What are Riveting Machines?

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

A riveting machine is a piece of factory equipment capable of setting rivets automatically and at high speed. A number of production processes use rivets as fasteners for their durability, strength, and safety with a variety of materials. Using a machine can allow for much more rapid production than manual riveting, where a technician has to set each rivet and use a hand-held riveting tool. A number of companies make riveting machines in several different styles for various applications.


One option is the impact riveting machine, where the machine sets the rivet by subjecting it to pressure to squeeze it through the material and cause the base to flare out. Orbital and spiralform riveting machines use a rolling process to compress the rivet in order to set it. Companies can chose from a variety of methods to meet their needs, depending on the type of material involved and how well different machines perform in testing.

The riveting machine can use a variety of power sources to operate, and the rate of speed varies, depending on how it works, the size of the rivets, and the type of material. People can usually set the speed to adjust it in response to changing production needs. It may be possible to control the equipment remotely if a factory is highly automated, allowing technicians to watch the production from a distance and make many basic changes to the production line without having to go out on the floor.

These fasteners can be used with wood, metal, textiles, plastics, and many other materials. A production line may have several riveting machines for different stages in the manufacturing process, including machines capable of handling very large materials like aircraft and car parts. Usually, an operator needs to walk the floor to make sure the equipment works properly. This can include clearing jams, oiling the riveting machines at the end of the day, and performing other maintenance tasks.

Working on a factory floor with devices like riveting machines can be dangerous. The automation makes the equipment hard to stop and if body parts are entrapped in the machinery, workers can be put at serious risk. Many machines have emergency stop buttons in a central location with prominent signs so people know where the button is and how to use it. Automated lines may also stop when a machine jams or a problem develops to prevent a cascade of issues when an accident occurs.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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