Six Easy Steps to Install Nut Rivets

Step by step to easily install nut rivets and obtain a great result.


Often, we get asked: “What can I use to mount something on a thin substrate such as sheet metal, fibreglass, or plastic?” One customer’s aim was to mount a bike rack in the back of a van. After he scratched his head, he called us.

We suggested a nut insert would do the job. His response – a what? After trying it he found a nut insert was a great option. It gave a professional-looking and sturdy threaded mounting point.

Following simple steps, a great result can be achieved. Firstly, mark where the rack will go on the metal panel. He selected M8 insert with an outside diameter of 10.8mm, using a step drill a 11mm hole was drilled – remember it is very important to drill the correct size hole so the nut insert just fits and is not loose (Fig.1 and 2).

Using a nut riveting gun and fitting the M8 stem, fully open the rivet gun arms and screw the insert on the stem until it protrudes a little. Using the gun, push the insert into the hole firmly and squeeze arms together until they stop. Turn the knob on the back of the gun anti-clockwise to remove the stem from the insert (Fig.3 and 4).

After doing this for all mounting points, he mounted his rack (Fig.5 and 6).


  1. If using on thicker substrate adjust the sheath on the gun to only crush the rivet enough to grip and not damage the substrate.
  2. Ensure grip range on insert is correct for the thickness of the substrate you are working with.
  3. Inserts come in different materials and sizes; alloy, steel, stainless with long and short grip ranges and offer a great solution for securing or mounting in many applications.


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