't really stay in place very well and some joints are extremely tight and have a hard time rotating for poses. (Which is why one of the ball joints for the legs have a visible slit in it.) I'll probably be using something to seal the joint holes with later to better secure the joints. (Some have suggested using scotch tape - others say dry cleaner's garment bag plastic pieces.)
The head may be a little heavy to hold some poses on its own. What I would suggest is placing a little eye putty around the inner neck joint piece to help give a little stability.
I am a bit disappointed that the joint pieces (as they currently are) often fall out of place. Perhaps I'll experiment with all those tube pieces and see if by fitting them into the drilled holes, they will create a more adjustable figure... *ponder*
As for the standard questions and concerns I've been asked or heard:
For those of you looking for a mini BJD, this isn't the kit for you. I find it is difficult to transport the figure (much less play with it) without it falling apart. However, if you are looking to keep her in a static pose like a figurine, this may be a better choice for you. She photos well and holds most poses nicely!
As for making it into a mini BJD, it's possible - but it will require a dremel with a long drill bit, lots of patience, and some ingenuity on your part. I don't own any mini BJDs to compare the CF kit with~
As for an initial clothes fitting run, standard Barbie Fashion Fever fashion is definitely too big. Some WTG clothes wear a little large as well. 22 or 23cm clothes would probably work best. As I have time to fix this little lady up
Welps! That ends the basic construction of the CF! Next up - Face up and dress up!