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Author Topic: A call for leather working advice  (Read 1716 times)
stockton_joans
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« on: March 31, 2009, 11:29:00 am »

so, all you leather workers lurking out there, I'm starting to realise that 2 part rivits aren't man enough to use for some upcoming projects and I'm going to use copper rivits instead.

this leads to two questions;

question 1) where can i find copper rivits which are both sturdy and inexpensive.

question b) how, exactly, do i use copper rivits. I know a ball peen(Sp?) hammer is involved but will i need anything else and could someone possably do a tutorial on the How To child board?

any and all advise will be generously rewarded  by Karma points and good vibes Cool
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Stockton Joans:
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TimeTinker
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« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2009, 12:41:00 pm »

Copper rivets are available from both Tandy and Le Prevo online.

Using them is easy enough.  You simply make your hole through the leather, poke your rivet through and slip on the rove(washer).  You need to cut the shaft of the rivet to length (wire cutters or even pliers are usually up to the job).  You want about 1 to 1.25 times the diameter of the rivet shaft proud of the rove. (If there is too much length the rivet shaft can simply bend over rather than peening to shape.)

Remember to put the work on a suitable hard surface (the back of a vice, anvil etc)  I have a large piece of marble and a two inch thick aluminium disc I work on, saves trekking down to the workshop where I keep the anvils etc.

You simply tap the end of the shaft to shape using the ball of the hammer.  Don't go at it too hard - better to be too gentle and increase force as you start until you get used to it.  It's pretty easy. To get a nice "rose head shape" you can do it with four strokes either rotating the work with your free hand or altering the angle of the hammer shaft as you "address the work" but that may well be getting too fancy for you.

Once you have done half a dozen you will be an expert.

Hope that is helpful.
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stockton_joans
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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2009, 12:49:21 pm »

just the ticket, should be picking some up at the weekend.

I'll let you know how it goes.
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stockton_joans
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« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2009, 03:24:35 pm »

i just had a thought (skilled masons are currently working on a monument to commemorate the occasion) when rotating the work or changing the angle of approach would it be preferable to work around in a circle

(direction the hammer blow is coming from depicted by numbers)

      1
   8     2
7           3
   6     4
      5


or alternating top/bottom left right         


      1
   5     8
3           4
   7     6
      2

or would it not make a blind bot of difference?
               
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Zwack
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2009, 03:59:39 pm »

Well... I'm a rank amateur... But I use a tool for it.  Basically it's like a punch but with a hole in the end to help push the rove down onto the rivet (it's a tight fit deliberately) and a second hole which is more like a concave dish. 

You push the rove down and cut the shaft, then you place the dish over the shaft and hit it with the hammer.  Less skill required but one more piece of equipment.

http://www.tandyleatherfactory.co.uk/p-81717-copper-rivet-burr-setter.aspx

I'm not sure if this is the size I use off the top of my head, but they look the same.

Z.
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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2009, 04:03:09 pm »

I am afraid I don't know how stone works so I can't really comment on masons.

If I am hot working iron to make a nail and want to create a rose head I strike 1/5/3/7 according to your first diagram.  When using a nail header you can't easily rotate the work so you do it by changing the angle of the handle - that is when you strike 1 you have your hand higher in relation to the work, when you strike 2 you have it lower than the work. 3 and 7 are angled in so 7 is almost a sort of backhand stroke if you know what I mean.  The angle of work on an anvil and  the angle of address of the tool have an effect. It sounds complicate but it comes naturally with practice.

As a rule of thumb with metal if you work in succession (i.e. a circle or line along the work) then you develop a curve. Interspacing keeps the work more square.

(Strewth this is hard to explain in words but easy when stood with someone...)

The tools for making nice finished heads on rivets are known as snap and sets to metal workers - they are helpful but personally I prefer to free hammer. Of course if you want a really neat job you should counter sink the rove and hammer the end of the rivet in so you have a flush finish.

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stockton_joans
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« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2009, 05:22:39 pm »

thank you, that makes perfect sense.

how would one go about counter sinking a rove
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TimeTinker
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« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2009, 05:52:25 pm »

Personally I make my own from sheet copper or brass. 

1. Centre punch a series of dots.
2. Drill the dots the size of the rivet shaft.
3. Counter sink each hole by part drilling with bit half as big again (although I am sure you know that.)
4. Using tin snips cut the sheet up into squares and voila square roves.

Historically roves were square. Round ones appeared once stamping machines came into use.  I started making square roves for things like viking and medieval work and now just seem to prefer them.

Its a bit of a chore but makes for nice finished work.
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stockton_joans
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« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2009, 06:22:20 pm »

i see, i took your post to mean that you conter sink the roves into the leather so the top of the rove is flush with the surface.
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TimeTinker
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« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2009, 06:45:53 pm »

That is what actually happens with the square roves since you don't have a peened head on the rivet as the excess metal is filling the c/s the whole thing gets impressed into the leather.  It's enough to stop belts snagging on clothes etc.
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stockton_joans
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« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2009, 01:29:42 pm »

i dint suppose you could post some pictures of the process could you, i tend to understand this better if i can see them (actually i learn best by doing but visual aids come in a close second)
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stockton_joans
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« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2009, 12:12:38 pm »

the rivits were purchased on Saturday and used soon after, the first one didn't go quite as well as it could of and the strap i was attaching ended up skewed so i had to file like a mad man and replace it but after that it went fine Grin

just one more thing, should the rivet cover the rove completely once it has been flattened or am i cutting them too short? (my rivits only cover about half of the rove.)
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Zwack
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« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2009, 04:21:14 pm »

I've never seen the rivet cover the rove completely...  In fact the illustrations I have seen on how to use this kind of rivet show it as not covering the rove completely. 

Based on TimeTinker's comment about countersinking I would imagine that his don't either.  After all, why countersink if you're going to cover it all anyway.

Z.
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jringling
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« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2009, 04:57:41 pm »

i dint suppose you could post some pictures of the process could you, i tend to understand this better if i can see them (actually i learn best by doing but visual aids come in a close second)
Yes, Photos please. I am very interested in seeing square roves...
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TimeTinker
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« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2009, 05:57:23 pm »

No the rivet should not cover the entire rove. If the rivet shank is cut too long you tend to get bending in the rivet and the work can skew leaving poor joins etc.

I'll see if i can find time for a piccy or two but really pulled out at the moment hence the short posts unlike my usual missives.
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