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13-03 Nutplate Extravaganza

Since there are lots of nutplates, I needed an efficient system to secure them in the correct place for riveting. In the end what worked best for me was the following:

  1. Position all rivets along a row.
  2. Place on the nutplates.
  3. Clamp a nutplate.
  4. Drive a screw with a cordless drill just short of the countersink.
  5. Nip gently with a handheld screwdriver – avoiding damage to the priming!
  6. Remove clamp and apply to next nutplate ready for repeating the process.
  7. Rivet.

The placed rivets located the nutplate during screw insertion, and the clamp allowed a gentle pressure to be applied to prevent the screwdriver bit slipping in the screw head.

Gentle nip with a normal screwdriver.


When I tried to insert a screw into a nutplate whilst secured in a vice as a test I discovered the screws were a VERY tight fit! A bit of research resulted in a …

Apply Boelube to the thread and it becomes much easier. I used this on the single screw I sacrificed to centre all the nutplates.


Rivets set with Pneumatic Squeezer.

During repeated squeezes … and there is a LOT of that … the set can rotate and hence go out of adjustment. Once the set is adjusted I mark the shaft and check/adjust frequently.

The result.

Phillips ACR Screwdriver Bit

ACR is a Phillips trademark, and means the screwdriver bit incorporates tiny grooves on the contact surfaces allowing a better “grip”.

The PH2 with ACR proved a perfect fit in the #6 & #8 nutplate screws … even though a high torque was needed for each nutplate, no slippage occurred using this bit, and I only needed one screw per type of nutplate for the whole job. In fact the cross on the screw is completely undamaged! I think ACR stands for Anti Cam-Out Ribs.

One comment on 13-03 Nutplate Extravaganza
  1. Chris Cooper

    On the fuselage I was able to place one rivet and then hold the nutplate with a finger whilst I squeezes the other rivet. Only works for dimpled nutplates and for people with titanium fingers.

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