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Removing Engine Number Plates the Easy Way

Hot tanking a block in a caustic solution is the best way to get it really clean. Unfortunately, caustic hot tank solutions will rapidly eat away at any nonferrous metal they come in contact with. This means the block must be stripped of all parts made of these materials, including the number identification plate riveted to the side.

The number plate on MGB blocks is held in place by two "rivets" which are driven into holes in the side of the block. Common attempts at removal include the use of drills, easy-outs, chisels, dirty words, etc. We've found a better way.

By filing a notch on either side of the rivet, a good set of vice-grip pliers can be clamped to the head. Twisting in a counterclockwise direction will allow the rivet to be removed very easily. The rivet to the left has been removed while the rivet on the right is filed and ready to be extracted.

The removed rivets show the spiral-grooved pattern and file-notched heads. New drive screws are available in package quantity from Fastenal (part number 32229) and other hardware outlets. To replace, simply tap the new drive screw into the existing hole.

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