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What did I do to my PDP-8 today.

thunter0512

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2020
Messages
523
Location
Perth in Western Australia
I happen to have a foot-powered Stimpson riveter we used to use in at work in the 90s and 80s for attaching handles to our Qbus and Unibus boards...

Could you please post detailed photos of the two parts of the tool which engage the rivet?
It should be possible to turn up something similar on a lathe and then use a drill press with the two tool bits mounted on the press.
 

gnupublic

Experienced Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2019
Messages
133
Location
Germany, Berlin
Yes, I also would like to thank all the helpful people here. Great community. Without the great work from Vince and Roland and David and Kyle and and and.... We would not be so far. Many thanks to you all.
Hopefully one day I can give something back from what I got here.

And for the topic: I managed to bring a TU-56M back to work this weekend.
 

vrs42

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2009
Messages
727
Location
Beaverton, Oregon
Could you please post detailed photos of the two parts of the tool which engage the rivet?
It should be possible to turn up something similar on a lathe and then use a drill press with the two tool bits mounted on the press.
I suspect it would be easier to order one of these:
If the shipping is too high, maybe this instead:

I'm using the latter in my drill press with success. The special anvil isn't strictly needed,. You will need something flat, and a small post might be useful to help with the centering. I'm lifting the board slightly, centering it on the nubbin in the staker, then lowering the whole thing to the table and then applying the pressure with the press knob in my other hand.

Vince
 

erd

Experienced Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2003
Messages
112
Location
Central OH
Could you please post detailed photos of the two parts of the tool which engage the rivet?
It should be possible to turn up something similar on a lathe and then use a drill press with the two tool bits mounted on the press.

I don't know that a drill press makes a good rivet setter. Try looking at an arbor press. A small one shouldn't be expensive.

If you look at a manual rivet setter you'll get an idea about what the dies need to look like. The big deal with these is the small finger that sticks up. In the past, we've had to replace dies because someone lost control of a hex-height board and the weight of it was enough to snap that finger off the lower die. New dies aren't cheap.



1667600128593.png1667600142093.png
 

vrs42

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2009
Messages
727
Location
Beaverton, Oregon
If you look at a manual rivet setter you'll get an idea about what the dies need to look like. The big deal with these is the small finger that sticks up. In the past, we've had to replace dies because someone lost control of a hex-height board and the weight of it was enough to snap that finger off the lower die.
From the comparison of what you've got vs what I've got, it looks like your rivet is installed the other way up. I've got the pre-formed side down, against the table. The "set" has a short alignment pin, and a curve that matches the shape I'd like to flare the cylinder end into.

One issue that I ran into is that the rivets probably should be longer than the vintage rivets that I have. Both the handles that I bought off Mouser and the modern PCBs are thicker than the vintage handles and PCBs, so there's not as much "flare" to hold the rivet in place. I'm not sure it is critical, though, because most of the insrtion/removal force is in the "Y" direction, with some in the "X" direction, but almost none in the "Z" (pull the rivet from the board/handle) direction.

Another issue is that the new boards need tweaking as to the placement of the holes. Some holes are too far from the board edge, and some have the spacing between the rivets rounded to the sixteenth, and so they don't line up perfectly with the holes in the plastic handles.

Vince
 

thunter0512

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2020
Messages
523
Location
Perth in Western Australia
I don't know that a drill press makes a good rivet setter. Try looking at an arbor press. A small one shouldn't be expensive.

If you look at a manual rivet setter you'll get an idea about what the dies need to look like. The big deal with these is the small finger that sticks up. In the past, we've had to replace dies because someone lost control of a hex-height board and the weight of it was enough to snap that finger off the lower die. New dies aren't cheap.



View attachment 1248259View attachment 1248260
Thank you very much for posting the closeup photos.
I can easily make the bottom die in my lathe, but the photos don't really show enough detail of the upper die.
It could be that the top die simply has a hole slight larger than the pin.
It is not clear to me how the bottom die is forming the mushroom head shape of the rivet as there is no visible flaring.
 

thunter0512

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2020
Messages
523
Location
Perth in Western Australia
Another issue is that the new boards need tweaking as to the placement of the holes. Some holes are too far from the board edge, and some have the spacing between the rivets rounded to the sixteenth, and so they don't line up perfectly with the holes in the plastic handles.

I too noticed that the PCB holes are not perfectly aligned with the handle holes, but there is enough tolerance for M3 rivets to fit.
 

thunter0512

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2020
Messages
523
Location
Perth in Western Australia
I have been worried about accidentally knocking against my precious Lab-8/e front panel switches.
Below is a photo of my solution for the perceived problem using a 6 mm acrylic sheet held in place by two acrylic rails stuck to the sides with double-sided sticky tape.

IMG_20221111_205944976.jpg

To get access to the switches I simply slide up the acrylic sheet in the rails to remove it. After use I slide it back in.
 
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