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Old 12-13-2016, 10:30 AM   #1
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Link to rivet kit

So there is a small cover over the step into the Airstream that is held with three rivets, two of which have broken.

I need to remove two rivets and replace them.

I don't want to spend hundreds of dollars in a rivet gun kit.

Anyone have a link to a relatively inexpensive rivet gun/rivet kit I can use? And links to a video on how to remove/install rivets?
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Old 12-13-2016, 10:36 AM   #2
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Go to Lowes or Harbor Freight. No reason like you say to spend hundreds. I got my all aluminum rivets from vintagetrailersupply.com. Added them to another order so shipping did not kill me.
For video go to YouTube and search riveting.
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Old 12-13-2016, 10:49 AM   #3
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Thanks for the YouTube tip.





https://www.amazon.com/TEKTON-6555-R...ords=rivet+gun
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Old 12-13-2016, 12:19 PM   #4
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Don't want to take the topic too far off track, but has anyone used one of the air/hydraulic rivet guns typically available for rivets up to 1/4" diam for $100 or less?

I'm sure for that price it won't be a pro version, but hoping adequate for the limited amount of use I will make of it.


I have a lot of trouble with corroded rivets under the trailer (belly pan) most likely due to road salt / water getting up inside the belly pan.

I expect to have more of this work to do when we get south this winter, and will take along some tools to be ready for it!

I plan to start using larger rivets - probably 3/16" D, and imagine they could be more of a squeeze with a hand gun - plus I have some arthritis in my hands which doesn't make it any easier!

The job might a a whole lot more pleasant when lying under the trailer if I bring a small compressor and buy an air riveter - if they are any good!

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Old 12-13-2016, 03:02 PM   #5
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They're great, up to 5/32 or so. Still have a beat up Harbor Freight model I got for less than $50. Thousands of rivets. Needs routine maintenance only.


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Old 12-13-2016, 04:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markdoane View Post
They're great, up to 5/32 or so. Still have a beat up Harbor Freight model I got for less than $50. Thousands of rivets. Needs routine maintenance only.


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Thanks for the feedback! Did you not have luck with larger rivets? I was thinking to use 3/16" for the belly pan to replace the 1/8" oes that just dont seem to last.

The rivet gun I am looking at is supposedly rated to use up to 1/4" and comes with noses for four rivet sizes.

On sale here in Canada right now at "Princess Auto" our equivalent of
"Harbor Freight" and "Northern Tools" for $59, 40% off their regular price - I'll go get me one tomorrow!


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Old 12-14-2016, 03:08 PM   #7
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I have used the Harbor Freight air/hydraulic version for major skin repairs (5/32" olympic rivets) and with hundreds of 3/16" rivets as well. It works just fine. I have not yet used it with 1/4", but I am confident that it will work. Larger rivets just require slightly more force which would be more of a function of air pressure than anything else. I have used the 3/16" large head rivets for belly pan attachment with great success. Fastenal has them available.
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Old 12-17-2016, 06:31 PM   #8
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Link to rivet kit

So my first experiment trying to rivet something was a bust. The cheap gun I bought at Amazon was not grabbing the rivets, and I decided to take it apart.

Note to self - cheap rivet guns are not adjustable.

Apparently the spring was not seated right, and once I reseated it the gun started grabbing the rivets, but I lost a small part that held the gun together. I was still able to rivet some, but the size rivets that came with the gun were too small.

So I learned something new. The rivets have a "grip" length, which is essentially how long they are, and they come in different sizes.

What size do I need? I have no idea.

So I went to Lowes intending on buying some regular screws to get this over with. An attendant asked me if I needed help, and I said "yes, where do you have your rivets?"

Not sure why I did that.

So I found a new rivet gun. Still cheap ($20 instead of $12) but it did did not include any rivets. There was a cheap variety pack with three grip lengths - 1/8", 1/4" and 1/2". They were all 1/8" diameter. The diameter didn't bother me as much, as I can make the hole bigger if I need to, but I think 1/8" is fine.

So, I'm headed back to my trailer to try this again. Wish me luck!!!
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Old 12-17-2016, 06:40 PM   #9
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Do the rivets you bought have steel or aluminum shafts? The steel rust.
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Old 12-17-2016, 07:10 PM   #10
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SUBSCRIBING. Have a few popped that I will attend to when we thaw out in March.
Thanks
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Old 12-17-2016, 07:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AWCHIEF View Post
Do the rivets you bought have steel or aluminum shafts? The steel rust.


The package had both. But I obviously ignored the steel ones.

1/4" grip worked like a champ. The guard cover at the foot of the main door is once again secure, and all is well with the world. Now I'm looking for something else to rivet....
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