Riveting Timber Structures


What successive operations does the shipwright perform to create a riveted joint?

First we look at the equipment that the shipwright uses and in the second part we explain the successive operations.

Tools and equipment for creating a single riveted joint

In the example the transverse planks of a curved hatch cover are being riveted to the beams.

The pliers are used to cut off the surplus section of the rivet.

The holes through which the rivets are to be inserted are pre-drilled using a drill. The holes size is slightly smaller than the diameter of the rivet. This prevents the timber from splitting or cracking.

The setter is used to drive the washer over the rivet.

The dolly is used to swage over the surplus material.

Gluing clamps
The gluing clamps are used for clamping together the two parts that are to be riveted together.


Successive operations that result in a riveted unit.

  • A row of holes is first drilled, through which the rivets will be hammered.

  • The rivets are hammered through the slightly smaller holes.

  • The crown head of the rivet that is to be riveted is placed on a hard base. In this case a section of railway track is used.

  • The washer is placed on the point of the rivet.

  • The setter is used to drive the washer over the rivet until it is against the timber.

  • The pliers are used to cut off part of the rivet. Approximately 5mm is left. This part is swaged (riveted) using the dolly, as a result of which the washer is riveted against the timber.

  • Result.
Choose Language

Tools Required

  • Drill
  • Gluing clamps
  • Hammer
  • Pliers
  • Rivets
  • Washers
  • Setter
  • Dolly

Materials Required

None applicable