Introduction to Rivets and Their Uses in CNC(what is a plasma cutter Cyril)
- source:DAHLER CNC Machining
What Are Rivets?
A rivet is a mechanical fastener that consists of two main parts - a smooth cylindrical shaft and a head. The shaft is inserted into pre-drilled holes in the materials being joined, and the head is upset, or deformed, to clamp the materials together. The upsetting process spreads the rivet shaft, creating a second head and permanently joining the riveted materials.
Rivets come in a variety of styles, sizes, and materials. Some common types include blind rivets, solid rivets, drive rivets, and specialty rivets like tubular or split rivets. They are made from metals like steel, aluminum, copper, or titanium. The choice of rivet depends on factors like joint strength needs, materials being joined, installation access, and cost.
Strengths and Advantages of Rivets
Rivets have stood the test of time as a trusted fastening method due to their unique advantages and performance:
- High strength: The upsetting process work-hardens the rivet, creating very strong joints. This allows rivets to handle high shear and tensile loads.
- Reliability: Properly installed rivets provide consistent, reliable performance over time. Vibration and shock loads have minimal impact on riveted joints.
- Quick installation: Manual, pneumatic, or hydraulic riveting tools allow for fast on-site assembly. Minimal access space is required.
- Material versatility: Rivets can join dissimilar materials like metals, plastics, composites, and more. The joint strength remains high regardless of material combinations.
- Design flexibility: Rivets are available in many head styles, lengths, and diameters, allowing for adaptable joint design.
- Cost effectiveness: Rivet installation requires simple tools and training, keeping labor costs low. The rivets themselves are inexpensive hardware.
These attributes make rivets a highly versatile and useful fastening technology for CNC machined components and assemblies.
CNC machining and Rivet Usage
CNC machining utilizes computerized tools to automate the shaping and fabrication of metal, plastic, and composite components. Milling machines, lathes, routers, grinders, laser cutters, and more can all leverage CNC technology.
One of the main advantages of CNC machining is the ability to produce intricate, high-precision components. Rivets help translate that precision into robust final assemblies by joining machined components together accurately and securely.
Here are some of the key ways rivets are used in CNC machining workflows:
- Joining machined aluminum or steel brackets, frames, and supports that require high strength. Aerospace, automotive, and construction industry examples.
- Attaching CNC routed or stamped panels, covers, and enclosures where watertightness or disassembly is needed. Electronics enclosures and furniture as examples.
- Assembling CNC machined sheet metal fabrications like enclosures, cabinets, and containers efficiently.
- Installation of CNC milled or turned pins, shafts, and mechanical components like gears or pulleys. The rivets hold the parts securely in place while allowing some rotation.
- Joining platens, tooling plates, and fixtures made from machined metals and used for production or in inspection equipment.
- Attaching 3D printed end-use parts or fixtures to conventionally machined components when designs require integration.
- Securing CNC machined brackets, arms, and components onto larger assemblies in a modular fashion.
For each application, different rivet types, sizes, materials, and installation methods may be used to optimize the joint performance. Proper rivet selection and placement is crucial to achieving robust, quality assemblies.
Automated Riveting for CNC Assemblies
For mass production or high volume assemblies using CNC components, automated riveting can be very beneficial. Robotic riveting stations can be integrated into the production line to replace time-consuming manual work.
These automated riveting cells use robotic arms equipped with specialized rivet installation heads. They are programmed to insert rivets in the necessary locations to code, eliminating human error and speeding up the process considerably.
Vision systems and sensors allow the robots to locate riveting points precisely on complex assemblies. Pressure monitoring, hole probing, and other checks help ensure consistent quality.
Automated riveting is commonly used in automotive, aerospace, medical, and electronic manufacturing. The technology is constantly improving as well - some of the latest robotic riveting systems boast advanced process monitoring, adaptive control features, and machine learning capabilities.
When combined with consistent CNC machined parts, automated riveting provides an efficient path towards mass producing robust assemblies. It maximizes the advantages of both technologies.
Riveting remains a highly versatile and relevant assembly method, especially for CNC machined components and fixtures. The unique properties of rivets allow for reliable, precise joining even as machining capabilities and design complexity increases.
Understanding modern rivet options as well as the integration of automated riveting allows manufactures to produce higher consistency and quality assemblies. This improved production efficiency from CNC machining to final assembly. Rivet technology will continue advancing in tandem with CNC capabilities into the future. CNC Milling CNC Machining