Aluminum Rivet Questions Trimming and Rivet Tool

Help Support

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


New member
Feb 5, 2024
Reaction score
Yorktown, VA
So I have an old 80/s 14' Starcraft I had recently bought and have been putting quite a bit of work into it as it was previously a duck hunting boat that had seen quite some abuse. The whole bottom of the boat was covered in flex seal as a quick fix for the hunting season I'm assuming. The boat had a handful of marine putty covered bolts and rivets that were leaking slightly when on the water so I took it upon myself to drill them all out, clean the working surface and add closed end sealed rivets in. I do plan on sealing all rivets with epoxy after the boat is sanded, and before I prime/paint it.

I am using a handheld riveting tool for the 1/4" dia rivets as my rivet gun only goes to 3/16" (unfortunate mistake, but thankfully only have about 15 rivets that need the bigger rivets). Is that something I should be concerned about?

The problem I have is some of my newer rivets are slightly too long and I am afraid at some point will become snagged and mess the integrity of the seal itself. Is it advisable to trim the rivet at all with a small cutting wheel and hit the domed side with an air hammer to further secure the rivet? I know aircraft has a similar practice with trimming sealed rivets and bucking down/hammering the rivet end and was wondering if the same process could be applied here. It would also help my piece of mind knowing that they are sealed further by an air hammer.

Thanks for the help, been a lurker looking at the forums waiting to build a boat out, so I'm excited to have started the process!
Congrats on the boat purchase!
DaleH is member here and very well versed on all things rivets....perhaps he'll chime in.