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So I guess what I am saying is it would be nice to have some more data on the Rivnuts for folks to use inform their decisions rather than just another "influence" based on the assessment/understanding of the design theory you have presented.
I've tried looking in the past (like 20 years ago), some rivnuts follow NAS aerospace and MIL standards, which has minimum specs. The plusnut design was never approved and thus has no NAS or MIL spec, so there are no specs.


I ended up following the advice of the local Fastenal guy, who presented a convincing argument to sell me the cheaper item.
 

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I ended up following the advice of the local Fastenal guy
I wish the guy at the local Fastenal was knowledgeable. Heck I'd just settle for friendly service. I just order online and pickup there. I get better service from most of the guys at my local Lowes. The HD sucks. I am sure it all varies by location.

I know there are graded Rivnuts, but like I said, it's doubtful that they publish any info on installed fasteners, since there are too many variables and since they don't want any recourse, they leave the design up to the user to figure out. There probably is tech support for industry, but doubtful for individuals. I suppose it would be interesting to ask a specific pointed question to see how they might respond. The pull out comparison EXAMPLE is no doubt to just highlight/ market the differences in the products.
 

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Maybe at the next van meetup we should have a “van Olympics”. One event can be who can install the strongest plusnut or rivnuts. Bring your own install tools. Contestants will be judged on pullout strength and spin out torque. 😁

can also throw in how fast you can make a door panel, stuff some van cavities with thinsulate, wire up some harness and connectors? 😂

I’d probably lose on the speed events given how fast my build is going though haha.

Lubricating SS plusnuts is critical, particularly in larger sizes (use anti-seize on the install bolt). Only available in straight shank (non pre-bulbed). I just stuck them all in a vice and pre-bulbed them myself a tiny bit haha. I use 5/16-18 SS for all my under chassis mounts
 
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Maybe at the next van meetup we should have a “van Olympics”.
NAH. Autocross. All those jacked up vans with lots-o-stuff on the roof would be fun to watch.Water tanks must he 1/2 full.
Gotta go now, need to search for a rare 130LR/EB/Cargo. AWD might be faster, but I suspect RWD would be funner :devilish:
 

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Lubricating SS plusnuts is critical, particularly in larger sizes (use anti-seize on the install bolt).
I screwed up. Installed all my Plusnuts without using lubrication. By this statement they should not have worked. Wonder why I did not have any issues? Found then easy to install without lubrication, no torque wrench and a $30 manual installation tool. Must have been doing something wrong.

Do agree if you were using SS Plusnuts and SS bolts. I just used plated steel Plusnuts and SS bolts.

Do not understand all the comments about Plusnuts when an inept installer like me can install them with a $30 tool without issues.
 

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You just talked yourself in a circle orton… you used plated (zinc) plusnuts, not Stainless steel (ss), which is why you didn’t have any problems installing them dry. I use the same McMaster tool as you. I specifically said lubrication is critical for stainless (ss) plusnuts during install (even with a zinc plated socket bolt in the mcmaster too).

lubrication Doesn’t matter for zinc plated plusnuts, I have never used lubrication when I install zinc plated plusnuts, nor did my post advocate for it.

If you had used SS plusnuts, you’d know they don’t come prebulbed, and during install with the mcmaster tool it’s easy to deform them in torsion/twisting (the legs don’t like to collapse properly, mostly on bigger sizes 5/16” and up). Even if they do collapse, the threads can get messed up if you install them with the mcmaster tool with a dry bolt.

However, Add some anti-seize, and they install like a dream. As I mentioned earlier, I also stuck mine in a vice to prebulb them ever so slightly before install. Not as necessary on 1/4” sizes, and if using the Astro tool I don’t think it would be necessary since it doesn’t use the center bolt itself threading through the nut to create the pulling force. I did a good number of tests to figure this out. The SS might not collapse as easily because they’re not prebulbed, might be a stronger alloy (400 series vs what I assume is low or medium grade steel for the zinc plated), and the threads might gall a little easier even with a zinc bolt.

all in all, the stainless plus nuts are a bit of a hassle, but for under the van I wanted the piece of mind since I drive on salted roads a lot. Zinc probably would have been just fine, but why not use them
 

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You just talked yourself in a circle orton… you used plated (zinc) plusnuts, not Stainless steel (ss), which is why you didn’t have any problems installing them dry.
I did not notice that you were referring to SS Plusnuts. I used plated Plusnuts.

Fully agree that thread lube is required when using SS nuts and SS bolts. I was in business for 40 years building SS bottle conveyors. In order to avoid galling thread lube is required.

Most of my Plusnuts were 1/4-20NC installed in the existing van wall holes. I did install a few plated 5/16-18NC under the van in existing holes by slider door for the grey water tank hangers. No issues after 6 years but I do not live where salt is used on roads in winter.

Thanks for your input about lube required with SS Plusnuts. For those using SS Plusnuts they will appreciate your comments.
 

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Any installation tips?
I have installed all my rivet nuts using an 13" handle tool, similar to the Astro Pneumatic #1442. I even bought an M10 mandrel to install even larger rivet nuts (the top end size of what the 1442 is designed for).

The larger size rivet nuts do take some muscle, but every one set right the first time with no fuss. I don't think the savings you get for using a wrench-type tool (either homemade or McMaster-Carr) would be worth it if you are setting more than a couple of rivet nuts. A pneumatic setter would be even nicer, but for my application, I am happy with the handle tool.

As far as the plus nut vs rivet nut "debate," I wasted a lot of time reading very vocal pundits, studying the technology, and studying the market (like what are the vast majority of tools designed to set). I set rivet nuts in scraps of sheet metal to learn how they work.

I also learned about how forums work, mostly on another forum on another subject (which I do have expertise in). They are not full of people looking for truth, they are looking for someone to believe. They are susceptible to loud "influencers" who are just as likely trying to convince themselves. What is most sad, to me, is the influenced turn around and spread the influencer's message without critical thought. Oh, and they attack anyone who suggests their preferred influencer is wrong.

I am not an expert on plus nuts vs rivet nuts. I did choose rivet nuts for my van.

Cheers!
 

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Any installation tips?
I did a bunch of plus nuts in the ceiling, and had a bad time (16 plus nuts, only 7 usable). I then posted here, asked for hints, and the fabulous @kazuo linked some actual testing pictures.

I've now installed about 30 more and only had one that refuses to thread nicely. Tips:
  • Use a star washer on the outside of the van metal to help the plus nut grab
  • Be very careful to ensure the install tool is perpendicular to the metal throughout the installation/squeeze. This is difficult.
  • Consider not using plus nuts anywhere you can get a ratchet head behind the metal. Transit has plenty of places where you could use a nut/bolt (or nut/carriage bolt into 80/20)
 
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