Whether you’re working on a simple installation job or a huge building project, one thing is true: your choice of fixings and fastenings can draw that fine line between success and failure – and that’s especially true when it comes to channel fixings. From bolts and nuts to guidance on sockets and screws, we’ve created a quick guide to channel fixings. Be sure to check our blog out before you buy!
It’s a fact that choosing the right parts is essential if you want to deliver that neat and professional finish your client demands, as well as the secure and sturdy installation mandated by building regulations. From light tasks to heavy-duty jobs, our guide will cover all of the key products you need to succeed.
What is Channel used for in Construction?
Before we get into our in-depth advice, let’s take a step back and answer that key question: what is channel used for in the construction trade?
It’s simple. Channel is used to create trapezes to support containment and pipes, fixing to walls or floors as a quick fixing method for your cables and pipes or building special frames to support your bespoke requirements. Channel is an adjustable framing system that is usually constructed from Pre Galvanised Steel but can be supplied in Hot Dip Galv or 316 grade stainless steel. It can be cut to your specific requirements for speed or supplied in standard 3 & 6mtr lengths.
So – Simple. Quick installation, easy accurate cuts without additional measuring tools, customisable length per application requirements, clean, pre-galvanised finish can easily be painted, high quality steel & rust resistant, Nifty!
Now, let’s take a look at some of the key channel fixings available and how they can make your life easier.
Channel nuts are vital elements of channel support systems, with their grooves along their edges acting as small teeth that can effectively lock onto the channel whenever they are tightened. Simple, effective and designed to perform with channel struts, you’ll need to ask yourself a key question before you purchase: do you need plain channel nuts or spring channel nuts? Check out the information below which should help you decide…
- Plain Channel Nuts: Plain channel nuts are rectangular in shape which can be easily turned to fit against the edges of your channel. These versatile products are highly cost-effective and are ideal for the vast majority of tasks you’ll face in your day-to-day work. Wherever access is easy or wherever assembly could be done in advance, these are the perfect choice (our Plain Channel Nuts come in packs of 100 and are available in 4 sizes; M6, M8, M10 and M12).
- Spring Channel Nuts: Also known as ‘zebedees’ in the construction trade. Whilst Plain Channel Nuts are incredibly versatile, sometimes your task will call for a solution that allows for more precise and easy placement. That’s where Spring Channel Nuts come in! If you’re assembling a channel at a height or if you’re using your hands for other tasks, you’ll need to ensure your channel nuts stay in place under pressure. These nuts don’t need to be held when you’re installing your stud or bolt. The spring does all the hard work for you, saving on time and hassle on those more tedious jobs.
There are lots of channel nuts to choose from, each offering their own unique features and benefits. To view the full range, click here.
Hex Nuts & Bolts
You’ve heard of channel nuts – now it’s time to learn about hex nuts and bolts. Hex nuts are six-sided hexagon nuts which can be used for tightening bolts and screws. Hex bolts, meanwhile, are a type of threaded bolt typically characterised by their six-sided, hexagonal shaped head.
When combined with channel nuts and square plates (we’ll get onto those later), hex bolts and nuts can create a fixing from the channel length from which to secure various installations.
To achieve the best possible results, select a hex bolt or nut which can lock down your plate and provide a connection for attached other accessories. Before you get started, always remember our advice: your hex nut should ALWAYS correspond with the channel nut you’re using!
Once you’ve decided on your nuts and bolts, you’ll want to decide on your next channel fixing essential: square plates. Also known as square plate washers, these handy products are made from pre galvanised steel and have a significantly larger surface area than their round counterparts. Highly corrosion resistant, these specialised washers fit perfectly across open channel struts. As a next step, you can tighten the stud onto the washer and into the channel nut.
There are three options to choose from once you’ve specified your required hole size.
- Standard Square plates: Square plate washers come in a range of hole sizes and materials which will correspond to available thread sizes. The larger thread, the larger the stud that can fit within it. Choose carefully!
- Quick Nuts: Pre assembled square plates and channel nuts connected with a simple plastic clip. The unique 3 in 1 design allows fixings to hold themselves in place with easy adjustment of positioning; giving the installer freedom to mount fittings (even on a vertical axis) with ease.
- Quick Studs: Pre assembled channel nut, washer, stud and hex nuts are a four in one ideal time saving solution. No more need to fiddle around on site making up your channel nut, cut stud, square plate and hex nut. These are ready-to-use pre-assembled for a quick fixing all you need to do is decide the length of and diameter or the stud.
Armafix currently holds a huge selection of square plate washers. To view the full range, click here.