Riveting in Sheet Metal Using CNC Technology(removing chrome from wheels Quintion)
- source:MAJA CNC Machining
In this article, we’ll look at how CNC-controlled riveting works for sheet metal fabrication, including the key benefits this automated process provides over traditional manual riveting.
How Does CNC Riveting Work?
CNC riveting utilizes computer-controlled tools to drill holes and insert rivets with consistent speed and force. It is highly programmable, allowing the operator to adjust variables like hole pattern, hole size, rivet length, and insertion depth for each application.
Here is an overview of the automated riveting process:
- The sheet metal components to be joined are loaded into a CNC machining center and clamped into position.
- The CNC machine drills holes at the programmed locations and angles using a spin drill or hole punch tool. The depth is precisely controlled.
- Rivets are fed automatically into the nose of the riveting tool from a vibratory bowl feeder. Popular rivet types include blind, solid, and semi-tubular.
- The CNC riveting head aligns over the first hole and a pneumatic ram inserts the rivet into the hole under programmable pressure and force. This flares out the tail of the rivet.
- The ram exerts force on the bucktail of the rivet, expanding the rivet shank and clamping the sheets together.
- The machine repeats this sequence rapidly and accurately for each hole based on the programmed pattern.
- Lastly, the flush trimmed rivet tails may be swept away by an automated air blast.
The entire process produces consistent, high-integrity rivet joints timed to maximize throughput. Precision control removes human variables from the equation.
Benefits of CNC Riveting
There are many advantages to using CNC machines for riveting versus manual methods:
Speed and Efficiency
CNC riveting is extremely fast, installing hundreds of rivets per hour compared to a few dozen by hand. The automated process also reduces worker fatigue. No time is wasted moving between rivet locations.
Consistency and Accuracy
The programmable nature of CNC allows for precise hole positioning and rivet placement. Rivets are inserted with even pressure and depth, resulting in uniform joints. Manual riveting cannot match this consistency.
CNC-driven pneumatic rams can apply higher and more focused insertion force than a riveting hammer. This work hardens the rivet shank for stronger joints. The flush trimmed ends also enhance strength.
CNC programs can be modified to suit different rivet patterns, materials, and joint requirements. No retooling is needed to alter hole locations or rivet size. Easy adjustments optimize the process for each application.
The combination of automation, precision hole alignment, and programmable force settings minimizes human errors like missed holes, off-center rivets, and inadequate insertion pressure that lead to defective joints.
CNC machines integrate drilling and riveting in one continuous process with smooth work flow between operations. This boosts efficiency over separate drilling and riveting stages.
Lower Labor Costs
Automating the intensely manual task of riveting reduces direct labor requirements significantly. Skilled workers are only needed to oversee the equipment, not perform riveting manually.
Overall, CNC riveting provides considerable advantages for sheet metal fabrication shops, enabling higher production at lower costs while improving joint quality.
CNC Riveting Applications
Thanks to its benefits, CNC riveting has become widely adopted for fastening sheet metal in many commercial and industrial applications:
Aerospace - Riveting of aluminum fuselages, wings, engine nacelles and other aircraft structures where reliability is critical. Staggered riveting ensures airframe integrity.
Transportation - Riveting car and truck body panels, frames, subframes, and chassis components to withstand vibration forces during driving.
Electronics - Riveting internal sheet metal enclosures for computers, medical devices, telecom equipment, and other electronics needing durability.
HVAC Ducting - Joining duct section panels and sealing duct joints using row after row of blind rivets to withstand air pressure flows.
Building Facades - Riveting metal wall panels, roofs, frames, railings, and architectural features to provide weather resistance and long service life.
Tanks & Vessels - Riveting pressure vessel parts like culvert stock, nozzles, filters, hoppers, silos, and chutes to create leakproof, seamless joints.
CNC riveting reliably fastens sheet metal across many products where structural joints are needed. The automated process is highly adaptable to the exact riveting requirements.
In summary, CNC riveting of sheet metal has many advantages over manual riveting in terms of speed, precision, joint quality, and labor savings. With programmable hole drilling and rivet insertion, it produces uniform, strong, and consistent riveted connections for all types of fabrication and manufacturing applications. The automation of this traditionally manual process boosts quality and efficiency. CNC Milling CNC Machining