What are pop rivets?
Pop rivets are a very strong permanent way of attaching two or more thin sheets of material to each other. Also other materials like strong plastics can be riveted together. And even in some applications wood works as well.
Where are they used?
They are used in applications where the material is to thin to tap a thread. Or where glue connections are just too weak. Can also be used in connecting sheet metal to a thin walled pipe or square tubing. Or in creating rotating connections that do not undo themselves.
Step 1: Measuring the Thickness
Before choosing your rivets you must be aware of the total thickness of the material you are going to connect.
In this case the total thickness is around 3,44mm.
We need to keep this thickness in mind when we are choosing our rivets.
Step 2: Wat Do You Need?
- Rivet gun :To set a pop rivet logicly you are going to need a rivet gun. Ask about it in the shop
- Rivets: Rivets come in a lot of different sizes and lengths. The shop at school has only a small variety of different types. If you don't find what you like you can go to other shops and find a lot more sizes.
Step 3: Choosing Your Rivets
When choosing your rivets one measurements is very important to keep in mind. The earlier measured total thickness of the material you want to connect.
In this case the total thickness was around 3,44mm.
So we need to choose or rivet accordingly. Because not every rivet can be used for every thickness. They always have a minimum and maximum range. You can find this information on the box.
I picked out a "4x8" rivet. On the box it says it can handle a thickness between 3 to 5 mm. Where our 3.44mm comfortably fits inthis range.
Step 4: Choosing a Drill
In this case we choose a "4x8" rivet. In this case the "4" refers to the diameter of the rivet and the "8" refers to the length of the rivet.
Now we know the rivet has a diameter of 4mm. It time to find the right size of drill. On the back of the box you can find al the relative drill sizes for pre drilling your type of rivet.
In this case we will need a 4.1mm drill for our 4x8 rivet.
if you can't find this size drill just choose the closest diameter you can find. Preferably smaler to insure a tight fit. Make sure your rivet can still go through the drilled hole!
Step 5: Preparing the Work Piece
Using a ruler and pencil to mark the center location of the hole.
Step 6: Center Punching the Holes.
I do this using hammer and center punch. This step is needed to insure a precise positioning of the holes.
Step 7: Drilling the Holes
When drilling holes in sheet metal you should never hold a sheet-metal workpiece in your hands when drilling, and always clamp it down when you can.
Preferably use a hand drill when drilling in sheet metal. This gives you better control when the drill bit catches and grabs the workpiece
Step 8: Removing the Burr
Sheet metal tend to leave a burr when drilled. This has to be removed to insure there is no gap between the different plates.
You can do this by drilling it out using a bigger drill or a special countersink bit.
Step 9: Preparing the Rivet Gun #1
First you need to find find the right tool head for for your rivet. Every rivet has a different shaft diameter. To find the one that fits it is just a matter of trail and error.
Step 10: Preparing the Rivet Gun #2
If there is a included spanner you can use this to replace the head.
Step 11: Inserting the Rivet
Insert the rivet into the tool. so it sits flat on the the head of the tool
Step 12: Pop the Rivet 1#
- Insert the rivet through the holes you drilled in your plates. Make sure it sits flat on on the surface of your material. Also pay attention there is also no gap between your different materials. This all to ensure a strong connection.
- Now squeeze the rivet gun closed until you hear a pop.
Step 13: Pop the Rivet 2#
The stem of the rivet has now been broken off. The pieces of plate are now strongly connected with a rivet.
Step 14: Ejecting the Stem
To eject the stem, hold the rivet gun upside down. And move with force the two legs of the rivet gun to the open position. Repeat until the stem drops out.
Step 15: Result and Possibilities
Connecting a thick and thin plate together, multiple thin plates together, connecting a plate on a pipe all depending on your application
Even connecting a piece of plastic on top of a metal plate is possible. Just make sure the plastic sits on top. Where the head is the widest. So that the rivet does not dig itself into the plastic.