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Old 12-20-2011, 05:52 PM   #1
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Broken 70s Letters

I removed the letters from my 1977 Safari to polish the front end cap and found that several of the attaching studs were broken off. Two questions
  1. What is the nut-like doohickey called and where can I get some?
  2. I'm going to JBWeld some new studs in place. Maybe cut off a sheet metal screw or a coarse thread #8 machine screw? I'm hoping that epoxy will be strong enough to hold them in place.
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:02 PM   #2
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They are called pal nuts, just google them to find suppliers. I would epoxy a small bolt with a large flat head like a miniature elevator bolt, I can't remember what they call them (I will probably think of the name as soon as I post this).
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:02 PM   #3
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They are called speed nuts and are easy to find search them online.

If your plan doesn't work out.
I have seen them held on with 2 rivets in each letter. they painted the rivets blue to match and it looked good and the letters were not going to fall off.
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:03 PM   #4
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The nut doohickey things were common auto trim parts. Someplace like NAPA should have some.

J-B Weld would probably be what I would try for the stud replacement. Get everything surgically clean, rough everything up with course sandpaper or emery cloth, and heat the pieces up till they are warm to the touch. The J-B Weld will run into all the little scratches better if they are warm.
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:44 PM   #5
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I got my speed nuts from fastenal
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Old 12-20-2011, 06:54 PM   #6
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Old 12-20-2011, 10:25 PM   #7
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Zepp they look like flanged speed nuts.

McMaster Carr carries them as well as pal nuts.
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Old 12-20-2011, 11:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardT View Post
...If your plan doesn't work out.
I have seen them held on with 2 rivets in each letter. they painted the rivets blue to match and it looked good and the letters were not going to fall off.
Two of mine were held on with one rivet and one stud. The thing I don't like about the rivets is there is an air gap behind the letter, so any kind of rivet just seems wrong, even though the two I took out looked like they deformed and held the letter just fine.

BTW, thanks to all for your replies. Very helpful.

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Old 12-22-2011, 01:18 PM   #9
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I have a box of the nuts, how many do you need? I got them from McMaster-Carr. You could also rivet them back on with MS20426A4-X rivets and then paint the countersunk heads after installed and they would never show. Or you could use 5/32 flush Hilocs (they have no drives on the head but a resessed allen in the threaded end and installed with a nut)
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:04 PM   #10
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If you go the epoxie route I would use something like JB weld. I would put a flat head screw through a small plate and epoxie the plate to the back of the letter in that low area. You need as much surface area as possible to get a good bond. Epoxie is not real strong in tension. Clean all the oxide off the back of the letter before bonding and same goes for the plate with the screw in it. This should be as strong or stronger than the original.

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Old 12-22-2011, 06:42 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerowood View Post
I have a box of the nuts, how many do you need? I got them from McMaster-Carr. You could also rivet them back on with MS20426A4-X rivets and then paint the countersunk heads after installed and they would never show. Or you could use 5/32 flush Hilocs (they have no drives on the head but a resessed allen in the threaded end and installed with a nut)
The existing holes in the shell are large, like maybe 1/4". Finding a spot for another hole isn't that tough to do, but it's just another little PITA in getting the letters back on. I think the large holes allowed for fine alignment of the letters. I do like the idea of a flush rivet, but the air gap in the back of the letter would have to be shimmed. The two letters that had the pop rivet in them were totally non-obvious--the trick is to use just the right color of blue, I guess.

On the other hand, the opportunity to learn a new rivet from the Rivet Master is totally alluring!

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Old 12-23-2011, 02:46 PM   #12
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Once I get off of these @#$%^&*&^%%$ crutches and the cast removed I'll show you.
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Old 12-23-2011, 02:51 PM   #13
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Just used pop rivets and painted. Sal.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:27 PM   #14
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I'd install a few posts on the aluminum, and a few posts on the letter, then glue the bunch together with some playa dust..
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