Rivets, also known as blind fasteners, like those produced by HTF partner, POP®, come in a wide variety of types and can be used for many projects. Here is a guide on the different types of rivets and how to use them.

What Is a Rivet?

A rivet is a permanently installed fastener used to secure two sheets of material such as metal or plastic. Unlike other fasteners, a rivet is not tightened down to secure it. Instead, it is permanently installed using force. When the rivet is struck or pressed, it fills the void creating a permanent fastening. The rivet is made up of a head and cylinder and is usually fashioned from aluminum or steel, but it can be made from other materials. 

The rivets from POP come in nickel-copper alloy, copper, stainless steel, steel, and aluminum. Rivets can be installed by drilling or punching and are most often installed with a tool called a riveter. These fasteners are produced to secure materials from plastic to metal in industries like automotive, military equipment, leather works, decor, trailers, and electrical motors. As you can probably guess, rivets are an integral part of a vast number of products. Let’s explore the types of rivets available today and their applications.

Open and Closed Rivets

Open and closed rivets are standard pop rivets offered in a range of materials, lengths, and sizes, providing fast and easy installation for a variety of applications. The open-end rivet is a pre-assembled, hollow blind rivet, which closely resembles a tubular rivet. Unlike the tubular rivet, the mandrel head is retained within the body of the rivet. With a wide load spread, this rivet type is a strong, low-cost solution for industrial applications that do not require high load-bearing for the materials needing to be fastened.

Closed-end rivets are ideal for applications that require watertight sealing or stem retention. Ideal for electric and electronic applications, the unique cup-shaped end configuration produces a seal preventing liquid or vapor passage up to 100 psi. This blind rivet has a 23 percent greater tensile strength compared to the open-end rivet, with 100 percent mandrel retention.

Blind Rivets

Blind rivets are designed for installation in drilled holes and consist of cylindrical fasteners with a mandrel through the center. Blind rivets are frequently called POP rivets because the innovative design was originally manufactured by POP. Designed to provide superior shear and tensile strength, they resist vibration, which increases the integrity of the joint by using large blind-side expansion. 

The name-blind rivet comes from the “blind end” being installed on the side, which isn’t accessible. The blind end expands, and the mandrel snaps off, creating the joint on one side of the part. Blind rivets are often used in military, aerospace, and electronic applications.

Tubular Rivets

As its name implies, the tubular rivet has a hollow shank, with the remainder of the fastener being similar to the solid rivet. The tubular rivet is used to fasten thin sheets of material like plastics, leather, sheet metal, and pivot points when movement is necessary. The tubular rivet is also known as a hollow rivet and comes in full tubular or semi-tubular designs. 

Along with POP, Avdel has been a preferred brand of innovative and high-quality engineered fastening solutions for decades. Avdel's speed fasteners are an example of tubular rivets which can be installed rapidly and reliably through many different methods of installation equipment. The Avdel NeoSpeed is a tubular rivet with superior multi-grip capability to accommodate a large variety of material thicknesses. The Avdel Chobert is another rivet cable of securing soft or brittle materials with a consistent clamp.

Split Rivets

Split rivets have a split in the shaft with sharp ends, which allow them to pierce the material without pre-drilled holes. These are most often used in residential repairs to join materials on the softer side, like wood, plastic, or leather. Split rivets are often known as bifurcated rivets, and they work by piercing material, and then the split shaft folds back in on itself after installation. Another type of rivet in the split rivet family is the self-piercing rivet (SPR). 

The self-piercing rivet is used to join multiple layers of material without the need for pre-drilled or punched holes. They can be used to connect mixed materials or aluminum. The Tucker Self-Piercing Rivet is installed without the need for a hole and cold-forms an interlock between the materials. The rivet is installed by being pressed into the sheets to form the joint. The Tucker SPR can be developed in custom configurations to meet many joining needs.

Structural Rivets

Structural rivets are specially designed to hold the mandrel in place using a locking mechanism. The lock activates once the mandrel has snapped during the final step of installation. Avdel’s structural rivets are sold in a variety of types, ensuring the technological needs of each application are met. Each blind rivet has a unique interference lock, fit for applications ranging from automotive to heating and ventilation as well as marine and hostile environments, among others.

POP’s high-strength structural rivets are a proprietary design providing the top shear and tensile strength, with an extended life thanks to its grooved mandrel, which resists rattling. This domed fastener is widely used in the transportation industry, where noise and vibration reduction are a requirement.

Specialist Rivets

Simply put, specialist blind rivets are fasteners designed to provide solutions for specialty needs. The overall design of the rivet resembles other rivet types but is differentiated primarily based on its application. Whether it’s load spread, grip strength, or even the need for different rivet sizes due to material thickness, specialist rivets offer a wide range of designs that will meet your unique needs.

HTF and POP® Rivets

HTF has spent over thirty years in the fastening business developing strong partnerships like that with POP. This makes HTF your leader for expedited shipping and expert service for all of your fastening needs. Reach out to us with questions today, we’re here to help. 

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