There is an unspoken truth in the automotive repair industry today. This is that some Bodyshops are working on vehicles without having full knowledge of the varying types of fasteners used in the repair process.
A good example of this is the FORD F-150. This vehicle from FORD requires the use of NINE different sizes of Self Piercing Rivets (SPRs) and also FOUR different types of 6.5mm Blind Rivets. Unfortunately, the reality is that the responsibility to use the proper Rivets lies solely with the technician who is repairing the vehicle. The Rivets used in their repairs should always come from a FORD dealer or a supplier who has FORD Certified Rivets. Using non-approved rivets in a FORD repair can result in a multitude of problems, not least the safety of the vehicle being compromised.
Remember; NOT ALL RIVETS ARE THE SAME!
In a proper repair, the technician would verify the parts needed to repair, order the parts & accompanying rivets from their FORD dealer and apply the correct rivet in the corresponding location. In actuality, it is much faster for a technician to try and save time by using similar rivets at differing locations. This is not usually due to laziness but more often because the tech does not understand why this isn’t acceptable in today’s high-tech vehicle repairs.
This same lack of knowledge can also be seen in the use of the Riveting tools used for repairs. For example, some of the Self Piercing Rivets in a FORD F-150 are hollow. If the technician was unaware of this, they may try to use the same removal methods as for a regular SPR and experience great difficulty.
Here at Titanium Tools and Equipment, we make sure our training explicitly covers this, and all areas of riveting repair to ensure that your technicians are using the correct tools, supplies, and techniques to repair today’s vehicles properly. One way we do this is with our SPR removal and installation dies from Wielander+Schill for their Xpress 800 rivet gun system. Using dies like the ‘A5 hollow SPR removal die' and others, technicians can remove and install the correct types of rivets with speed and efficiency and limit any liability for your shop.
By Stephen Prendergast