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Rivet Nut...! What...? How...? Where...?

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Blog entry by LittleBlackDuck posted 09-25-2018 02:13 AM 1125 reads 0 times favorited 21 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Boys and Girls, while window shopping in my local men’s shoe shop (tool shop), I came across what looked like a more user friendly pop rivetter.

After some dumb questions, I was informed it was a Rivet Nut Setter.

Qué…???... I asked the salesman to speak into my good eye. He informed me it was a tool for inserting metal threads into thin metal (sheet metal) using a pop rivet principle.

Now I’m not here to spruik a brand (that’s why it’s here and not under Reviews) but to make readers aware of the tool in case you may not have stumbled across it while browsing your wife’s Women’s Weekly magazine.

As soon as the salesman described it, my mind started running amuck and while I had no idea where I would use it, I could foresee its use in some of my jigs and workshop attachments.

Disclaimer… Now this does not replace the traditional tapping of thick metal or timber, however, it is ideal for thin material… have not tried it in thin ply but I believe it may work.
The thickness of material is governed by the “compression collar” on the nut which increases as you move up the guage.

Purchased it for $122(Aus., slight discount). The gun came with the full range of threaded (3, 4, 5, 6. 8 and 10mm) mandrels and a teaser of 10 of each rivet nuts.

Got it home, unpacked it and mused over a cask of vino of where I could use it (the gun, not the vino). I proceeded to prepare some samples to demonstrate its use to inquisitive visitors to my workshop and quickly forgot about it with the assistance of an overindulgence of the red fluid.

Started working on a project and spent some time looking for a knob used on my router to hold an “outrigger”.

This knob is already a replacement due to me losing the original one. Hey, Festool is metric… my nuts (riveter) are metric…

The knob had a 5mm thread so I drilled a 11mm hole in the plastic formfit systainer insert. Popped a 5mm nut in there and voila… now had a permanent place for that bloody recalcitrant knob.

OK… I’ll confess, you don’t need to part with all those shekels to buy a Festool OF1400 router for finding a use for these rivet nut, however, I’m sure you may find use for it elsewhere in the workshop, your car or the missus car (the broomstick… hey, I’m not sexist… Harry Potter rides one).

To use it, you put in the appropriate mandrell, thread on the right nut… don’t, repeat don’t forget to drill a hole in your target material otherwise it’s too hard to push through,

Push the handles, but unlike a pop rivet where you snap the pin,

(I tried it on a piece of timber before I got the Festool brainwave and snapped it along the grain from too much force…

however, you get to see how the “collar” compresses, rather than at the end like a pop rivet…)

snug it up till the “collar” compresses till it gives a tight fit in the hole.

If you do a Google, you will find some videos putting a better twist on this little product then me.

Hey, this tool may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but then again I’m a coffee drinker and if you don’t like the idea… don’t read the article!.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD



21 comments so far

View WeekendWoodworking's profile

WeekendWoodworking

59 posts in 2799 days


#1 posted 09-25-2018 02:49 AM

Hey that’s cool! Have not seen this before. Can see it being useful. Thanks for the What-how-where Rivet Nut blog!!!

-- Steve at WeekendWoodworking

View CO_Goose's profile

CO_Goose

186 posts in 1990 days


#2 posted 09-25-2018 03:27 AM

We called them Riv-nuts. Whatever the name, they still work the same. They were very good on thin material, but they were not so good on the thick material. we had a difficult time getting them to set on 1/2” (13mm) material. It worked great on anything less than 1/4”. Pretty cool, cinches like a rivet, but has a threaded insert when you are done.

-- Just making sawdust

View CaptainKlutz's profile

CaptainKlutz

601 posts in 1694 days


#3 posted 09-25-2018 06:34 AM

Hehe – New toys can be fun. :)
Been using rivet nuts for long time.

FWIW –
Harbor Freight in US sells a cheap $20 riv-nut installation kit that supports nuts 1/4-20 and smaller. Great for occasional use, but if need a tool for regular use or larger sizes, then need a larger and better quality tool.

If you only need to use one size of riv-nut, there are also expandable rivet nut tools that use wrench(es) to compress the rivet into place available for less than HF kit. Once I put a 5/16-18 tool in my wood shop box for jig work, I find many more uses than 1st imagined.

IMHO – Best part about riv-nut is they have larger allowable tolerance on hole diameter than other threaded inserts for metal like press-in PEM nut. You can drill holes with hand drill and not be too worried about less than perfect diameter.

Would never use them on in wood as you learned. But I have used them to repair striped out screw hole in wood, by using a thin metal backing plate(s) on both sides that constrains the rivet to avoid excess pressure on wood. Also need to ensure you match rivet length to thickness of metal. Too much or too little compression on rivet results in weak bond and rivet insert will spin in hole.

Cheers!

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

2085 posts in 1020 days


#4 posted 09-25-2018 06:41 AM

Having never seen or heard of them before I have a tad less than none experience… it’s 2 days, 3 rivets old…. so I can only imagine potential use.


.... Have not seen this before….
- WeekendWoodworking

It’ll be interesting to see how many W’W’s there are out there.


..... had a difficult time getting them to set on 1/2” (13mm) material. It worked great on anything less than 1/4”.....
- CO_Goose

I would not even hesitate in tapping anything over about 4mm with either metal/wood taps as there would be enough meat to fake a reasonable thread. However, I can see extensive benefits for anything <4mm.

Would never replace the trusty bolt and nut but can see major inroads when the nut belongs on the inaccessible other side of the fence.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View robscastle's profile (online now)

robscastle

5465 posts in 2404 days


#5 posted 09-25-2018 06:43 AM

Yo LBD great piece of kit

I couldnt live without my nut setter!

You can also get stud setter as well but I am tipping your across them anyway!

You can use them on wood but you need rubber types from memory.

Wait I will go look, ... Ill be back!

-- Regards Rob

View robscastle's profile (online now)

robscastle

5465 posts in 2404 days


#6 posted 09-25-2018 06:52 AM

OK I am back… here is the scoop, rather than clutter up you excellent post, check out this website.
Its all here

http://www.rivtec.com.au/

BTW you can also install them with just a bolt, nut and spanner if you by accident break the anvil while doing a job.

-- Regards Rob

View crowie's profile

crowie

2737 posts in 2150 days


#7 posted 09-25-2018 09:10 AM

Well Alex, I’m pleased for you keeping your learning going in new fields…

BUT SORRY SIR, I have used them since leaving the Navy and starting in civilian employment 40 years ago…

Now saying that, I’m still amazed at what i think is new stuff that other tech’s and trades use daily…

PS – Good review!!

-- Lifes good, Enjoy each new day...... Cheers from "On Top DownUnder" Crowie

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

6223 posts in 3552 days


#8 posted 09-25-2018 10:43 AM

A Good tool to have when you need a fix!
I’ve seen these nut setters (good to have but) for me I need a problem before I take a tool like this home. So far I left this tool on shelf at the store; if I ever need one I know where to get one. Maybe I’m just lazy and don’t do enough work. LOL! I bought a heavy duty pop riveting tool to fix one pop rivet on my truck’s Tonneau cover and that was over two years ago now it sits on hook in the shop doing nothing. I confess that I love tools but not having the space for every tool I drool over I must let the store keep it until I’m desperate!
Nice review bog LBD!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

2085 posts in 1020 days


#9 posted 09-25-2018 11:37 AM



.... I have used them since leaving the Navy and starting in civilian employment 40 years ago…
- crowie

A lot of feedback indicates that these have been around for years and used by many. If someone bothered to do a write up years ago (and I got off my arse and read it!), I would have made extensive use of these on my jigs over time gone by.

It is for that reason I am posting this…. for the odd few that are unaware of it.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View Fresch's profile

Fresch

359 posts in 2120 days


#10 posted 09-25-2018 11:40 AM

I use the aluminum for my boat with aluminum hardware.
A steel insert for steel jobs, have 2 HF setups one at camp one at main house.

View pottz's profile

pottz

3550 posts in 1184 days


#11 posted 09-25-2018 01:24 PM

It is for that reason I am posting this…. for the odd few that are unaware of it.-LBD.

youve called me plenty duckie but now ODD,well i wont argue it.ive had a pop rivet toll for many years but like mu buddy tony it just collects dust so as cool a tool as this is ill wait for the nned to arise before adding another dust collector.nice blog though.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View BurlyBob's profile

BurlyBob

5977 posts in 2465 days


#12 posted 09-25-2018 02:42 PM

Like Fresch, Riv-Nuts were used to install the duck blind on my boat. I was really amazed when I saw them for the first time. Really ingenious.

View Rayne's profile

Rayne

1108 posts in 1739 days


#13 posted 09-25-2018 05:22 PM

This is new to me, so I’m happy to see this. I also didn’t know HF carried something like this. Might be useful but not in the current state of my shop. Maybe once I finish my Miter station, opportunities may arise to use it. Thanks for posting.

View oldnovice's profile

oldnovice

7326 posts in 3567 days


#14 posted 09-25-2018 06:46 PM

That is a real nice set of tools and fasteners, wish I had it.

I have used a lot of pop rivets and rivnuts, I have a very old, two pulls required, Craftsman rivet tool that accepts two different sizes of rivets/rivnuts. They are a real time and sometimes project saver.

Use a backing washer on the compression side of the rivet/rivnuts when doing thin or softer material but you will need a longer rivet.

I have used them on 1/8” diaphragm rubber with a backing washer and very good luck.
Rivnuts are also handy when you drill an oversize hole you wanted to tap.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

2085 posts in 1020 days


#15 posted 09-26-2018 01:30 AM



I couldnt live without my nut setter!

You can also get stud setter as well but I am tipping your across them anyway!
- robscastle

rc, I couldn’t live without my nuts either….

As mentioned, this is new to me and I’m like a kid in a candy shop (woman in a shoe shop or a young man in a bordello)_

Read with interest your aside about the RivStuds which I could find an even greater use for, however, could not find any stud setters while riding the curls at Noosa (surfing). Couldn’t find one on the Rivtec site (have sent a Pauline Hanson [”please explain”]). I have observed (a video not a read) that for studs you need a different mandrell “spindle” but they don’t seem to be readily available (even if they may be interchangeable between brands).

Can you,

shed some light on this for me please?

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

showing 1 through 15 of 21 comments

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