Structural adhesives have taken over thousands of bonding applications once dominated by metal-joining processes such as welding, riveting, staking, and bolting. Here are some reasons why:

  • Preload is critical in riveted or bolted joints because the joint draws its strength from the "traction" between the surfaces. Adhesives need no preload.
  • Tensile loads concentrate on the fasteners or spots where joined surfaces are welded. In an adhesive joint, the entire surface of the joint carries the load.
  • Dynamic joints tend to loosen or fail in fatigue. Adhesive joints have no known fatigue limit.
  • High-strength fasteners are subject to hydrogen embrittlement, a phenomenon that does not apply to adhesive joints.
  • Mechanical fasteners and welding demand mating surfaces conform to within a few thousandths of an inch of each other to be effective. Most adhesives, on the other hand, fill irregularities and gaps.