"And a Rivet Runs Through It" - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-04-2006, 11:55 PM   #29
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Basically, what Buddy (and Joy, separately) came up with is a short piece of aluminum pipe, plus two pieces of PVC pipe, all sized to fit inside each other -- One end of the alum pipe is crimped so it loosely fits an acorn nut but the nut won't slip inside it -- Other end of alum pipe is fastened into one end of PVC pipe -- That pipe, in turn, slides into second PVC pipe -- Loose rivet (plus cap base and sealant) are slid in from outside -- PVC pipes are adjusted inside, with SS hose clamp around smaller diameter piece, so the pipes fit from floor to ceiling or side to side with a curve in them to keep things tight -- Acorn nut is put in end of pipe and the rig is set on the rivet with the other end tight on floor or wall -- Then go back outside and do the rivet with the rivet tool.

To work on his 5W, he built a portable outside stand, like aircraft techs use to work on aircraft (He's USAF retired).
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Old 10-05-2006, 08:42 AM   #30
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I believe the primary reason the various manfs over the years have used rivets is ease of production...
I'm sure you're right there, Pete. I will add a couple of outsider's thoughts on rivets breaking:

If, let's say, 10 rivets aren't strong enough to keep a joint together, it would be logical to put, say, 20 rivets in - after all, it's the fastener or its substrate that's breaking, not the whole moulding. Halve the load on each rivet and both it and its surrounding fiberglass are less likely to break. Of course that's also twice the potential leak paths.

The best way of joining fiberglass mouldings is by bonding, but that is permanent and expensive in a production setting. What works on exactly this problem in yachts is to 'bond' in the minor mouldings using a polyurethane sealant/adhesive (examples are 3M 5200 and Sikaflex 221). This doesn't need to be all round, just along some strategic joints, and the rivets would then be largely superfluous, though useful to hold the moulding while the sealant sets. Removal is difficult, but not impossible - a hacksaw blade worked along the gap will part the mouldings.

Andrew
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Old 11-05-2006, 01:33 AM   #31
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I'm a newbie who's still looking for his first egg (a Scamp 19' "Standard" 5th wheel, if you happen to be selling), but I do know something about blind "pop" rivets that some of you may have overlooked.

Blind rivets are used in lots of construction projects. I'm familiar with "Avex" blind rivets, which are specialty items used in airplane/airframe construction. Avex rivets are specifically designed for joining thin aluminum layers together in settings where high-reliability is an absolute must, but there are many, many different variations on the blind rivet theme.

Blind rivets all work more or less the same way: a tubular sleeve with a "T" head has a nail-like thing passing through it. You insert the sleeve through holes just big enough for the sleeve in the two (or more) things you want to rivet together and add a hard steel washer to the back side, then pull the nail-like (called a mandrel) thing through the sleeve. The nail deforms the sleeve up to the point where it runs into the steel washer, then the nail breaks off, leaving an enlarged "tail" jammed tight against the steel washer and all the layers btween it and the rivet's "T" head. It's a quick way to join two things together using a fastener that won't unscrew or otherwise work loose over time.

The most common blind rivet is the "Pop" rivet (a brand name). You can buy them in hardware stores: they're cheap and good for lots of things, but they are not very strong and (as many people have remarked) they can leak water up the mandrel sleeve.

Enter closed-end rivets. Closed-end rivets are built almost the same way "Pop" brand rivets are, but instead of having a channel that's open at both ends for the mandrel to pass through, closed-end rivets have a solid cap enclosing the inside end so it can't leak. Prep the inside edge of the "T" at the top of the sleeve with a dab of sealant applied with a paint brush (to keep the layer thin so it doesn't interfere with the mechanical holding action of the rivet) and that joint will stay watertight longer than the fiberglass underneath. Just remember to get rivets with aluminum or stainless steel mandrels, which won't rust and leave rust streaks down the side of your egg.

You can buy them here: http://www.hansonrivet.com/w22.htm and other industrial fabrication suppliers.

--Peter
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Old 11-05-2006, 07:58 AM   #32
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Quote:
I'm a newbie who's still looking for his first egg (a Scamp 19' "Standard" 5th wheel, if you happen to be selling), but I do know something about blind "pop" rivets that some of you may have overlooked.

Blind rivets are used in lots of construction projects. I'm familiar with "Avex" blind rivets, which are specialty items used in airplane/airframe construction. Avex rivets are specifically designed for joining thin aluminum layers together in settings where high-reliability is an absolute must, but there are many, many different variations on the blind rivet theme.

Blind rivets all work more or less the same way: a tubular sleeve with a "T" head has a nail-like thing passing through it. You insert the sleeve through holes just big enough for the sleeve in the two (or more) things you want to rivet together and add a hard steel washer to the back side, then pull the nail-like (called a mandrel) thing through the sleeve. The nail deforms the sleeve up to the point where it runs into the steel washer, then the nail breaks off, leaving an enlarged "tail" jammed tight against the steel washer and all the layers btween it and the rivet's "T" head. It's a quick way to join two things together using a fastener that won't unscrew or otherwise work loose over time.

The most common blind rivet is the "Pop" rivet (a brand name). You can buy them in hardware stores: they're cheap and good for lots of things, but they are not very strong and (as many people have remarked) they can leak water up the mandrel sleeve.

Enter closed-end rivets. Closed-end rivets are built almost the same way "Pop" brand rivets are, but instead of having a channel that's open at both ends for the mandrel to pass through, closed-end rivets have a solid cap enclosing the inside end so it can't leak. Prep the inside edge of the "T" at the top of the sleeve with a dab of sealant applied with a paint brush (to keep the layer thin so it doesn't interfere with the mechanical holding action of the rivet) and that joint will stay watertight longer than the fiberglass underneath. Just remember to get rivets with aluminum or stainless steel mandrels, which won't rust and leave rust streaks down the side of your egg.

You can buy them here: http://www.hansonrivet.com/w22.htm and other industrial fabrication suppliers.

--Peter
Hi: Thanks my one daunting task for next season is to remove the windows 1x1 re seal and re rivet them back in...trying to make them water tight and rust/streak free... this info. may be just the ticket!!! Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 11-05-2006, 08:07 AM   #33
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Hi: Thanks my one daunting task for next season is to remove the windows 1x1 re seal and re rivet them back in...trying to make them water tight and rust/streak free... this info. may be just the ticket!!! Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
Hi: again...just remembered some one once told me that an aircraft was described as a "million rivets flying in close formation" Is that True??? Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 11-05-2006, 10:19 AM   #34
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....an aircraft was described as a "million rivets flying in close formation"....
This dexcription has been in use in the RAF (British Air Force) for a very long time. Generally the pilot is Pontius, Henry is the navigator and maintenance is done by Mortis, the rigger.

Andrew
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Old 11-05-2006, 02:23 PM   #35
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This dexcription has been in use in the RAF (British Air Force) for a very long time. Generally the pilot is Pontius, Henry is the navigator and maintenance is done by Mortis, the rigger.

Andrew
And it all depends on Cptn. Murphy!!! Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 11-05-2006, 08:18 PM   #36
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Hi: again...just remembered some one once told me that an aircraft was described as a "million rivets flying in close formation" Is that True??? Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
Not actually. Closer to half a million. http://www.boeing.com/commercial/757.../pf_facts.html

In general, however, there several times as many rivets in a small, all-metal airplane than there are other metal parts. The materials list for building the rudder on my Zenith Zodiac 601XL lists 14 metal parts and 320 Avex blind rivets.

--Peter
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Old 11-05-2006, 11:43 PM   #37
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...The materials list for building the rudder on my Zenith Zodiac 601XL lists 14 metal parts and 320 Avex blind rivets.
... and that's just the rudder!

Peter, I see you have a fiberglass egg, not an Airstream. Tired of rivets?

That Boeing site does not have a similar count for the latest 787 Dreamliner. Too bad - that one will be almost half composite, and even in all-aluminum models I'll guess that for the same size of aircraft, more recent designs have fewer rivets, and depend more on adhesive bonds.

I think Andrew has a good point: aluminum blind rivets in soft material are not really suitable for major point loads, and loads on sheet material shouldn't be concentrated either - rivets in sheets should be sharing the load in large groups, like stitches in a sewn seam in fabric. No I'm not about to start drilling dozens of holes in my Boler...
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Old 11-06-2006, 06:36 AM   #38
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Bad idea! I also removed all my rivets & replaced them w/ss no. 10 bolts w/lock nuts.
Plastic rivets can fail under stress from the trailer walls moving around while out & about.

Don(Mech Engr)
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Old 01-23-2007, 11:44 AM   #39
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Plastic rivets with time become brittle & break. The best rivet replcement is ss bolts.

Don Meyer(Mech Engr)
Hi Don,
I have a few questions. If I replace old style rivets with Stainless Steel bolts.
#1 What size and length would I use?
#2 Would'nt I have visible bolts on the inside of my Trillium 4500?
#3 How would I tighten them up in Blind Spots on the interior of my trailer?

Thanks,
Dave In Michigan
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Old 02-03-2007, 03:27 PM   #40
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I know its nice to redo everything at the same time, but I do have to ponder this: If the rivet isn't broken, and if I don't need to remove it to fix something else, is there any reason to take all my rivets out and replace them?
(Thanks to Donna who reminds us to use the search engine. Now I can add to this topic instead of starting my own about rivets!)
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Old 02-03-2007, 05:15 PM   #41
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If the rivet isn't broken, and if I don't need to remove it to fix something else, is there any reason to take all my rivets out and replace them?
My opinion..No... "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." For me, the only exception would be to pull non-leaking windows and reseal with NEW butyl...if I was going to paint.

my 2 1/2 cents.
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Old 02-03-2007, 10:41 PM   #42
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Ditto here.....wait till they start leaking.....Benny
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