Constructing a bridge is a project that needs to be handled with a lot of care, since doing it wrong can have numerous consequences later on. One of the issues you will need to handle is how to pick the right fasteners for the job. If you go shopping for fasteners, you will find that there is a large variety you can pick from, and this in turn means that you need to be very careful with the choices that you make.
Picking them at random is out of the question, since different types of fasteners are meant to be used in different scenarios. For instance, you can’t substitute Hastelloy C276 hex tap bolts with Grade 8 steel hex lag bolts, mostly since they have very different properties. Some of the things that influence the types of bolts you can get for bridge construction include:
The size of the bridge
The size of the bridge has a bearing on a large number of the physical attributes of the bridge. For instance, the larger it is, the heavier it will be. This means that you will need bolts that can withstand a lot of tension so that it does not end up collapsing.
The role of the bolts
You need to figure out whether the bolts will be under tension or compression. This has a direct influence on the types of bolts you can get, and is therefore something that you can’t afford to neglect. Using the wrong types of bolts in such a setting can be catastrophic. For instance, using bolts with very good tension characteristics in an area with very high compression might lead to collapse.
The environmental condition
Where will the bridge be located? Is it in an area such as a desert, where the differences in temperature between day and night are very large, which means that you need bolts that do not expand and contract much? Or is it over a salty water body, in which case it would be necessary to get fasteners that are resistant to corrosion? Figuring this out will go a long way in helping you make the right decision in as far as fasteners are concerned.
The utility of the bridge
The way in which the bridge is going to be used will determine a lot in terms of what fasteners to use. For instance, if you are constructing a simple footbridge, you can expect that it will not have to bear a lot of weight, and this means that you may not need to spend a lot of money on fasteners that are meant for this. If it’s to be used by loaded trucks, on the other hand, this would be a primary concern.
Remember, the goal of building the bridge is to get the best results while spending the minimum amount of money possible. By considering the above, you will avoid wasting money on the wrong types of fasteners. By thinking about the above, you will be in a better position to then consult a fastener vendor for the right products for the project.
Started my career in the fastener world in 1969 at, Parker Kalon Corp. a NJ based screw manufacturer located in Clifton, NJ working in inventory control, scheduling secondary production and concluding there in purchasing. In 1971 I accepted a sales position at Star Stainless Screw Co., Totowa, NJ working in inside sales and later as an outside salesman, having a successful career at Star I had the desire with a friend to start our own fastener distribution company in 1980 named: Divspec, Kenilworth, NJ. This was a successful adventure but ended in 1985 with me starting Melfast in August 1985 and have stayed competitive and successful to date. Melfast serves the OEM market with approximately 400 accounts nationally.