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What are Rivet Nuts?

A rivet nut is a special type of nut that is installed into a prepared hole in a piece of sheet metal and secured prior to assembly of a bolt. A special installation tool is required to ‘set’ the nuts into the prepared hole. The nuts are placed into the hole and ‘upset’ on the backside (much like a blind rivet) which secures them, eliminating the need for a wrench.

Standard rivet nuts have been around for years, and work well as attachment points for low strength joints that do not see much stress. These standard nuts are not high strength and generally cannot support enough clamp load for structural joints.


Standard rivet nuts must be used with through holes in harder materials such as steel or aluminum and do not work as well in softer materials like wood or plastic. The bulge formed on the backside must have unrestricted space to form and will apply pressure to the plate which could overly stress plastic or wood.

Specialty type rivet nuts exist, such as the BCT®* which employ bulge control technology to allow them to work in blind holes and/or soft materials such as plastic. There is also a high strength version of BCT® which may be used in structural joints and can create high clamp loads for use with high strength bolts.

If you are currently using weld nuts, or have areas with limited access to one side, consider looking at rivet nuts. Contact us at ProvenProductivity@Bossard.com for more information. Look for a future blog discussing tools for the installation of rivet nuts.

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*BCT® is a registered trademark owned by BBA srl Italy
What are Rivet Nuts? by
June 08, 2018

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