Finding an engineering solution 14 July 2016

By Andy Giddings, technical manager, Staytite Ltd

You may ask yourself what is the main goal in finding an engineering solution? The desired results may vary but cost is usually the largest driving factor. But how can this be achieved without compromising on quality? At Staytite Ltd we have the answers…
When we are looking for customer savings we often provide an engineered solution rather than just the lowest cost product. We offer solutions that give engineered costs savings i.e. assembly, quality or process cost savings. It can vary depending on the individual customer’s needs – we evaluate the total assembled cost, which could include a reduction of part numbers; a change in plating finishes; or rationalisation of parts. These are all different tools to try and save the customer time and money.
Once we know the purpose of the customer’s application we can advise on the best fastener to suit. We prefer to support customers with standard parts, but in most cases customers have their own specific requirements they need to meet. As experts in our field we can support that with our experience of overcoming many issues such as corrosion resistance, galling and end of life Cr6/Cr3 issues.
Ensuring we can offer the customer the most up to date technology is important. A fastener isn’t always the best solution and we’ve expanded the breadth of products we supply to support this. With an ever increasing range of over 6,000 part numbers, we estimate that at least 70% of these are non standard parts that are customer bespoke – designed to improve the quality and integrity of the customer’s application. Whilst the vast majority are still fastener-based products we also supply tapes, glues, plastic plugs and all manner of fixings the customer requires.
In our experience as fastener suppliers we find that customers rarely consult about fixing solutions at the initiation of a new design. Our typical customer tends to think of fasteners last because they are the lowest value item and not the customer’s area of expertise. Manufacturers are more focused on their core competence, whether it is an electric drive or the internal workings of the hydraulics unit of a design, and not necessarily the complete assembly – which might use a complex and vast range of fasteners, clips, springs, plates and pressings. This is where Staytite can come in and help. We can add value by sharing our knowledge to support better assembled designs, which might include fastening technology the customer is not aware of – enabling us to provide the most cost-effective tailored solution.
This strategy is not restricted to only new designs. We are also able to take this approach to supporting customers on re-evaluating current designs. We often get involved in tear down projects to look at cost of assembly in partnership with our customers.
Typical applications to support these initiatives incorporate a reduction of fasteners in assembly. In fact part count reduction is something we have achieved with many of our customers. Rationalisation of fasteners and reducing part count helps drive out cost as it increases the volume of high running parts and eliminates more costly low volume items. Also, we can offer improved assembly solutions using thread forming fixings to help increase production rates and simplify parent part design.
Although assembly design strives to remove fixings with snap-fit plastic mouldings or similar parts, we have never found a customer that has completely eliminated fasteners. We tend to end up changing designs or supporting design changes from a development stage rather that an initial design phase for that reason.
Recent successes in this area have achieved customer cost benefits of GB £100,000+ and savings in assembly times amounting to hundreds of hours per annum.
Many of our engineered solutions are a result of working in partnership with our customers. Once we’ve shown our worth to the customer then we can expand what we sell.
So we develop ideas for our customers where we perceive there to be an engineering gain. Those are easy wins, which are beneficial to both parties and show how valuable these partnerships are to the ethos at Staytite of ‘better engineered solutions’.
We provide our fastenings and engineering solutions to a range of industries. We look forward to continuing our support for infrastructure projects, including rail with products such as our vibration and loosening resistant Hardlock, all the way through to supplying small electronics fastening components using time saving products such as our encapsulated washer SEMS ranges.
Whatever the challenges are, we are ready to tackle them, applying what we have learnt across a broad spectrum of industries

Content Director

Will Lowry Content Director t: +44 (0) 1727 743 888


Will joined Fastener + Fixing Magazine in 2007 and over the last 15 years has experienced every facet of the fastener sector - interviewing key figures within the industry and visiting leading companies and exhibitions around the globe.

Will manages the content strategy across all platforms and is the guardian for the high editorial standards that the Magazine is renowned.