What Are Structural Pop Rivets?
Structural pop rivets (structural blind rivets) are rivets that are specially designed with a locking mechanism to hold the mandrel in place. Before we talk about how exactly a structural pop rivet works, we should begin with how pop rivets in general work.
Pop or Blind rivets are comprised of two parts: the hat and the mandrel. A rivet hat is the portion of the rivet that deforms and stays in the installation. The mandrel is the portion of the rivet that is pulled into the rivet and mostly removed. A standard pop rivet mandrel has a designed flaw near the base of the mandrel which makes it easier to snap.
To install a rivet, first a hole needs to be drilled into the two materials. The hole should be just wide enough for the rivet hat to fit into. Once the rivet is sitting in the two materials, a rivet installation tool is used to pull the mandrel through the rear of the hat while keeping the hat pressed firmly against the installation surface. As the mandrel is pulled into the hat it deforms the back of the hat causing it to widen and pull firmly up against the rear of the installation surface. Once the torque is reached the weakened point of the mandrel will snap resulting in a complete rivet installation.
How Do Structural Rivets Work?
Structural rivets work slightly different from the typical blind rivet. A structural blind rivet has a built-in (internal) locking mechanism that is designed to hold the mandrel inside of the rivet after the exposed portion snaps. This is commonly referred to as an interlock rivet. Notice how in the diagram to the right, the portion of the mandrel to the left of the hat is also much larger in a structural rivet than in a standard pop rivet.
There are several reasons structural rivets keep the mandrel locked inside the hat once installed:
- Increased Shear Strength
- Increased Pullout Strength
- Higher Resistance To Vibrations
- In some cases, they are also said to be considered weather-proof
How To Install Structural Rivets
Installing a structural blind rivet can be done basically the same way as installing a standard pop rivet:
- Line up the two installation materials
- Choose the appropriate drill bit to match the diameter of the structural rivet
- Drill a hole through both materials
- Insert the rivet through both materials into the hole
- Attach a rivet installation tool onto the mandrel
- Activate the tool to draw the mandrel out towards the installation surface
- Once the mandrel snaps it is completely installed
How To Remove Structural Rivets
Removing a structural rivet is just as simple as removing a standard blind rivet. To remove a structural rivet:
- Punch a starting hole into the center of the rivet
- Get a drill bit that is the same diameter as the hole originally drilled
- Add some lubricant to the drill bit
- *If the rivet is spinning, cover it in tape to prevent it from spinning
- Drill through the rivet with the drill bit until it goes completely through the hole
Common Industry Uses For Structural Rivets
- Commercial Vehicles
- Sheet Metal
- Agricultural Equipment
Common Pop/Blind Rivet Installation Tools
|Hand Operated Riveter
||Industrial Lever Riveter
|Battery Operated Riveter