FDB Panel Fittings and its partner DIRAK have responded to customer feedback on the subject of speedier panel assembly
FDB Panel Fittings and DIRAK say that many of its customers were tired of wasting time dealing with screws, washers, back-nuts and other loose parts when assembling panels: it seemed that they would welcome a simple click fit instead that would do away with all the fiddling about. So the engineering team developed a pioneering technology which they called DIRAK-SNAP-Technology (DST). The resulting system is said to offer easily made high-strength panel connections without the use of any tools, allowing panel builders to assemble equipment simply and securely in greatly reduced time. FDB says that the new system offers precise, quick installation with reduced assembly time and high retention with safe, vibration proof service.
FDB says that because it is simple and reliable, DIRAK-SNAP-Technology ensures proper installation whilst greatly reducing the risk of assembly errors, such as improper torque specs. An audible click confirms proper assembly which is especially helpful especially in applications which are hard to access. Safe and convenient removal is assured with either standard or DIRAK specific tools. According to the company the DST series offers an unlimited variety of possible hardware components with a well-engineered fastening technology that ensures quality assemblies. DIRAK-SNAP-Technology is claimed to combine flexibility, convenience, and security, without the need for tools as the products slide precisely through the panel cut out and snap into position A strong and secure fixing is created with no possibility for loosening or turning.
The design concept is based on the same principle as a slam-latch, similar to those used in a door. It is made up of two wedges with ramped edges, and a spring set into a window within the wedges. These components are then inserted into the hardware and secured with a plastic plug to keep them in place. As the DST component is pressed into the sheet metal cut out, the ramps on the wedges allow them to retract against the spring. When the ramps pass their apex, the spring pressure spreads them back outwards, resulting in the distinctive “SNAP” sound. The “SNAP” component is thereby secured into the sheet metal, resulting in a secure, high-strength connection which naturally tightens.
The DST series includes captive fasteners for light weight sheet materials as well as for heavier gauge materials and heavier duty applications, for example enclosures and cabinets. Conceived as a complete system there is a full range of components to offer a true alternative to the traditional rather fiddly nut and screw approach. By virtue of their design DST products are rattle, vibration and shock resistant, with the ability to withstand heavy strains without compromising high-strength locking. Many DST products are tested according to DIN EN 61373 for vibration and shock and GR-63-CORE, Issue 4 for earthquakes.
In order to enable joining of different types of materials various DST products were devised to accommodate sheet metal, plastic, or wood and to be sufficiently flexible in application to accommodate individual application requirements with reinforcement plates available to increase strength and load capacity. Where electrical continuity is required, safe and reliable electrical earthing is achieved with easily fitted grounding clips. Where additional security is required then components requiring specialized DIRAK tools are available to address cases where vandalism or theft are concerns.