A rivet is a type of fastener that’s used in the permanent assembly of a product or workpiece. Featuring a bolt-like design, they are affixed with a head that’s wider than the shaft. When a rivet is driven into a product or workpiece, its shaft — also known as a tail — is expands up to one-and-a-half times its original size, thus securing it in place. But there are several types of rivets used in the manufacturing industry, some of which include the following.
#1) Solid Rivets
Also known as round rivets, solid rivets have been around for thousands of years, with some of the earliest examples dating back to the Bronze Age. They feature a traditional design consisting of a shaft and head. To install a solid rivet, manufacturers use a crimping too that causes the shaft to deform and expand after being driven into the product or workpiece.
#2) Structural Steel Rivets
Structural steel rivets feature a similar design as solid rivets, but they are designed specifically for use in high-stress commercial construction applications. Made of steel, they’re used in the construction of bridges, high-rise buildings, storage sheds and more. Structural steel rivets are typically heated in a furnace prior to installation to make the metal softer, more flexible and easier to work with.
#3) Split Rivets
Split rivets feature a unique design in which the shaft splits into opposite directions. Like a wall anchor, when a split rivet it driven into a product or workpiece, the shaft expands in opposite directions. This makes split rivets ideal for use in products and workpieces made of soft materials like plastic or wood.
#4) Blind Rivets
Also known as pop rivets, blind rivets consist of both a rivet as well as a mandrel. A tool known as a riveter is used to manipulate the mandrel during installation, allowing the rivet to deform and expand into the product or workpiece.
#5) Flush Rivets
After installation, most rivets protrude from the product or workpiece. However, flush rivets live up to their namesake by sitting flush with the product or workpiece in which they are installed. Also known as countersink or countersunk rivets, flush rivets are used in manufacturing applications where aerodynamics is a priority. Since they sit flush with the product or workpiece, they reduce drag to improve aerodynamics.
#6) Friction Rivets
Friction rivets are designed to lock into place once the shaft extends deep enough into the product or workpiece. Unlike most other rivets, the shaft of a friction rivet won’t expand until it’s been drive deep into the product or workpiece.