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Loose Mochi Ashi Hip Joint

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frollywoggy

So I’ve gotten pretty good at seating the mochi ashi legs properly in the joint after they come loose, but I noticed recently that even though my doll’s legs were seated properly, her left hip was loose. I figured out that the piece of frame in her left thigh needs to be tightened, but I can’t access it.

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The handling guide says that the joint in question can be removed and tightened, but I’ve been trying for hours and haven’t been able to get it out. Has anyone else had this issue, or know how to remove the joint from the shell?

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BeyondTime
6 minutes ago, Frollywog said:

The handling guide says that the joint in question can be removed and tightened, but I’ve been trying for hours and haven’t been able to get it out. Has anyone else had this issue, or know how to remove the joint from the shell?

That one is really tough to remove. It can be done but it's hard to get enough of a grip to pull it out. You really need to heat the vinyl and work it back over the ball joint, but getting a grip on the joint is hard. I think the last time I did that I slipped a screwdriver into the socket to help with leverage. I did worry about scaring or damaging the frame though. A wooden dowel in the right size might be better.

 

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The difference between Dollfie Dreams and Heroin? Heroin is illegal, Dollfie Dreams probably should be.

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Xiongmao

My new girl's right leg is really wobbly. It's a shame but as she's tan it would be really difficult to get a replacement leg if I damaged hers.

Part of her new outfit came today though, so she's chill. Plus we got a Pureneemo sized skateboard and wine bottle as free gifts 🛹.


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My Dollfie doll family 😊.

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BeyondTime
1 hour ago, Tierparkzone said:

You can pull the pin that connects the left and right hip joints out from the torso and use this as a lever.

I kind of wondered about using the whole lower torso frame as a lever, but I haven't seen it on the MDD so I don't know how delicate it might be, and I'd still worry about breakage; even on DD I'd worry. 

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The difference between Dollfie Dreams and Heroin? Heroin is illegal, Dollfie Dreams probably should be.

“Empty wallets, full hearts.” That’s probably an apt description for the effects of DD addiction

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frollywoggy

Thank you for all the advice! I used a screwdriver wrapped in a cloth to avoid scarring, and managed to pull it out with some heating, and now it’s all fixed! I did accidentally stain her in the process though, so now she’s being treated for that lol.

Edited by Frollywog
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Jezrah

In case if future need, another option is to leave the lower leg frame attached but remove the shin vinyl and foot, then heat. Use the lower leg frame to push from the bottom as you work on wiggling the hip ball out, then once it's out far enough not to pull back easily you can remove the lower leg frame so the hip ball cam come out. If that makes sense? Sometimes pushing a part out is easier than pulling it with no leverage.

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Subaru

I've had better luck submerging the leg completely in hot/boiling water (ex. in a sous vide bag) and pulling the frame out. I found that removing the internal frame was more difficult if the vinyl shell wasn't evenly heated and soft.

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BeyondTime
1 hour ago, Subaru said:

I've had better luck submerging the leg completely in hot/boiling water (ex. in a sous vide bag) and pulling the frame out. I found that removing the internal frame was more difficult if the vinyl shell wasn't evenly heated and soft.

Yes! The hot water trick is way better than a hairdryer. Without that, I would not have been able to shoehorn an f3 frame into a unitorso. 

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The difference between Dollfie Dreams and Heroin? Heroin is illegal, Dollfie Dreams probably should be.

“Empty wallets, full hearts.” That’s probably an apt description for the effects of DD addiction

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Tierparkzone
6 hours ago, Frollywog said:

I did accidentally stain her in the process though, (still not sure how…) so now she’s being treated for that lol.

Does your hair dryer or your screwdriver have black neoprene grips? These can sometimes invisibly transfer color onto your hands and from there onto the doll.

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frollywoggy
1 hour ago, Tierparkzone said:

Does your hair dryer or your screwdriver have black neoprene grips? These can sometimes invisibly transfer color onto your hands and from there onto the doll.

I don't think they do, I think I was just careless, as I put her on a surface that may have had pencil residue. I've also recently dyed my hair, and it's hard to remember to avoid touching it when I'm handling her. Those are the most likely reasons I can find, anyway. But good news, the stains came out super quickly, so she's all fixed up!

Edited by Frollywog
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frollywoggy
4 hours ago, Subaru said:

I've had better luck submerging the leg completely in hot/boiling water (ex. in a sous vide bag) and pulling the frame out. I found that removing the internal frame was more difficult if the vinyl shell wasn't evenly heated and soft.

I also use this method, I call it "making doll tea" 😁

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bananaaether

Thank you so much for posting this because I've desperately needed to tighten my mochiashi's hips, but the last time I tried to get her hip joint out I accidentally scratched it up with my pliers and traumatized myself... Thankfully I'll never actually see it and it doesn't affect how it sits in the frame or anything, but I was so afraid of accidentally damaging the vinyl or snapping the frame, lol! I even wrapped my pliers in a cloth towel so I was pretty salty about that screwup. I'm gonna have to try the boiling water thing...

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BeyondTime
14 hours ago, Frollywog said:

I also use this method, I call it "making doll tea" 😁

That has got to become the official name for this.

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The difference between Dollfie Dreams and Heroin? Heroin is illegal, Dollfie Dreams probably should be.

“Empty wallets, full hearts.” That’s probably an apt description for the effects of DD addiction

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flora

I'm just posting to say I'm a new MDD owner and I loved my doll at first. But after take playing with her, I've had stains and the left hip joint just gave out and her leg fell off. I've used tape on the peg that seems to help but why haven't they made these dolls to be like Barbies or have magnets/metal joints? I feel like this is just so frustrating. I've cried multiple times dealing with these issues. I really don't want to give up on this hobby but I hated strings in the regular bjd dolls and I wanted the easy to deal with joints of the dollfie dream doll. Is there another doll company that might be a better fit if I can't get this hip joint fixed? 

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Oculae

These dolls aren't built like Barbies because they're intended for gentle handling and photography, so the frame is meant to allow as much posability as possible while still letting the doll look good in a variety of poses. Magnetic joints would fail to hold a pose well, and would fall apart just as easily over time.

It's easy to mess up when you're new to vinyl, but that doesn't mean you're a bad doll owner or the doll itself is faulty, it just means you need to learn a bit more! Stains are fixable and joints can be put back together, though, so don't worry! There's a good stain removal guide and a guide for how to put the f3's hip joint back in place so you can get the leg back on right here on this forum, the search function on here is really good.

And to prevent future stains, you can get a fabric bodysuit that goes over the vinyl to protect it! Volks sells them and has them in stock pretty frequently. Until it shows up, keep your girl in light colors, as those have a much lower stain risk.

As for alternatives...all vinyl dolls have this same frame with shell design, as it's the easiest to maintain and repair by yourself if something goes wrong, but if you really want a body whose joints are built like a tank in 1/4, take a look at Tinyfox dolls. They're not technically vinyl, they're hard plastic with a soft coating, so they'll be a little more like resin in terms of weight, but you've gotta REALLY try to take them apart, even if you're doing it on purpose. They do have the same stain risk, though. You can't escape that with these dolls.

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flora

Okay thank you @Oculae I used tape on the hip peg and was able to get the legs back in but I don't know that I feel like it's sturdy enough to do a lot of posing. I'm not even into photography much, so I was simply changing clothes that caused the leg to loosen and fall off. The half moon key on the hip joint is really difficult to get to line up and that seems to be the big issue I'm dealing with.

I do recall reading that the MDD body was being discontinued or that maybe a newer one would be coming out? But I'm not sure how often body updates are made, like once every 5 or so years? I wonder if an older body would be a better fit or have more problems? 

The stains were from some black knee highs ( I think Dollmore but IDK for sure). I tried dish soap, magic eraser, rubbing alcohol, peroxide and acetone. Nothing helped. Then went to get oxy 10 and maybe I need to apply heat and multiple applications but the stains are still there. I'm pretty sure I'll have to order dollfie rescue cream at this point. (I've seen cif cleaner but would rather try a volks product first)

I honestly just wanted a more customizable figure to enjoy on my shelf, but this seems really complicated. 😞 

And yes, I've been thinking about a TinyFox so I might try that as well in the future. I have thought about getting a DDP but IDK about growing my collection when I've had so much frustration rather than enjoyment so far. 

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frollywoggy
On 9/26/2023 at 9:49 AM, flora said:

I honestly just wanted a more customizable figure to enjoy on my shelf, but this seems really complicated. 😞 

And yes, I've been thinking about a TinyFox so I might try that as well in the future. I have thought about getting a DDP but IDK about growing my collection when I've had so much frustration rather than enjoyment so far. 

Tinyfox are very good if you are worried about joint issues. I recently got a new Tinyfox, and her arm popped out the moment I took her out of the box. However, I just popped it back in, without even batting an eye. Staining issues are also a bit easier with Tinyfox. The dolls are not vinyl like MDD are but rather made of ABS plastic with a soft coating on the outside. The coating is easily stained and stain treatment rubs it off, which seems scary at first. However, if you remove the coating completely and use some matte sealant in its place, the staining issues vanish from what I understand. There's a thread about Tinyfox that goes into more detail about these things, so I reccommend taking a look.

TinyFox Dolls! - General Discussions - DollDreaming

On 9/26/2023 at 8:57 AM, flora said:

I'm just posting to say I'm a new MDD owner and I loved my doll at first. But after take playing with her, I've had stains and the left hip joint just gave out and her leg fell off. I've used tape on the peg that seems to help but why haven't they made these dolls to be like Barbies or have magnets/metal joints? I feel like this is just so frustrating. I've cried multiple times dealing with these issues. I really don't want to give up on this hobby but I hated strings in the regular bjd dolls and I wanted the easy to deal with joints of the dollfie dream doll. Is there another doll company that might be a better fit if I can't get this hip joint fixed? 

Ugh this is so true. I had a horrible 2 hours of trying to get my doll's legs and hips seated correctly after I first got her, and it's such an awful experience. I can make a quick photo guide to help you get the legs seated properly if that would be helpful, just let me know. Also if you have a mochi ashi MDD, they are known to have issues with the hips and the legs will become a bit loose anytime you pose her legs. It is annoying, but becomes super easy to just push them back in after a bit of practice.

In my experience, stain treatment takes time, patience, and many treatments. It can be a pain sometimes, but after a bit becomes more of a minor annoyance instead of a scary ordeal. Here's the process:

1. Apply the product on the stained area (you want acne cream with 10% benzoyl peroxide, that's what does the job).

2. Cover it with plastic wrap so the cream doesn't dry out. 

3. Set up a desk lamp about 6 inches from the surface, and leave it like that for 4-6 hours.

4. Check it about every hour or so to make sure the vinyl doesn't get too hot.

5. After 4-6 hours, unwrap it, wipe off the cream with a cloth, and check the stain. If it needs more treatment, repeat from step 1 as many times as needed to remove the stain to your satsifaction.

6. When the stain is gone, wipe the area again with a slightly damp magic eraser and a damp cloth to remove all the product. All done!

Stains still terrify me, especially when they are so difficult to remove. This hobby can be so stressful when things go wrong, and I'm sorry things have been so stressful for you. Sending love and good vibes to you❤️

Edited by Frollywoggy
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finnleo
1 hour ago, flora said:

The half moon key on the hip joint is really difficult to get to line up and that seems to be the big issue I'm dealing with.

This is unfortunately a feature of the F3 generation of Volks vinyl bodies, and even the new MDD F3 2.0 seems to have this design as far as I could tell from the skeleton picture.

putting tape over the hip cross pin might not be the best solution, since it might bunch up inside the hip where the keyed bits of the legs need to go into. If theres something in between the leg bits, they wont seat properly in the hip and will be floppy (the two leg pieces pretty much need to touch eachother inside the hip.)

as oculae mentioned it worth looking into the posts about f3 hip alignment problems and solutions. this is the biggest annoyance with the volks F3 body generation, but it also features upgrades over past generations that make up for it in terms of longevity.

 

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chantelle
2 hours ago, flora said:

And yes, I've been thinking about a TinyFox so I might try that as well in the future. I have thought about getting a DDP but IDK about growing my collection when I've had so much frustration rather than enjoyment so far. 

If it helps, from my experience, I haven’t had any issues with my DDP’s joints as of yet. The legs haven’t popped out for me either! 🙂 I did take apart my DDP’s legs before and while it was a bit finicky to get back in, it wasn’t too difficult.

IIRC, F3 DDdy and MDD Mochi ashi legs are particularly problematic because the shell of the thigh is much larger than the frame. I think the common advice is to press tightly onto the hips every so often so the joints are pushed together!

I do understand your experience may be discouraging though. I don’t know if these are easier to handle but the Obitsu 50 and Azone 45 are similar in proportion and height to DDP so they may be worth considering!

Edited by chantelle
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flora

Okay, thank you for the advice! I may try a DDP if it's less likely to have problems or I could look at the other brands as well. Do you own an obitsu or Azone? 

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Oculae

I should warn you, DDP, Obitsu, and Azone all have their own problems as well. DDP doesn't have a lot of options for clothing from Volks, as they're a weird size in between 1/3 and 1/4. They also don't have a lot of optional parts like Volks's other dolls do, such as hands and busts. If you get a 50cm Azone or Obitsu, they also have problems with finding clothes that fit...though Azone and Parabox at least make clothes and optional vinyl bits for these dolls, and release them pretty regularly, so it's not AS bad. If you want to avoid that, go for 45cm or shorter dolls. Those are true 1/4 size and can fit anything an MDD can fit!

Also, any doll with an Obitsu frame, which includes Azone, have fragile shoulders and hips, so you need to either be careful when posing, assembling, and disassembling your girl, or plan on having a few backup frame pieces for when something breaks. They're pretty cheap, but you'll need to get them from overseas, so shipping can get expensive, and they're not always in stock. I own and love several Obitsu framed dolls, but if the DD frame frustrates you, the Obitsu frame might not be right for you either. Both require some patience and some maintenance to be at their best.

I really recommend browsing the forum and reading the comparisons and how-to guides here before making a decision one way or the other. There are a lot of doll owners here who've been where you're at! Reading their experiences and learning from their tips, tricks, and mistakes are the best way to get an idea of what you want out of a doll and what kind of doll would be best for your needs.

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PolitelyNefarious

@flora  Oculae is spot on. It's kind of a tradeoff any way you go;

*MDD is the sturdiest, one of the most popular vinyl dolls in general, and the default most clothing artists and manufactures base off of, but has more limited posability. (Regular MDD doesn't have the Mochi Ashi hip problem, but is more or less the same otherwise)

*Azone/Obitsu/Parabox dolls have significantly more posability across the board, with double-jointed knees and elbows, but your clothing options are limited unless you stick to the MDD-comparable sizes, and their frames are notably more fragile.

*Dollbot also makes a beautiful body with some unique posability options- the tradeoff is that the double-jointed knees are hideous, and from what I've heard, it is not as sturdy as MDD, though I have yet to read any accounts of a broken one.

*Imomodoll is fairly cheap and has MDD-comparable posability, but some TLC is almost always required, and I personally was unable to fix the arms in mine to keep them from popping out when I tried to use the double-jointed elbow. But mine is a V1, and the V2 seems to be the better version across the board. It is a case of 'less money = more do-it-yourself'. 

*I admittedly don't know much about TinyFox, except that removing the default coating and giving them the clear sealant is advisable, as they seem to be the most stain-prone of all these options. People who have them tend to really like them, and rarely stop at one. Their posing looks quite nice, and they are produced by one of the older BJD companies from the resin side of the hobby, so there's a fair bit of experienced engineering and design going into them.

*If you are looking at DDP, some Azone clothes do fit her okay, but if you really wanted the upgrade in size, I would personally opt for an Azone instead, for the reasons Oculae mentioned. Volks made DDP and then didn't do much with her- you will have no option parts. The clothes made for her by sources outside of Volks are few and far between, whereas Azone at least has dedicated clothing lines and parts for all their sizes. Because MDD is the standard for this size, picking any of these options that fits into MDD clothes will be easier to shop for than Azone's taller sizes.

*On the other hand, there is the new MDD body, and unless it proves less stable, it will presumably continue to be the midpoint in terms of quality and posability. You still have the single-jointed knee, but they've improved the hips and torso posing, and added a neck joint mechanic that brings a lot to it.

In the end, research is key. Watching videos and looking at photos to see how people handle their dolls and how they pose. Hear what they have to say about the things they like, and the things they don't about them. You are correct; Dollfies and their counterparts are more complicated than a run-of-the-mill fashion doll. They're closer to a highly-posable action figure: Lots of fiddly bits to be mindful of. But working with those bits will also help you understand more about them and how they're put together, which can make customizing easier. I am very sorry about your bad first experience; it sounds like a lot of things have gone wrong up front. And it's okay if you decide the hobby is not for you. It should be fun, after all. It is definitely an elbow-grease hobby; even if someone commissions others to make their doll look nice, they will still have to maintain her from time to time. But the good news is, it gets easier. Usually. Some aspects are harder than others, but as far as basic maintenance goes, the more you do it, the more familiar with the doll you'll become, to the point where you can tell when something is starting to get loose, where it is, and be able to address it right away. ☺️👍

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flora

Thank you for the help! So far she's been good in the small amount I've handled her. I think all of it happening at once was just an overwhelming experience, but it's good to see it's but just my fault and just will take time and experience. I think I'm also so fearful that if I apply too much pressure it'll break something, but it needs it to go back into place. 

I would like to research further into other doll brands. I have a volks SD and honestly the body is made so nice versus two other brands I had that I felt like volks was the best way to go. I might just also look into the slim leg MDD (and as for the new body, how new is it? I haven't had her body for too long I don't think?)

Thanks! I appreciate all the help I've gotten here! 

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