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Old 23-12-2011, 07:35   #1
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Need Suggestion for Heavy Duty Riveting Tool

Calling to metal fabricators-- I will be doing a mast refit and will need to relocate a T-track for the boom gooseneck. (New mast -- I=47 ft; Refit--I will be 43 ft) I want to do some heavy duty riveting,and I'm shopping on ebay for tools. Am I thinking overkill when I look at aircraft industry pneumatic rivet guns that handle 1/4" rivet stock? Or would a hand-powered tool used in auto body repair or sheet metal work using 3/16" stock do the job? I am certain I wouldn't entertain using my householder quality Stanley tool. Any suggestions? Thanks!
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Old 23-12-2011, 08:04   #2
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

T-Track for boom gooseneck? That style went out in the 1970's. A change in the race rules I think. Good riddance. A gooseneck is better attached in a fixed fashion. But that was not your question, was it? I don't really understand your question, but goosenecks need to be attached to the mast very securely. For a cruising boat this is a fragile and critical item that has a history of failing at the worst possible times.
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Old 23-12-2011, 08:06   #3
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

Actually that Stanley tool might work ok. I used a Home Depot tool (not sure it was Stanley, but it wasn't Chinese crap either) to pop rivet mast fittings using 3/16" stainless steel core pop rivets. Worked fine for me. I think it might have worked ok for 1/4" as well. You might also consider monel core pop rivets which might be a little easier, but should be plenty strong and will stand up to corrosion better.

David
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Old 23-12-2011, 09:53   #4
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Thumbs up Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

This is what I use. Around thirty USD I think. Only serious hand riveting tool out there. Get it from an automotive supplier cheaper than a boating supplier.

This is their description:

"The HP-2 is the largest selling hand rivet tool in the industry. Known and trusted for durability, quality and performance, the HP-2 is often copied but never equaled. Its square shoulder fulcrum pin of cold formed heat-treated steel prevents pin rotation that can elongate the engaging holes and cause premature tool failure in imitation tools. Other quality features include: precision diecase, high-strength aluminum alloy body; drop-forged carbon steel upper handle; and thick, cushion-molded vinyl grips for comfort. The HP-2 sets up to 3/16" steel rivets and comes with four mounted nosepiece (3/32" , 1/8" , 5/32" and 3/16" ) and a service wrench."
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Old 23-12-2011, 09:58   #5
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

What size are the rivets? if 1/4, you're going to need a bigger rivet tool. Definitely use SS or Monel rivets. You could just tap and screw...?
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Old 23-12-2011, 10:07   #6
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
What size are the rivets? if 1/4, you're going to need a bigger rivet tool. Definitely use SS or Monel rivets. You could just tap and screw...?
Exactly, tap it, use stainless screws, use blue thread locker.

cheers,
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Old 23-12-2011, 10:54   #7
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

Screws might be more practical. Rivets are holding the track now. But I wouldn't need need another $30 tool that might get used once.
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Old 23-12-2011, 14:34   #8
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

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Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Exactly, tap it, use stainless screws, use blue thread locker.

cheers,
Nick.
Will a tapped bolt in 1/8" aluminum mast have the same strength as a stainless rivet?
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Old 23-12-2011, 15:31   #9
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

Bit bulky, but this type should do the job:



Some even have a little plastic cup to catch all the "spent cartridges".

The problem I've found with a normal hand riveter is that, even for a well built one that wont literally buckle under load with s/steel rivets, they are torture on the hands after a few rivets because of the force that needs to be applied
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Old 23-12-2011, 15:44   #10
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

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Will a tapped bolt in 1/8" aluminum mast have the same strength as a stainless rivet?
No, the screw (it's not a bolt) will be much stronger than the rivet, unless structural rivets are used (with mechanically locked mandrels). Remember that the forces involved here are in shear. With a regular rivet that is being considered I think, the mandrel can fall out, leaving a thin hollow tube rivet.

1/8" aluminium mast is regular thickness, no problem tapping it. If you worry about aluminium being weaker than steel, you can reduce the diameter of the drill bit so that the threads are cut deeper than the 75% that is most often used.

cheers,
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Old 23-12-2011, 16:38   #11
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

Check out Rivnuts. A rivet that is threaded internaly. Better shear strength.

Rivnuts from Aircraft Spruce

Rivnut Tools from Aircraft Spruce

This also allows disassembly without drilling the rivet out
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Old 23-12-2011, 16:40   #12
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

Use aluminum rivets in an aluminum mast, and borrow the tool. You're talking about the short track to raise and lower the boom a foot or two. Installed correctly that is all you need. If you use stainless do something to isolate the two metals. The rivets will be stronger than screws in your case.
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Old 23-12-2011, 16:41   #13
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

I have used a hex machine screw, washer and nut to install them. slow but cheap .
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Old 23-12-2011, 19:25   #14
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

If you go with rivets and have to order them, go for Monel (called copper-nickel now and then) instead of stainless then. Aluminium is not strong enough.

cheers,
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Old 24-12-2011, 02:20   #15
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Re: Need suggestion for heavy duty riveting tool

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Originally Posted by heron237 View Post
This is what I use. Around thirty USD I think. Only serious hand riveting tool out there. Get it from an automotive supplier cheaper than a boating supplier.
That be good enough for Mast Steps?

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