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How to measure a rivet
Rivets are measured not by the length of the body but instead the maximum material thickness that can be fastened.
Steps to measuring a rivet
- First measure the thickness of the parts being joined and use this measurement to select the MAx Grip Range. Grip Range is the minimum and maximum material thickness the rivet is intended to be used with
- Measure the diameter of the hole. Matching the rivet diameter this is the measurement of the body of the rivet
- Diameter: This is the measurement of the body of the rivet.
- Grip Range: This range is the minimum and maximum material thickness the rivet is intended to be used with.
- To choose the correct rivet length, first measure the thickness of the parts being joined and use this measurement to select the MAx Grip Range.
- The reason rivet measurements are focused on grip range instead of barrel length is because there is a minimum protrusion of 1.5x the diameter of the rivet on the blind side for it to properly secure the materials and meet the specified load values.
- If only the barrel length measurement is available, we also provide this measurement for all of the rivets we offer.
your mating workpieces just where you want them (if you are doing a repair, this likely has been done for you already). A C-clamp or spring clamp is helpful here.
- Drill your hole
Select a drill bit (an ordinary metal twist bit works well for either sheet metal or acrylic) the same diameter as the pop rivet head, and drill a guide hole through both workpieces at the joint area. If you are drilling sheet metal, first squirt a little oil on the drilling point of the bit.
- Set your rivet gun
Load the pop rivet into the gun, stem first. Make sure you are using the gun nozzle with an opening diameter that matches your rivet.
Insert the head of the pop rivet all the way into the guide hole so the flange is flush against the outer workpiece.
the tool handles together. You will feel the resistance increasing as you squeeze. Maintain even pressure and try not to wiggle the tool too much.
- Listen for a snap
Squeeze until you hear a snap—that noise is the stem breaking loose from the head.
Remove the stem from the throat of the gun (this can be a little frustrating). Repeat as necessary.
Understanding Rivet Trade Sizes
Rivet Trade sizes are the easiest way to identify a pop rivet. Every rivet has one and almost all packaging from every manufacturer will display it. Below is an example of a 4-5 Rivet which is 1/8" x 5/16" pop rivet and one of the most commonly purchased sizes. The first number "4" refers to the rivet diameter in 32nds of an in "4/32", while the second number "5" references the Maximum Grip Range in 1/16ths on an inch "5/16"
Understanding Rivet Part Numbers.
Rivet part numbers are generally manufacturer specific and don't relate industry wide. Within these proprietary numbers you may find references to style, type and materials and almost always the Rivet trade number.