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What is Torque Control?

Torque Control and Related Terms

Torque is the force applied to something to make it spin (rotate) in machinery. Torque in relation to fasteners is the resistance faced when installing a fastener. Toque control then is simply controlling the amount of torque placed on a fastener without damaging it.

Prevailing Torque Measure of a screw or nuts frictional resistance to rotation.
Prevailing “Off” Torque Highest back-off torque on a torque wrench on the first rotation of a screw or nut upon removal.
Installation Torque The initial torque amount used to install a fastener before Pre-load.
Breakaway Torque The minimum torque required to start rotation into a nut (in the case of a bolt) or into a pre-tapped hole (in case of a screw).
Breakloose Torque Minimal torque required to begin the disassembly of a fastener assembly.
Seating Torque The torque required to produce pressure onto the installation material causing compression by the fastener.

Torque Wrenches are one of the easiest ways to ensure proper torque is met. Simply set the wrench’s torque and then when the maximum is reached the clutch will slip. This slip means the wrench stops putting any more torque on the fastener and it has reached its optimal torque.

Fastener Mechanical Properties

What Are Fastener Mechanical Properties?

Fasteners are arguably the most commonly used connecting items. You can find them anywhere you look. They hold your house, toys, car and just about everything else together.

When dealing with the many kinds of fasteners available, it is critical to deal with all of the components of fasteners. But just what is tensile strength? What about shear load? Join us as we dive deep into understanding fastener properties and discover what these industry terms mean.

Tensile Strength Refers to the maximum load under tension a fastener can handle before being compromised.
Tensile Load Refers to the maximum load (pressure in tension) exterted by the installation material against the fastener before it will compromise.
Ultimate Tensile Stress Refers to the estimated minimum where a fastener will compromise its integrity.
Elongation Refers to the stretching and deformation that will occur to a fastener caused by a load exceeding its capacity.
ProofLoad A test load a fastener MUST be able to hold without causing any compromise in its integrity. Considered the maximum safe load of a fastener.
Pre-Load One of the most important measures in the industry. Refers to the axial load placed on a fastener. Pre-load is considered to be 75% if the proofload.
Shear Load The load a fastener can handle when two materials are pushing against each other onto the fastener. This will vary if the load is pressing against a fasteners shoulder versus it’s threading.
Torsional Strength Maximum torque a fastener can handle before the threading becomes warped or destroyed.
Yield Strength Refers to the load a fastener can handle before begining to stretch.
Yield Point The definitive point a fastener can no longer handle the load before stretching.
Fatigue Strength Fasteners expand and contract many times due to elemental stresses. Fatigue strength is the maximum number of times this can occur in a cycle before some critical component of the fastener becomes compromised.
Creep Strength Refers to a fastener that has heated up and elongated due to the load under pressure and the heat.
Hardness Refers to a fasteners ability to scratch, mar or otherwise damage another material without itself being damaged.

Now that you know what these terms mean, you can begin using them to help you find the appropriate fasteners for your job.

*Not all fasteners are made equal. Always follow the specifications from where you buy your fasteners to get the best results.

How To Drill A Countersunk Spade Bit Pilot Hole

Drilling a Countersunk Pilot Hole In

Woodspade bits for wood

Today we are going to learn how to make a countersunk pilot hole in wood from our fastener expert, Bob. He told us that he has seen many people attempt to drill this hole and approach it the wrong way. Most people start the same way the would if they were using a standard drill bit. First the pilot hole, then the countersink. This however, does not work with spade bits due to the way the drill bit is engineered.

A countersunk hole is where a secondary larger hole is cut on top of the first hole so that the head of the nut or bolt can sit inside of the material and not be exposed. There are many applications for these types of holes and you probably see them around quite often without even realizing it. Fasteners may be countersunk in furniture, buildings, banisters, decks, etc.

Spade Bits have a triangular tip that digs into the wood before the outer edges of the bit do. This not only acts as a guide for the rest of the bit but as a stabilizing factor as well. Bob told us that if we drill the pilot hole first we would have a hard time drilling the countersunk area and would damage the wood.

He set out to give us an example by showing us the proper way to install a lag screw into some wood.drilling a countersunk hole - spade bit



The first step when drilling a countersunk hole with a spade bit was to start with the countersink itself. This will allow both the larger spade bit (countersink) and the smaller (pilot hole) to grip the material and prevent “wobbling”.

drilling a pilot hole with a spade bit

So first we drilled the countersunk hole and then we set about drilling the pilot hole inside of the countersunk hole. It was a surprisingly easy task.

We tested this again by doing the process backwards and determined that what our fastener expert had said was true. Not only was it difficult to drill the holes but there was some significant chipping to the surface of the wood. While we were able to drill the hole the result was an unprofessional mess.

Our fastener expert also chose a very large spade bit for the countersink which he later explained was to allow breathing room for the socket that he would use to install the lag screw. Otherwise, it will be difficult to install without the socket getting caught up in the hole.

installing a lag screw with a socket wrench

The Result

using blue tape to prevent chipping in wood during drilling

After comparing the two holes, we determined that the hole we drilled first (properly) was much better. The edges were smoother, barely any chipping on the outside of the wood, everything was in good shape. The second hole was abysmal. With chewed up and chipped edges from the bit bouncing around. Our fastener expert said we can do even better. Pulling out a roll of his trusty blue painters tape, he laid it over the wood and drilled the countersunk pilot hole again. This time there were virtually no chips in the wood at all. The tape re-enforced the edges of the hole being drilled to prevent chipping.

Below are the three drilled holes and the results:

  1. Hole 1 – Left – Was done properly with no tape. Light chipping occurred around the edges but was still a fairly clean.
  2. Hole 2 – Middle – This hole had the pilot hole driven first and as a result has heavy chipping around the external edges. The inside edges also weren’t smooth from so much bouncing around.
  3. Hole 3 – Right – Done by first covering with blue tape, then drilling the countersunk hole and then the pilot hole, this hole is the cleanest of all three with virtually no chipping and clean sides.
    comparison of various ways of drilling countersunk pilot holes with spade bits

How To Use An Auger Drill Bit

Drill Bits for WoodAuger Drill Bits

Auger drill bits are bits used to drill holes into wood. They are commonly used for boring holes into bulkheads and general timber applications. These drill bits come with a spiral drill bit head which, when drilling, is designed to pull the bit into the wood so you do not have to apply excessive pressure.

Lets Begin

Today we wanted to show you how an auger drill bit works. Most of these drill bits have a long stem on the end which attaches to the drill chuck. Then the

Begin Drillingtip of the bit can start “biting” into the wood and pulling the rest of the bit into it. Before beginning your drilling application, you may want to put a piece of painters tape over the hole you plan on drilling into. Auger bits may chip the wood they are drilling into resulting in an unclean look. Painters tape should deter this from happening.

Auger bits are also designed to be run very slowly and with minimal pressure. Remember, the tip of an auger bit will help to pull it into the wood so you don’t need to apply a massive amount of pressure. We recommend about 600 rpm when drilling.

What About Nails?

Auger bits are incredibly durable andDrilling through a deck screw have the strength and cutting power to drill through nails and screws. It is important to maintain a slow speed and let the bit do the work. Once through the nail just continue on and finish the hole you are drilling.

The completed hole

Fasten Meaning?

Fasten Meaning

Fasteners are used in almost every application you can think of. From the tallest building in New York City to the smart phone in your pocket. Everything is held together with fasteners and that begs the question: “What does fastening mean?”

Well luckily the answer is quite simple. Fastening means to close, lock, hold or secure something. You can fasten your shoe laces. Fasten a seat belt, even fasten a watch. From an industry standpoint, all of these items that are used to hold materials together have become known as fasteners.

What Are Fasteners?

Fasteners are tools designed to behave a certain way in a material making them the ideal tool for the job. Wood screws are used to hold two pieces of wood together, Tapcon screws can cut their own threads into concrete, and sheet metal screws have sharp cutting threads that slice through thin metal with ease.

Who Uses Fasteners?

Each of these fasteners serves a specific purpose and is designed to do one thing very well. Fasten materials together. From the person who is using a screwdriver to change their remote batteries to the industrial construction crew building skyscrapers, we all come into contact with fasteners in our daily lives. Everyone uses fasteners and each has a purpose. To better understand how fasteners work and their individual purposes please check out our Fasteners 101 content pages designed specifically to help educate you on the tools you need before working on a project.

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