Structural blind rivets are rivets that are specially designed with a locking mechanism to hold the mandrel in place. Before we talk about how exactly a structural blind rivet works, we should begin with how blind rivets in general work.

How Do Standard Blind Rivets Work?

Blind rivets are comprised of two parts: the body and the mandrel. A rivet body is the portion of the rivet that deforms and stays in the installation. The mandrel is the portion of the rivet that is pulled into the rivet and mostly removed. A standard blind rivet mandrel has a designed flaw near the base of the mandrel which makes it easier to snap.

To install a blind rivet, first a hole needs to be drilled into the two materials. The hole should be just wide enough for the rivet body to fit into. Once the blind rivet is seated in the two materials, a rivet installation tool is used to pull the mandrel through the rear of the body while keeping the body pressed firmly against the installation surface. As the mandrel is pulled into the body it deforms the back of the body causing it to widen and pull firmly up against the rear of the installation surface. Once the torque is reached the weakened point of the mandrel will snap resulting in a complete rivet installation.

How Do Structural Blind Rivets Work?

Structural blind rivets work slightly different from the typical blind rivet. A structural blind rivet has a built-in (internal) locking mechanism that is designed to hold the mandrel inside of the rivet body after the exposed portion snaps. This is commonly referred to as an interlock rivet. Notice how in the diagram below, the portion of the mandrel to the left of the body is also much larger in a structural rivet than in a standard blind rivet.

Standard Blind Rivet
Structural Blind Rivet

There are several reasons structural blind rivets keep the mandrel locked inside the body once installed:

  • Increased Shear Strength
  • Increased Pullout Strength
  • Higher Resistance To Vibrations

Benefits of High Strength Structural Blind Rivets

During installation, the mandrel remains within the shear plane of the fastener, yielding high strength under shear loads. In addition, the internal lock ensures positive mandrel retention, resulting in high strength under pullout loads. These rivets provide excellent clamp-up force and the mandrels break flush with the heads when installed. They offer a vibration-resistant connection and are suitable for a wide variety of applications.

Internal locking fasteners have wide grip ranges, and might be used for a variety of applications in order to reduce the number of different fasteners kept in stock.

We offer High Strength Structural Blind Rivets in the following materials and styles:


  • All aluminum, rivet size 3/16” and 1/4”
  • All steel, rivet size 3/16”, 1/4” and 3/8”
  • All stainless steel, rivet size 3/16” and 1/4”

Head Styles

  • Button (Dome) head for all sizes and materials
  • Countersunk head in all materials, sizes 3/16” and 1/4”

Common Industry Uses For Structural Blind Rivets

  • Commercial Vehicles
  • Sheet Metal
  • Electrical
  • HVAC
  • Agricultural Equipment