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Effect of Surface Roughness and Joint Material on Torque-Tension Relationship in Threaded Fasteners

[+] Author Affiliations
S. A. Nassar, T. S. Sun

Oakland University, Rochester, MI

Paper No. DETC2005-84116, pp. 613-626; 14 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 4c: 18th Reliability, Stress Analysis, and Failure Prevention Conference
  • Long Beach, California, USA, September 24–28, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4741-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3766-1
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


An experimental study is presented in order to investigate the effect of surface roughness on the torque-tension relationship in bolted assemblies. Three levels of surface roughness are considered for the fastener underhead and the joint surface; namely, low, medium, and high levels of surface roughness. The study is conducted for two joint materials, two fastener classes, and for coarse and fine threads. In this study, the torque-tension data is expressed in terms of the value of the nut factor as well as its scatter. The effect of the number of tightenings on surface roughness and on the torque-tension relationship is investigated as well. The surface roughness is measured before tightening, and after each loosening using a WYKO optical profiling system. An M12 fastener is used in this study. Both fine and coarse threads and fastener material Classes 8.8 and 10.9 for M12 fasteners are used in this study. The torque-tension data is analyzed for both steel and aluminum joints. The safety and reliability of bolted assemblies are mainly determined by the level and the stability of the clamp load provided by the initial tightening of the threaded fastener. The value of initial clamp load, which is achieved by a specific level of tightening torque, is highly sensitive to the friction torque components. This study provides an insight into the reliability of the existing engineering practices for estimating the clamp load level from the tightening torque. Hence, the findings of the study would help enhance the reliability and the safety of bolted assemblies, especially in critical applications.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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