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Shortening detention pins

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  • Shortening detention pins

    We've all been there haven't we? you got some pre-fab detention pins laying around --- pretty much the right size for loading and application BUT their too long and hang out way too far and slop around and look "hack"

    well mine could end up snagging my dog so I took action and in just ten minutes had everything fixed and not looking so "hokey"

    anyways - if you got some springing laying around and an assortment of ball bearings your good to go - so chop it to the needed length, I marked these and then took about an inch off of them and then mounted them in the vise, drilled to 1/8" .225 deep... Click image for larger version

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    then the perfect size flat punch...

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  • #2
    Not to shabby and at today's hardware store prices probably saved about 6 or 8 bucks...

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    • #3
      Nice work! And the flat punch is brilliant! I'd done it with a pin punch around the whole thing and that led to almost but not quite holding the balls too low. I like this way a lot better.

      But what did the poor pins do to deserve detention?

      I'm pretty sure that I've seen them called retention pins. But it's more a feeling.

      Either way though, nice bit of machining on your feet.
      Chilliwack BC, Canada


      • #4
        I think your right - retention sounds better and less "of person and of the law" although, detention derived from Latin dētentiō meaning "a keeping back"

        Iv always used the word "detent's" for the little grooves that the spring loaded balls in transmissions fall into on shifting rails and the like - right or wrong its quicker than saying "retention grooves" and "retent's" just don't sound right, and could have sworn I did read "detent" in a manual long time ago but Iv worked on everything around the world and have read allot of crazy stuff,

        The Brits had some memorable ways of communicating with "sparking plugs" and "gently prysing"

        anyways - no real reason to ever purchase one of these pins as they are so dead simple to just build yourself,,, and the flat punch does hold you just have to take baby steps so you don't over do it but once you get it acceptable they will stay put as there's no real wear factor in the holding deformation area so even though it's just on two 180 degree area's it's just as good.


        • #5
          I like this. Thanks for sharing!


          • #6
            Another name for this style of pin used in the firearms application is "take down pins". At least I think that's what they call them on AR style rifles.

            And I'm pretty sure that regardless of the name of the pin itself that the balls are in fact called "detent balls". Or in the case of similar but using a pin "detent pins".
            Chilliwack BC, Canada


            • #7
              Good idea and nice job AK,have lot’s of those pins around the farm on implement jacks.For the ones out in the weather I try to position pin with ball at bottom,seen lots rusted if filled with moisture.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Tundra Twin Track View Post
                I try to position pin with ball at bottom,seen lots rusted if filled with moisture.
                Damn good point --- makes me think of it filling and freezing and then just popping the ball out ! wonder if some have seen that outdoors and just said WTF??? Aliens??? lol

                I just thought of possibly a better way of getting a more uniform peen around the hole, hold another pin sideways over the ball and other pin - compress and then strike said pin with the hammer... I think it could even be a duplicate pin of same hardness - the deformation will occur at the edges of the drilled hole rather than the solid pin that's doing the driving...