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Rivet Guides

What Is a Rivet and Where Can You Buy It?

A rivet is an outstanding and permanent mechanical fastener. Before installation, it consists of a head on one head and a smooth cylindrical shaft, the tail, on the other end. There are still certain cars (mostly vintage ones and some modern customized ones) that make use of rivets instead of high-strength bolts. When installed, the rivet is placed in a drilled or punched hole before its tail is bucked or deformed so that it expands into another head that holds the rivet in place.

Rivet Buying Considerations

The end result of your riveting job is directly affected by the following factors.

  1. Hole Size: The type of rivet you should buy for your car should fit the hole it's supposed to fill. Rivet insertion is difficult for smaller holes. Larger holes, meanwhile, will reduce the tensile strength and shear of your rivet setup. It can also cause separation of bulging of the members. Make sure your hole puncher or drill bit makes the right size of hole for the rivets you've bought. Follow hole size recommendations provided by the site too.
  2. Nature of Materials: The materials to be fastened (usually stainless steel or aluminum car parts) and the material used on the rivet will affect the ultimate strength of the resulting joint. As a rule, the rivet should be made of the same materials as the materials to be fastened (or at the very least they should share the same mechanical and physical properties, like aluminum bumpers riveted with steel rivets). Joint failure can result from using dissimilar materials.
  3. Head Style: When buying rivets off of the Internet, pay attention to the head style of the products that have caught your eye. For most applications, a low-profile domed head is enough to finish the riveting job. However, a large flange head is a better fit for brittle or soft materials because it offers a bigger, wider bearing surface. As for flush surfaces, you should use a countersunk head style.
  4. Joint Thickness: To measure joint thickness, you should add the total thickness of the materials to be joined together. This information is important because this helps determine the required grip of the rivet you want to use. Your rivet should have a grip range that takes into account the thickness of the two materials to be riveted. Insufficient rivet length will keep you from forming a secondary head at the back of the work that forms the joint.
  5. Factors of Joint Strength: To ensure joint strength, get the specs for the shear and single-joint tensile values of the rivet you're buying. These are functions of rivet diameter, rivet body material, fastener spacing, and the like. There should be a rivet selection guide on the product site that allows you to match the proper values required by your riveting application.

To Sum it All Up

Rivets are usually used in cars and trucks back in the day, before arc welders replaced riveters and rivet work. However, using rivets even today remains still a viable method of permanent fastening of two materials. They're used widely in the present time for fastening various car surfaces such as doors, bumpers, and fenders. They're nowadays made of plastic material and could fit 6 millimeter holes. Just keep in mind of hole size, material composition, head style, joint thickness, and other factors before buying a set of rivets for your riveting needs.

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