Fastener Technology

Why Quality Fasteners are Worth It

You’ve spent months on your design doing careful analysis and selecting the right materials. You are finally getting close to production – but wait, you haven’t selected a fastener supplier yet. You need mostly standard fasteners, except for those few specialty print parts. It’s just fasteners; how hard can it be?

The next step is to turn over your fastener list to the buyer and have them find the cheapest hardware they can negotiate to save a few pennies on the product. After all, it doesn’t matter where they come from. All fasteners are the same, right?

This scenario may be a bit harsh, but is all too often true. If manufacturers are making standard fasteners, they should be using the same fastener standards. Unfortunately, some manufacturers take short cuts to keep costs down in this highly competitive market. Some low-cost providers may make perfectly good fasteners 90% of the time, but is 90% good enough for your design? Assembly issues, failures in the field, warranty claims costs, and poor customer satisfaction when a new widget breaks or doesn’t perform as advertised can be very expensive and time consuming.

My advice is this: know where your fasteners are coming from. Here are some questions you can ask yourself before selecting a supplier:

  • Does the manufacturer have good process controls?
  • Are they tracking reject rates both internally and externally?
  • Are they subcontracting fastener finishes or heat treatment?
  • Do the subcontractors have good process controls?

Contact us through and see what steps we take to ensure good quality fasteners.

Doug Jones
Applications Engineer


September 22, 2017
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Length of Engaged Thread

Length of Engaged Thread

Length of engagement is important to understand. The required minimum length of engagement changes for different materials and hardness of said materials. This is something that needs to be determined during the design process.

When screws need to be fully loaded in tensile, it is important to note the strength of the material that the ‘nut’, or female threaded component, is made of. The minimum length of the engaged thread will depend on it. Ultimately, it is important to achieve the required minimum length to give the joint the durability it needs.

Below are some examples of recommended minimum lengths of engaged thread in internal threads based on the material of the nut component for heat-treated steel bolts. These have been determined from practical trials:

Recommended minimum lengths of engaged thread in internal threads.

Make sure the toolbox of information needed to determine the proper length of engagement is readily available. Reach out to us at if there is any questions regarding this!

June 02, 2017
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Fatigue Resistance in Fasteners

Fatigue Resistance in Fasteners

Simply put, you want your fasteners to hold up under many situations including conditions of changing load. However, some fasteners cannot hold up to the challenge. One of the most common forms of fastener failure is fatigue. That is why fatigue resistance and strength is something to look for in your fasteners.

A fastener can experience fatigue for a variety of reasons including assembly parameters, fastener material, geometry, and stress on the fastener. Fatigue often occurs in the first load-bearing part of the thread, and it can be detrimental to your project. This means your design must allow for screws to increase its fatigue strength. However, the fatigue strength of fine threads decreases with increased rigidity and fineness of thread, so there are some things to keep in mind with fatigue strength in your fasteners.

There are ways to increase the fatigue strength of your screws. These would include measures that reduce the effective peak stresses or prevent combined loading.

Check out some options for increasing your fatigue strength:

  • Use longer screws rather than shorter screws
  • Use screws with waisted shanks
  • Use pins or fitted shoulder screws to absorb lateral forces
  • Adequate and controlled pre-stressing of the screws

Reach out to us at to learn more about fatigue resistance and to find the fastener with the perfect fatigue strength for you.

May 26, 2017
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bigHead® for Wind Turbines

bigHead® for Wind Turbines

Solving your fastening problems is what bigHead does. Whether it is a difficult project or an extreme environment, we can come up with fastening solutions tailored to your needs. That is what bigHead did for offshore wind turbine maintenance hatches.

Siemens nacelle suppliers approached bigHead with a fastening problem. They recently came up with a composite hatch to replace a steel panel for covering a maintenance hatch. The only problem with the composite hatch was fastening it with traditional bolt fixings. This was a challenge because two people were required to perform the operation—one inside and one outside the nacelle. That made the operation not only less safe, but more challenging and time consuming to perform.

However, bigHead and Siemens came up with a solution through prototyping and extreme testing to make sure the fastening solution could hold up under the harsh conditions that the offshore wind turbines endured.

The solution for these offshore wind turbines was surface bonding the 316 marine grade stainless steel bigHead to the outer skin of the nacelle and passing the threaded stud section through its composite structure. This means the panel can easily be secured or removed by one person from the interior of the structure. The bigHead’s large perforated head allows a generous flow of adhesive to firmly secure it in position and its outer surface includes an over-moulded insulation layer that safeguards the nacelle against lightning strikes.

bigHead and Siemens worked together to create the perfect fastening solution for a tough problem. bigHead has been manufacturing its distinctive and leading brand of discrete bonding fasteners for over 50 years and has extensive experience across a wide range of industries where formed and molded composite products require discrete and completely secure fixing. Applications range from carbon fiber panel fixing in specialist and luxury car production to building and construction, railway carriage construction, marine and boat building, and more.

Do you have a tough problem that needs a fastening solution? Reach out to us at and we can find your perfect solution or even develop one for you.

May 19, 2017
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Fastening Solutions for the Rail Industry: bigHead® and FRP materials

Fastening Solutions for the Rail Industry bigHead® and FRP materials

Improving efficiency and reducing costs are two focuses of any industry or any business and mass transit is certainly not an exception. The rail industry is always looking at embracing new materials and new production techniques to improve their processes. bigHead® is a fastening solution that will help do just that.

FRP Materials and the Rail Industry

One of these new materials that has become popular recently in the rail industry is the use of fiber-reinforced polymer composite (FRP) materials. The FRP materials help to create lightweight but high-strength structures, and they are also good for design flexibility.

bigHead® Fastening Solutions

However, to use these materials successfully, you need a fastener that is safe, secure and discrete. This is where bigHead® comes in. Fastening solutions from bigHead® offer you advantages over many other fasteners. Check out the reasons to look into bigHead® below:

  1. bigHead® fits your project perfectly – You can receive a wide range of standard or customized product solutions, which means bigHead® will be a perfect fit.
  2. bigHead® can save you time – With bigHead® you can fasten without drilling, which offers you many advantages. You will save time by not drilling, and you will also preserve your materials and keep them strong because you don’t have to create holes in your materials. You can use bigHeads to complete and assemble pods into the vehicle structure. Also, bigHeads can be used on the inside of your pods and structures to fix internal panels, flooring, signage and even trim into place.
  3. bigHead® can reduce your assembly costs – When you use bigHead® fasteners, they can be embedded in composite materials during the lay-up process or they can be surface bonded with adhesive. This means you don’t need a secondary assembly process which can reduce your manufacturing costs.

Every company and industry is looking for innovative ways to make their products and services more successful. At Bossard, with our bigHead® fastening solutions, we are providing the solutions to make your products more successful. You can save time and money with bigHead®, and you can rest assured that these solutions work.

If you have any questions, contact us at

April 28, 2017
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5 Benefits of Metric Dimensioning Fasteners

Metric Fasteners

When looking at fasteners, you have to decide whether you want imperial fasteners or metric fasteners. When designing new products metric dimensioning should be considered as a low cost solution to fastener assembling.

Metric fasteners most often win out over imperial fasteners and here’s why:

  1. It is a simple form of measurement with a base of whole numbers. This can help reduce the number of fasteners in a bill of materials.
  2. They are interchangeable in a global market. Parts can be assembled globally because of the availability of tools. Replacement fasteners can be purchased from local sources. Interchangeability was the key reason the automotive industry has moved to the metric form of fasteners.
  3. The metric system is the most precise form of measurement. It has been adopted by the medical industry as well as the aerospace and electronics industries.
  4. Metric thread falls between an inch course and fine thread. This allows the designer to take advantage of both thread types. It’s a better choice for vibration resistance as well as providing a larger stress area in the cross section of the screw. A commercial finish can be applied without gaging issues.
  5. Standard metric fasteners are manufactured in accordance to the ISO 4759 standard. This is a global base hole system that uses a letters and numbers system to determine a standard plus/minus tolerance for threaded fasteners.

These benefits will aid long term cost savings in design, manufacturing, and assembly, as well as product longevity in the market. If you are interested in other ways of making your business more productive, check out our product solutions and our Smart Factory Logistics.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, let us know how we can help you by contacting us at

April 21, 2017
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Fasteners for Composite Materials


Composite materials have become more popular to use in various projects because of their versatility. Composites are often lighter and stronger than traditional materials, so they are a go-to for projects. However, it can be a little more tricky to find fastening solutions for composite materials. Fasteners such as bigHead® and ecosyn®-BCT were created for more complex materials and situations like working with composite materials. Learn what bigHead® and ecosyn®-BCT can do for you.


These fasteners are made so any attachment points such as pins, nails, nuts, threads, hooks, etc. are attached to the head or base plate via a weld point. This construction allows bigHeads to be integrated into your project “invisibly.” It also means these fasteners don’t require holes in your composite materials, so your material can stay strong. These fasteners can either be embedded into the composites or surface-bonded to the composites so you don’t compromise the composite material itself.


ecosyn®-BCT rivet nuts have cross holes on the shank to determine where the rivet nut will collapse to allow it to be installed in non-conventional blind applications. ecosyn®-BCT rivet nuts give you a resilient connection because it applies minimal stress around the base material so there is no damage to your materials.

Both bigHead® and ecosyn®-BCT work hard on your tough projects. These fasteners were designed to help out on those projects that are hard to handle. Using these fasteners with composite materials will help you to have a strong, stable and resilient product.

To find out more about fasteners for composite materials, or to find out which fastener is perfect for your project, contact us at

April 14, 2017
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Fastening Solution for Extreme Heat: ecosyn®-MRX


In an ideal world, your product would exist in the perfect climate with no wind, water or extreme temperatures of any kind. You would also never have to deal with any type of corrosion or rust. In a perfect world, your product would withstand anything man or nature could throw at it.

This isn’t a perfect world, but at Bossard we work to improve it every day. We work to provide you with fastening solutions that better stand up to the elements and keep your product going stronger for longer. One of these fastening solutions is ecosyn®-MRX, and it was developed for many reasons, but one of these reasons was to withstand extreme heat.

Customer Problem: Extreme Heat

A Bossard customer in France develops fixing systems around the world. They needed a fastening solution for a tunnel renovation. We were asked to provide a solution that could withstand corrosion and heat in the case of extreme conditions like a tunnel fire.

Our Solution: ecosyn®-MRX

Our team came up with the solution of ecosyn®-MRX. This fastener is constructed with special martensitic, hardened and tempered chrome steel. This means it can resist at least six hours in extreme high temperature up to 1,200° C. ecosyn®-MRX can withstand those hot temperatures to get the job done.

Examples of application areas for ecosyn®-MRX:

  • General sheet metal construction
  • Heating and ventilation ducts
  • Appliances
  • Vehicle body construction
  • Facade constructions
  • Green houses

You can use this fastening solution for a variety of different applications because it offers you many benefits. However, if you are looking for a solution for heat resistance, ecosyn®-MRX is a great option for you. Contact us at if you have any questions!

March 31, 2017
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Methods for Calculating Appropriate Tightening Torque

When you are trying to determine the tightening torque you need for a fastener, there are a couple ways you will want to go about it. It may seem like a fairly easy answer, but that is not always the case.

Use a Torque Calculator

Using a torque calculator to determine the approximate tightening torque is a good place to start. This calculator will request information such as the coefficient of friction, the bolt strength and diameter. A torque calculator is a good way to get started and get an approximate tightening torque, however, it will not be exact in all situations. This is why after using a calculator, it is a good idea to perform some joint testing to verify your results.

Test Your Torque

Once you arrive at the proper torque requirement, you may want to test your torque values to verify the accuracy of your assembly tools. This is important because it helps you ensure the safety, reliability and quality of your project.

You will need a calibrated hand torque wrench to verify the tightening torque of your fasteners. You can select from the First Movement Test, the Loosening Test and the Marking Test as an indication of the applied torque:

  1. The First Movement Test will involve applying force to your torque wrench after the fastener has been tightened. You will do this until the first movement of the fastener is noted.
  2. The Loosening Test requires that you turn the fastener in the opposite direction to loosen it. You will record the torque when the fastener first breaks loose.
  3. For the Marking Test, you will need to mark the fastener and continue to mark onto the surface being clamped. Then you will loosen and retighten until the marks match up.

It is important to use the proper torque on your project to ensure safe, reliable joints. To learn more about torque and methods for measuring it, contact Bossard at

March 17, 2017
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Self-Tapping Screws for Plastic

self-tapping screws for plastic

Self-tapping screws are those that can form their own threads as they are driven into the material. Plastic requires a specially designed thread profile as tapping screws used with steel can result in residual stresses in the plastic that can degrade the structural integrity of the assembly. Plastic thread-forming screws give you more flexibility and quickly assemble components with fewer fasteners. When looking into self-tapping screws, the first step is to decide what type of self-tapping screws are best suited for the application. Thread-forming and thread-cutting are two categories self-tapping screws are classified into. Below is a brief description of each category.

Thread-Forming Screws

When you are using a thread-forming screw, you will get a very secure fit. Thread-forming screws produce little waste as the plastic that is displaced to create the thread relaxes back into the root of the thread. This attribute is one of the reasons why a thread-forming screw would be chosen over thread-cutting. Thread-forming screws, generally, function best in thermoplastics. This is due to the spring back function of the material to fill voids created by the screw.

Thread-Cutting Screws

These screws actually remove material because they have cutting edges. In general, thread-cutting screws can be used for both thermoplastics and thermosets without issue. Each application can result in a different screw being recommended, so a review of each application should be done. Thread-cutting screws have a smaller flank angle to reduce instillation torque while increasing surface area which results in a higher pullout force.

ecosyn®-plast is a great option for a thread-cutting screw for plastic. These screws are designed differently than tapping screws because they are designed to easily penetrate the material without causing stress to the material. Check out some advantages of ecosyn®-plast:

  • Low driving torque and high stripping torque
  • High breaking torque and tensile strength of screw
  • Excellent security against vibration
  • Low risk for cracking the base material
  • No setting of the assembly due to excessive relaxation of the plastic material

If you have questions about self-tapping screws for plastic or need help in deciding on a fastener, contact us at Our experts can help you get the materials you need for a successful project. We are also prepared to provide you with technical advice and we can even provide field-related assembly tests for you in our laboratory to help with application technique.

March 10, 2017
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