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SPRING 2020

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Distributor's Link Magazine Spring 2020 / Vol 43 No2

12 THE DISTRIBUTOR’S

12 THE DISTRIBUTOR’S LINK Guy Avellon Guy Avellon has been in MRO and Fastener Distribution for over 30 years, in such positions Sales Engineer, Chief Engineer, Manager of Product Marketing, Product Engineering & Quality and Director of Quality & Engineering. He founded GT Technical Consultants where he performs failure analysis, lectures on fastener safety, works for law firms and designs/audits Quality systems. He is a member of SAE, is Vice Chairman of the ASTM F16 Fastener Committee, Chairman of the F16.01 Test Methods Committee and received the ASTM Award of Merit in 2005. Guy can be contacted at 847- 477-5057, Email: ExpertBoltGuy@gmail.com or visit www.BoltFailure.com. WHAT FASTENER DISTRIBUTORS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT FASTENER CONSULTANTS There are times when a second opinion is necessary, especially from an impartial expert because the distributor is caught between the manufacturer and the customer with any complaints. The customer’s needs must be satisfied if he is to remain a customer. A fastener manufacturer is good at making the variety of products they produce; commodity or specialty fasteners. However, their customers may use their products in many different and unknown applications. Some may be of standard use; others may be inappropriate for the size or grade of fastener used. The only time the manufacture is aware of any problems is when the failed fastener is returned to the manufacturer with the presumption that it is faulty. The fastener manufacturer and distributor can only retrieve test documents and quality records to prove the material was not defective and passed their standard testing methods. They can run further tests to prove that the product meets physical specifications and had no material defects, but that is all. The customer needs to be assured the products are of good quality but they also need to know why it failed so future problems may be avoided. An experienced fastener consultant can be an advocate for the manufacturer or distributor and outline the reasons why the part failed and provide guidance to the customer on how to prevent future fasteners from failing. Being able to help in this manner will solidify customer relations for the manufacturer or distributor. What Is Fastener Consulting? A fastener consultant is a person or company that offers advice or an opinion on a variety of issues CONTRIBUTOR ARTICLE involving fasteners; applications of products, metallurgy, manufacturing, heat treatment, quality control, testing, marketing, determining torque values and procedures, installation techniques, assembly methods, patent design or patent infringement advise, chemical coatings, training, failure analysis and providing expert witness testimony. Fastener consultants are few in numbers and fewer, if any, can provide all of the services mentioned above. Therefore, the specific type of expertise you need must be carefully chosen. The same applies to laboratories who are familiar with testing machined specimens, not full-sized fasteners. The ASTM, ISO and SAE requirements for testing externally and internally threaded fasteners are much different than for testing wire or bars. One such laboratory was given a fracture to analyze. They identified the head failure as being caused by hydrogen embrittlement. However, the metallurgists could not understand why there was a fracture line extending outside the embrittlement zone. Had they been trained in the manufacturing processes for fasteners, they would have recognized the quench crack as the primary defect which allowed the hydrogen assisted failure to occur. Product Use And Assembly Distributors get product returns because the heads of the fasteners are snapping off during assembly or not producing the expected clamping force. Users may not always realize that proper torque values must be observed between different fastener grades and surface finishes. This includes stainless steels, alloy steels and plain carbon steels, coated and non-coated as well as different types of lubricants CONTINUED ON PAGE 106

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