Author Topic: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?  (Read 530 times)

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Offline sofakng

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IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 10:07:34 »
What's the best way to accurately drill into the rivet without a drill press?

I have a dremel and hand drill but is either one better for this type of mod? 

1) Should I just purchase a dremel drill press?  ($50;  most expensive and I don't need for anything else; EDIT: this might not have the depth needed to fit the keyboard...?)
2) Can I use a drill-bit guide from a hardware store?
3) Is there any 3D printable guides?

Any other tips to accurately drill out the holes?

Also, what size drill bit is correctly?  The geekhack wiki says "1/16" (#52 or metric 16) drill bit" or the screws are only M2 so isn't metric 16 much too large?
« Last Edit: Fri, 18 June 2021, 10:11:59 by sofakng »

Offline fohat.digs

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #1 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 10:32:20 »
I use a Dremel at its slowest setting (use your smallest burr tip to make a tiny dimple to prevent the drill bit from "walking"). I put on (reading) glasses and get my face in as close as possible, holding the rotary driver with both hands to keep it steady and vertical. At first it is unnerving but quickly becomes easier. Do not be in a hurry. Your eye is probably better than a guide.

I consider a 1/16" drill bit to be perfect because it is slightly smaller than the M2 screw, and so the screw cuts it own way in but remains tight. 1/16" is slightly over 1.5mm so if you are using that bit it will be slightly harder to start but be tighter once in (my guess, I have never tried it with a 1.5mm bit). A 2mm bit might be too big, but again, I have never tried that.
Over the past few decades there has been a redistribution of dignity upward. The Republicans valorized entrepreneurs, CEOs and Wall Street. The Democratic Party became dominated by people in the creative class, who attended competitive colleges, moved to affluent metro areas, married each other and ladled advantages onto their kids so they could leap even farther ahead. There was a bipartisan embrace of a culture of individualism, which opens up a lot of space for people with resources and social support but means loneliness and abandonment for people without. Four years of college became the definition of the good life, which left roughly two-thirds of the country out. And so came the crisis that Biden was elected to address the poisonous combination of elite insularity and vicious populist resentment. A group of people so enraged by a lack of respect that they are willing to risk death by Covid if they get to stick a middle finger in the air against those who they think look down on them. They are willing to torch our institutions because they are so resentful against the people who run them. The Democratic spending bills are economic packages that serve moral and cultural purposes. They should be measured by their cultural impact, not merely by some wonky analysis. In real, tangible ways, they would redistribute dignity back downward. They would support hundreds of thousands of jobs for home health care workers, child care workers, construction workers, metal workers, supply chain workers. They would ease the indignity millions of parents face having to raise their children in poverty.  David Brooks NYT 2021

Offline sofakng

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #2 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 10:42:41 »
Thanks so much for the help!

I don't use my dremel too often, so this is a dumb question, but can I use my standard 1/16" drill bit in the dremel or does it need a special bit?

Also, I don't have any burr tips (sharp/pointed tip?) ... I'm looking at Home Depot but I can't find anything...?

Sorry for the dumb questions and thanks so much for the help!

Offline fohat.digs

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 11:53:57 »

can I use my standard 1/16" drill bit in the dremel or does it need a special bit?

burr tips


Drill bits are standard but you may need the chuck to hold it. Not all Dremel sets come with an adjustable chuck.

A burr tip is knurled and spherical - just like what the dentist uses to make a place for a filling. Making a dimple is not essential, maybe you can scratch a little dip with a sharp awl.
Over the past few decades there has been a redistribution of dignity upward. The Republicans valorized entrepreneurs, CEOs and Wall Street. The Democratic Party became dominated by people in the creative class, who attended competitive colleges, moved to affluent metro areas, married each other and ladled advantages onto their kids so they could leap even farther ahead. There was a bipartisan embrace of a culture of individualism, which opens up a lot of space for people with resources and social support but means loneliness and abandonment for people without. Four years of college became the definition of the good life, which left roughly two-thirds of the country out. And so came the crisis that Biden was elected to address the poisonous combination of elite insularity and vicious populist resentment. A group of people so enraged by a lack of respect that they are willing to risk death by Covid if they get to stick a middle finger in the air against those who they think look down on them. They are willing to torch our institutions because they are so resentful against the people who run them. The Democratic spending bills are economic packages that serve moral and cultural purposes. They should be measured by their cultural impact, not merely by some wonky analysis. In real, tangible ways, they would redistribute dignity back downward. They would support hundreds of thousands of jobs for home health care workers, child care workers, construction workers, metal workers, supply chain workers. They would ease the indignity millions of parents face having to raise their children in poverty.  David Brooks NYT 2021

Offline sofakng

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 16:18:29 »
Ahh ok. Something like this?  (drill shaft with ball at the end?)


Im not sure they make these in 1/16 sizes though.

Offline fohat.digs

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #5 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 20:14:40 »

Something like this?  (drill shaft with ball at the end?)


That's it. Even if you had one about the same diameter as the rivet, you could still make a depression. Not necessary, but drill bits tend to "walk" at the beginning and you need to be as accurate as you can.
Over the past few decades there has been a redistribution of dignity upward. The Republicans valorized entrepreneurs, CEOs and Wall Street. The Democratic Party became dominated by people in the creative class, who attended competitive colleges, moved to affluent metro areas, married each other and ladled advantages onto their kids so they could leap even farther ahead. There was a bipartisan embrace of a culture of individualism, which opens up a lot of space for people with resources and social support but means loneliness and abandonment for people without. Four years of college became the definition of the good life, which left roughly two-thirds of the country out. And so came the crisis that Biden was elected to address the poisonous combination of elite insularity and vicious populist resentment. A group of people so enraged by a lack of respect that they are willing to risk death by Covid if they get to stick a middle finger in the air against those who they think look down on them. They are willing to torch our institutions because they are so resentful against the people who run them. The Democratic spending bills are economic packages that serve moral and cultural purposes. They should be measured by their cultural impact, not merely by some wonky analysis. In real, tangible ways, they would redistribute dignity back downward. They would support hundreds of thousands of jobs for home health care workers, child care workers, construction workers, metal workers, supply chain workers. They would ease the indignity millions of parents face having to raise their children in poverty.  David Brooks NYT 2021

Offline sofakng

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #6 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 20:28:08 »
OK - Thanks!

I've removed the rivets using Hakko flush cutters:


Where do I drill the hole?  It's hard to tell exactly where the center of the rivet was?

Offline fohat.digs

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #7 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 22:21:46 »

It's hard to tell exactly where the center of the rivet was?


I posted a detailed response on DT.
Over the past few decades there has been a redistribution of dignity upward. The Republicans valorized entrepreneurs, CEOs and Wall Street. The Democratic Party became dominated by people in the creative class, who attended competitive colleges, moved to affluent metro areas, married each other and ladled advantages onto their kids so they could leap even farther ahead. There was a bipartisan embrace of a culture of individualism, which opens up a lot of space for people with resources and social support but means loneliness and abandonment for people without. Four years of college became the definition of the good life, which left roughly two-thirds of the country out. And so came the crisis that Biden was elected to address the poisonous combination of elite insularity and vicious populist resentment. A group of people so enraged by a lack of respect that they are willing to risk death by Covid if they get to stick a middle finger in the air against those who they think look down on them. They are willing to torch our institutions because they are so resentful against the people who run them. The Democratic spending bills are economic packages that serve moral and cultural purposes. They should be measured by their cultural impact, not merely by some wonky analysis. In real, tangible ways, they would redistribute dignity back downward. They would support hundreds of thousands of jobs for home health care workers, child care workers, construction workers, metal workers, supply chain workers. They would ease the indignity millions of parents face having to raise their children in poverty.  David Brooks NYT 2021

Offline fanpeople

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Re: IBM Model M - Bolt Mod - How to accurately drill holes?
« Reply #8 on: Fri, 18 June 2021, 23:08:44 »
Although it has been many years since I did a bolt mod, the best tip I received and still remember is to use a soldiering iron to make a little dent in the plastic before drilling. That way the bit goes where you want it to.

1. remove rivet
2. mark rivet area with paint marker (makes it less likely to miss a rivet area.
3. use soldering iron to make a little dent
4. drill.

If you have already removed the rivets. Put the metal plate over and mark the holes with a marker.

Just hold the plastic flat on the table and drill directly down, if you take care it is usually rather straight.