If you happened to miss the Fastener Fair nearest to you this year because of pandemic restriction or otherwise, you were in luck. The Fair organizers launched their first virtual marketplace and digital business platform this week, with the aim of unifying the global fastener industry: Fastener Fair CONNECT.
“For the first time, we merged the Fastener Fairs worldwide to deliver our customers an all-inclusive experience,” explained Liljana Goszdziewski prior to the event. She is the portfolio director of the European Fastener Fairs at event organizer, Mack-Brooks Exhibitions.
Typically, the Fair is an in-person exhibition, well-known for uniting the full fastener supply chain. Pre-pandemic, there were eight established events around the world, including in Italy, France, Germany, India (in Mumbai and New Delhi), Turkey, Mexico, and the United States.
Fastener Fair USA successfully took place at Cleveland, Ohio’s Huntington Convention Center last week, November 8th to 10th. However, that was not the case for every show this year and the organizers decided to do something about it.
Fastener Fair USA, Italy, Stuttgart (Germany), Mexico, and India joined forces to provide a unique networking event, November 17th and 18th.
“Fastener Fair CONNECT digitally unites five solid regional markets for the fastener and fixing industry, providing the whole supply chain with a comprehensive display for innovations and unparalleled networking opportunities with the global fastener and fixing community,” said Goszdziewski.
Fastener Fair CONNECT included an easy-to-navigate online platform with interactive networking opportunities (you could “match,” meet, or simply message attendees), expert webinars, and a marketplace where exhibitors could showcase their latest products and services.
A few examples…
Nord-Lock Group, a global provider in bolted solutions, highlighted its X-series washers. These washers combine Nord-Lock wedge-locking technology with an innovative spring effect, making it impossible for unintentionally loosening because of the wedge created underneath the bolt head and nut.
The X-series washers secure bolted joints, even when exposed to severe vibration and dynamic loads and offer the highest corrosion resistance in the market — they’re tested to at least 1,000 hours in the Neutral Salt Spray Test.
Global manufacturer, SPIROL, showcased several of its products, including its solid pins, slotted and coiled spring pins, spacers, disc springs, compression limiters, and others. Interestingly, SPIROL invented the coiled spring pin and its production technology in 1948, which has proven to be the most versatile spring pin in the industry.
According to SPIROL, its coiled pins are shock-absorbing elements that are integral, active components of a total assembly, which serve as alternatives to bolts, rivets, dowels, welding, adhesives, and other joining methods. Along with product information, the Fastener Fair CONNECT platform also allowed for videos. Here’s a link to a SIROL webinar on its coiled spring pins.
Rotor Clip featured several types of retaining rings that it manufactures, including its constant section retaining rings. They offer high value for applications with low assembly clearances. The space and cost savings are because these rings can forgo assembly and disassembly lugs, requiring no special tooling for installation or removal.
They’re also manufactured with the same width throughout their circumference, providing only three points of contact with the groove in housings or shafts.
You can learn more about retaining rings and the different options available in this article.
Fastener Fair CONNECT also offered live and on-demand presentations — a useful feature for those in different time zones or simply for webinar re-watching. Security seemed to prevail as a significant theme.
The team at Hafren Fasteners presented an insightful discussion about the significance of safeguarding against theft, vandalism, and tampering as an essential element to any good product design. This is where security fasteners prove useful. They offer an unconventional drive, making tampering with the screw more challenging, if not impossible without the matching driver.
According to REYHER’s webinar, this counter nut offers several advantages over conventional hexagon nuts, such as reduced space requirements, flow resistance, and a lower risk of injury during installation. Its unique shape means the CONU fits into the countersink without any protrusion.
The result: an almost completely flat surface.
Thanks to its wedge effect, CONU requires no additional securing elements, prevents self-loosening, and is easy to install without counter tools — even one-handed. At market launch, CONU is available in two different versions in dimensions M 6 to M 16. This means that CONU can be used with screws of a stiffness grade 8.8 and 10.9. You can learn more about the CONU counter nut here.
NISSEI, a Japanese manufacturer, promises “the most powerful lock bolt” with its PLB v2 — explaining in its presentation that many components prevent loosening by relying on friction, but that the friction generated at the time of fastening is unstable. However, the PLB v2 prevents loosening, thanks to mechanical interference.
Check out this page with a video link to learn how to install the PLB v2 and how it ensures high anti-loosening performance. (NISSEI is also looking for applicants to test its lock bolt. Email: [email protected]).
Overall, Fastener Fair CONNECT offered a unique opportunity to learn and connect remotely. Although there was an international presence, it seemed more highly focused on the European and UK fastener communities. But it was certainly worthwhile to attend and learn about the latest developments in the global fastener and fixings industry. Attendees can also access the on-demand presentations until early December.
The “matchmaking” system also combined information provided during registration to connect participants by pairing contacts with compatible profiles — and, hopefully, connecting the industry in the way it hasn’t before.
To learn more about the history of the Fastener Fairs, read this profile here.
The next in-person, Fastener Fair USA is scheduled for May 17th to 19th, 2022 at the TCF Center in Detroit, Michigan. We hope to see you there!
Final thoughts… direct from Fastener Fair CONNECT:
“We are delighted to have hosted Fastener Fair CONNECT, the digital event dedicated to the fastener and fixing community. Due to the live events postponements last year, we decided to introduce this event format to offer the industry globally an occasion to get together, keep connected, conduct business, and learn from educational content to keep the momentum while waiting for the live event to resume after the pandemic,” shared Stephanie Cerri, event manager for Fastener Fair Stuttgart, Fastener Fair Italy, and Fastener Fair CONNECT
“We believe we delivered the industry with an excellent platform to support fastener and fixing professionals in making valuable connections and running business meetings directly on the portal,” added Cerri. “The digital event featured exhibiting companies, covering a broad spectrum of materials, finished products, technologies, and equipment from fastener suppliers. Fastener Fair CONNECT also had a comprehensive webinar program with sessions discussing the latest fasteners and fixings technology trends and policies, which saw a good level of engagement. The audience had the opportunity to listen to industry experts covering the sector’s hot topics and interact with the speakers during the Q&A sessions. We are now looking forward to meeting the industry face-to-face next year at Fastener Fair Italy in Milan and Fastener Fair Stuttgart in Germany in 2023.”