Rivets VS TEK Screws


Author: Thanuja Ranwaka

We often get asked for the pros and cons of rivets vs TEK screws.   As a high level summary, Thanuja Ranawaka, our inhouse engineer here at Scottsdale has put together the following points which we hope you find useful.   

  1. Rivets are considered easier to use and more practical in the fabricating process than TEK screws.  The RF machine provides a hole punch for the rivet but doesn’t for the TEK screw.  The position of the TEK screw will depend on the fabricator.  However, at the same time, if there is a requirement to modify the frame it is a lot easier if you are using a TEK screw because if you are using a rivet you need to drill it out.   
  2. Compared to screws, rivets hold much better. They are impossible to open and won’t shake loose. This is because the screw only has a head on one side whereas the rivet is supporting both sides.  This is also important in the transport process where the frame is subject to vibration.  
  3. The standard rivet capacity itself is lower than TEK screw capacity. However, the riveted connection capacity is almost the same as screwed connection capacity for 0.55 and 0.75 mm thick steel.   This is because it is the steel failure not the connector failure which comes into play here in these gauges.   
  4. If you are using 0.95 mm steel, the TEK screw will give you higher capacity than the standard rivet connection. However, if you use structural rivets for 0.95 mm thick steel, it is better than a TEK screwed connection.  In this case, it will be a connector failure before the steel fails

 There is plenty of discussion on this topic both in our industry and other industries including building aircraft which use rivets over screws.   
Feel free to get in contact with any further questions we can help clarify. 

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