Minifig Picture

A friend of mine gave me some of his old minifigures. As you guys can see, the hand of one of the figures is broken and a part of the hand is stuck in the arm.

Do you have any ideas how to remove the broken part?

  • 3
    I think you would have to drill it out somehow, but that seems difficult. Might be easier to just replace the whole arm with some cheap blue-armed minifig from BrickLink. Commented Apr 28, 2018 at 22:54
  • 4
    I wonder if you could heat up a sewing pin with a lighter and stick it in and wait until it cools / solidifies. Commented Apr 30, 2018 at 0:01
  • That is no soldier, that is now a pirate Arrrggghh! who's hook, hat and parrot have been lost during a daring raid!
    – nickjb
    Commented May 11, 2018 at 10:38
  • been sucessful with Aarons method twice, works fine!
    – fabian
    Commented Mar 10, 2019 at 15:21

6 Answers 6


Don't fix it

I sympathize with the desire to fix it, but on closer consideration it doesn't seem easy or worth it. Getting the hand out would probably damage the arm even if you manage to do it.

Replace it

The entire torso is available for less than $1 on BrickLink. This is the easiest path forward. Some similar torsos are half as much if you don't need an exact match.

There are replacement arms for many colors and color combinations on BrickLink, but not a plain blue arm like this that I could find.

If you get lucky.

Apparently you can buy just the hands as Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 pointed out. So if you manage to get the hand out without damaging the arm you can solve your problem for a few cents plus postage.

Or re-purpose it

As with all of LEGO the possibilities are limited to your imagination:

  • maybe this soldier had his hand cut off and he's too poor to get a prosthetic.
  • maybe this guy is holding a tray of drinks on his right arm during a battle. I don't have an arm with a missing hand to test this, but I hope something could be attached to it.
  • maybe he had a tragic shaving accident and you can make a bloody scene about it.
  • maybe this soldier put on the wrong uniform and you can live with 2 new matching arms from BrickLink that aren't entirely blue.
  • maybe he's sticking his arm into a bee's nest or a hole in a dike.

So I hope you can see some way to get more value out of your "broken" torso than just tossing it. But sometimes we've gotten all of the life out of a piece and it is time to let it go.


I've had this problem several times before. There are two general ways to solve this issue.

Brute Force Needle Stick several needles into the arm area at an angle. Then simultaneously push down on all the other ends of the needles to unstick the needle

Hot Paperclip This is excessive but effective. I wore gloves and used my kitchen stove to heat up a paperclip and stuck it at an angle into the plastic. It melted the plastic and stuck really well and after the plastic solidified again (in a literally a minute) I pulled the entire stuck arm out.

Good luck!


The tiny screw method works. We dipped it in dish soap, made a tiny groove with a thumb tack and then threaded a very small screw. Used two pairs of plyers, one on the arm and one on the screw, and pulled the broken hand out with no issue.


I extracted two broken hand stumps with a hot needle and replaced them with unbroken hands from less important or otherwise broken figures.


  1. Position the figure's arm pointing straight out and remove accessories that might fall off.
  2. Hold sewing needle with pliers over stove until glowing hot.
  3. Plunge hot needle into hand stump at an angle.
  4. Quench with water.
  5. Pry the hand stump out with the needle.
    • The needle will not have enough friction with the plastic to pull the stump straight out unless it's really lose, so the direction of pulling/prying must be at an angle from the needle.

Of the two figures I used this technique on, it worked on the first try for one and took two or three attempts (at different angles) for the other. The hand stumps were recessed to different depths.

The hot needle caused minimal distortion to the inside edge of the hand socket and did not interfere with the ability to install a new hand. With enough skill, I think you could avoid touching the arm socket at all, but I nicked mine a little tiny bit. Of course, this minifig has seen worse, so I'm not too concerned.

enter image description here

The king is all better now, with a new hand. The stub of an old one is on the table next to him.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Welcome to Bricks.SE! Great answer!
    – jncraton
    Commented Mar 10, 2019 at 0:30

I just got one out using a very small drill bit and twisting it with my fingers. Took about a minute of twisting to make a hole in the hand piece. Then pressed the drill bit to the side of the hole I made and pulled it out.


If you have a tiny screw, it might be possible to screw it into the inner part and then pull on the screw to remove.

Almost like opening a bottle of wine with a corkscrew, except in this case the "cork" is set into the bottle a little.

  • Unless you had a super tough screw, you can't push it through the plastic. It could be melted though, to make it softer.
    – Samuel L.
    Commented May 19, 2018 at 4:21

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