What is a riveter?
A riveter is a manual tool that is used to install blind rivets, usually to fasten two or more pieces of material together.
A blind rivet is a permanent fastener that consists of a head, a cylindrical body and a mandrel - a long pin that goes through the hollow body.
Blind rivets can be installed from just one side of the panels or pieces being fastened together, even when there’s no way of seeing what’s happening on the other side, hence the name ‘blind’ rivet.
For more information on blind rivets check out Wonkee Donkee's separate guide to Rivets and visit the How does a blind rivet work? page.
The rivet is placed through corresponding pre-drilled holes in the materials being joined.
The nozzle of the riveter is placed over the mandrel. When the handles of the riveter are squeezed, the mandrel is drawn through the hollow body of the rivet, so that the mandrel head deforms the body, creating a second rivet head which, together with the first rivet head, fastens the pieces together. Further squeezing of the riveter breaks the mandrel, so that its tail falls away.
Riveters are suitable for use by professionals and DIYers.
There are manual and automatic riveters available for solid rivets called rivet squeezers.
Some types are available in the UK. However, they are restricted to use at or near the edge of materials, are expensive and are mainly used in the aerospace and industrial engineering industries.