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Thread: Intake nipple RIVET details (Panhead mainly, but others as well)

  1. #1

    Intake nipple RIVET details (Panhead mainly, but others as well)

    So, I'm doing some '49 heads, and this is my first time actually going back to stock plumbers fittings and I had some questions about the rivets specifically. I see plenty of general talk about sealing the nipples on the web, but I want to focus on the rivets.
    1. What EXACTLY are the details of the original rivet: diameter (most importantly), material, head shape (domed, flushmount, low profile dome, flat, etc.), did it actually have a taper?
    2. Are OEM replacement rivets still available that are same as stock, and if so what's the part # (I'm aware of the nutted bolt -52 replacement)?
    3. When replacing the rivets, does it make sense to use a different material (like a softer material than steel: copper, aluminum, brass, etc)?
    4. I'm assuming that the rivets were originally installed with the rivet head on the inside, but maybe that's not true?
    5. I'm curious if anyone knows or has a picture of how they were originally installed at the factory (peening or a press)?
    6. I assume that the hole in the head and the nipple need to be the same diameter? So if the hole in the head is already hogged out, then the nipple needs to be drilled\honed\reamed to same size? This would be dimension "E" and "D" in the attached pic.
    7. I bought the Sifton intake tool setup which includes a drill bit guide (see pic). Is the proper way to do this to use the use guide in the Aluminum head to simply help center a PILOT hole and avoid messing up the aluminum head anymore, then take the guide out and drill one hole straight through the nipple AND head so that entire length is one diameter (Dimension "E" and "D" in the attached pic)?

    intake2.jpg
    Last edited by scottmckelvey; 11-27-2019 at 10:39 PM.

  2. #2

    Re: Intake nipple RIVET details (Panhead mainly, but others as well)

    To further the discussion, here is a picture of and details of the sifting tool and an aluminum rivet that comes with the stock replacement nipples from colony.

    It also got me thinking about whether the A and B side of the anvil tool should be used alternatively ( like for different style rivetheads), or sequentially (like use A and then switch to B). Thoughts?
    Image_1575169449-556x400.jpg
    Last edited by scottmckelvey; 11-30-2019 at 10:08 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Intake nipple RIVET details (Panhead mainly, but others as well)

    Quote Originally Posted by scottmckelvey View Post
    So, I'm doing some '49 heads, and this is my first time actually going back to stock plumbers fittings and I had some questions about the rivets specifically. I see plenty of general talk about sealing the nipples on the web, but I want to focus on the rivets.
    1. What EXACTLY are the details of the original rivet: diameter (most importantly), material, head shape (domed, flushmount, low profile dome, flat, etc.), did it actually have a taper?
    2. Are OEM replacement rivets still available that are same as stock, and if so what's the part # (I'm aware of the nutted bolt -52 replacement)?
    3. When replacing the rivets, does it make sense to use a different material (like a softer material than steel: copper, aluminum, brass, etc)?
    4. I'm assuming that the rivets were originally installed with the rivet head on the inside, but maybe that's not true?
    5. I'm curious if anyone knows or has a picture of how they were originally installed at the factory (peening or a press)?
    6. I assume that the hole in the head and the nipple need to be the same diameter? So if the hole in the head is already hogged out, then the nipple needs to be drilled\honed\reamed to same size? This would be dimension "E" and "D" in the attached pic.
    7. I bought the Sifton intake tool setup which includes a drill bit guide (see pic). Is the proper way to do this to use the use guide in the Aluminum head to simply help center a PILOT hole and avoid messing up the aluminum head anymore, then take the guide out and drill one hole straight through the nipple AND head so that entire length is one diameter (Dimension "E" and "D" in the attached pic)?
    1. 3/16 x 9/16 <strike>Button</strike> Pan Head Rivets. SolidRivets316916.jpg
    2. Yes. #27046-48
    3. The MoFoCo used mild steel rivets. I try and use NOS when available.
    4. That's True.
    5. Here's a picture of a NOS head. Attachment 24186
    6. Yes, if the hole is oversize then it should be reamed for a light interference fit for an oversized rivet. Alternatively, you could try and bring it back to 3/16 but that can be tricky as welding it could warp the insert threaded area.
    7. Yes.
    Last edited by 50pan50; 12-01-2019 at 07:00 PM.

  4. #4

    Re: Intake nipple RIVET details (Panhead mainly, but others as well)

    Quote Originally Posted by 50pan50 View Post
    1. 3/16 x 9/16 <strike>Button</strike> Pan Head Rivets. SolidRivets316916.jpg
    2. Yes. #27046-48
    3. The MoFoCo used mild steel rivets. I try and use NOS when available.
    4. That's True.
    5. Here's a picture of a NOS head. Attachment 24186
    6. Yes, if the hole is oversize then it should be reamed for a light interference fit for an oversized rivet. Alternatively, you could try and bring it back to 3/16 but that can be tricky as welding it could warp the insert threaded area.
    7. Yes.
    Thanks. I guess I'll wrap this thread up. I'd never done the rivets before and I was really nervous about messing it up after all the work that went into replacing the nipples, or worse yet, messing up the heads.

    I debated LONG and hard about which way the rivets should get inserted and how best to set the rivets, and what material to use, etc. I'm not doing a points bike, so ultimately I decided on aluminum for it's better resistance to corrosion (and since 70% of it's length is in the aluminum head), more malleable which I thought would help it seal and make bucking easier and less likely to crack the head trying to get it to seal, and the bonus was that it was easier to cut them to size in the lathe. You could always paint the ends black if you cared.

    My head holes were already 1/4 b/c it had an o-ring conversion kit previously. I drilled everything out to 1/4" using the little steel guide to center the hole, and to protect the aluminum head. I cut down aluminum rivets to exact size, then installed with a modified Sifton install tool and pneumatic rivet setter. It's such a pain to upload\attach pictures here, so here's a link if anyone wanted more detail https://photos.app.goo.gl/fDx3nHZt8umMAWFg9
    Last edited by scottmckelvey; 12-28-2019 at 10:34 AM.

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