Case Study - Tumu ITM Quick Connect

truss.pngCarterton Event Centre

Timber Rivets

Timber rivets have been used for the first time in New Zealand in 2011, in the timber truss connections of the Carterton Event Centre. The Trusses were constructed using LVL members supplied by Juken New Zealand Ltd. The auditorium trusses in the building were up to 24.6m long and 4.8m high, so they were delivered to site in two pieces. The riveted connection uses easily man handle-able components that allowed the required mid-span splice connection to be completed without specialist lift equipment.

Use of the rivets allowed the fabricator, McIntosh Timber Laminates, to save over $30k on this project when compared to the detailed bolted connection option. It also allowed for adjustments on site not possible with bolted fastenings. The timber rivets were found very user-friendly both in the work shop and onsite with significantly less visual impact and material cost compared to the conventional fasteners.

Trimble Bldg in Christchurch

Timber Rivets


In another project by TimberLab Solutions Ltd. (formerly McIntosh Timber Laminates Ltd.), using rivets in the connections of the structure and energy dissipating system of the building demonstrates the advantages of this timber fastener. The Trimble building in south-west Christchurch was damaged by the September and February earthquakes. The new building was a design-build project, which was undertaken by Mainzeal and Opus, commencing in February 2012. The building holds over 6,000 m2 of office space over two levels and utilises LVL Pres-Lam frames in one direction and Pres-Lam walls in the other to resist seismic loads. The LVL of this building was supplied by Carter Hold Harvey Ltd. 

The principal structural engineer from Opus, and the structural design team leader for the Trimble project found that the compact timber rivets provide high strength and stiff connections to take significant seismic loads.


IMG_1748_2.JPGPortal Frame for URM Bldg Seismic Retrofit

Timber Rivets 


In this project, EQStruc Ltd implemented efficiently LVL timber portal frames to resist seismic loads for an unreinforced masonry structure about 45m long by 12m wide. To provide strong and stiff joints between the timber elements, rivet connections were designed by Timber Connect Ltd. with controlled deflections. As the first experience by EQStruc Ltd to apply timber portal frames for URM building seismic retrofit purposes, they found the timber structural system efficient, in particular, the application of rivets as a solution with cost benefits for the connections.

CLT Shear Walls Hold-DownIMG_0591.JPG Connections of Kaikoura District Council Bldg

Timber Rivets


To provide stiff connectors for the hold-down dissipaters of the CLT shear walls, timber rivets were implemented in this project designed by Innovations Nelson Ltd. The elastic deformation of the rivet connections were limited to 0.5 mm in order to achieve the targeted system ductility only through the extension of the energy dissipaters under earthquake events. The feedbacks from the fabricator indicate the quick and easy installation of the rivets on the hold-down joints as efficient fasteners. Innovations Nelson Ltd. is currently working on another similar project related to a 2-story commercial/retail building in which rivets will be applied to provide high capacity and high stiffness hold-down connections.