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January 25, 2010

It's been two weeks since a devastating earthquake hit Haiti. If you're looking to contribute to a reliable charity to help earthquake victims, check out Charity Navigator which gives ratings and descriptions of the work various charities are doing in Haiti and elsewhere. (Thanks to Motion Systems Design editor Elisabeth Eitel for the link).

In this week's fastening & joining news, take a look at fasteners that extend assembly life, a video about turning a fastener into a seal, and FEA that lets you look at grain-level stresses. And scroll down to check out new products and industry updates.

Please let us know what you think of this newsletter or any of our content by commenting on any article at, posting at our discussion forums, or by email.

Jessica Shapiro


Fasteners that maximize assembly life
Fasteners are usually the smallest, least-expensive components within a machine, but OEMs depend on them to hold entire assemblies together — often for years or decades. And assemblies can be held together in many ways: bolts, rivets, screws, and pins, to name a few.

Assembly techniques generally fall into two broad categories: Methods that take two components or two operational steps to hold parts place; and methods where the components are self-retaining. The challenge for the design engineer is to choose a method that provides the highest quality joint with integrity over time at the lowest manufacturing cost.
Read the full article.



PEM® self-clinching panel fastener assemblies can satisfy a wide range of application requirements including limited space applications, low-profile design, limited access areas, high corrosion resistance, tool or hand actuated, long screw projection for thicker panels, installation into printed circuit boards, and flush mounted.

O-rings upgrade fasteners
This brief tutorial video demonstrates how embedded O-Ring technology enables a standard stainless-steel fastener to become a high-pressure self-sealing fastener that will seal up to 20,000 psi (internal/external) against gas or liquid seepage.
See the video.

Modeling grain-level stresses in metals
Finite element analysis has become a standard tool for ensuring the structural integrity of components such as turbine blades and diesel engines. So why do auto companies pay huge royalties and the largest U.S. companies spend about $30 billion a year on warranties? Because, until now, FEA didn't have a way to factor in how the material itself reacts to stress forces and how reactions evolve and change over time.

Vextec Corp. addresses this shortcoming with Virtual Life Management. The service links to FE structural analysis packages and translates global stresses down to a metal’s grain level.
Read the full article.


New Products

Alignment dowels
Series GD100 Ground Hollow Dowels are manufactured from strip steel, then OD ground to replace Ground Solid Dowels in alignment applications. The dowels weigh 50% less and cost 30% less than their solid counterparts.

The parts permit alignment to within 20 µm, have 8-µm surface finish, and come in Ø8, Ø10, Ø12 and Ø16mm standard diameters. Special sizes, case hardening, and the use heat-treated, high-carbon steel are available on request.
Spirol International Corp.

Quick-disconnect couplings
FitQuik connectors are quick disconnect couplings with hose barbs and thread forms for a secure fit. The connectors come in black and white nylon and animal-free, natural polypropylene. Fitting styles include luers, tube-to-tube, thread-to-tube, blood pressure fittings, and with NPT or 10-32 threads.
Colder Products Co.

High-strength studs
Type HFG8 (unified) and Type HF109 (metric) heat-treated carbon-alloy steel clinch studs install permanently in carbon-steel or HSLA-steel sheets as thin as 0.040 in. They studs have tensile strengths of at least 150 ksi. Large-diameter heads transmit less compressive stress to panels.

The studs come in in thread sizes up to 5/16-18 and in lengths up to 1 in. Longer lengths can be specially ordered. Appropriate sizes meet SAE J429 and ISO 898-1/SAE J1199 specifications, and all the studs are RoHS compliant.

Industry Update

World's largest linear friction welding machine
Moog and Thompson Friction Welding announced the development of the E100, a linear-friction-welding machine capable of welding 15 in2. The surface area is a nearly twice as much as previously achieved, and the machine breaks the record of weld forge load at 100 tonnes.

Linear friction welding, sometimes known as solid-base additive manufacture, allows the manufacture of complex shapes without wasting excess material by machining from solid block, casting, or forging. Manufactured parts are close to the final shape so that very little final machining is required to produce a fully functional component.

Thompson manufactured the E100 in the United Kingdom and partnered with Moog for hydraulic, servo, control, and manufacturing system design.
For more information, contact Moog or Thompson.

New conference programs at fastener show
The management of the National Industrial Fastener Show/East announced two new educational programs that will be offered by the Fastener Training Institute at the show, May 25-26, 2010 in Columbus, Ohio. The half-day seminars are titled “Print Reading for Fastener Industry Professionals” and “Solid Modeling and Computer Aided Design for Fasteners and Assembly Components”. Each seminar costs $199/person for either seminar or $350/person for both seminars and lunch.

Show management expects to have around 100 exhibitor booths at the show. A current list of exhibiting companies and a show floor plan can be viewed at

Featured Links

PennEngineering, founded in 1942, provides fastener design and product assembly solutions worldwide for diverse industries, including electronics, computer, data/telecom, medical, automotive, marine, aircraft, and general manufacturing.

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Contact Information
Editorial questions:   Jessica Shapiro 216-931-9850
Advertising/sponsorship opportunities:   Virginia Goulding 216-931-9893

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