The Importance of Quality Rivets in CNC Machining(how to make custom metal parts Joseph)

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Rivets are a crucial component in many CNC machined parts and products. While they may seem insignificant, the quality and durability of rivets can make or break a product. This article will examine the role of rivets in CNC machining and discuss the importance of using high quality rivets for optimal results.
What are Rivets?
A rivet is a mechanical fastener that consists of two main parts - a smooth cylindrical shaft and a head. The shaft is inserted into a hole drilled or punched into the materials being fastened together. The rivet head is then mashed against the material using a tool called a rivet gun. This smashing or pressing of the rivet head causes the shaft to flare out and grip the sides of the hole tightly, fastening the materials together.
Rivets come in a variety of styles, sizes and materials to suit different applications. Some common types include blind rivets, pop rivets, drive rivets and structural rivets. The most popular materials used to make rivets include aluminum, steel, copper, stainless steel, titanium and monel.
Applications in CNC Machining
Rivets have numerous applications in CNC machined parts and products. Some of the most common uses include:
- Assembling sheet metal enclosures and frames. Aircraft, electronics enclosures and automotive panels all use rivets to join sheets of aluminum and steel. The CNC machined parts have punched or drilled holes and rivets are inserted by automated riveting machines.
- Joining machined brackets, attachments and sub-assemblies. Rivets provide a quick and secure method of fastening CNC machined components together, especially where welding may be problematic.
- Securing non-load bearing hardware. Pins, plates, doors, covers and other hardware pieces are often secured with rivets if they do not require bolted joints. The rivets allow easy assembly and disassembly when required.
- Replacing welds and bolts. Rivets can provide weight savings over welds and faster assembly than bolted joints. Aerospace and aviation applications frequently use rivets instead of metal fastening methods.
- Allowing movement and vibration absorption. Rivets form a tighter fit than screws and allow thinner materials to be joined. The clinching effect absorbs vibration better than hard bolted connections.
Why Quality Matters
The quality of rivets plays a crucial role in the safety, lifespan and functionality of CNC machined products. Here are some of the reasons why using high quality rivets is important:
- Strength and durability: Good rivets are made from strong materials that will not bend, deform or shear under pressure and repeated stress. Low quality rivets are prone to loosening, popping out or snapping.
- Corrosion resistance: Quality rivets have coatings and treatments to resist rust, oxidation and corrosion. This is vital for machined parts exposed to weather elements or harsh chemicals.
- Consistent sizing and fit: Properly sized rivets will fill holes snugly and clinch correctly. Poorly sized or made rivets can result in loose connections and misshapen rivet heads.
- Good drivability: Quality rivets are easily set and driven to form tight clinched connections. Rivets that drive poorly or unevenly indicate inferior quality.
- Shear and tension capacities: Structural rivets must have certified shear and tension capacities to handle machined components under load. Using substandard rivets risks joint failure.
- Compliance with standards: Reputable rivet suppliers comply with all industry regulations and quality standards like ASME, ANSI, ISO, etc. This ensures consistent quality rivets.
How to Source Quality Rivets
To benefit from quality rivets in your CNC machining operations, follow these tips when sourcing supplies:
- Choose established brands known for quality, like Cherry Aerospace, Ateliers de la Haute Garonne (AHG), Avdel, Arconic, etc.
- Look for certifications like ISO 9001 to confirm quality management practices.
- Specify industry standards like ASME, ANSI, NASM, etc. that rivets should comply with.
- Require material test reports and lot traceability data from the rivet manufacturer.
- Ask about quality control procedures used to ensure consistency.
- Order sample rivets for evaluation before purchasing production quantities.
- Perform test assembly runs to assess rivet driveability, clinch and pull-out strength.
- Partner with rivet suppliers that provide technical expertise and guidance.
Investing in quality rivets from reputable sources is a small price to pay for ensuring the long-term performance of CNC machined products. By following these tips and insisting on proven quality rivets, manufacturers can avoid headaches from fastener failures down the road. The peace of mind offered by premium rivets makes them a worthwhile purchase for any CNC machine shop. CNC Milling CNC Machining