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Home made Dimple dies with a twist

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by murfman, Oct 5, 2009.

  1. murfman
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 539

    murfman
    Member

    I have been researching dimple dies and speed holes for a while now, and finally made a set, the problem with the commercialy available ones (To me anyways) is that they are on even hole sizes, and I hate hole saws for cutting into plate steel, seems like I never get a hole say to last more thatn 3 or 4 holes, so I made my dies at 1.115 Inches, amd 2.416". You may be asking why? Well the 1.115" hole is what is commonly used for 3/4" conduit, and 2.416 is for 2" conduit, allowing me to use Greenlee "Slug-Splitters" The slug splitters use a 3/8" pilot hole (If you use the correct adapters), and cut through up to 10 Ga stainless steel like butter, especially if you use the Hydraulic Greenlee setup. The Greenlee dies are available from just about every electrical supply house, and while not cheap, work amazingly. I picked up a Hydraulic kit on Ebay for 100.00 with dies from 1/2" to 2" Conduit.

    Pics:
    Die:
    [​IMG]
    test hole:
    [​IMG]
    Size reference:
    [​IMG]

    Link to the Greenlee kit I have:
    http://www.mygreenlee.com/GreenleeD...=showGreenleeProductTemplate&upc_number=34293

    My next experiment is going to be drilling and tapping the male die, to see how thick of material I will be able to dimple with the Hydraulic ram form the greenlee kit as it is an 8 ton ram, and much more mobile than my shop press. If it actually works with the ram I will be able to dimple 10 Ga 2x4 box tubing one side at a time, or even open C frame rails.
     
  2. murfman
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 539

    murfman
    Member

    If you look closely you can see that I made the male die out of 2 pieces, I did this because the only 6" bar stock scraps I could find were 1 1/2" thick cut offs, so I made the centering pin ouf of some 2 3/4" bar stock I had laying around, and welded it into the larger die from the back side.
     
  3. oh great a new line of traditional cup holders !!!
     
  4. mbmopar
    Joined: Mar 27, 2006
    Posts: 467

    mbmopar
    Member
    from Canada

    i like it, what does a set of the greenlee's go for typically?
     
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  5. murfman
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 539

    murfman
    Member

    Here is one on Ebay right now:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/greenlee-7806sb...in_0?hash=item41495add1e&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14

    I found mine after watching E-bay and Craigslist for ~ 6 weeks for 100.00

    New, from an electrical supply house I think they are around 600.00.

    The individual dies are 30~40.00 a set, and you can use the threaded draw stud with a box wrench. The Ram is nice for when you need a lot of holes done.
     
  6. scottybaccus
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,106

    scottybaccus
    Member

    Murfman, try hosting your pics at myspace or somethin. The bandwidth limits you are under really keep you from sharing anything publicly. They want you to pay for hosting.

    I think the greenlee set you have in the link and the following posts is a knock-out punch, not a dimple die. They cut a clean hole with no flange on the edges. They are used for electrical work. Dimple dies have an die that clmps the edge of the hole against an bell flange on the cutter to create the bell.
     
  7. willymakeit
    Joined: Apr 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,325

    willymakeit
    Member

    Keep us posted. I can pick these up on the job sites somemetimes.
     
  8. jj mack
    Joined: Mar 22, 2007
    Posts: 735

    jj mack
    Member

    Last edited: Oct 5, 2009
  9. Jay Rush
    Joined: Jan 3, 2007
    Posts: 508

    Jay Rush
    Member

  10. murfman
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 539

    murfman
    Member


    I fixed the bandwidth issue, I made my own dimple dies, but sized them to work with readily available knock-out punches, instead of the more typical "Even" sized dimple dies that are readily available.
     
  11. oj
    Joined: Jul 27, 2008
    Posts: 6,110

    oj
    Member

    You can get most any size knockout dies you want and many shapes as well. Individual sets are available from McMaster-Carr and others. Don't think that you are limited to an electricians set, just no so.
     
  12. murfman
    Joined: Nov 6, 2006
    Posts: 539

    murfman
    Member


    While other sizes are available, the "electricians" sizes are the most readily available. I looked into a 22.5MM KO for Square D switches for a project at work, and just the dies alone were over 250.00:eek: On the other hand I have been given 1 1/2" and 2" conduit size KOs for nothing beacause they were not needed by the electricians that typically do residential work. The electricians sizes are cheaper new because the supply/demand thing, and are always on E-bay and Craigs list.
     
  13. scottybaccus
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,106

    scottybaccus
    Member

    I get it now. Very cool!
     
  14. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

    If you want some inexpensive dimple dies, you might already have the tools you need. I realized I did. Don't ask me how this came to mind, but here is the idea.

    I used a large 3/4-inch-drive socket from a set I got from Harbor Freight as the male die. Here's the HF 3/4" socket set. $60 on sale, but $48 with the 20% off coupon found in the newspaper and car magazines.

    I used the female die from a set of metal knockout hole punches used by electricians. I had both the hydraulic set ($80 on sale from Harbor Freight) as well at the manual set, pictured in a post, below. The hydraulic set is quick and easy if you want to do a lot of them, but a manual punch is fine for just a few.

    The great thing about this method is that you don't have to do it in a large shop press. Some pieces are too large to put in a press. I used light-gauge sheet metal, but I imagine that the dimple could be made in at least 18-gauge.

    See the following three posts for all of my pictures.

    Here are some pictures:
     

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  15. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

    Here is the method I used to do easy dimples in sheet metal. The hole to the left in the second picture is the first test hole that I made just to make sure it worked.

    Here is the size of the punches I used. The small die is for cutting the hole, and the larger die is for the dimple. I used a step drill for the bolt or shank that holds the male and female dies. To punch a hole, if you are not familiar with these punches, go by the directions in the set you have.

    I inserted the bolt through the hole in the sheet metal and assembled the two dies, one on each side. Then I cranked down the bolt until the hole was punched.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  16. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

    Here you can see the manner in which I assembled the punch die set to make the dimple. I used a large socket as the male die.

    For the dimple, I used the a slightly larger female die than the die that I used to cut the hole and I used a socket with a shoulder that just fit inside the larger female die, but too large to fit through the hole in the sheet metal.

    To hold the assembly together, I used a small male die that fit into the large socket since it is threaded and fit the threads in the punch shank. You can't see the small male die because it is inside of the socket, threaded on the bolt/shank.

    The last picture shows how the socket's angled shoulder fit the dimple.

    For other sized holes, there are several more combinations of dies and sockets that will work. All you have to do is experiment.

    Hope this helps someone. Thanks to all who post their ideas for all of the great inspiration that you have given me.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  17. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

    Here is a picture of the Harbor Freight knockout punches. $25 on sale, but less with a coupon.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  18. Beau
    Joined: Jul 2, 2009
    Posts: 1,884

    Beau
    Member

    Welcome to The HAMB. I like you already. Thanks!
     
  19. txturbo
    Joined: Oct 23, 2009
    Posts: 1,771

    txturbo
    Member

    What is the item number for these dies?
     

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  20. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

  21. txturbo
    Joined: Oct 23, 2009
    Posts: 1,771

    txturbo
    Member

    Thanks....I searched the HF website and it didn't come up.
     
  22. encorecustoms.com
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 18

    encorecustoms.com
    Member

    Look up knockout punch set on the HF site. Or, the dies are available other places, too. Try eBay. Good luck.
     
  23. Moto Moto
    Joined: Jan 24, 2015
    Posts: 32

    Moto Moto
    Member
    from Krum, TX

    That's damn handy.
     
  24. ago
    Joined: Oct 12, 2005
    Posts: 2,197

    ago
    Member
    from pgh. pa.

    Ok, How thick of steel are we talking here?
     

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