I believe safety joints 'lock' into one position only, leaving no small parts to potentially cause a hazard. Cotter joints/nut and bolts are more traditional and they give you more control on how tight or loose a joint is. So you can deliberatley make a bear with loose joints, so the arms swing around, or you can joint tight.
It gives you more control.
Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, I've never used a plastic safety joint.
Jaina is right, the plastic safety joints lock into place and they are very hard sometimes to get them to lock into place. You can adjust the tension or how loose or tight you want your bear limbs to be with locknut joints. I originally started with cotter pins and realized that it is very hard to get all four of your limbs to have the same tension when using them. To me cotter pins were very hard on my hands when turning the pins also. :doh:
I've only used safety joints a couple of times when asked to make bears for kids, and they were a nightmare! One of them is actually coming back from Denmark (it was a present for a friend of my parents' new baby) as the head popped off one day when she was playing a bit too roughly with it. Not sure how I'm going to fix that, or rather how I'm going to be able to instruct my dad to fix it over the phone as she'll be visiting them 200 miles away from me!
Well, I always use the safety joints on my babies. There are a couple of different kinds. The cheaper ones do pop ocassionally but I have never had the secure ones pop. I do adjust the tension to how I want it but once you have the baby put together it is done. I have removed them also but they are not reuseable once they are pulled apart...you basically have to break them. Now I don't know if I should use them on my bears or not. I do have a difficult time with the cotter pin joints. I do not have so much strength as I used to. Hummmmmmm, perhaps this is a trial and error situation???
I'm new to this too, and i chose traditional cotter pin joints with the hard board discs basically for longevity. I have some bears from 1905-1910 that are cotter pin jointed and if they can hold up for that amount of years im sticking with them..even though they are really hard to do.
With plastic, i dont believe they will outlast cotter pins, but i make bears for shelf use only, not for play..well accept by me
I have been making bears for over 30 years and use the plastic joints because I make bears that are child safe. They can be loose or tight and they never have come apart. Because my hands are not what they use to be I have a system I use for putting them on to make them tight. I put the pieces in the bear and then snap them together loosely and then with a socket from my husbands toolbox, I set the socket on a hard surface and put the joint on top of it and I can push the whole joint together with arm strength. I don't know if I explained this well enough to understand, but I hope so.
Well, the latest...
I put the bolt joint in the head and could not get it together...my hubby had to do it for me. Yesterday I tried my hand at the cotter pin and could not even pull them apart. I pried them with a tool and then tried to make a crown joint...NO WAY! So, I did the snail joint and not very well at that. The joint is loose but so be it. I have decided that I am going to go the the plastic secure joints I use in my babies. Yes, Eva, I use the same method you do only with a large thread spool. I can make the joints as tight or as loose as I want and they never come apart!
Funnily enough I've just carried out surgery today on the bear I mentioned in the post above. Had to open him up again, empty his stuffing, re-attach the head and stuff and finish him again. I'm not sure I'd trust a safety joint again, so I think the next one I make for a child will be string jointed!
There are different kinds of safety joints...some will pop and some won't! I always get the more expensive secure ones that will not come apart. I have never had one of them pop. In fact, if you need to take them apart you have to cut the post off and pry them open, but, with the before mentioned process they can be made as tight as you want!