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Old 08-26-2016, 09:14 AM   #1
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Rivets

Could someone explain rivets to me in laymans terms? I know about 'pop rivets' but they are not used on airstreams correct? Do you replace them if they pop out? What kind, how?
Yes, I am a newbie (5000 mi and counting), with a 95 that is updated inside and stucturally sound, but 'rough' on the outside.
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Old 08-26-2016, 09:32 AM   #2
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Solid round head rivets are the type used on the outside body of an Airstream. This type of riveting requires a two man team and full access to the interior. Blind rivets or pop rivets are utilized on the interior panels of an Airstream. These rivets require access to only one side. Hit up Uncle Google. There are some good explanations on line with photos and drawings.

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Old 08-26-2016, 09:33 AM   #3
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Basically pop rivets are used in a lot of applications in Airstreams.Pop rivets do not "pop out" the term comes from the pop noise when they are installed. They are also called blind rivets because you can't see the inside surface when they are installed. The rivets you see on the exterior skins of Airstreams are bucked rivets because you have to have access to the inside surface when installed and use a bucking tool (usually a 2 person job)
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Old 08-26-2016, 10:08 AM   #4
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Re: pop rivets, Recommend using all alluminum rivets like vintagetrailersupply sells. They can be difficult to sometimes find locally.
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Old 08-28-2016, 06:22 AM   #5
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Thanks for the response..Maybe I should have asked it this way....If an exterior buck rivet comes out/head breaks off/becomes loose, can you replace them with pop rivets?
(bucked rivets need the other side exposed, pop rivets may leak?)
Thanks again
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Old 08-28-2016, 07:09 AM   #6
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Exterior rivets are replaced with "Olympic rivets". They are a nice variation of pop rivets, but are shaped like the buck rivets. They need to be shaved after they are in place to look like a buck rivet, though. This requires a rivet shaver or lots of patience and skill with a Dremel.

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Old 08-28-2016, 08:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbs411 View Post
Thanks for the response..Maybe I should have asked it this way....If an exterior buck rivet comes out/head breaks off/becomes loose, can you replace them with pop rivets?
(bucked rivets need the other side exposed, pop rivets may leak?)
Thanks again
This begs the question, why did the bucket rivet come loose? Is there excessive towing vibration?
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Old 08-29-2016, 09:18 AM   #8
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Here is an old post of mine that shows pictures of the different kind of rivets...hope this helps.

Rivet Types - Post #14

Basically there are three different kinds of rivets:

Bucked Rivets - Solid and strong - BUT, you must have access to both sides of the rivet in order to install them. Also, in most cases, a second person to help install them. These are the kind that were originally used on your Airstream exterior.

Olympic Rivets - three legged with heads that look like solid bucked rivets, if they are shaved properly - can be installed w/o removing interior panels. These are often used as replacements for bucked rivets when you don't want to or can't dismantled your entire interior to access the back side of the panels being riveted. Not as strong as bucked but strong enough for most small repair projects and/or non-structural uses.

Pop Rivets - the kind you can get at the hardware store, they have a stem & hole in the center - can also be installed w/o removing panels but were only used on the interiors of vintage Airstreams. They aren't nearly as strong as the other two types.

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Old 08-29-2016, 02:28 PM   #9
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Great question...Just a few up on top, the heads came off...not sure why....22 years of vibration?
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Old 08-29-2016, 03:52 PM   #10
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Great question...Just a few up on top, the heads came off...not sure why....22 years of vibration?
Ordinary vibration should not cause rivets to pop, even on trailers a lot older than yours. Did they pop recently? Try riding in the trailer while it is being towed at various speeds. The vibration should not be excessive or something is wrong with your running gear.
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