Blind Bolts have been around for 8 years, and in that time they have radically shifted the possibilities open to civil engineering projects all over the world.
Architects, builders and designers can now work in the knowledge that virtually any part of a structure can be accessible to working on, and that any components can be safely attached. Examples of this flexibility include being able to repair the roof of a sports stadium without having to shut the facility down, working on the underside of a bridge without erecting scaffolding which would disrupt the flow of traffic over that bridge and completing construction projects of virtually any kind on time and under budget.
Projects of this kind can be completed quickly and easily because Blind Bolts provide an affordable, efficient fixing system. The application process is as simple as drill, rotate and tighten, and no oversized holes are required, so Blind Bolts offer an easy, stable and predictable alternative to welding.
The flexibility of Blind Bolts greatly expands the range of load bearing structures and connections which can be created, and everyone from private concerns to government projects are happy to take advantage of them.
Blind Bolts make it possible to fit larger beams and girders together quickly, without having to use specialist equipment. This makes them the ideal solution for large scale construction projects, keeping disruption to a minimum and holding down costs across the board. In addition to this, Blind Bolts make it possible for parts of a structure which would previously have required the use of scaffolding - or would be completely inaccessible – to be reached and worked on quickly and simply. Blind Bolts offer the ideal solution for projects taking place in public buildings such as transport hubs, shopping centres and sports stadiums, because they allow construction and repair work to take place while keeping the disruption for clients, service users and the general public to an absolute minimum.
The advantages offered by Blind Bolts are particularly apparent when work has to be carried out in problematic environments. This might mean tackling part of a structure – such as the underside of a bridge span – which is difficult to access, or it could be working during very bad weather conditions. Working in or close to the sea offers a very particular set of challenges, whether handling marina construction or engaging in actual shipbuilding.
Working in a marine environment means having to cope with the extremely corrosive nature of sea water itself. Blind Bolt fasteners, from thin wall to heavy duty bolts, are constructed from 316 grade (A4) stainless steel bolts, which means they can be used in corrosive environments without any impact on the robust nature of the fastening provided.
Besides the sea water itself, working in a marine environment means having to cope with unpredictable weather conditions. Poor weather conditions can impact on even the most carefully planned project, but the fact that Blind Bolts can be used extremely quickly means that any brief spells of good weather can be utilised in full.
The repair and maintenance of ships themselves has to be carried out safely, effectively and often very quickly. The fact that Blind Bolts can be applied without using specialised tools or drilling oversized holes means they are the perfect solution for working in the kind of challenging environment in which ships are often repaired or constructed. Once Blind Bolts have been used for a repair or construction job, they are more than capable of dealing with everything that the sea might throw at them.
Many of the world’s largest and most famous train stations were initially constructed during the Victorian era. This throws up highly specific challenges when tasks such as carrying out repairs or adding to the original structure have to be carried out. The work which is done not only has to be entirely safe and fit for purpose, it also needs to be carried out in a way which is sympathetic to the existing structure.
Even when the station itself is a more modern structure, the work in question has to be carried out with only the minimum of disruption. It is vital to the smooth running of the transport system that commuters don’t face disruption to their travel plans. Contractors who use Blind Bolts are able to work quickly without resorting to disruptive methods such as welding or using specialist tools, and they will also be able to access hard to reach parts of the structure without having to put up scaffolding.
Many large scale refurbishment projects in the rail sector make use of Blind Bolts, since they enable the work to be carried out without causing large scale disruption to the travelling public.
Its status as a high performance fixing solution also means that it is the certified choice for installing AWS (automatic warning system) units onto steel sleepers.
AWS units have played a central role in the safety provision of the mainline UK rail network since the 50s, enabling drivers to gauge the status of the signals on the line up ahead of them. It is imperative to passenger safety that these units are fitted in a manner which is convenient and reliable, and signal and track engineers came to the conclusion that Blind Bolt represented the ideal solution.
A large part of the reason for this is the fact that Blind Bolts enable AWS units to be fitted to steel sleepers between rails without having to be welded into place. This means that they combine simplicity with convenience, as well as being hard-wearing and durable enough to ensure that the AWS units stay fixed in place. This has led to Blind Bolts being used for AWS systems across the UK.
Blind Bolts are also used in the maintenance of rolling stock throughout the rail network by providers like London Underground, as well as being used by track component manufacturers and in vintage steam engine maintenance.
Construction projects which rely on foundations built using girders and beams will benefit hugely from the use of Blind Bolts.
The fact that they don’t require the use of specialist equipment or the need to drill oversized holes means that they can be used quickly and easily by builders who would previously have had to make use of welding techniques. Welding of this kind is slower and more disruptive – which means that it drives up prices – and also fails to offer the kind of consistently good results provided by Blind Bolts. Blind Bolts can also often be applied in places which are difficult to access without the need for scaffolding, cutting the time which has to be spent delivering a project, therefor meeting deadlines and cutting costs.
Some construction jobs are impossible to carry out without the use of scaffolding. By using Blind Bolts, contractors are able to install large scale scaffolding without disrupting access to the building being worked on. This is especially appropriate when working on buildings which rely on service users and employees gaining access, such as airports, hospitals and shopping centres.
In most cases, Blind Bolts attach scaffolding to the steel skeletons of buildings which are new build commercial or industrial units. Because no welding is required and the anchor system employed has a quick release mechanism, the fabric of the building is completely safe and the installation itself is quick and easy.
Teams carrying out repair or construction work on bridges face two major challenges. When construction is being carried out, the sections of the bridge which need bolting, such as the underside, are often difficult to access. When it comes to repairs, the issue of working conditions is made even more problematic by the fact that members of the public may still have to have access. This often means that contractors have to work during the night, when the weather conditions and darkness could have a major impact. Taking all of this into account, the use of Blind Bolts means that delivery will be quicker and so costs are kept lower.
Renewable Energy Fastening Solutions
Renewable energy solutions are likely to become increasingly important as concerns about the environment continue to mount. Projects such as wind farms and tidal energy involve moving parts in very difficult environments, and call for large scale construction and regular maintenance.
Blind Bolts are the perfect answer in cases such as this, as they can fasten in a manner which is versatile, simple and extremely effective. Repairs in the marine environment of a tidal barrage, or carried out at height on a wind turbine, have to be done quickly and easily, and the ‘drill, rotate and tighten’ method of fixing Blind Bolts increases the speed of operations and helps to maintain the safety of the engineers involved. In a sector which deals with the maintenance of extremely vital power supplies, Blind Bolts are likely to have a huge role to play.