The links, beads and rivets in TierraCast’s new Leather Findings Collection are refreshingly easy to use — especially for those of you who are still nursing bruised fingertips from my previous riveting blog!
- Compression rivets are fast.
- The rivetable links are sturdy, yet can be re-shaped if desired:
- Hook clasps, tribuckle clasps, strap tips, ribbon slide cord ends and D-rings fit a variety of round and flat cording — making it easy to upcycle and repurpose old leather straps or ribbon, or make custom-length bracelets, belts and armlets.
- The barrel beads and distressed ovals have large oval holes (4 to 6mm), which fit nicely over multiple strands of leather cord, and can be crimped — if desired — to hold strands in place.
- Fun spiral snap caps:
Setting TierraCast compression rivets:
This video tutorial by Tracy Gonzales of TierraCast shows how quick and easy these rivets are to set:
If the video above doesn’t display for you, try this link:
Technique: Setting Compression Rivets or just keep reading!
Supplies needed for setting compression rivets:
- Metal or hardwood block
- Something to rivet (leather bracelet blanks, fun links, etc.)
- Leather hole punch
- Rivet setter (inexpensive tool)
- Brass hammer
How to set TierraCast (or any) compression rivets:
- Punch holes in leather at desired spots (it can be helpful to mark them with a pencil or a Sharpie)
- Set the post (long portion) on the block.
- Add your items to the post.
- Slide the (domed) cap over the post.
- Make sure everything is aligned nice and straight (and that you’re looking at the top of your bracelet/item).
- Place the cupped end of the rivet setter on the rivet cap.
- Tap once or twice with the brass hammer.
- Test: If the rivet is wiggly … you didn’t compress (hammer) it hard enough, so line it up and hammer again!
What other embellishments can you add?
Anything with a 2.4 – 3mm hole, and total stacking height between 2mm and 4.5mm.
Diameter / Hole Size:
- TierraCast rivets have a 2.3-2.5mm diameter post, so any bead or finding that has 2.5mm hole fits nicely onto the rivet.
- Beads with a 3/32″ (2.38mm) hole usually fit too. If they are close, briefly use a bead reamer.
- Beads with a 3mm hole may wiggle or fit a bit loose, but are usually ok.
Length / Height:
- Items with a total stacked height of 2.5-4mm are perfect, but a range of roughly 1.5-4.5mm thick (total) can work.
- 2 pieces of 2mm leather = 4mm = perfect!
- A layer of 2mm leather + a 1.5mm-thick link = 3.5mm = perfect!
- A plain rivet embellishing a single layer of 1.5mm leather = ok, but a little loose
- A layer of 2mm leather + a 2.5mm-thick bead or washer = usually ok, but pushing the limits.
And, to wrap it up — here are some of my favorite things that fit TierraCast’s rivets, but aren’t part of their official leather findings collection:
- Stackable flowers
- Tim Holtz idea-ology sprocket gears.
- Spacer beads – Many of these TierraCast beads work – everything in the picture below works, but some in the link (like the bead caps and Buddha heads) are too thick.
p.s. Still to come: Riveting with Crafted Findings riveting system. In the meantime, here is a PDF with general tips and tool comparisons.