remove rivets... how?

Marlene

Member
I never do it that way. All personal preference, but I remove all the rivets and trim around the moulding. Think it looks more "oem".

I did a search as I remember Flame saying he removes all the rivets from a trailer when he works with one but what I'd like to know is how do you remove them?

I did a trailer yesterday and would have loved to remove the rivets in some of the areas where I applied vinyl (it wasn't a wrap, just lettering and graphics) but wasn't comfortable mucking around with a customer's trailer when I had no idea how to remove the rivets. how do you remove them and then put them back in place?? I am so clueless, any help would be grat, thanks
 

Baz

Member
Many trailers have screws and not rivets. Those you can remove and put back in after. Other trailers have actual rivets and those cannot be removed. I personnaly like the trailers that have NO screws or rivets :Big Laugh
 

Marlene

Member
Many trailers have screws and not rivets. Those you can remove and put back in after

the ones I had had were dome shaped, approx .5" or so in diameter with a indent in the center that looked like it might need a special "key" type bit to unscrew, was that a screw or is that a rivet? can I tell by looking a it or do I need to try to unscrew it and if it comes out it's a screw and if not, it is a rivet?
 

insignia

New Member
If they're removable it'll have a 8-point small star-shaped hole in it. You actually use a #2 square driver to remove these. Home Depot sells the bit.
 

Baz

Member
#8 Robertson bits (square) work as well on many of those star shaped screws. I think you can buy those bits failry easy in your stores but not the screws! Something about Phillips bits being american and Robertson being canadian.

Even though the Robertson screw is way more superior to Phillips! :popcorn:
 

d fleming

Member
10-20 bucks for a bit assortment package at lowes or hd will cover most funky screw heads you find. Make sure you have the correct bit and not something that "almost fits and will work" so you don't strip the head.
 

Baz

Member
10-20 bucks for a bit assortment package at lowes or hd will cover most funky screw heads you find. Make sure you have the correct bit and not something that "almost fits and will work" so you don't strip the head.

Agreed that everyone should buy a package of assorted bits. Just mentioning the #8 Robertson because it has helped a few times when i didnt have the star shaped ones on hand.
 

diamondavenue

New Member
If its an american trailer and looks like a star it is most likely a #2 square, it seems kind of odd when looking at them if you dont do it very often. Just dont remove all at once or you have a bigger issue.
 

J Hill Designs

New Member
If its an american trailer and looks like a star it is most likely a #2 square, it seems kind of odd when looking at them if you dont do it very often. Just dont remove all at once or you have a bigger issue.

nah just take the side of the trailer into the shop to apply :thumb:

(kidding, of course)
 

SignManiac

Member
If it is in fact a rivet, you have to drill out the center and the head comes off. Replacing them requires new rivets and can use either a hand squeezed rivet gun or a pneumatic if you have an air supply. When replacing existing rivets, make sure to match the head length and the stem thickness. They also come in either aluminum or stainless.
 

Marlene

Member
Even though the Robertson screw is way more superior to Phillips!

that's what my Canadian husband says too!

thanks to all of you for all the help. I have a box of different shaped "keys" and will try them the next time I get one of these things to letter. it sounds like I can't mess it up and remove something I can't replace without a ton of work and that was my worry. I was afraid to mess with it and then find out I needed a special tool to replace them.

thanks!!!!!!
 

bob

Member
the ones I had had were dome shaped, approx .5" or so in diameter with a indent in the center that looked like it might need a special "key" type bit to unscrew, was that a screw or is that a rivet? can I tell by looking a it or do I need to try to unscrew it and if it comes out it's a screw and if not, it is a rivet?

A rivet is a one time use fastener. It works by deforming one end to clinch the pieces being fastened and must be destroyed to be removed.

A screw is merely an application on of the fundamental machines the inclined plane and the wedge. It does not have to be destroyed in order to remove it.

Most of the fasteners used to fasten panels on trailers etc are #2 square drive. For which bits are available most anywhere.

There's a bewildering array of screw drives available from common [plain old slot], Philips, Reed & Prince [which is hard to tell from Philips], square, allen, Torqx, and beyond.

Basically if it was screwed in it will unscrew.

Even though the Robertson screw is way more superior to Phillips! :popcorn:

Depends. The square drive is one of many drives designed for hands off robotic automation. The Philips is not. Both have their places.
 

Baz

Member
The square drive is one of many drives designed for hands off robotic automation. The Philips is not. Both have their places.

Name me an application where a Phillips screw is better than a Robertson. That Phillips design is .. ahem ... screwed. It strips to easy. You can't put any pressure on it when screwing and even the drivers strip easy. Tight spaces where you cant use two hands to put in one screw can be very frustrating. Face it .... It's crap!
 

bob

Member
Name me an application where a Phillips screw is better than a Robertson. That Phillips design is .. ahem ... screwed. It strips to easy. You can't put any pressure on it when screwing and even the drivers strip easy. Tight spaces where you cant use two hands to put in one screw can be very frustrating. Face it .... It's crap!

Philips is auto-centering and in any semi-automated application is superior to most any drive into which the bit must be precisely located.

The problem with Philips is that you must assert down pressure sufficient to overcome any turning resistance. In other words, as long as you're pushing down harder than the force it takes to turn it, the drive will never strip.
 
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