A leader in aluminum extruded roof mounted systems approached Hynes Industries with a new design for both a steel roof mount and steel ground mount system. Along with the steel structures, this company also needed to develop all-new steel clips, clamps, fasteners, tubes, and other assembly items that would now all be made from steel instead of aluminum. Although their engineers were experts in aluminum parts, they were not as well versed on the steel side.
Our engineers began working with them to perfect the new cross sections they considered building. Many changes were made by Hynes engineers in the cross section shapes, steel grades, galvanized coatings, holes and hole patterns, tolerances, fasteners, packaging methods, and the process of fastening two sections together.
How to fasten two box channels?
One of the most important problems the customer faced was how to securely fasten two box channels back to back to form a virtual I beam without disturbing the G-90 pre-galvanized finish. There were six different widths with the largest one being 9.8 inches wide and sections as long as 50 feet. This meant that when put back to back, the resulting beam could weigh as much as 400 pounds. These beams would be outdoors and under constant stress for a minimum guaranteed period of 25 years, so how we locked them together would be critical.
The customer suggested welding them together, then spraying the welded area. Riveting was also proposed. When Hynes engineers saw the application and potential volumes that needed to be produced, it realized that both approaches would not be viable.
Tog-L-Locking gets it done
Hynes used its prior knowledge of joining to recommend “Tog-L-Locking” the sections together. With Tog-L-Locking, there would be no disruption of the galvanized material. The process is quick, very strong, and durable. Plus no foreign fasteners need to be purchased.
The dies for Tog-L-Locking were made, and after only a few months the volume increased to the point where the customer wanted Hynes to increase the output by six times. So, we needed to speed up the Tog-L-Lock process six-fold. To accomplish this, Hynes and Samco Solar worked together to develop a completely automated Tog-L-Lock system that takes the parts off the mill, puts them back to back, Tog-L-Locks them together, and stacks them on a skid for packaging -- all without being touched.
Hynes has been instrumental in helping the customer achieve its production goals and continues to assist on new projects.