Well Nuts, A Hidden Gem
Compared with Rivet Nuts in other materials, which “shine on the stage” in the fastener world, Well Nuts seem less appreciated. However, they have their own “personality” and can be used for some applications where regular rivet nuts may not be ideal.
So, what is a Well Nut, and how does it compare with a rivet nut?
A Well nut, also called a rawlnut or a rubber nut, is a removable rivet nut or nutsert, comprised of an EPDM Neoprene nut and a brass insert nut. Like a regular rivet nut, a well nut can be installed from one side, so it is one of those “blind” fasteners. It has the following benefits:
● No special tools are required for installation – You don’t have to use a rivnut tool to install a well nut, as with other rivet nuts. It can be installed by using a threaded fastener of any type.
● Removable – Removing a regular rivet nut is a pain, but removing a well nut is as easy as loosening the threaded fastener.
● Water-tight – The rubber body is pressed into the pre-drilled hole and deformed tightly at the back of the installation surface after installation. This creates a sealed finish. Though a well nut is water-tight, it doesn’t mean it is waterproof: rubber degradation will eventually occur. The threaded fastener can loosen over time as well.
● Absorbs vibration and noise – Due to the nature of rubber, a well nut can absorb solid transmission sound and reduces vibration effectively.
● Can be used as an insulator – When a well nut is installed, the rubber flange stays between two materials. As a result, there is no galvanic corrosion occurs between the materials.
Due to these benefits, a well nut can be used on glass, pipes, and plywood. It is great for boating and automotive production and maintenance. Well nuts are available in a wide grip range, so they are suitable for both thin and thick plates.
One thing must be considered about well nuts when choosing a fastener for your job: While a well nut is versatile, its grip relies very much on the deformed rubber body. Therefore, it has a weaker pull-out and torque strength than rivet nuts in other materials. We do not recommend it to be used in structural applications. However, it is reasonably strong, and the following demo video gives you an idea of its performance and how to install and remove it.