Easy Way to Remove Pop Rivets??? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 27 Old 02-12-2017, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Easy Way to Remove Pop Rivets???

Hi All,

This is a two part question. First, yes I've been removing pop and other rivets for a whole lot of years using the traditional methods of drilling, grinding, chiseling as the need may be.

However, about 3-4 months ago while watching a YouTube DIY video, someone demonstrated a really cool and easy way of doing it. I remember thinking, dang, how come I've never tried it that way! And now, with my CRS syndrom, I don't remember the trick :frown2:

So anyone have a non-traditional, easy way they want to share?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Part II: I usually have thick metal or plastic to work with when removing pop rivets. However, my current task is to rewire an electrical outlet box on an antique sewing machine (along with mechanical repairs). While every other connection is screw-held, the ones inside the box are riveted. (I wonder if that's even to code for modern times?)

My concern here is the electrical parts are thin, brass, and feel fairly fragile so I don't want to damage the metal strips as I'll need to reuse them.

Any tips for something like this?? Also, any tips on securing the new wires? I found copper rivets online (to keep it fairly original) but for $35.00 shipped, which is cost prohibited. I'm thinking maybe #8 brass screws with nuts, star washer on one side, and flat washer on the other. These items I have on-hand.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 27 Old 02-12-2017, 02:34 PM
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I have always drilled them out ...

I have a tip for drilling them out. Usually the draw portion of the rivet is either flush with the body or in just a bit. Take a small diameter punch and give it a tap to drive it in further. Then use a 135 degree twist drill just slightly larger than the rivet's body. With moderate drilling pressure, the head of the rivet will "pop" off leaving the rest inside. Another tap with a small punch to drive out the remaining parts, and all is back to original, no damage to anything surrounding.

If you don't have a 135 degree bit , you will just have to proceed with more caution, since it may want to "run away" and drill right through everything... :frown2:

I can't imagine a better way, but I'll be anxious to see what you can turn up. This is kinda funny because I once built an entire truck body using pop rivets and had to drill out more than I ever wanted.
I had to change a few things as I went..... :smile3:
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Last edited by woodnthings; 02-12-2017 at 03:19 PM.
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post #3 of 27 Old 02-12-2017, 03:04 PM
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Sharp bit and drill em out, quickest way I've found as well

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post #4 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 09:00 AM Thread Starter
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Sounds good. Thanks for the replies :smile3:
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post #5 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 11:11 AM
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Maybe you'll recognize the video here;

https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...ving+pop+rivet

Dave

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The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.
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post #6 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 01:22 PM
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the "rivets" in tworails pix are not pop-rivets.
actually, they are not even rivets.

"grommet" would be a more apt description.
and . . . .wait for it . . . there are "grommet removal tools"
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post #7 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 02:44 PM
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Not grommets in my opionion based on .....

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomCT2 View Post
the "rivets" in tworails pix are not pop-rivets.
actually, they are not even rivets.

"grommet" would be a more apt description.
and . . . .wait for it . . . there are "grommet removal tools"

QUOTING FROM THE OP:
Part II: I usually have thick metal or plastic to work with when removing pop rivets. However, my current task is to rewire an electrical outlet box on an antique sewing machine (along with mechanical repairs). While every other connection is screw-held, the ones inside the box are riveted. (I wonder if that's even to code for modern times?)

These are connections to the supply wires. I've never seen a grommet that was used as a connection, rather more to isolate or insulate from contact. I think they are pop-rivets. :smile3:

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #8 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoRails View Post
Hi All,

I'm thinking maybe #8 brass screws with nuts, star washer on one side, and flat washer on the other. These items I have on-hand.

.
I'm thinking if you use screws and nuts and then grab (or even come in to contact with) that box with power going through it you will have a good chance of having some electrocution "on-hand".

I'd go with short brass machine or wood screws threaded into the existing holes to keep all the electricity inside the box. Even if epoxy was required to make they stay in place. I'd also add wire rings to the wire ends.

James
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post #9 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 05:15 PM
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pop rivets have a stem that expands a sleeve then snaps off - and the stem stays in the sleeve.
i.e. that is the "definition" of "pop"

the classic rivet is a solid core/stem that starts with one side with a head an a fixed diameter stem - it is installed then 'headed' or peened over to secure the two joined pieces.
see: Rosie the Riveter

the pix does not have a solid core/stem or anything else in the "hole"

it is identical in construction to the grommets used on your local friendly tarp.
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post #10 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 05:54 PM
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I enlarged the photo 200% in Paint

You can clearly see the strands of wire under the pop rivets which are used to "connect" the wiring to the brass plates. Earlier wiring sometimes used a circular ring crimped around the wire to form a small loop to insert a screw or OTHER fastener. That may be the case here OR the wire is just looped by hand and then secured under the rivet.
How else are the wires secured to the brass plates for the dang thing to work if they are not pop riveted? The stem in a pop rivet is often not always present in the center of the rivet and has fallen out after the crimping/draw process. DAMHIKT.

I can't post the enlarged photo here because it's "too large" so you'll just have to trust me, or enlarge the photo on your computer.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #11 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 06:22 PM
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if you insist.
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post #12 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
You can clearly see the strands of wire under the pop rivets which are used to "connect" the wiring to the brass plates. Earlier wiring sometimes used a circular ring crimped around the wire to form a small loop to insert a screw or OTHER fastener. That may be the case here OR the wire is just looped by hand and then secured under the rivet.
How else are the wires secured to the brass plates for the dang thing to work if they are not pop riveted? The stem in a pop rivet is often not always present in the center of the rivet and has fallen out after the crimping/draw process. DAMHIKT.

I can't post the enlarged photo here because it's "too large" so you'll just have to trust me, or enlarge the photo on your computer.
I also enlarged the photo and agree that strands of wire can be seen.

I have no idea of what to call those "things" that are holding the wire to the brass/copper plate. However I agree that using bolt or machine screw would be good way to make new connection. You can twist the end of the wire into a loop and then use solder to make the loop solid if so desired.

I have no idea of what JamesTinks is trying to say about keeping electricity in the box.

George
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post #13 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 06:45 PM
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I think a better point is who bloody cares if it's a rivet or a grommet? Either way, the question is "how to remove it", and the answer is the same either way, drill out the center. Some slight semantics over the term used don't change that, they just waste half a page on an unnecessary argument
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post #14 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 07:26 PM
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you have your solution and you have your discussion...

Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
I think a better point is who bloody cares if it's a rivet or a grommet? Either way, the question is "how to remove it", and the answer is the same either way, drill out the center. Some slight semantics over the term used don't change that, they just waste half a page on an unnecessary argument
We had the solution many post back, agreed. So now we are haggling over the terms in the discussion. To some folks like me, terms are important because improper terms lead to improper advice. Hey, If Tom wants to call them grommets, so for it,. If he wants to explain the fine points of rivet design and manipulation, go for it. What's the point of a forum if we can't disagree about something, even if it is the terms?

Do a Google search for grommets and see what you find....
https://www.google.com/#q=grommets

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #15 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 08:23 PM
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Clearly, that is a grovet, but it's possible it is a rimmet, either way, they gotta come outta there!!
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post #16 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 10:20 PM
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Oh c'mon epic.. Why shouldn't we dedicate 87 pages arguing about rivets v grommets? After all, it would certainly beat debating whether the NFL is rigged or not..
One thing is sure..they ain't pop rivets. Pop rivets have the aluminum stems that break off inside..

I figured it's time to change my signature so hold your breath. This is it.
Impressive, huh?
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post #17 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC View Post

I have no idea of what JamesTinks is trying to say about keeping electricity in the box.

George
OP said he was going to use "#8 brass screws with nuts, star washer on one side, and flat washer on the other." Every old box like this I have messed with those plates rest on posts molded into the box. The "other side" where the nut would be is going to be outside the box. I could be wrong. /shrug/
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post #18 of 27 Old 02-13-2017, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
We had the solution many post back, agreed. So now we are haggling over the terms in the discussion. To some folks like me, terms are important because improper terms lead to improper advice. Hey, If Tom wants to call them grommets, so for it,. If he wants to explain the fine points of rivet design and manipulation, go for it. What's the point of a forum if we can't disagree about something, even if it is the terms?

Do a Google search for grommets and see what you find....
https://www.google.com/#q=grommets
Well IF your gonna argue about it .....get it RIGHT Woodenthings . It's NOT a pop rivet....it's a electrical rivet ....it doesn't "pop" it's compressed via a tool with special dies whether it's by handtool or machine. Once it's compressed it does favor the looks of a grommet but those are for protection of a product as edges or tarps/canvas.

here's your link http://www.alibaba.com/product-detai...249560411.html

Also NOT all pop rivets are aluminum NOR all stems are aluminum....they're available in steel, ss, aluminum and other metals and plastics.

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post #19 of 27 Old 02-14-2017, 02:46 AM
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You are correct TIm, as usual

I know there are quite a few types of rivets, and different pop rivets, having used them at one time or another. There's even a "riv nut" or "nutsert" that uses a compression tool to create a nut on the back side of sheet metal in the automotive world. Roof racks and side mirrors on trucks use them where a blind fastener is needed.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/49294296?...tserts&veh=sem

And these:
http://www.aimfasteners.com/about_ri...l#.WKK0qTjkoXg


My point was those connectors in the OP's photo was a rivet, not a grommet, grommets being used to isolate or insulate as I stated above. How the rivet was assembeled wasn't all that important in my opinion. I had seen that method on some older motors I worked on. You are actually making my other point by keeping this discussion alive and adding to it.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #20 of 27 Old 02-14-2017, 03:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allpurpose View Post
Oh c'mon epic.. Why shouldn't we dedicate 87 pages arguing about rivets v grommets? After all, it would certainly beat debating whether the NFL is rigged or not..
One thing is sure..they ain't pop rivets. Pop rivets have the aluminum stems that break off inside..
Hey, I'm not saying we shouldn't, wood got it right. This is a forum, discussion is what it's for, just put the discussion in its own bloody thread instead of getting in a fight unrelated to the original question...

Nearly forgot to add, I do apologize if my outburst offended anybody, that wasn't my intention, but c'mon, there's no need to snipe at each other over if it's a rivet or grommet or spot weld or whatever

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