Golf Historical Society of Canada

2. Reset Heads of Hickory Irons, Part 2

Image #1: Settling & Curing

2. Reset Heads of Hickory Irons, Part 2 (21 Images)

By: Ken Leedham, GHSC Member

As noted previously, I am not an expert or a professional in this area – I just do a lot of it, and this is how I do it. 

In my Part 1 post, I dealt with removing the heads, cleaning, and re-gluing the heads in place with wooden pins in. We left the clubs with the epoxy curing for 24 hours. 

Here in my Part 2 post, I cover the removal of the wooden pins, and the creation and insertion of new metal pins. Please see the text below for details.


The 21 thumbnail images below read left-to-right across each line, and then down to the next line. Mouse over an individual thumbnail image to see the title. Click on an individual thumbnail image to see a larger image.

Image #1: Settling & Curing  The clubs were left with heads up to allow the epoxy to settle in between the cone and the hosel and to cure.

Image #2: Pin Removal – The next step is to remove the temporary wooden pins. First the protruding ends of the pins are snapped of with pliers.

Image #3: Knifing – Then a knife is used to further take off protruding wood.

Image #4: Drill Out Pin – Now an 1/8″ drill bit is used to drill out the wooden pin. Almost all standard clubs will be riveted with 1/8″ pins. An exception would be clubs with aluminium heads, and those are tricky to work with, and require special procedures.

Image #5: Drill Pin – I drill the pin a little from one side …

Image #6: Drill Pin, cont’d. – … then a little from the other, in order to better get a clean pass-through.

Image #7: Drill Pin, cont’d. – I have never really had problems getting the drill through cleanly from one side to the other.

Image #8: Remove Excess – Once the hole has been thoroughly cleaned out with the drill, use a knife or similar tool to ensure that all epoxy, scrap wood etc. is removed from around the hole ends on either side. This is important, as a proper metal-to-metal contact is required for good riveting.

Image #9: Making New Pins – This is what I use to make my new pins. These are 14″ mild steel rods, sold in hardware stores as electrodes for arc welding. Except for one end, they are coated with a clay insulation, but this is easily removed by crushing with pliers and then polishing with steel wool.

Image #10: Smoothing – This is a piece of rod left from an electrode from which I have already cut quite a number of pins. I smooth off any burrs from previous cutting with a rat-tail file, to give a flat end.

Image #11: Rod Insertion – I put the rod through the hosel, and mark the place to cut with a razor saw. I want about 1/16″ or a little more to protrude on each side.

Image #12: Cutting the Rod – You could cut the rod with a hacksaw, but I use a carborundum cutting disc on a Dremel tool. Cutting this way will make the rod hot, so hold it in pliers, not your fingers.

Image #13: Square the Ends – Once the piece of rod has been cut to the right length, square off the ends again with a rat-tail file.

Image #14: Pin Insertion – Put the pin through the hosel. There should be about 1/16″ or a bit more protruding on each side. If the pin comes out the wrong length, it is better to cut another.

Image #15: Hammer the Ends – Now I hammer the ends of the pin with a standard, full-size hammer. The other end of the pin needs to be braced on something like an anvil. I am actually using the top of a heavy vise in my workshop.

Image #16: Striking – Strike just a few blows on one side, then turn the head over and strike the other end.

Image #17: Starting to Spread – Here, the head of the pin has started to spread under the blows.

Image #18: Keep Hitting – Keep hitting a few blows first on one side then another, spreading the pin on each side to fill out the hole.

Image #19: Hammer Evenly – Try to hammer the pin evenly in such a way as to spread the pin both side to side and up and down the shaft direction.

Image #20 Pin Spread Out – When the pin is spread out like this on both sides we are done. Don’t over hammer the pin, especially if you have a bit more than wanted protruding, as this could damage the hosel.

Image #21: Levelling – When I started doing this, I would use a file for all of the levelling off of the pin heads. But now I use a stone grinding wheel on a Dremel tool to take of the initial excess of metal.

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