Rivetting news for accountants

At McDonnell Douglas in California, engineers have discovered the way to an accountant’s heart is through a rivet, or more accurately, a coating for a rivet. They knew that each C-17 military cargo jet had more than 1.4 million fasteners which had to be installed `wet’ using a sealant that cost more to dispose of than to buy because of its status as hazardous waste.

The Military Transport Aircraft division developed a pre-coated dry sealant for titanium pins and aluminium rivets that will save $2.2 million as each new Globemaster III comes down the assembly line.

The patented technology makes use of an aluminium pigmented resin with corrosion inhibitors. As a coating on the fasteners, it ensures a better squeeze on the fastener and avoids problems where the rivets do not fill the hole tightly. The precoated fasteners allow mechanics to work faster and more cleanly, saving thousands of labour hours.

Additionally, if titanium pins have to be removed, they no longer seize up because there is more lubrication.

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