Author Archives Bossard

Best Fasteners for Plastics and Composites: Threaded Inserts

When it comes to choosing the best fasteners for plastics and composite materials, you have a range of options. However, not all fastening solutions are suitable for every application.  And if you’re looking for the best fasteners for plastics and composites, the team at Bossard can help. 

Throughout the world, Bossard fasteners have become synonymous with exceptional quality, durability, and unrivaled performance. In addition to an expansive selection of fastening solutions, we offer Product Solutions and Assembly Technology Expert support as you work toward the best solution to your bolted joint problem. And if the ideal solution doesn’t exist, Bossard can create it. 

One of the top fastening solutions we offer for composites and plastics are threaded inserts. Also known as a threaded bushing, threaded inserts are fasteners that can be pressed-in, molded-in, or welded into a soft material to create permanent machine threads. Threaded inserts help prevent hardened fasteners from pulling out of softer composites, plastics, and soft metals. Because of these qualities threaded inserts are ideal for creating durable mechanical joints in your plastic and composite components. Let’s take a closer look at some of our top and most frequently utilized thread inserts. 

Types of Thread Inserts for Plastics and Composites

  1. The Tappex MULTISERT thread insert is a press-fitting insert that is made of brass. Available in M1.6 through M12, this threaded insert can be unheeded, with a large head diameter, or small head diameter. 
  2. The Tappex MICROBARB thread insert is a press-fitting fastener that has micro knurling for thin-walled materials. Made of brass, this threaded insert is available in M2 through M10. 
  3. Tappex TRISERT/TRISERT-3 are versatile, self-tapping inserts. They are available in brass, steel, and stainless steel in sizes ranging from M2 through M10. The TRISERT features three special cutting slots that prevent chips.
  4. Tappex FOAMSERT are self-tapping inserts that are ideal for wood, expanded materials, and soft plastics. These threaded insert are made from brass and are available in M2.5 through M8. 
  5. Tappex HiMOULD are threaded inserts designed for molding in. Manufactured from brass, these threaded inserts boast a highly-increased pull-out force by extra grooves from thread size M3. 
  6. PEM NFPC are threaded inserts for press-fitting. Manufactured from stainless steel, these inserts are available in M3 to M6. They feature high torsional strength through outer milling and a hexagonal head. 
  7. IN-STOP threaded inserts are made from brass and are designed to splay. These inserts can be set blindly without tools. 

Contact Bossard Today

At Bossard, we are proud to offer a solution to every fastening challenge. As industry leaders, countless customers have turned to Bossard for tailored solutions, premium quality products, and innovative services. 

Contact us today.





January 07, 2022
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Best Fasteners for Plastics and Composites: Blind Rivet Nuts

#4 - Best Fasteners for Plastics and Composites Blind Rivet Nuts

At Bossard, we are proud to be leaders in fastening technology. We offer an array of fastening solutions for virtually all materials, including plastics and composites. However, we don’t just supply standard products and components, we offer active and close support as you search for the most ideal solution. And in the event the solution doesn’t exist, the team at Bossard can create it.

One of the top fastening solutions we offer for plastics, thermosets, and composites are blind rivet nuts. It is a single-piece, internally threaded, and counterbored rivet that can be anchored entirely from one side of the material. Let’s take a closer look.

Bossard offers Blind Rivet Nuts which can be adjusted with a controlled deformation feature. These innovative blind rivet nuts form a bulge without any bearing stress inside the bore hole.

Because of this, brittle materials like composites and plastics can be securely fastened without stress for the underlying material. The bulge can be created in a pre-specified material level of the composite to ensure a reliable, solid hold. We offer several blind rivet nuts.

Blind Rivet Nuts with Controlled Deformation

The controlled deformation blind rivet nuts are ideal for installations with soft, brittle composite materials. With this type of blind rivet nut, the bulge is created without force and brace transmission on the base material.


The Jack-Nut® blind rivet nuts are optimum for setting and fastening in soft materials and porous materials with a large surface for contact on the material base side. These types of blind nut rivets are ideally suited for oversized hole diameters.


The FLEXINUT blind rivet nuts are highly versatile, non-conductive solutions. They are designed to dampen vibrations and impacts.


FASTEKS® Nilko blind rivet nuts are polyamide fasteners that can be used in drilled or punched circular holes. These nuts will affix themselves when they’re being screwed in the bolt.


The STECKO blind rivet nuts are all-metal fasteners. They can be used in drilled or pierced circular holes and will affix themselves upon screwing in the bolt.

POP® Peel

POP® Peel blind rivets are designed with load spreading capabilities. These rivets have four petals that are ideal for joining brittle and softer materials especially materials with a honeycomb structure.

POP® Load Spreading (LSR)

As the name suggests, these rivets have a load spreading feature. They have three legs that are ideal for joining brittle and softer materials.

POP® Multi Grip (MGR)

POP® multi grip blind rivets feature a larger flange head that delivers excellent load spreading in thin or soft materials. This rivet is suggested for oversized hole diameters on slotted or head-size holes.


POP® HR Blind Rivets have a large flange head as well as a large secondary expansion for excellent load spreading in harder plastics.

POP® VGrip

With standard blind rivets, the rivet sleeve can expand radially to maximize the clamp length range. To limit the radial expansion, the POP® VGrip can be adjusted with controlled bearing stress. The workpieces are pulled together whilst forces against the sides of the holes in the joined components are reduced.

Contact Bossard Today

At Bossard, we are proud to offer the best fastness for the most modern materials.

Contact Bossard today at




December 03, 2021
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Fastening Solutions for Electrical Cabinet Applications

Fastening Solutions for Electrical Cabinet Applications

Whether you’re looking for conductive fasteners for the distribution of energy, fastening elements for white goods or electrical cabinets, or circuit board micro fasteners, the team at Bossard can and will help. We offer a range of flexible and versatile fastening solutions for virtually all electrical enclosure applications.


Best of all, our service continues and exceeds expectations where the palette of standard products ends. Let’s take a closer look at some of our instrumental fastening solutions for electrical cabinet applications.


Fastening Solutions for Electrical Cabinets & Enclosures

The safety and security of your electrical cabinet is paramount. Bossard offers a variety of fastening solutions to protect equipment from the environment as well as people from the equipment. We provide solutions for fasteners in electrical engineering that reduce costly, manual steps in production and save space.


Fasteners for Energy Distribution Application

Your energy distribution fasteners must boast high-temperature resistance as well as anti-vibration qualities. These two attributes guarantee a consistent clamp load, which aids in safe energy distribution in low and high-voltage applications.


Circuit Board Fastening Solutions

Circuit boards represent one of the most delicate and smallest applications of electrical engineering. Because of this, circuit boards require space-saving fasteners with controlled mounting. These fasteners shouldn’t place any additional stress on the panel.


Why Choose Bossard for Electrical Cabinet Fastening Applications?

Thousands of satisfied customers across the world have turned to Bossard for premium quality products and services. As an industry leader, we repeatedly exceed expectations with end-to-end solutions and more:


  • One-stop-shop. Bossard is home to more than one million fastening solutions, including several fasteners for mechanical and electrical purposes.
  • Tailor-made solutions. The best solution for every problem is usually not an all-purpose one. And if the best solution for your application doesn’t exist, we will make it.
  • Expert consulting. The Bossard engineering team will guide you through the process regarding innovative developments, alternative fastening solutions, or unique material requisitions.
  • Optimized delivery condition. We have more than 80 Bossard units throughout the world, so quick responses and expedited delivery times are guaranteed.
  • We own our test laboratories. Because we own our laboratories, we can meet the highest quality standards. We own ISO-IEC 17025-accredited test laboratories.
  • Smart Factory Logistics. We help you manage B- and C-parts in a transparent and leaner way while you concentrate on your core competencies.


November 26, 2021
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Select the Right Fastening Solutions from The Start

#1 - Prevent Bolt Failure and Select The Right Fastening Solutions From The Start

Joint failure can be disastrous, particularly if the fastener is holding together two critical pieces of machinery. For example, fatigue may prove insidious because it is slow. A crack may develop slowly in a component that works perfectly for years and then suddenly, the fastener breaks, and the machine it supports collapses.

Avoiding Bolt Failure

Joint failures can be avoided if some basic principles are understood and if the proper fasteners are used. Knowing which strength and finish to select along with using the appropriate tightening method are key factors to ensuring safe designs.

What is the first step to acquiring the necessary knowledge? Bossard’s Expert Education services are the place to start.

We believe that customers like you should become experts in fastening technology. You can then have the knowledge and skills to make decisions at your manufacturing site about what nuts and bolts can improve the quality and safety of your products.


You can achieve Expert Education through different learning formats that are tailored to your needs:

  • These live programs reveal relevant fastening topics by mixing theory and practice. After interactive learning, you gain hands-on experience. You can join one of our public seminars unless you prefer that we set up a customized private program only for your company employees.
  • If seminars seem too distant or inconvenient to attend or set up, we can show you short learning sequences that you can conveniently take at your desk.
  • E-learning. The most convenient option lets you learn about fastening technology whenever you have time through self-study. You can learn everything from related standards to fastener anatomy and function.

What You Gain

You gain the following benefits from our services:

  • Knowledge about assembly technology and how to pick fasteners when designing your products.
  • How to avoid joint problems like thread galling and hydrogen embrittlement.
  • Safer products that are more economical to produce with the correct bolt choices.
  • Fulfillment of quality standards.
  • Smoother production process.

Fastening Topics

The following are just some of the topics you can learn through our services. Most of them demand a full seminar or webinar to complete. However, each topic can also be broken up into smaller units for e-learning.

  • Anatomy of a Fastener – Covers heads, threads, grades, and finishes as well as manufacturing of fasteners.
  • Fastener Cost Drivers – What makes fasteners so expensive, and what steps can you take to keep costs to a minimum.
  • Plating & Coating – Learn all about common fastener finishes and when to use them along with recent changes in the industry including regulations and new products/trends.
  • Cost-Efficient Assembly – Tips from the experts on good design practices for keeping fastener costs down.
  • Thread Forming Screws for Plastic and Metal – Learn how to save money designing with thread-forming fasteners.
  • Securely Fastened Joints: Keeping Joints Tight – Learn the mechanics of joint loosening and strategies to keep them tight.
  • Securely Fastened Joints: Torque vs. Tension – Learn about the torque/tension relationship and the variables that need to be considered/controlled to ensure solid and safe joint design.




November 12, 2021
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How to Outsmart Your Competitors in New Product Development

#5 How to Outsmart Your Competitors in New Product Development

New product development (NPD) rewards you with an advantage when you introduce a new product or service to market or introduce an existing product to a new target market. Bossard helps you get the jump on your competitors with two offerings: Expert Design and Expert Assortment Analysis.

Expert Design

Bossard’s fastener know-how ranges from assembly methods to technical resources based on over 180 years of firsthand experience. Though these components may seem to have minor functions, they require demanding specifications. Our Expert Design can deliver the best product for your application and grant the following benefits.

  • Better in-place cost when you choose the right fastening solutions.
  • Lower production cost due to faster assembly processes.
  • Lower life-cycle cost by using a fastener of the right quality.

To achieve these goals, Expert Design provides a wide array of tools and knowledge:

  • Fastening Joint Design. Because we understand how the behavior and materials of your fastener can affect safety, lifespan, and costs, we can help you design a joint that meets your stringent requirements.
  • Calculation of Bolted Joint. By using advanced software for optimizing bolt connections, we rely on systematic steps to calculate bolted joints and create a design that makes full use of the bolt’s load-bearing capacity.
  • Joint Failure Analysis. A joint can fail because of the wrong design, incorrect preload, or wrong fastener. Analyzing the failed joint can determine the cause and eliminate it by implementing the right measures.
  • Online Calculators and Converters for fasteners that can be used by anyone involved in developing and assembling the bolted joints.
  • CAD Online Portal that supports your product design with static and animated 2D and 3D views.
  • Technical Information that includes standards, mechanical properties, tables, tolerances, and more.

Expert Assortment Analysis

Only 15 percent of the cost of using a fastener comes from the fastener itself. The other 85 percent covers logistics, procurement, assembly prep, and other activities. By reducing the number of different fasteners required in one product, you can streamline the Bill of Materials (BOM). Our Expert Assortment Analysis achieves this to provide the following benefits:

  • Eliminate unnecessary elements by looking for similar products that encourage substitution and make your production leaner.
  • Reduce the complexity of purchasing, storage, and assembly by defining the assortment you can pick from.
  • Increase productivity.

At Bossard, we offer different service packages:

  • BOM Analysis looks at your entire production line, especially the assembly technology that includes fastening elements, tooling, and assembly processes. Value Analysis estimates cost savings based on Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
  • Advanced includes basic services plus the following verifications. Technical Verification develops proposals for new and proven solutions and delivers a technical report that details possible technical improvements. Presentation of Proposals reveals the results in a presentation that includes a report and physical samples,
  • Superior includes basic and advanced services plus implementation. During onsite or off-site implementations, we lead the R&D engineering team, set up the project team, and arrange the stacks.







Bossard Online Calculators

Learn How to Design Your Best Product with Bossard Expert Design

Bossard Online Calculators

November 05, 2021
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The Most Innovative Things Happening with Supply Chain Logistics

#4 The Most Innovative Things Happening With Supply Chain Logistics

Supply chain logistics stand out as an essential piece of your manufacturing enterprise. It represents an efficient and profitable way to transport goods, services, and information from the initiation point to the destination. Bossard has been at the forefront of innovating this critical component with smart factory solutions.

Getting Smart

To make your factory smarter in the 21st century, Bossard created ARIMS, a platform that gives you full control of your visible supply chain. It enables you to monitor inventory, orders, supply, and demand through intelligent analytics, making your B- and C-part management fully transparent.

The following ARIMS functions improve the efficiency, predictability, and ultimately, profitability, of your supply chain.

  • ARIMS Analytics exposes your items, orders, locations, and deliveries to reports, graphs, and tables that can be exported into everything from other software to word processing applications. You can now access real-time data to make decisions about your manufacturing.
  • ARIMS Interactive helps you manage your assembly changes by requesting changes and looking at the status of open and past change requests. You can adjust system parameters to fit how you do business.
  • ARIMS Mobile puts all the ARIMS functions into an app that you download to your Android or iOS device. You’re no longer tied to one location but can find items, check orders, and view information from wherever you are, even if you’re on the production floor.

The Systems

The physical side of Smart Factory Logistics comes together in the following cloud-based solutions of the industrial internet of things.

  • SmartBin Cloud measures the stock that the SmartBin contains in real-time using the vibrations of the bin when someone removes an item. When the stock drops to a minimum level, a replenishment order goes via SmartBin Cloud to Bossard. Relevant information, such as stock level, order status, and delivery date appears on the bin label.
  • SmartLabel Cloud includes a SmartLabel that attaches to your existing containers and contains the same information as the SmartBin label: stock level, order status, and delivery date. Users can push the label button to replenish stock. The order is sent via SmartLabel Cloud to Bossard.

At Bossard, we then consolidate all your ordered items into one shipment for efficiency and economy before sending it to you. Depending on our agreement, we can deliver the order either to the dock or point of use, such as a specific shelf in your warehouse.


These Bossard innovations offer your facility the following advantages:

  • Full transparency with the information you need appearing on the label at the point of use and in the ARIMS platform.
  • You can now meaningfully analyze big data to improve predictability and efficiency.
  • The system integrates all suppliers to streamline the supplier base.
  • It also coordinates the flow of materials and information.

If you want to know more about how our innovations can improve the logistics of your supply chain, please contact your local Bossard agent.








Challenges and Solutions of Supply Chain Management

4 Supply Chain Solutions for Your Organization with Bossard

7 Easy Steps to Get Ready For Industry 4.0

October 29, 2021
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4 Go-To Technical Resources for Product Design

4 Go-To Technical Resources For Product Design

At Bossard, one of our core goals is to help improve the productivity of our customers. As a result, we have an unwavering focus on service development while investing in new processes that expand the supply of product solutions and expedite product delivery. To that end, we’ve compiled a robust suite of technical resources for product design and development. Read on to learn more and don’t hesitate to reach out to Bossard for more tailored solutions.

Product Design White Papers & Resources

Whether you’re looking for best practices in selecting a fastener finish, ways to prevent material fatigue, or other related topics, our library of white papers is a good place to start. These technical resources are ideal for product design engineers, product developers, mechanical engineers, students, and more:

  1. 7 tips to select your fastener finish is a white paper that discusses the six most-used coatings by exploring seven criteria.
  2. The importance of surface finish in stainless steel explains the importance of surface profile, polishing medium, and passivation on the corrosion resistance of stainless steel.
  3. Lightweight and the daily challenges of product design engineers is a technical resource that explains proven solutions for the challenge associated with additional hole requirements in lightweight construction.
  4. 7 criteria to prevent material fatigue is a technical white paper that explains how product design engineers should decide when dynamic loads are expected as well as the criteria fasteners should meet.
  5. Which fasteners need a heat treatment is a white paper that explains the important facts associated with the heat treatment of steels, aluminum, and non-ferrous alloys.

Read all Bossard white papers.

Access Bossard Technical Resources

At Bossard, we are committed to customized engineering solutions, excellence in all we do, and process-oriented consulting. All three of these attributes are key hallmarks of our services and products. And to highlight our commitment to you, we’ve compiled a generous list of helpful technical resources, including:

  1. Fastening Technology White Papers
  2. General Tolerances, Tables, Standards
  3. SI Units Systems
  4. Conversion Tables
  5. Designations of Different National Standards-Based on ISO
  6. Basic Tolerances and Tolerance Fields
  7. Definition of Mechanical Properties for Screws
  8. Screw Property Class 4.6 to 12.9
  9. Nuts Property Classes 04 to 12
  10. Set Screws Property Classes 14 H to 45 H
  11. Screws, Bolts, Nuts
  12. And much more

You can also find additional technical resources for:

  1. Electrical Engineering Product Design
  2. Operating and Control Elements
  3. Sealing and Flow Control Technology

Online Calculators & Converters

Bossard offers an array of converters and calculators for product design engineers, industrial designers, technicians, as well as students. Our key converters and calculators can be used in the development and assembly of bolted joints and fasteners. To meet a diverse range of needs, we’ve grouped our calculators and converters into specific categories:

  1. Online Converters are perfect for converting different units of measure, such as pressure, hardness, length, and more.
  2. Online Calculators for Production and Design are utilized for dimensioning and implementation in joint technology
  3. Online Calculators for Technical Design are used for designing and dimensioning in the joining technology.

The Mobile App

The Bossard mobile app features a host of tools in one, neat interface. You’ll have access to Geometric Calculators, Converters, and Mechanical Calculators.

  1. Visit iOS App Store
  2. Visit Google Play Store

CAD Online Portal

In addition to the previously mentioned technical resources, Bossard also offers a cutting-edge CAD (computer-aided design) Online Portal. This advanced design tool supports your product and a host of mechanical design choices with 2D and 3D views as well as animated solutions and extra smart features.

Visit our CAD Online Portal today.







20% productivity gain 0 complaints

The Benefits of Understanding Basic Fastener Finish Requirements

Surface Finishing Stainless Steel

October 15, 2021
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The Next Big Thing in the Product Design Process

The Next Big Thing in the Product Design Process

The fasteners used in your product are critical and can’t be understated. They literally hold your product and/or process together. As such, it only makes sense to design your product focusing on the fasteners from the very beginning. Fortunately, you have a team of experience, support, and guidance at Bossard.

As the leading name in fasteners and fastening technologies, Bossard offers decades of in-depth knowledge on different assembly methodologies, technical resources, and fastening joints. Regardless of the application, we will work to create fasteners and solutions that are the ultimate game-changer for your success. Let’s take a closer look at how Bossard can help elevate your new product development strategy.

Better Design + Better Development = Better Products

We get it — designing a high-quality, safe product while facing increasing competition and time constraints is a challenge. And while the functionality of a fastener may seem to be trivial, the requirements are especially demanding.

The Bossard Expert Design team can help elevate the quality of your product with materials recommendations and optimized conditions for assembly. On the other hand, we can assist with advanced prototyping based on our extensive knowledge of CAD big data and 3D prototyping. When you partner with Bossard, you’ll be privy to a unique suite of benefits and advantages:

  • Superior in-place costs: select the most ideal fastening design.
  • Reduced cost of production with streamlined, faster assembly processes.
  • Lowered life cycle costs from having the best quality of fastener from the beginning.

Access Assembly Technology Expert

Bossard application engineers are full of process optimization, continuous innovation, and efficiency knowledge. When you partner with us, you’ll open the door to each of these factors to gain a competitive edge in manufacturing.

The Bossard Three-Stage Methodology

Using an innovative three-stage methodology centered around slashing costs and reducing production time, we guide each project from product concept to production.

  1. From the beginning, we incorporate a focus on fastening joints to ensure perfect products.
  2. We will work to fine-tune your fastening process to perfection with proven methodologies, smart sensors, and industrial analytics.
  3. At Bossard, we believe in sharing our expert knowledge with those we serve. We are proud to be experts in the science of fastening.

Assembly Technology Expert Services

From beginning to end, our Assembly Technology Expert specialists will work to help you achieve the most intelligent solution for all fastening challenges. A few key services we offer include:

Ready to learn more? Contact Bossard today at







6 Types of Bolt Failure and How to Prevent It

Should I Use Weld Nuts, Self-Clinching Nuts, or Blind Rivet Nuts?

3 Solutions for Nylon Insert Nut Challenges

October 08, 2021
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Fasteners for Train Bogie Design

Fasteners for Train Bogie Design

Bossard is a leader in fastening solutions for an array of industries, including railway applications. As a leader in the industry, we offer a range of solutions engineered for the reliability, high speed, and promptness required to help make trains operate faster and more economically.

Because we understand the necessary trends and requirements of the industry, we have the proven ability to provide fasteners that meet or exceed the highest safety and quality standards. We provide solutions that help increase efficiency and productivity. We offer exclusive fastening solutions for all parts of any railway system, including

  • Supply Units
  • Rail Vehicle Body
  • Bogie
  • Energy Supply
  • Interior

Let’s take a closer look at key fastener solutions offered for the bogie.

Key Requirements for Bogie Fastening Solutions

No matter the type or size of the train, the chassis or framework that carries the wheel set is a critical component. The primary requirements of the bogie are operating maintainability, reliability, and traveling comfort throughout the suspension and damping system. In addition to several other desirable attributes, bogie fasteners must be:

  • Resistant to extreme temperature changes
  • Vibration-proof
  • Resistant to corrosion
  • Able to maintain clamp force of assembly

Bossard Offers Tailored Bogie Fastening Systems

Bossard offers a range of different fastening systems and solutions for the bogie. Some of our top bogie fastening systems are listed below.

Bogie Lock Washers

Bogie lock washers are designed to deliver exceptional security through friction and mechanical locking. Our bogie lock washers are:

  • Suitable for coated and sensitive surfaces
  • Boast no loosening and minimal loss of pretension force
  • Ribbed for higher resistance to vibrations
  • Designed to avoid surface damage while tightening

Bogie Hex Head Locking Screws

Our bogie hex head locking screws feature a cross-functional design with a serrated flange. Key attributes include:

  • Will not unscrew or become loose
  • A serrated, cross-functional washer that is integrated into the flange
  • Prevents the likelihood of forgetting safety washers
  • Prevents the possibility of using the wrong orientation

Bogie Wedge Locking Washers

Bossard’s bogie wedge locking washers have a unique self-locking design through tension. Features include:

  • High retention of the clamp load
  • Easy and quick dismantling and installation
  • High resistance to corrosion
  • Excellent resistance to vibration
  • Maximized safety against loosening

Bogie Tension Control Bolts

Our bogie tension control bolts ensure the cost-efficient installation of high-strength pre-loaded bolts. These key fasteners offer:

  • A safe tightening process because of a high-level clamp load
  • Innovative anti-corrosion protection that is designed to accept paint
  • Delivers consistent tension even in a high-vibration environment

Connecting the Railway Industry to Better Solution

At Bossard, our engineers specialize in advising clients on the best fastening solution, specific material requisitions, and innovative developments. In the event the most ideal solution doesn’t exist, we will work closely with you to develop one that best meets your needs.

Contact Bossard today at





New potential 365 days a year – thanks to strategic sourcing

Logistics costs reduction thanks to SmartBin

Quantifiable success month by month

October 01, 2021
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Types of Fastener Hardness Testing

Types of Hardness Testing

Hardness defines how a material resists permanent deformations such as indentation. Because measuring this characteristic is a mature technology, several hardness methods are available that produce different hardness values.

Parts like fasteners are typically tested at heat treatment to affect the process and the outcome. However, these tests are also conducted on raw materials for high-strength fasteners or some coating finishes.

Advantages of Hardness Testing

Such tests are quick and easy, relatively inexpensive, and can work on finished components since they do not destroy the specimen, which can be of any size and shape, such as a fastener. In general, mechanical hardness tests rely on an indenter made of tough material, such as hardened steel, carbide, or diamond. It presses into the surface of the test component at a specific force.

The hardness values come from either how deeply the indenter penetrates or the size of the indent with smaller indents signifying harder materials. Higher numbers mean harder materials.

Types of Tests

The following are just three of the major hardness tests. Tables are available for converting one hardness test scale to another. However, some of these values are interpolated because there is no direct mathematical correlation among scales. You should only use conversion tables as a last resort.

Brinell Hardness Test

In the early 20th century, the Brinell Ball Test stood out as the most popular. It presses a hard ball into the test material with a known load. Based on EN ISO 6506-1 standards, a typical value from this test is 600 HBW 1/30/15, which means:

  • 600 – Brinell hardness number
  • HB – Hardness symbol for Brinell
  • W – Indenter type, which is tungsten carbide
  • 1 – Diameter of the ball in millimeters.
  • 30 – kilogram-force (applied force)
  • 15 – Duration of the test force in seconds

Rockwell Hardness Test

The Rockwell Hardness Test starts with a light load and then continues with a heavier load at a specific duration with an indenter. The heavier load is removed, leaving only the indent by the light load. The difference in depth between the two loads represents the Rockwell hardness number. A typical value from this test is 60HRBW, which means:

  • 60 – Rockwell hardness value
  • HR – Hardness symbol for Rockwell
  • B – Rockwell scale symbol
  • W – Ball type, which is S for steel and W for tungsten

Vickers Hardness Test

This test uses a square-based pyramid indenter. (A variant of this test, Micro Vickers testing is reserved for a small or limited area. An example is the carburized surface of a gear for testing the surface, core, and carburized thickness.)

The test impresses as a reference for deciding a dispute between hardness results. A typical value from this test is 640HV30/10, which means:

  • 640 – Vickers hardness value
  • HV – Hardness symbol for Vickers
  • 30 – Kilogram force (applied force)
  • 10 – Duration in seconds

Contact Us

Do you want more information on hardness testing methods or how it can affect your choice of fasteners? Then please contact us today at





6 Types of Bolt Failure and How to Prevent It

Should I Use Weld Nuts, Self-Clinching Nuts, or Blind Rivet Nuts?

3 Solutions for Nylon Insert Nut Challenges

September 24, 2021
Read More