Aircraft Rivet Types

Updated February 21, 2017

Most rivets used in the aviation industry are made of aluminium and aluminium alloys. Aircraft rivets can be identified by the shape of the head of the rivet. Though there are many types of head designs, the most common can be broken down into three categories: plain, dimpled and patterned.

Plain Head Rivets

Perhaps the most iconic rivet type, plain head rivets are domed in shape. The actual domed head varies from a shallow design to hemispherical in shape. Domed rivets are easier to manufacture than some other types of rivets with more intricate designs.

Dimpled Rivets

Dimpled rivets can be identified by the indentation in the head of the rivet. The head can range from slightly raised with a dimple to flat. Additionally, these rivets may have one dimple in the middle to a few dimples.

Patterned Rivets

The biggest of the three general categories of aircraft rivets, patterned rivets come in an assortment of shapes and styles. Some have crosses indented in the rivet and look very much like common screws. Other rivets have raised dashes to identify them.

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About the Author

Writer, photographer and world traveler James Croxon is a jack of all trades. He began writing in 1998 for the University of Michigan's "The Michigan Times." His work has appeared in the "Toronto Sun" and on and Croxon has a bachelor's degree in English from the American Military University.