Attaching DEC Handles, the Right Way

Ethan Dicks ethan.dicks at
Wed Apr 26 08:51:57 CDT 2017

On Tue, Apr 25, 2017 at 9:03 PM, Systems Glitch via cctalk
<cctalk at> wrote:
> I'm sure most of you DEC hackers have replaced a broken DEC handle or put handles on a protoboard... I finally came across the right tool for the job, an Indestro tubular rivet set!

When I worked for a place that made Unibus and Qbus boards, we bought
bulk metal quad and hex handle assemblies from DEC, no number stamped
on them.  We used a floor-stand foot-powered Stimpson rivet setter
with a lower die that held the rivet and an upper die that set it.  I
saved the Stimpson machine when the company closed.

It's one of these:  They make
quick work of setting rivets but overkill for hobby use.  We shipped
over 1200 Unibus and Qbus boards, so we set well over 10,000 rivets on
it.  I probably did at least 1,000.

> they're 1/8" hollow brass rivets, but that a M3 x 5mm is close enough. You can buy the M3 rivets online for cheap, I paid $6 USD for 200 rivets, shipped.

Good to know.  I still have a bag of our old stock, but if I run out...


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