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How to dimple in a small hole

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birdus

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I've got a 3 1/8" hole. A normal (I think) dimpler is too big to dimple the rivets around the hole, as the "C" part of it bumps into the opposite side of the hole and/or the rivet holes are too close to the hole perimeter (I have one of these, by the way, and it has worked well for some other holes). I suppose if the rivets were farther away from the hole, then my dimpler would work.

How do I dimple these holes?

Thanks,
Jay
 

Rockiedog2

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Dec 11, 2012
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I've got a 3 1/8" hole. A normal (I think) dimpler is too big to dimple the rivets around the hole, as the "C" part of it bumps into the opposite side of the hole and/or the rivet holes are too close to the hole perimeter (I have one of these, by the way, and it has worked well for some other holes). I suppose if the rivets were farther away from the hole, then my dimpler would work.

How do I dimple these holes?

Thanks,
Jay
If it’s 032 or thicker you can countersink
It
 

birdus

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Tacoma, WA
Ooh! Good idea! It's exactly .032"! Guess I need to get one of those adjustable countersinks. Just watched a video on one the other day (that's how I know of that tool). I borrowed the dimpler from our local EAA chapter. I'll have to see if they have an adjustable countersink.

Thanks!
Jay
 

Rockiedog2

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There’s all kinda ways. Make one outa vise grips, for instance.
But for 032 and thicker I countersink
 

birdus

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There’s all kinda ways. Make one outa vise grips, for instance.
But for 032 and thicker I countersink
Seems like a few suggestions require a set of dies without the pins sticking of them. Not a bad idea, though.
 

birdus

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Not sure if the Sonex method would work for you:


Dale
N319WF
Now that's interesting, and I already have a pop rivet gun. Hmmm. I think I could pretty easily make a set of those dies, too. Did I say hmmm? Hmmm.
 

narfi

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One of my bucking bars has a hole drilled and counter sunk to accept the dies from the squeezer. I also have a pneumatic rivet set I cut the end off of and drilled and countersunk the same way to accept the squeezer dies.

With a steady hand and the air turned low you can dimple a lot of holes fast. (Or destroy the part if not careful)
 

gtae07

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Savannah, Georgia
What size are the rivets? for 3/32 (#40 hole) and maybe 1/8 (#30) you could countersink for NAS1097 rivets. They have smaller heads but I'm assuming you're just holding some nutplates for an instrument or an access cover.

Really, if you're just doing a handful of them you could just countersink by hand (100 degree countersink cutter in a drill or hand crank) as long as you're careful not to overshoot.
 

birdus

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What size are the rivets? for 3/32 (#40 hole) and maybe 1/8 (#30) you could countersink for NAS1097 rivets. They have smaller heads but I'm assuming you're just holding some nutplates for an instrument or an access cover.

Really, if you're just doing a handful of them you could just countersink by hand (100 degree countersink cutter in a drill or hand crank) as long as you're careful not to overshoot.
You are correct on all counts: this is only for a handful of rivets (32, I think), and they are 3/32", and it's not structural. That would certainly be the simplest, cheapest, and probably quickest.

Lots of great suggestions here! Thanks, everyone!
 

Aerowerx

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Dec 1, 2011
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Marion, Ohio
I've got a 3 1/8" hole.
Do you mean a 3.125 inch hole, or quantity three 0.125 inch holes???? The use of 'a' implies a single hole

If it is quantity three 0.125 inch holes, the others have answered.

If it is a 3.125 inch hole, get a circle cutting jig for your router and cut a 3.125 inch diameter hole in a piece of maple board (or other hardwood). Then use a 1/4 inch round-over bit in the router to round off the inside of the hole. Place your aluminum over it and whack at it until you achieve the desired result.

If you don't want to whack on your aluminum, get a 1/4 inch cove bit. Cut a circle of maple 3.625 inch diameter. Run the cove bit around the edge. Make a sandwich of the two pieces of maple with your aluminum in between, and squeeze.

You can use a larger round-over and cove bit as needed.
 

narfi

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It was my understanding it is a small (probably inspection) hole, and because it is small the neck of his squeezer is too deep to dimple or rivet the nut plate holes around it.

Of course I could be wrong.
 

Aerowerx

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It was my understanding it is a small (probably inspection) hole, and because it is small the neck of his squeezer is too deep to dimple or rivet the nut plate holes around it.

Of course I could be wrong.
Ah, Ok. I see now. I read the OP too quickly.
 
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