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Thread: Need rivet help on uniqe project...

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Need rivet help on uniqe project...

    Hi folks, my name is Gene and I've got a need for learning the ins and outs of doing rivet work for a project I've been working on for a very long time.

    Last week I finally got a canopy for my F-15C flight simulator project (it's a real F-15, see http://www.f15sim.com) and there's damage to the sheet metal that needs to be properly repaired.

    I've got a general idea of what needs to be done, but the details on the how are a bit fuzzy.

    The simplest method for me would be to use a pull rivet that had a countersunk head on it. My problem is that I've been unable to locate a source for these things that are reasonably priced. (you'd think they were individually hand carved out of Unicorn horn!) Barring a cheap source of them, what tools do I need for installing "standard" rivets.

    I've found a pneumatic rivet gun at Harbor Freight, but I'd rather not spend $99+ when I realistically need fewer than 200 rivets for the entire project.

    Thanks for your time!

    g.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Clarklake, MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by f15sim View Post
    The simplest method for me would be to use a pull rivet that had a countersunk head on it.
    If you use pulled rivets, you can make your own countersink head rivets from domed head pop rivets. Just find someone with a lathe to drill a hole and turn the desired countersink in a piece of round stock. Then place the rivet in the fixture and tap it with a hammer. I do this all the time, if you tell me what rivets you will be suing I'll be happy to make you a fixture for doing this.

    If you want to drive solid rivets, you need a bit more equipment, rivet gun, set and bucking bars.

  3. #3

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    Nov 2012
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    So essentially, you'd take a block of material, drill a hole in it the size of the rivet body and counter sink the hole. Then drop the rivet in and pound on it till the head conforms to the countersink?

    I don't know what size rivet I'm going to use yet - I'm still in the "thinking" stage of it. I need to get the thickness of the skin so I can order some raw material to work with.

    Thanks!

    g.

  4. #4

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    Sep 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by f15sim View Post
    So essentially, you'd take a block of material, drill a hole in it the size of the rivet body and counter sink the hole. Then drop the rivet in and pound on it till the head conforms to the countersink?

    I don't know what size rivet I'm going to use yet - I'm still in the "thinking" stage of it. I need to get the thickness of the skin so I can order some raw material to work with.

    Thanks!

    g.
    Wow, Talk about timing. I am counting thousands of cherrymax rivets to sell on ebay right now to make money for a EAA project. I also have alot of hy-loks. Do you have any pictures of where they are going?

  5. #5

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    Nov 2012
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    Here's a pic: http://www.f15sim.com/wp-content/upl...1/canopy-1.jpg

    The trim is split nearly all the way through right about where the black section starts and there's a tiny tear about 2 feet aft of that. The material is very thin and I suspect I should be using a 3/32" or 1/8" diameter rivet.

    g.

  6. #6

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    Sep 2011
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    "I need a better up close picture and the exact thickness of the material your going thru. How well do you want to really fix it? Airworthy repair or cosmetic type repair?

  7. #7

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    Nov 2012
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    I'll get better pics and a material thickness this evening (Pacific Time). I'd like the repair to be as good as possible. "Airworthy" really doesn't apply since I don't happen to own the back half of the F-15.

    Thanks!

    g.

  8. #8

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    Nov 2012
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    RV8505, Here's the damage pics:
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-1.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-2.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-3.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-4.jpg

    They're un-resized off my camera so they're pretty large pictures.

    I measured along the trim in a number of spots and got .043-.045 where paint had been knocked off and from .065-.067 where paint was still present. (Apparently the USAF isn't so big on stripping the old paint off before applying the new!)

    I did notice that the part that's split nearly all the way through does NOT run the full length of the canopy. It ends where the canopy bubble seam is, towards the middle of the canopy.

    tnx!

    g.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Clarklake, MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by f15sim View Post
    So essentially, you'd take a block of material, drill a hole in it the size of the rivet body and counter sink the hole. Then drop the rivet in and pound on it till the head conforms to the countersink?
    That is the general idea....

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    [QUOTE=f15sim;24315]RV8505, Here's the damage pics:
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-1.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-2.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-3.jpg
    http://www.f15sim.com/images/canopy-damage-4.jpg

    They're un-resized off my camera so they're pretty large pictures.

    I measured along the trim in a number of spots and got .043-.045 where paint had been knocked off and from .065-.067 where paint was still present. (Apparently the USAF isn't so big on stripping the old paint off before applying the new!)

    I did notice that the part that's split nearly all the way through does NOT run the full length of the canopy. It ends where the canopy bubble seam is, towards the middle of the canopy.

    tnx!

    First, I would like to say you are a very talented young man. Your homemade lighted panels are the bomb! I would love to have those in my RV. Anyway, send me a PM with your Email and phone number and I hook you up with some fasteners.

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