Join 2 objects while keeping modifiers on one?

Hi! I am trying to create a buckler (shield) like this one:

My model is fine, looks like this

Though when I try to add the rivets to the center piece in a circle using the array modifier & and empty, it works great, trying to add it to the original mesh it doesn’t follow my animation, and when I apply the animation modifier it works as an individual thing where each rivet follows the animation individually instead of staying uniform on the plate. This is a copy of my .blend:

If you are looking inside my file, this is a legend of the different parts relative to the image above

[TABLE=“class: grid, width: 500, align: center”]

Centre Shiny Thing

Blue/White Leather

Brown Outer Edge Material

Back Wood Texture


In the end, I’m hoping that I can have my rivets stick to the flat part of the boss as the Buckler mesh spins.