This is what I have done for about 3 years and have done thousands without incident.
Mold head with aluminum base hole pin, remove pin, twist off sprue, use a knife to make sure sprue mark is smooth.
I use 1/8" wooden dowel rods ($.30) and cut them with side cutters (I get about 32 per dowel rod).
I put the dowel piece in the head, heat and dip head, if I have paint in the eye (usually because there is slightly too much paint) I run paper clip through the eye and hang.
10 minutes later I bake the heads hanging by the hook in my toaster oven for 20 minutes at 350.
They are now done, the guard hole is clean, eye is clean and no drips.
If you get drips hanging them by the hook, you have too much paint on the head.
I have tried using teflon pins and don't care for them. Yes, they mold great, but I had too many of them slide out when in my work pile prior to painting and they don't go back into a poured head well.