Drilling out blind rivets.

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Davidss
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Drilling out blind rivets.

Post by Davidss » Fri Apr 22, 2011 5:15 pm

You guys must know more than most about removing blind rivets, so I thought I'd Search the forum. However 'rivet' is considered a common word, so is not a valid Search term.
Seems like I'll have to clutter up the Forum :-)

I will soon have to remove some blind rivets, and they will be followed by even more.
Mostly they are aluminium rivets into aluminium sheet, but some are steel rivets.
All 1/8" or 3/16" shank diameter.

I recall reading about a purpose designed 'drill bit' that makes a much better job (than a standard drill bit) of removing the rivet head, while minimising the risk of jamming into the rivet and spinning it in the hole, or going in slightly off-centre and enlarging the hole while not completely releasing the rivet.

The trouble is, I can't recall the correct name for the tool, has anyone else come across such a device?

Regards.

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Renegadenemo
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Re: Drilling out blind rivets.

Post by Renegadenemo » Fri Apr 22, 2011 7:07 pm

An ordinary cobalt drill, nice and sharp and with a wipe of cutting fluid will do a perfectly good job. Knock the mandrel out of the centre of the rivet with a parallel punch and the drill will centre itself. Our lot seem to think that the faster a drill goes the better it works and that I put cutting fluid on them because I like the smell. Take some good advice. Sharp drill, lube, slow drill speed.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

'Sometimes you gotta be an S.O.B if you wanna make a dream reality' Mark Knopfler

kneeslider
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Re: Drilling out blind rivets.

Post by kneeslider » Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:06 pm

As Bill says, you can't beat turning the drill / cutting device / whatever slowly. Just because your electric drill will spin up to 15000rpm, doesn't mean that it's going to cut the hole any better or faster, just burn out your drill bits quicker. Trefelex or similar is your friend too, although I never liked the smell of the stuff.

I have a mortal loathing of sharpening drills, its such a boring thing to be doing, when your time can be spent more prifitably actually using your drill bits. Drill sharpening jigs are great, and make the job a lot less loathsome, but they are a bit of a swine to set up just so, but ever after, you can sharpen a drill bit in about 5 seconds, and its right first time every time.

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Renegadenemo
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Re: Drilling out blind rivets.

Post by Renegadenemo » Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:31 pm

I have a mortal loathing of sharpening drills, its such a boring thing to be doing
I sharpen them with a 2 inch sanding disc. Takes seconds.
I'm only a plumber from Cannock...

"As to reward, my profession is its own reward;" Sherlock Holmes.

'Sometimes you gotta be an S.O.B if you wanna make a dream reality' Mark Knopfler

kneeslider
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Re: Drilling out blind rivets.

Post by kneeslider » Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:48 pm

I used to do that too, or use a bench grinder, and just do it by eye, which is OK, but now I bought something like this:-

http://www.toolbaydirect.co.uk/catalogu ... 0C/174023/

And it works a treat, you have to bolt it to the bench by the side of your bench grinder, and do some fiddling to get it just so, but then its the business.

I seem to end up with a big pile of drills which need sharpening (usually discovered when about to embark upon a project) and this gets through the chore in short order. I can recommend getting one, and as usual, I have no connection with any of the companies making or distributing them, I just like stuff that works, and makes me more productive in my workshop!

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