Uses for Rivets in Manufacturing and Construction(hardness Ann)
- source:LONTL CNC Machining
What are Rivets?
A rivet is a mechanical fastener that consists of two main parts - a smooth cylindrical shaft and a head. The shaft is inserted into a pre-drilled hole in the materials being joined, and the head is formed on the protruding end using pressure. This creates a permanent joint by cold working and radially expanding the tail of the rivet into the walls of the hole.
Rivets come in a wide variety of styles, sizes and materials. Some common types include:
- Solid/Blind Rivets - Tubular rivets with a built-in stem used for blind applications where access is only available from one side.
- Drive Rivets - Also known as open-end or tubular rivets. They have a pre-formed head on one end and are installed by driving a tool onto the opposite end to flare it out and form the second head.
- Split Rivets - Consist of a rivet body and a mandrel inside. When the mandrel is drawn into the rivet body, it flares out the legs to form the second head.
- Structural Rivets - Used for high-strength structural connections. They are available with large diameter shafts and extra wide heads.
- Self-Piercing Rivets - Designed to pierce through softer stacked materials and form a head on the opposite side upon installation.
Key Uses of Rivets
Aircraft and Aerospace Applications
The aerospace industry relies heavily on rivets for assembling airplane fuselages, wings and other components. Tens of thousands of rivets are used to join the various aluminum and titanium parts together to form a strong, reliable structure able to endure immense forces and fatigue. Solid rivets are often used because access is only available from one side when assembling the internal airplane framework. Rivet strength and reliability is critical, as a single failed rivet could compromise the safety of the aircraft.
Bridge and Steel Construction
Steel bridges, towers, cranes, transmission towers and offshore oil rigs all utilize high strength structural rivets for connections. The rivets help assemble strong trusses, built-up beams and stiffening gussets out of rolled or built-up steel sections. They provide reliable load transfer and resistance to fatigue failure in the complex structural joints. The large bearing surface of rivet heads allow them to handle shear forces better than high-tension bolts.
Ship hulls and deckhouses depend on thousands of rivets to unite their heavy steel plates into a watertight shell able to withstand harsh ocean conditions. The integrity of the rivet connections is crucial for preventing leaks that could sink the vessel. Drive rivets are commonly used to assemble ship structures, as access is generally available from both sides during the building process.
Self-piercing rivets are heavily utilized in the automotive industry for joining the various steel, aluminum and composite panels that form the body-in-white car frame. The rivets pierce through the outer skin and inner frame materials upon installation, firmly clinching them together. This creates quick and consistent joints without pre-drilling required. Rivets help automakers reduce vehicle weight for better fuel efficiency.
Appliances and Electronics
Many household appliance exteriors, like those on refrigerators, dishwashers, ovens and washing machines, are made from prepainted steel sheets fastened together with rivets. The rivets allow the cases to be disassembled for recycling at end-of-life. Internally, rivets provide sturdy mounting points for attaching components like compressors, pumps and circuit boards. Riveting is also commonly used in electronics assembly for products like computers, phones and medical devices.
HVAC and Plumbing Applications
Sheet metal ducting for heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems relies on rivets to form air-tight rectangular duct joints. Riveting is also used for assembling large commercial exhaust hoods, ventilation fans and spiral sheet metal pipes. In plumbing, riveted seams help join drain, waste and vent piping components while preventing leaks at the connections. Rivets also affix brackets, clamps and supports used in HVAC and plumbing installations.
Rivets play a key role in the production of backpacks, tents, climbing equipment, kayaks and other rugged outdoor gear where durability is paramount. Nylon webbing straps are riveted to metal frames for secure attachment strength. Rivets also assemble storage pouches, ladder locks and d-rings onto packs and cases. Jean rivets help reinforce stress points to avoid clothing tears and blowouts. Riveting provides a reliable fastening method able to withstand tremendous forces exerted during outdoor adventures.
Construction and Building Materials
In addition to structural steel connections, rivets have numerous applications in general building construction. They affix sheet metal roofing, siding, floor decking, ducts, gutters and downspouts onto structures. Riveting assembles the curved forms of metal spiral staircases and fire escapes. Scaffold components, railings, ladders and safety equipment also rely on riveted connections for strength and durability. Rivets are also commonly used for attaching studs, pipes, conduits and joists to steel frames in commercial buildings.
Key Benefits of Rivets
Rivets provide unique benefits that make them a widely utilized fastener across many industries:
- High shear and tensile strength – The riveting process work-hardens the shaft, allowing it to withstand tremendous loads.
- Durability – Solid rivet construction and tight clamping force provides excellent fatigue resistance under vibration or fluctuating stresses.
- Reliability – Properly installed rivets rarely loosen or fail except under extreme loads. Great for critical connections.
- Vibration resistance – Rivet heads dampen vibration to prevent joint fatigue and loosening.
- Corrosion resistance – Available in stainless steel and aluminum for exterior applications.
- Quick assembly – Allows faster fabrication and installation compared to welding or bolting.
- Angular flexibility – The rivet head can pivot slightly to accommodate alignment variations.
- No machining needed – Holes can be punched out rather than precisely machined.
- Low part count – Simple two-piece design reduces hardware complexity.
By understanding the capabilities and uses for the many rivet types, engineers can apply these invaluable fasteners in optimal ways across nearly any application. Rivets will continue playing a key role in manufacturing and construction thanks to their simple design, ease of installation and excellent strength-to-weight ratio. CNC Milling CNC Machining