Advances in technology which lead to better design, improved productivity and new market opportunities are equally beneficial for the fastener manufacturer and customers – a great benefit to us all
Pictured: Plastic fasteners
The change in fastener technology has benefitted the manufacturer
Millions, if not billions of fasteners are produced and sold worldwide every day. Designed in response to the constantly evolving needs of manufacturers, these integral components to our cars, fridges, computers and telephones are the lynchpins of our modern existence, without which our 21st Century lives would, literally, fall apart.
Advances in product technology and design, combined with economic and even environmental factors, mean that the successful fastener manufacturer and supplier has to be nimble enough to adapt its range constantly to manage its customers' needs, and stay ahead of competitors.
TR has been at the forefront of the industry since it was founded and today, regularly supplies over 5,000 companies with components, each with specific needs in both product and quality.
In recent years one major development in manufacturing industry has been the trend for using fewer, and lighter, materials. Already a market leader with our extensive range of metal fasteners and fixings, TR has recently launched a range of plastic fasteners, which looks set to become a core product range in its portfolio.
Where a fastener is needed to be versatile, light and yet strong, plastic is often the optimal solution. For example within the automotive sector the latest trend is for 'lightweighting' – a lighter car uses less fuel, is more economic and more environmentally friendly. TR recently supplied plastic fasteners to the UK car manufacturer Ariel Motors' Atom sports car, the objective to take weight out of the structure to enhance its world-famous performance.
The Atom is just one example of how we are currently approaching our clients and asking to work with them to understand their processes and see if we can use our engineering skills to improve production benefit. Plastic fasteners have the advantage of being multi-functional – why use a nut, bolt and a washer, when you could use a two-piece plastic rivet that takes less time to apply.That is where the innovation is.
Back in May 2011, an electric motorcycle (photo) designed and built by Phil Edwards set the UK record for electric motorcycle drag racing. As is the nature of motorsport the record was lost so Phil simply had to respond; the lure of record-breaking proving irresistible.
What's the plan?....a more ambitious target – building the quickest electric motorcycle in the world. That's going to need a motorbike with 1,000hp of clean energy, accelerating to 60mph in under one second, 200mph in just four seconds, and on to 225mph… in just a quarter of a mile.
Welcome to this great British project that's designed to showcase UK talent and inspire the next generation of engineers and scientists. TR is proud to be one of the support sponsors.
Pictured: Rivet Bush
Pictured: Binx Nut
Innovation is all in a day's work for TR's team of technical specialists with communication between customer and TR key to success – we regularly undertake market research and invest considerable time and resources in the development of new products as a result. Our Application Engineers regularly work alongside product designer and developers to provide technical assistance on materials and product development – a bespoke service for those who request it.
TR's range of Hank Rivet Bushes, Hank Self Clinch, Blind Rivets, Euro Rivet Bushes, Swage Nuts, Weld Nuts and K-Series products all offer threads in a variety of materials where the sheet is too thin to be tapped by conventional methods. This has ensured that TR has positioned itself as a market leader in the sheet metal fastener sector with its own-range of fasteners. As metals became lighter and thinner during the 1990s we introduced the TR Hank Clinch Fastening range which now currently comprises 750 different components and continues to expand to meet commercially viable markets and customer needs in numerous industry sectors, including medical equipment, marine, automotive, white goods, telecommunications, electronics and general engineering.
Binx Nuts range is another exclusive fastening to TR's product portfolio. Originally designed in the 1960s, the Binx nut, unaffected by temperature fluctuations, has been refined and developed by TR Fastenings to an all-metal, self-locking nut suitable for use in various industry sectors and remains the first choice for many, especially where vibration resistance is a priority such as in high-end specialist engineering industry sectors.
Meanwhile, further investment in product development for the thermoset and thermoplastic industries has enabled TR to expand its screws for plastics range with the introduction of the Plas-Fix 45 screw.
Pictured: TR has been manufacturing the genuine Hank Rivet Bush for 30 years and the new Euro RivetBush offers a competitive product for the European market
In recent years Trifast has invested in a number of manufacturing licences.
Read more on our 2016 Annual Report