Pop rivet size ......?

to reattach the gunwales on the Summersong. I’m about to take them off, but just want to be prepared for when I need to put them back on.

I have a bunch of pop rivets, but want to be sure I use the right size.


Someone in the HVAC shop
ought to have an arch caliper that you could borrow to measure the overall thickness of the gunwale/laminate sandwich. As for diameter, I believe the common size is 1/8".

But my memory is failing…


Great, thanks Jim!
I have calipers. Easy enough to determine.


your memory is still good
for that particular factoid.

Need anything back ??? : )
Borrow or buy a good quality rivet gun too … Saves a LOT of frustration.

No Pat, you can keep it!
I’ve got a rivet gun, a bunch of rivets of various sizes and washers, and a duplicate caliper. I’d like to see if I can find black rivets though, all the rivets I have are mill finish.

Black rivets
Andy, Wenonah has 'em.

pop rivets
You well find that the rivets you need are 3/16" and they need to be a lease 1/8" longer then the work you’r riveting together,they also need to be all alum. the rivet and the shank if they are not they will rust.

Good ol’ McMaster has 'em, too.

Monel for strength, holding power and
corrosion resistance. Back up with washer for even more hold.

other than what’s already …

– Last Updated: Mar-09-11 4:04 PM EST –

....... been mentioned about selecting blind rivets that have both the rivet body and mandrel shank made from a less corrosive material such as aluminum , stainless steel , monel , copper ... you may want to drill out the existing holes to a next larger size rivet when reinstalling .

It is important that you check to be certain the shank is not plain steel while the body may be another material ... rivets of aluminum , stainless etc. are often sold with just plain steel shanks , but also sold with alum. and stainless shanks .

The suggestion to use a washer for greater surface area contact may be a good one especially if you go with a next larger size , or one of the harder metals other than aluminum . I think your gunnels are vinyl and that being softer than the glass canoe shell may have a tendency to draw the harder material rivets maybe too deep into the vinyl before shank break unless using a washer or wide head blind rivet ... just something to think about .

look , here's an example of a wide head blind rivet ...


There are also different types of blind rivets , and different types of exposed heads ... you may want to do some research about them for your specific application before choosing .

this link was the 1st one that popped up to give you an idea about the different types of blind rivets available to choose from , not nessasarily a complete choice opt. or suggesting buy from them ...


Paid More, so mine must be better
I bought pop rivets from Wenonah because they had them and it was brain-dead easy. Call 'em up, talk to nice people, they send you stuff. I’m sure I paid more, but possibly it helped the nice people make a living, and I didn’t have to wonder about corrosive material and the right sizes. Besides, they must be better pop rivets if they cost more. Right?


Another reason to buy from WeNoNah is that they they have the right, tempered rivets to do the job.

And, as tempered are MUCH harder to pop, an air drive rivet machine is almost a requirement.

That explains my pain
Many years ago I re-gunwaled a Blue Hole OCA 16 by hand. This was back when I was young, strong, and handsome. Well, at least I had hair.

Man, did those rivits pump me up! Felt like I had arthur-itis, complete with crab-like hands.


Watch it, sucka!


my pop rivet gun
is manual, I had to firm up the hull before sanding and put some supports back with rivets. Easy as pie! The supports will come back out when I paint, and then once painted, I’ll reassemble with my manual rivet gun.

Andy , just an aid for working on …

– Last Updated: Mar-15-11 8:15 PM EST –

...... a canoe w/o gunnels in case you want to .

Take 4 pieces of 2x4 about 6" long , cut kerfs down the center that are about 7/8" deep and the width of the laminate (snug fit) .

These 4 blocks can slip onto the top edge where gunnels go , then if wanted attach a 1 x 2 spreader from block to block on the inside (same face as kerf) w/one screw . These same blocks can be moved to a new location as desired by changing the 1 x spreader length .

These can be slipped on and off at will (snug fit). When the canoe is upside down , the blocks would set on the saw bucks , so their spacing should be about that far apart .