What is a POP Rivet and How Does It Work?

What is a POP Rivet?

Pop rivets, also known as blind rivets, are a type of rivets. They are used in applications where there is limited or no access to the rear side (blindside) of the parts to be joined.

Pop rivets are a special type of blind rivet designed to be installed from one side of a joint, making them extremely valuable for fabrication and assembly applications where you cannot access both sides of the workpiece.

Pop rivets are a relatively simple design consisting of a shank that is inserted into a pre-drilled hole and a mandrel that fits through the shank. To install the rivet, the mandrel is pulled out with a blind riveting tool, which compresses the shank on the blind side of the workpiece, pulling the material together.

Once the joint is complete, the mandrel is snapped off at a pre-set nick for a clean finish. These rivets are called “pop rivets” because of the sound you hear when the mandrel breaks off.

Installation is usually completed with a single, gentle pulling motion, but the force required for installation depends on the size of the rivet and its application. For simple repairs or if you just need to add a few rivets, you can use a manual pop rivets tool.

For heavy applications such as manufacturing or construction, you should use a pneumatic or electric pop riveting tool that provides more pulling force.

How Do POP Rivet Work?

Pop rivets consist of two parts. The first part is called the rivet body (also called the shell or hat) and the second part is called the mandrel (also called the stem).

In situations where access to either side of a component is restricted, a hole is first drilled through the parts to be joined. A pop rivet is then inserted through the drilled hole and the rivet body is brought into contact with the parts.

A rivet gun is placed on the rivet and pulls the mandrel into the rivet body, causing it to expand and hold the parts to be joined. Once gripped, the mandrel snaps and holds the rivet permanently in place. This results in a localized connection.

What are the parts of a blind rivet?

Pop rivets, also known as blind rivets, are a type of rivet. They are used in applications where there is limited - or no - access to the rear side (blind side) of the parts to be joined.
Parts of pop rivet
  1. Rivet pin: The pin is the main body of the rivet which will slot through the pieces of material being joined together.            
  2. Rivethead: The head will sit on the outside of the material to stop the rivet from sliding out of the material.
  3. Rivet mandrel: The mandrel is slotted into the rivet gun when it is fastened. The rivet gun pulls the mandrel partially through the pin (body) of the rivet, deforms the pin to form a second head, and then snaps the mandrel off.
  4. Rivet mandrel head: The mandrel head expands the body of the rivet then leaves itself buried inside the rivet, creating a second head to secure and fasten the pieces being joined.

What are the different types of blind rivets?

A blind rivet, sometimes called a pop rivet, has a hollow cylindrical pin (body) that is attached to the head. A mandrel, a long, narrow pin with a head, goes through the recess of the body, with the head serving as a stop at the opposite end of the body to the rivet head.

Blind rivets are available with different types of bodies and heads. They are made from different materials.

1. Standard Blind Rivets

Standard blind rivets are typically used to secure metal to metal. They have domed heads and simple bodies. If you pull the mandrel partially through the rivet body, the body will expand at its “blind” end, creating a second head that can be used to permanently join the materials together.

Standard rivets are used in a number of industries including automotive, construction, metals, electrical appliances, containers, furniture, air conditioning, and heating.

2. Sealed Blind Rivets

This type of blind rivet comes with a sealed end. The mandrel head does not protrude from the end of the rivet like the other types of blind rivets included in the sealed body. Sealed rivets do not allow liquids to penetrate or leak and are used to secure metal to metal.

The head of the mandrel sits in the body of the rivet while the head of the rivet is sealed. This prevents liquid from entering or exiting the component. They are suitable for use in the automotive, construction, and metal industries. They can also be used in electrical appliances, containers, furniture, and air conditioning and heating systems.

3. Peeled Blind Rivets

Peeled rivets provide a locking head with a larger diameter, providing them with a greater bearing surface (underside of head). As the mandrel is drawn through, the body expands, leaving the head in the shape of a flower with four petals. This type of rivet is best suited to fastening metal to softer materials.

The sides (petals) of the rivet fold over, creating a head to fasten the materials together. Peeled rivets are ideal for use in the automotive industry, construction work (plasterboard, coatings, and insulation) and can be used on trailers, plastic components, electrical appliances, and upholstery (padded covering on furniture).

4. Grooved Blind Rivets

This type of rivet has grooves around the body that give the rivet excellent gripping strength when installing softer materials such as plastic and wood. Grooved rivets are perfect for securing metal to wood and metal to building materials such as cement, brick, and wood.

The grooves on the rivet body are embedded in the material and hold it together almost like a screw. The hole it goes into doesn’t have to be right through the material.

The tail of a grooved rivet will expand inside the material as the mandrel is withdrawn, rather than forming a new head on the other side of the material. The rivet grips the material with friction and not with a second head, while the head at the other end grips the object that is connected to the material.

Grooved rivets are best for construction, metalworking, and furniture manufacturing, as well as electrical equipment and injection, molded parts.

5. Multi-Grip Blind Rivets

Multi-grip rivets are similar to standard rivets but have indents located on the rivet body. The indents expand and provide multiple grips when the mandrel is pulled through the body. These rivets are for fastening metal to plastic and plastic to plastic.

The multiple grips on the body of the rivet are forced against the material being riveted as the mandrel is pulled through. Multi-grip rivets are suitable for use in the automotive, construction, and metal industries, and in electrical appliances, furniture, electronics, ladder manufacturing, and air conditioning and heating.

6. Soft Set Blind Rivets

Soft rivets are identical to standard rivets. However, the body and mandrel are manufactured from a softer metal, which tends to be an aluminum alloy. The mandrel breaks off with much less force than other types of rivets so it applies the right amount of pressure to fasten brittle materials without them becoming damaged.

These rivets are for use when fastening metal to plastic, metal to wood, metal to fiberglass, plastic to plastic, and metal or plastic to soft materials with low resistance. The soft rivets can be used in furniture, packaging, plastic components, containers, plastic, and construction work.

7. Blind Rivets Heads

As well as being available in a number of body designs, blind rivets can also have different types of heads.

8. Dome Head Blind Rivets

The dome head provides enough bearing surface for it to be used to fasten a variety of materials, except extremely smooth and brittle materials such as plastic.

This is because this type of head applies more pressure closer to the hole that has been drilled which can damage softer materials. The bearing surface is the contact between two materials. In this case, it is the area under the head of the rivet which makes contact with the material being fastened.

9. Large Head Blind Rivets

The large head offers double the bearing area of a dome head rivet. This provides great resistance and is ideal for fastening brittle or soft materials to rigid support materials.

10. Countersunk Head Blind Rivets

A countersunk head fits into the material without the head protruding, keeping a flat surface.

Applications of Blind Rivets

They are used to make high-strength joints in a range of materials, including metals, plastics, wood, and leather. Typically, the process is used for joining plastic or sheet metal.

To enable pop rivets to meet the requirements of a wide variety of applications, they are available in many materials, including Steel, Stainless steel, Monel, Copper, Aluminium

Uses for Blind Rivets:

  • Building or Home Applications.
  • Attaching Nameplates and Signs.
  • Fastening Wall or Ceiling Decorations.
  • Attaching Hinges.
  • Attaching Door Knobs, Drawer Pulls, and Handles.
  • Woodworking Applications.
  • Industrial Applications.

Advantages of Pop Rivet

  • Being cost effective
  • Allowing for joining of parts when there is limited rear access
  • Being durable
  • Being lighter than bolts/screws (dependent on rivet material)

Disadvantages of Pop Rivet

  • Being difficult to remove once placed
  • Protruding from the sheet metal surface, potentially creating a hazard and reducing aerodynamics
  • Potential corrosion issues if the rivet material differs from the metal parts to be joined


What is Pop Rivet?

Pop rivets, also known as blind rivets, are a type of rivets. They are used in applications where there is limited – or no – access to the rear side (blindside) of the parts to be joined.

How does Pop Rivet work?

Pop rivets consist of two parts. A pop rivet gun is placed on the rivet, pulling the mandrel into the rivet body, causing it to expand and grip the parts to be joined. Once gripped, the mandrel snaps, permanently holding the rivet in place.

What is the type of Pop rivet?

Types of Pop Rivet:

  1. Standard Blind Rivets.
  2. Sealed Blind Rivets.
  3. Peeled Blind Rivets.
  4. Grooved Blind Rivets.
  5. Multi-Grip Blind Rivets.
  6. Soft Set Blind Rivets.
  7. Blind Rivets Heads.
  8. Dome Head Blind Rivets.

What is a pop rivet used for?

They are used to make high-strength joints in a range of materials, including metals, plastics, wood, and leather. Typically, the processes are used for joining plastic or sheet metal. To enable pop rivets to meet the requirements of a wide variety of applications, they are available in many materials, including Steel.

What is the difference between a blind rivet and a pop rivet?

A blind rivet is a rivet that can be completely installed from one side, unlike machine screws and nuts, which require access to both sides of the material. Blind rivets are also known as “pop” rivets because POP is one brand of blind rivets.

Are pop rivets strong?

Overall, pop rivets are popular and reliable because they install quickly and easily, producing strong and reliable fastenings. When installed correctly, pop rivets and the installation tool won’t mar the surface of the material being joined, which means a more professional finish, too.

What is a pop rivet and how does it work?

Are rivets better than screws?

Compared to screws, rivets hold much better. They are impossible to open and won’t shake loose. This is because the screw only has a head on one side whereas the rivet is supporting both sides. This is also important in the transport process where the frame is subject to vibration.

What materials does a pop rivet work with?

POP rivets are available in steel, stainless steel, nickel-copper alloy (Monel), copper, and several grades of aluminum to meet the requirements of a wide variety of applications.

What are the three types of rivets?

The general types of rivets are solid, blind, tubular, and metal piercing (including split rivets).

How do you know what size pop rivet to get?

The length of the rivet should be equal to the thickness of both objects you are fastening, plus 1.5 times the diameter of the rivet’s stem. 3/32” (2MM) FOR UP TO 3/32” (2MM) Thickness.

Can a pop rivet be too long?

It differs from grip range but is an important measurement when considering clearance on the blind side of the material being fastened a rivet that’s too long may not properly fit or could negatively impact whatever resides behind the hole.

Are pop rivets waterproof?

Closed-End Pop Rivets are often referred to as sealed blind rivets or sealing rivets because they create a watertight seal when installed properly, making them a popular item in the boating and automotive industries.

Is a pop rivet stronger than a screw?

For typical workshop applications, where pop rivets are usually used, threaded fasteners will provide superior strength. Pop rivets use a hollow shaft, reducing their ability to resist shear loads. By contrast, solid rivets are perhaps the strongest mechanical fastener available.

How do you remove pop rivets?

Where are rivets used?

Steel rivets can be found in static structures such as bridges, cranes, and building frames. The setting of these fasteners requires access to both sides of a structure. Solid rivets are driven using a hydraulically, pneumatically, or electromagnetically actuated squeezing tool or even a handheld hammer.

Why are planes riveted and not welded?

One reason that airplanes are manufactured with riveted joints instead of welded joints is that the aluminum materials used in their construction aren’t tolerant of heat. Most commercial aircraft are designed with an aluminum body. Not only is aluminum is inexpensive and readily available; it’s also lightweight.

What are the disadvantages of rivets?

Disadvantages of Riveted joints:

  • Due to holes plates become weak.
  • Labor cost is more.
  • Overall cost of riveted joints is more.
  • They have more weight than welded joints.
  • Riveting process creates more noise.
  • Stress concentration near holes.

What can I use instead of pop rivets?

They are available in a range of sizes to suit a variety of applications. Nuts and bolts can be tightened to a particular degree of pressure to suit the application you are working on, unlike rivets that are simply installed to fit the width of material they are holding.

How do you install a pop rivet?

Can you use pop rivets on wood?

There are no specialized pop rivets for wood but you can use a standard or blind pop rivet for riveting into the wood. I recommend that you choose an Aluminum ‘Pop rivet’ for riveting wood. The reason for this is that hard rivets can split the wood if near the edge.

Are pop rivets airtight?

Fully sealed fastening! Our exclusive Closed-End rivet design is ideal for applications that need to be watertight or when stem retention is paramount. This blind rivet produces a seal that prevents the passage of liquid or vapor at pressures up to 100 psi.

Will pop rivets rust?

If the two are in contact, the aluminum will corrode by the steel, as aluminum is less noble than steel. so no, the rusting won’t accelerate in the steel, but the steel will electrochemically attack the aluminum body and flanges of the rivet where they are in contact.

Are pop rivets hollow?

POP Open-End rivets are hollow blind rivets pre-assembled onto a headed pin or mandrel. These large-flange rivets give a wide load spread and are available in aluminum and nickel-copper alloy.

How do you remove a pop rivet without a drill?

Removing Pop Rivets with a Chisel:

  • Position the edge of your chisel (or screwdriver) against the edge of the rivet at a shallow angle.
  • Strike the butt of the chisel sharply with a hammer.
  • Repeat, until the head of the rivet shears away.
  • Shake or tap the work surface to make the mandrel fall out.

Who invented the pop rivet?

History of POP Rivets. The history of POP rivets began in the U.K. in the early 20th century. British inventor Hamilton N. Wylie patented a method for installing tubular rivets from one side, rather than the typical method of pounding the metal shaft down while holding a buckboard against the back of the assembly.

What are the advantages of pop riveting?

Being cost-effective. Allowing for joining of parts when there is limited rear access. Being durable. Being lighter than bolts/screws (dependent on rivet material)

Are pop rivets and blind rivets the same?

Blind rivets are also known as “pop” rivets because POP® is one brand of blind rivets. A blind rivet consists of two pieces that are pre-assembled: the rivet body (usually just referred to as the rivet) and inside it is the setting mandrel (commonly just called the mandrel).