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Hi

I have a quick (I hope?) question.

I never really needed to do this, but now I do - install metal resonators with rivets. The problem is when I hammer on anything even slightly soft it is impossible to install. The rivet will get crooked and it won't work at all. On hard metal surface it is ok but the rivet becomes flat. Some pads I received with metal resonator had the rivet round, so it is possible (but maybe they have surface shaped like the rivet?).

Any help will be appreciated!

Nitai
 

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Nitai, I'm not certain I understand the problem, but do you have a rivet punch?

As in

http://www.musicmedic.com/catalog/products/tool-rv100.html

Once you have put the new rivet through the pad's center hole, place it all on a hard surface, center the rivet punch on the rivet and strike it once or twice. This splits the rivet tubing and curls it down over the pad's cardboard backing.

You might want to use the Kraus (110-Back Rivet) backup washer, too, as they provide a much better "grip" for the split rivet.


If you are using the type of punch that peens or "rolls" the rivet tubing over itself (instead of splitting it) that will require a bit more force. If you would prefer to have the tubing split, but don't have the right type of rivet punch, you can also use the tip of wire cutter pliers to "start" the split by clipping notches around the tubing in 5-6 places. Hope that makes sense, I don't have a pic....

http://www.krausmusic.com/pads/saxophon.htm#resonator
 

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Nitai, what are you using to split the rivet? If it is something sharper, such as a countersink bit, then you may need less force with your hammer, and therefore do less damage to the head of the rivet.

Also, some models of rivet have a much weaker head than others. Some are much more difficult to split than others.

Have you tried using a lead block as the backing, or ,one of those black polymer blocks that several band instrument suppliers sell. Or perhaps put some cardboard over a hard surface.
 

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Nitai, If you take a bar of steel and drill just the beginning of a hole with the appropriate sized drill bit you can approximate the size and shape of the head of the rivet and provide a "cup" to support the head of the rivet as you tap on the other end. I made a similar fixture on my bench because I was replacing a lot of riveted resonators while changing pads on Cannonball saxes.
 

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Or a similar hole in a more forgiving material such as timber.
 

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Many moons ago, my father used to exactly that. He had a die and something or other he put over the straight end of the rivet (I think) and the he would bash it into shape. These were either steel or bronze rivets. It worked very well for him. I have never been able to perfectly replicate these results. I've never riveted in resonators, but I have some tools I got from Feree's. Someday, I'm sure, I will be called upon to do as good as my dad.
Hans
 

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I use a large(est) size phillips screwdriver end... I understand about the flat head .. that happened to me too. Use cardboard over something solid like a marble block ..hit it just enough to split and flatten .

Frz
 

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A good sharp rivet splitter or Gordon's suggestion of the countersink bit is fine but a Phillips head screwdriver is not a good choice. No sharp ends and only four edges to split the rivet. You'll damage far more rivets than you'll get right.

A canvass bag full of fine lead shot makes a wonderful backer.
 
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