So here are the hands, or at least their internal structure. Mostly toothpicks (except for cardboard claws). Holes were drilled using a fine bit in a pin vise. I was surprised how quickly these went together; just a few hours. In some of the photos the various bits are temporarily pinned together with bits of wire. Final assembly will use wooden pins carved from toothpicks. I'm hoping that the greater friction using wooden pins will keep the fingers from flopping around if the joints are too smooth.
Next step for the fingers is to go through bone by bone, removing or adding material as needed to arrive at the final shape of each. I'm going to leave the long bits of excess toothpick on the end of each bone for as long as possible so that they can serve as handles during the shaping process. I've made photocopies of the parts at 1/4 scale (to match the scale of reference diagrams I have) so I can figure out the subtraction/addition a bit easier (and with less eyestrain!). I'll probably have to do a bit of gentle bending or breaking as well, because of the joint morphology of some of the phalanges. Not all of the joints move along the same plane;as the fingers are flexed the claws move in toward each other. This will be easier to show than describe (thousand words a picture and all that).
One of the photos has a bit of crude photoshoppery to give a bit better idea of what a finished hand will look like. So far so good.
Next episode, Dinosaur Manicure!