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Old 04-16-2017, 10:14 PM   #1
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Rivet gun , rivets and re-skining

Hi.

I'm about to take all the windows out since I'm getting new windows and I think the rivets used on the bus outside some are steel and they are quite hard so I don't think my flimsy rivet gun could install those back, can someone point me out what kind of gun should I buy to be able to install those rivets ?

What kind of sheet metal usually are found in the bus ? ( 18 gauge medium ?)

What are the size of the rivets used ? ( mine is a 2002 bluebird )

Thanks.
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Old 05-16-2017, 09:23 AM   #2
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Hi.

I'm about to take all the windows out since I'm getting new windows and I think the rivets used on the bus outside some are steel and they are quite hard so I don't think my flimsy rivet gun could install those back, can someone point me out what kind of gun should I buy to be able to install those rivets ?

What kind of sheet metal usually are found in the bus ? ( 18 gauge medium ?)

What are the size of the rivets used ? ( mine is a 2002 bluebird )

Thanks.
Someone needs to get to answering these questions!!
Searching for "rivet" returns too many hits.

Pepe,
I'm getting close to this point myself. I want to buy some Cleco fasteners but want to buy the right size. I know the rivets inside are a different size than the ones on the outside. The outside steel ones measure 1/2" in flared head size I think. No idea the barrel size or whatever it is called. I want to say 3/8ths for the aluminum ones on the inside.


I've been told the ribs are 14 gauge and the new skin should be 18 gauge. I know NOTHING about rivet guns.
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Old 05-16-2017, 09:51 AM   #3
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I'm doing this right now too. I ended up settling on 1/4 aluminum closed end blind rivets. Using 18 gauge steel for the skin. I wanted to do 1/4 solid steel rivets but the price of the rivet gun to handle 1/4 rivets was super expensive. Harbor freight has a pneumatic riveter that will handle 1/4" blind rivets. I plan on picking one up this week. Clecos are also colour coded. Couldn't tell you what colours are what size though.

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Old 05-16-2017, 09:52 AM   #4
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I'm doing this right now too. I ended up settling on 1/4 aluminum closed end blind rivets. Using 18 gauge steel for the skin. I wanted to do 1/4 solid steel rivets but the price of the rivet gun to handle 1/4 rivets was super expensive. Harbor freight has a pneumatic riveter that will handle 1/4" blind rivets. I plan on picking one up this week. Clecos are also colour coded. Couldn't tell you what colours are what size though.

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don't use aluminum rivets on steel, man.
Use steel or stainless.
I bought a ton of 1/4" rivets but half mine turned out to be 3/16". You have to know exactly how thick the metal will be so you get the right grip range.
The HF gun will do just fine, mine works well. Ignore the warning on the box about having to fill it with oil. They come FULL. Its just a CYA statement.
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Old 05-16-2017, 10:05 AM   #5
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I really wanted to use steel but couldn't find any closed end steel rivets. I did see closed end stainless rivets, maybe I should have just paid the premium for the stainless steel

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Old 05-16-2017, 10:12 AM   #6
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I really wanted to use steel but couldn't find any closed end steel rivets. I did see closed end stainless rivets, maybe I should have just paid the premium for the stainless steel

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Do you NEED 1/4" or 3/16" ?

https://www.boltdepot.com/Blind_rive...l_mandrel.aspx

this is where I got my rivets-
Closed End Blind Rivets | Rivets In Stock
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Old 05-16-2017, 10:17 AM   #7
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I drilled holes for 1/4 already, so unfortunately need 1/4". The price is what drove me towards aluminum. I ordered from the same place you did. I'll see if I can change my order for stainless. Hopefully it hasn't shipped yet.

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Old 05-16-2017, 11:00 AM   #8
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Those are great resources! Did you use the sealed rivet?
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Old 05-16-2017, 11:08 AM   #9
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My caliper needs batteries but why is the head of these listed as a range? .0475 ~ .525 With just a tape measure, they were close to 1/2" on the outside.
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Old 05-16-2017, 12:06 PM   #10
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Those are great resources! Did you use the sealed rivet?
Absolutely. SS closed end.
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Old 05-16-2017, 12:07 PM   #11
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My caliper needs batteries but why is the head of these listed as a range? .0475 ~ .525 With just a tape measure, they were close to 1/2" on the outside.
Maybe it depends on the rivet size? IDK. Grip range is the most important thing to get right.
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Old 04-01-2019, 05:43 PM   #12
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Found this when researching rivets. Looks like a great resource...still stand by these ECCB?
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Old 04-01-2019, 05:49 PM   #13
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Every rivet I removed from the skins got replaced with a screw, same size as the old rivet but has the square drive Phillips hole in the end. Will be hardly visible after paint.
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Old 04-01-2019, 06:08 PM   #14
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Found this when researching rivets. Looks like a great resource...still stand by these ECCB?
YEah. Top quality rivets.
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Old 04-02-2019, 01:31 AM   #15
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Every rivet I removed from the skins got replaced with a screw, same size as the old rivet but has the square drive Phillips hole in the end. Will be hardly visible after paint.
Hmm...you have me curious. These won't be visible at all because they'll be under my gutter/rain catch. My bus is all screws except for the top rail, which was 90% rivetted. There is a big screw every 8 rivets or so. The holes are 3/16", other than the ones I wollered out a bit much while punching the rivets out. I may go that route vs rivets. I'll need to make sure the profile of the heads are low enough to fit under the raised portion of the gutter.

Would you mind sharing which screws you used & where you sourced them? I saw Teks at Home Depot today. I'd like to find something that has a lock washer as part of the head.
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Old 06-16-2019, 04:15 PM   #16
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Hello everyone,
When putting up the metal, did you put anything between the sheet metal and the ribs such as butal tape, 3m tape, or caulking?
Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2019, 05:36 PM   #17
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Hmm...you have me curious. These won't be visible at all because they'll be under my gutter/rain catch. My bus is all screws except for the top rail, which was 90% rivetted. There is a big screw every 8 rivets or so. The holes are 3/16", other than the ones I wollered out a bit much while punching the rivets out. I may go that route vs rivets. I'll need to make sure the profile of the heads are low enough to fit under the raised portion of the gutter.

Would you mind sharing which screws you used & where you sourced them? I saw Teks at Home Depot today. I'd like to find something that has a lock washer as part of the head.
Sorry, didn't see this reply when it came in. The screws are pan head 14g x 3/4". Where ever I had a hole wallered out I would use a matching machine bolt and nut. I'm having trouble picturing how you are securing the top of the panel to under the rain rail. On mine there is nothing to secure to other than welding the top edge against the rain rail. Once painted the screws will be hardly noticeable.
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Old 06-18-2019, 10:06 AM   #18
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don't use aluminum rivets on steel, man.
Use steel or stainless.
I bought a ton of 1/4" rivets but half mine turned out to be 3/16". You have to know exactly how thick the metal will be so you get the right grip range.
The HF gun will do just fine, mine works well. Ignore the warning on the box about having to fill it with oil. They come FULL. Its just a CYA statement.
You were able to drive the 1/4" stainless rivets with a HF 1/4" pneumatic riveter? I'm having problems with mine - it's able to set the 1/4" aluminum rivets no problem, but using my pancake compressor (120 PSI 2.3 SCFM) it's not able to run the steel ones. The mandrel only moves a tiny distance before breaking off, allowing the rivet to then slip out of its hole.

I've also tried it with a Dewalt compressor I just bought that delivers 5 SCFM, and it works slightly better. It pulls the mandrel slightly farther so at least there's enough deformation to hold the rivet in place. But it's still not working correctly as the base of the mandrel is still a good quarter inch from the back of the material instead of being flush with it as with the aluminum rivets.

This riveting stuff is very depressing. It seems like choosing 1/4 instead of 3/16 was a big mistake. It's not too late to change, but I'm curious how you got it working with HF gear.
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Old 06-18-2019, 10:12 AM   #19
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You were able to drive the 1/4" stainless rivets with a HF 1/4" pneumatic riveter? I'm having problems with mine - it's able to set the 1/4" aluminum rivets no problem, but using my pancake compressor (120 PSI 2.3 SCFM) it's not able to run the steel ones. The mandrel only moves a tiny distance before breaking off, allowing the rivet to then slip out of its hole.

I've also tried it with a Dewalt compressor I just bought that delivers 5 SCFM, and it works slightly better. It pulls the mandrel slightly farther so at least there's enough deformation to hold the rivet in place. But it's still not working correctly as the base of the mandrel is still a good quarter inch from the back of the material instead of being flush with it as with the aluminum rivets.

This riveting stuff is very depressing. It seems like choosing 1/4 instead of 3/16 was a big mistake. It's not too late to change, but I'm curious how you got it working with HF gear.
Could be your rivets?
Some are meant to break off lower, some flush.
Mine is still working.
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Old 06-18-2019, 10:18 AM   #20
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I have had good luck with the HF rivet gun using 3/16 & 1/4" stainless steel rivets. I haveset a few hundred so far.

I am running a 3hp/40gallon compressor.
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