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Drill Gun Charts

Self-Drilling Fasteners – Tips and Problem-Solving Solutions

Even the best fasteners are only as good as the operator installing them. Knowing some basics about how to properly use our products – and which tools to install them with – is the best way to ensure you get all the benefits they offer.
At All Points Fasteners, our goal is to give you the tools you need to do your work better. This includes not only quality products, but also the information and training you need to use them correctly. That’s why, when you call us, you’ll speak with a live, knowledgeable operator who can answer your questions right away. It’s also why we’ve prepared this useful free resource – keep reading to learn more about how to select the right product and how to use it properly on the job.

Choosing the Right Fastener for the Job

There are four main questions you need to ask yourself when selecting a fastener:

1.  What types of material am I working with?
Wood, metal, laminates and other materials all require specific types of fastener. Self-tapping screws can be designed with different thread, head and point types for different applications. Visit individual product pages for detailed information about potential uses.

2.  What size screw do I need?
Screw size is another major consideration when choosing a fastener, for obvious reasons – the right screw must be able to anchor securely into the base material. Screws are measured by diameter, threads per inch and length, in that order. As such, a screw with a measurement of #8-15 by 1 inch will have a #8 diameter (0.16 inches), 15 threads per inch and a length of 1 inch.

On the job, there are a few simple ways to ensure your installation goes smoothly. Before starting any project, go over the following five steps, and their related substeps, before you start work.

click chart to enlarge

3What are my weight and strength requirements?
Not all fasteners are created equally – different products are better suited for heavy-duty use. Consider your intended application, whether it’s general construction, HVAC work or manufacturing, and be sure to select a product that’s tough enough to provide secure fastening for the long term.

4. What environmental conditions will they be exposed to? Exposure to wind, rain and salt can all cause a fastener to degrade over time. Ceramic-coated screws offer more reliable corrosion resistance, and as a result are better for outdoor use. When evaluating coated screws, look to their salt spray rating – a higher number, such as 500 or 1,000 hours, is favorable for outdoor applications.

Ultimately, the best way to select an appropriate fastener for your task is to work with a supplier you can trust. At All Points Fasteners, our team is available to answer all your questions and help you choose the best possible product. We even offer free samples, so you can test a potential purchase out in real-world conditions before making a decision.

Staying Out of Trouble at the Jobsite

1.  Verify the Following Equipment Is Being Used for Installation of Self-Drilling Fasteners
Wood, metal, laminates and other materials all require specific types of fastener. Self-tapping screws can be designed with different thread, head and point types for different applications. Visit individual product pages for detailed information about potential uses.

click chart to enlarge

•  Any other corded screw gun with a variable speed of 0-25,000 rpm and a minimum of 6 amps with either a depth-locating nose piece or clutch system.

•  Not using the above recommended screw funs properly will result in the following failures: Overdriven fasteners resulting in leaks, underdriven fasteners resulting in leaks, stripped out fasteners.

•  Under no circumstances may you use and of the following tools: Any impact tool, any cordless tool, drywall screw gun with up to 4,000 rpm.

2Verify the Fastener Is the Correct One for the Job

3.  Verify the Screw Gun Is Powered by No Longer Than a 100-Foot Extension Cord of #14 AWG Minimum
A #14 AWG extension cord will experience approximately 5 to 10 percent power loss for every 100 feet of cord..

4. Verify the Fastener Is Not Drilling Into Any Air Space of Gap Between Joining Metals
•  A standard Self-Drilling TEK Fastener is unable to drill and tap threads at the same time.

•  If the steel materials you are joining together have insulation, drywall, wood or air space between the two pieces of metal, then the fastener will be drilling and threading at the same time. This will result in one of the following failures: Point melting, point breakage, fastener shank breakage.

•  We stock specially threaded fasteners with a gap in the threads for such applications. Please ask for our special thread fasteners for your unique application.

5. Verify the Joining Materials Are Similar Metals
•  Carbon steel Self-Drilling TEK Fasteners are to be used in steel-to-steel applications only.

•  Wood-to-steel Reamer and Ply-Metal fasteners are required for wood-to-steel applications.

•  Dissimilar metal applications (aluminum to steel) require use of specially designed hardened fastener. Drill-Flex fasteners are manufactured specifically for aluminum-to-steel applications.

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