I. armatures = wire
Movement is an important part of our doll making. The foundation of our movable dolls is a poseable armature based on stop motion animation.
This armature (or skeleton) is constructed of braided wire and wood, the wire is aluminum which is well-suited for repositioning as it has very little memory, meaning it doesn't try to spring back to its original position. In addition, the wire is annealed which makes it less brittle, longer lasting, and less likely to break.
Copper wire has more spring and does not hold up as well to repeated bending, therefore, is not used very much in stop motion animation, which requires very specific positioning. Background characters use these types of basic armatures. However, the '60s Christmas TV specials as "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,"used this type ofarmature covered withflocked foamed latex rubber. Many duplicates had to be made as they wore out quickly.
To make an elbow, or knee joint, two dowels are drilled on each end with four holes to accept the braided wire that is inserted and glued with an adhesive called Zap-A-Gap, a form of crazy glue. The limb is attached to the torso with machine screws and T-nuts, which are pressed into the wood to accept the screws. These parts are available at any well-stocked hobby shop. The wires are clamped to the ankle, which is made of aluminum angle stock that can be bought at most hardware stores. The bottom of the foot is threaded and attached to the display base.