Blind fasteners are available for every application imaginable, from building cars and trucks to installing circuit boards. Choosing a suitable blind fastener for the job means matching the fastener to the materials. You want to select a fastener that delivers optimal performance, whether you’re installing fasteners in steel, wood, or plastic.
When you have rigid materials, such as steel plates, you can use conventional rivets, blind bolts, and other types of fasteners without the risk of pullout. You insert blind rivets through a pre-drilled hole, and when you remove the mandrel, the rivet body on the blind side of the material collapses to form a bulb that secures the joint. The rigidity of materials such as steel or hardened metals ensures the bulb won’t pull out.
With softer materials, such as wood, fiberglass, and plastics, most conventional blind rivets will fail since the blind side of the joint can’t cover sufficient surface area to handle the stress. That’s why peel rivets were developed. Peel blind rivets have a larger joint footprint on the blind side to secure soft and brittle materials.
What are peel blind rivets?
As the name implies, you install peel blind rivets by peeling the rivet body on the blind side, much like a banana. Just like with any other blind rivet, you insert the rivet into a pre-drilled hole, but when you pull the mandrel, the blind side splits into peels or petals that lay flat against the materials, distributing the load on the joint.
While the basic design is the same as other rivets, peel blind rivets come in different configurations. T rivets split into two petals, tri-fold rivets into three petals, and quad-peel rivets into four petals.
Peel blind rivets have a higher tensile and shear strength when used to join soft or brittle materials, and they won’t pull out. Peel blind rivets can also connect different types of materials, such as fiberglass and wood or metals and plastics. For example, peel blind rivets are commonly used with drywall and plasterboard, insulation, rubber, felt, and similar materials.
One common application for peel blind rivets is to repair rivet holes or pullouts. When other types of blind rivets fail, they leave a hole too large to accommodate a similar blind rivet. A peel rivet can provide a secure seal to repair oversized holes.
How do you install and remove peel blind rivets?
You install peel blind rivets like any other blind rivet. Insert them into a predrilled hole to join the materials, and pull the mandrel using manual or power tools to form the petals on the blind side. Then, snap off the mandrel for a finished appearance.
Since peel blind rivets are designed for softer and brittle materials, it’s common to use a manual rivet tool to install them. With a manual tool, you have more control over the force applied during installation, so you can create a firm joint without damaging or cracking the materials. When using a battery riveter or other power tool, it’s essential to use the right amount of force to prevent damage to the joint.
You remove peel blind rivets the same way you remove other rivets. The most common approach is to drill out the rivet head.
How do you choose the right peel blind rivet materials?
Like all blind rivets, peel blind rivets are available in different materials. Typically, the rivet body is made of aluminum or an aluminum/magnesium alloy, and the mandrel is made of a harder material, such as steel. The material must be soft enough to split into petals and still maintain a strong joint.
Most popular rivet manufacturers offer peel blind rivets and tools that you can order from the Bay Supply Marketplace:
- Avdel: The Avdel T-Lok rivet is a split peel blind rivet that forms four legs when installed. It comes with a zinc clear-finish body and steel mandrel in sizes starting at 0.156 inches.
- Bayfast: Bayfast offers a variety of BayPeel dome-headed rivets in 0.156- and 0.187-inch diameters with grip ranges starting at 0.177 inches. Most rivets are made of aluminum bodies with steel mandrels.
- Gesipa: Gesipa makes peel rivets in sizes starting at 0.125 inches in diameter with aluminum bodies and steel mandrels. Grip ranges are available starting at 0.39 inches.
- Goebel: Goebel peel rivets are available with aluminum bodies, steel mandrels, and a zinc clear-plated finish in sizes starting at 0.125 inches in diameter and grip ranges starting at 0.020 inches.
- Huck: Huck peel rivets come in sizes starting at 0.187 inches, with grip ranges starting at 0.020 inches. Most Huck peel blind rivets are made of aluminum with a clear finish and a steel mandrel.
- Ornit: Ornit T.P.R. peel rivets have an aluminum body and steel mandrel with zinc coating and grip ranges starting at 0.354 inches. T.P.R. is a patented technology designed specifically for flat roof assemblies.
These are just some of the peel blind rivet types available. The Bay Supply Marketplace has a complete catalog of peel rivets in all sizes and materials. Whether you are buying or selling peel blind rivets and tools, the Bay Supply Marketplace can meet all your rivet and fastener supply needs.