How to Drill Out a Rivet Safely and Easily

We research in-depth and provide unbiased reviews and recommendations on the best products. We strive to give you the most accurate information. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

If you’re looking to remove a rivet, you must do so safely and easily. In this blog post, we’ll show you how to drill out a rivet using a few simple tools. We’ll also share some tips for avoiding damage to the surrounding area. Let’s get started!

What is a rivet and what are its uses?

Rivets are a type of fastener used to join two or more pieces of metal together. They are typically made of steel or aluminum, and consist of a head and a tail. The head is larger than the tail and has a textured surface that helps to grip the material being joined. The tail is tapered, making it easier to insert into the hole drilled for it.

Rivets are inserted into holes drilled through the materials being joined, and then the tail is hammered until it expands and locks in place. This creates a strong connection that can resistant to vibration and shock. Rivets are commonly used in the construction of aircraft, cars, and other metal structures. 

How to identify a rivet on a piece of hardware

Rivets can be identified by their distinctive shape. They are usually cylindrical with a flared head on one end. The head is typically smaller in diameter than the body of the rivet. Rivets are typically made of brass, steel, or aluminum.

When looking for a rivet on a piece of hardware, you will usually find it near the edges of the objects. It is usually a small, round fastener with a flat top. The rivet is inserted through pre-drilled holes in the two pieces of material and then expanded to secure them in place.

If you are unsure whether a fastener is a rivet, you can use a drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet to test it. Drill into the center of the fastener until you feel resistance. If the fastener is a rivet, the drill bit will not go all the way through.

how to drill out a rivet

The different types of rivets and their uses

There are several different types of rivets, each with its specific use. Here is a list of the most common types of rivets and their uses:

  1. Solid rivets are the most common type of rivets. They are made of a single piece of metal and are used to join two pieces of metal together.
  2. Blind rivets are similar to solid rivets, but they have a cap that covers the end of the rivet. This makes them ideal for use in situations where one side of the joint is not accessible.
  3. Split rivets are made of two pieces of metal that are joined together by a pin. They are often used in applications where it is important to be able to remove the rivet without damaging the surrounding material.
  4. Pop rivets are also made of two pieces of metal, but they are joined together by a plastic or metal sleeve. Pop rivets are typically used in applications where a strong joint is needed, but the surrounding material must not be damaged.

The right tools for drilling out rivets

To drill out a rivet, you will need the following tools:

Drill

You will need a drill that is strong enough to penetrate the rivet, but not so strong that it will damage the surrounding material. The drill bit should also be slightly larger than the size of the rivet.

Drill Bit

The drill bit you use needs to be slightly larger than the rivet. This is so that when you drill through the rivet, the bit can create a hole that is big enough for the pliers to grip onto.

If the drill bit is too small, then it will just spin in place and not remove any material. If the drill bit is too large, then it will create a hole that is too big and the pliers will not be able to grip onto the rivet.

Pliers

If you have a pair of pliers, then you can use them to grip onto the rivet and pull it out. Once the rivet is out, you can then drill through the hole that it left behind. This will allow you to remove the rivet completely from the material.

Wearing safety goggles

When you are drilling, it is important to wear safety goggles. This is because the drill can create flying debris that can injure your eyes.

How to drill out a rivet

When removing a rivet, it is important to be careful not to damage the surrounding material. If you are not careful, you can easily damage the material, which will make it difficult to remove the rivet completely. If you are having trouble removing a rivet, you can always consult a professional for help. They will be able to remove the rivet safely and without damaging the surrounding material.

To learn how to drill out a rivet, you will need to:

  1. Use a drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet. You can find this information on the rivet itself, or on the packaging, it came in.
  2. Drill a hole in the center of the rivet. The hole should be big enough for the pliers to fit into.
  3. Insert the pliers into the hole and twist to remove the rivet.
  4. Be sure to wear safety goggles while doing this to protect your eyes from flying debris.

If you don’t have a drill bit that is the right size, you can:

  1. Use a hacksaw blade to cut through the rivet.
  2. Put on first your a pair of safety goggles.
  3. Use the hacksaw blade to score a line around the rivet.
  4. Once you have scored the rivet, you can twist the blade to break it off.
  5. Use a pair of pliers to remove the remaining piece of the rivet.

Tips for drilling out a rivet successfully

There are a few things you can do to ensure a successful drill out of a rivet:

  • Make sure you are using the correct tools. A drill, drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet, and pair of pliers are essential.
  • Wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris.
  • Use a slow and steady speed when drilling to avoid damage to the materials.
  • Apply pressure evenly to the drill bit to avoid it slipping.
  • Drill from the backside of the material if possible to minimize damage.
  • Ease up on the pressure when the drill bit starts to break through the rivet head. This will prevent the drill bit from catching and damaging the material.

What to do if a rivet is stuck

If you’re trying to remove a rivet and it’s stuck, don’t force it. You could end up damaging the surrounding material. Instead, try drilling out the rivet.

  1. Use a smaller drill bit to make a pilot hole in the center of the rivet.
  2. Switch to a larger drill bit and continue drilling until the rivet is completely removed.
  3. If the head of the rivet breaks off while you’re drilling, use a punch or chisel to remove it from the hole.

How to remove a rivet without drilling

There are a few ways to remove a rivet without drilling:

  • Use a chisel and hammer to pry the rivet head off the rivet body. To remove a rivet without drilling, use a chisel and hammer to pry the rivet head off the rivet body. Be careful not to damage the surrounding material while doing this. Once the rivet head is removed, you can use pliers to pull the rivet out of the hole.
  • Use a pair of wire cuttersIf you are unable to remove the rivet head using a chisel and hammer, you can try using a pair of wire cutters. Place the wire cutters over the rivet head and squeeze the handles together. This will cut through the rivet head, allowing you to remove it from the rivet body.
  • Use a pair of locking pliers to twist the rivet head off the rivet body. To remove a rivet without drilling, use a pair of locking pliers to twist the rivet head off the rivet body. Place the locking pliers over the rivet head and squeeze the handles together. This will twist the rivet head off the rivet body, allowing you to remove it from the hole.

The process of installing a new rivet

To install a new rivet, you will need to first drill out the old rivet. Here are the steps:

  1. Use a drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet, drill into the rivet from one side.
  2. Once the drill bit has penetrated the rivet, use a pair of pliers to twist and pull the rivet out.
  3. Insert the new rivet into the pre-drilled holes and expand it to secure it in place.

Why replacing a rivet is important

Rivets are designed to be replaced. They are not meant to be permanent fixtures. Replacing a rivet is important for two reasons:

  1. The rivets tend to loosen over time, which can eventually lead to parts of the aircraft coming loose in flight. This is obviously a safety hazard. By replacing them when they become loose, you are ensuring that the aircraft is able to withstand the forces it will encounter in flight.
  2. The periodic replacement of rivets helps to prevent metal fatigue, which is a leading cause of aircraft accidents. Although it may seem like a minor task, replacing worn-out or damaged rivets is an essential part of maintaining an aircraft.

How to avoid damaging the material around the rivet

When drilling out a rivet, be careful not to damage the material around it. If you drill too closely to the rivet, you may damage the material and weaken it. In order to avoid damaging the material around the rivet, it is important to

  • Use the correct drill bit. If the drill bit is too large, it can cause the material to chip or crumble.
  • Start by using a small drill bit to create a pilot hole. Once the pilot hole has been created, switch to a larger drill bit and continue drilling until the rivet is completely removed.
  • It is also important to keep the drill bit perpendicular to the surface to avoid creating an uneven hole.
  • Drill a hole that is slightly larger than the size of the rivet. This will give you some room to maneuver and will help to avoid damaging the material.
  • Wear safety goggles. This will protect your eyes from flying debris that can be created when drilling.
ljnp00c93co - How to Drill Out a Rivet Safely and Easily - HandyMan.Guide - how to drill out a rivet

The risks associated with drilling out a rivet

Here are a few risks associated with drilling out a rivet and possible solutions to avoid them:

  • The drill bit can slip and damage the surface of the material. If the drill bit slips, it can damage the surface of the material. To avoid this, grip the drill bit tightly and keep a firm grip on the drill. Be careful not to apply too much pressure, as this can also damage the surface.
  • The rivet can fly off and cause injury. If the rivet flies off, it can cause injury. To avoid this, grip the rivet firmly with a pair of pliers. Apply pressure to the drill bit as you drill, and be careful not to overheat the rivet.
  • The drill can overheat and cause a fire. If the drill overheats, it can cause a fire. To avoid this, keep the drill bit cool by running it under water. Drill slowly and take breaks to allow the drill bit to cool down.

How to avoid personal injury while drilling out a rivet

avoid getting into personal injury while drilling out a rivet with the following the safety tips:

  • Always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris
  • Make sure the area around you is clear of any obstructions
  • Make sure the drill bit is the correct size for the rivet. Use a drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet to avoid breaking the rivet head off.If it is too large, the bit may become stuck in the rivet and could cause injury.
  • Drill slowly and steadily to avoid wobbling and jerking the drill.
  • Apply firm pressure to the drill bit to keep it from slipping.
  • Use a pair of pliers to remove the rivet once it has been drilled out.

How to secure the new rivet in place

Once the old rivet is drilled out, you will need to secure the new rivet in place. To do this:

  1. Hold the drill bit against the rivet and hit it with a hammer. This will expand the rivet and secure it in place.
  2. You can then use the pliers to trim off any excess rivet.
  3. Put on your safety goggles and drill out the new rivet. Again, be sure to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris.

Why it is important to seal a new rivet?

Sealing a new rivet is important because it helps keep the pieces of material together and prevents them from coming apart. Sealing a rivet also helps to ensure that the joint is strong and secure.

There are several ways to seal a rivet:

  1. Use a cold-set rivet sealant. This type of sealant is applied to the rivet before it is inserted into the hole.
  2. Use a hot-set rivet sealant. This type of sealant is applied to the rivet after it has been inserted into the hole.

When choosing a rivet sealant, it is important to consider the type of material you are using. For example, if you are using aluminum, you will need to use a different type of sealant than if you were using steel. There are also different types of sealants for different sizes of rivets. It is important to choose the right size sealant for the rivet you are using.

brown steel ladder

Conclusion

If you’re looking for an easy way to join two pieces of material together, look no further than the trusty rivet. Rivets are small metal fasteners that are inserted through pre-drilled holes in the material. Once inserted, the rivet is expanded to secure the material in place.

Drilling out a rivet can be a dangerous task if you’re not careful. It’s important to wear safety goggles, use the correct drill bit size, and apply firm pressure to the drill bit to avoid personal injury. It’s also important to choose the right type of rivet sealant for the material you’re using. With the proper tools and safety precautions, drilling out a rivet can be a quick and easy process.

FAQs

What to do if a drill bit breaks while drilling out a rivet?

If a drill bit breaks while drilling out a rivet, stop drilling immediately and do not attempt to remove the remaining bits of the drill bit from the rivet. This can be extremely dangerous and may result in serious injury. Instead, carefully use pliers to remove the remaining bits of the drill bit from the rivet. Once the drill bit has been removed, continue drilling out the rivet with a new drill bit.

What is the best way to drill out a rivet?

The best way to drill out a rivet is to use a drill bit that is slightly larger than the rivet. This will allow you to remove the rivet without damaging the surrounding material. You will also need to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris.

To drill out a rivet, first insert the drill bit into the pre-drilled hole in the two pieces of material. Next, use the pliers to expand the rivet. Finally, remove the drill bit and dispose of the rivet safely.

What type of rivet to use when replacing an old one?

When replacing an old rivet, you will need to use a rivet of the same type. There are several types of rivets, including solid rivets, blind rivets, and pop rivets. The type of rivet you use will depend on the material you are fastening together and the thickness of the material. Pop rivets are the most common type and can be easily replaced using a drill.

When to seek professional help when learning how to drilling out a rivet?

If you are not comfortable drilling out a rivet, or if the rivet is too small for you to easily hold with pliers, it is best to seek professional help. A professional can safely drill out the rivet for you, without causing damage to the surrounding material.

Why trust Handyman.Guide?

s written by Itamar Ben-Dor, who has 25 years of experience in renovations, carpentry, locks, creation, landscaping, painting, furniture construction, and furniture renovation, works with concrete, plumbing, door repair, and more.

Itamar Ben-Dor has been in the home improvement business for over 25 years. Itamar Ben-Dor is a jack of all trades. He's worked in the renovation field for years, doing everything from locksmithing to carpentry. He's a small repairs specialist. But his true passion lies in furniture construction and renovation - he loves seeing old pieces come back to life with some new woodwork or a fresh coat of paint.

He has taken courses on many topics in these fields at professional colleges in Israel. Over the years, Itamar has also become quite skilled in gardening, carpentry, and renovations. He's worked on projects of all sizes, from massive renovations to small repairs. No job is too big or too small for him!


Disclosure: handyman.guide participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for publishers to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

HandyMan.Guide
Logo