Wood-to-Metal Screws – Reamer Teks
This screw is a not a well-known screw but to our educated contractors it is a necessary screw. The head on the Reamer Tek is normally flat with a phillips drive and the threads are finer, which means the screw will not turn faster than the drill bit and will prevent it from breaking, which costs time and money to everyone. This wood-to-metal screw can be used on both hardwoods and softwoods. There are wings on the bottom of this screw which break off when reaching the metal and allows the screw to drill out the wood and then connect to the metal. The good news is most of your projects do not need to be pre-drilled!
You can use these screws in all types of building projects, such as truck beds, trailer decks, four-wheeler trailers, and horse trailers and even docks. Can also be used when building decks and metal joists are used. Once our contractors find out about the reamer tek screw, they continue to use them. It has become one of our best selling products.
Many of our customers come to us to ask questions about Reamer Teks before buying. Some of the most common questions are “Will it damage the wood?” “What sizes will I need?” Reamer Teks are specially designed not to damage the wood. Reamer Teks come in a variety of sizes for use in all your DIY products involving wood to metal. If you are not sure of the sizes you need, we have the specifications available to help you choose the right screw for you. Reamer Teks can be used in 16-gauge metal to 30-gauge metal. Some sizes may even be able to through 12 gauge metal.
Here is a helpful chart to determine what size wood to metal screw you need:
Self-Tapping Screws – Sharp Point or Drill Point
Since starting this fastener blog several years ago, one of the most common requests we hear is “I want self-tapping screws”. “I want self tappers”. We hear this more often than not. We have written several articles on what is the best terminology to use when ordering your screws to make sure you get the right parts and not have to go through the time and expense of returning them to your supplier.
Summer is here and the building season is booming so this would be a great time to go over this again. Even some employees at fastener supplier houses are confused as to the correct usage of ‘self-tapping screw’ Self-tapping is referring to the threads and NOT the point of the screw. For a more detailed description of fasteners that are often referred to as ‘self-tapping’, please click here to watch our informative video.
Most of the time, when we hear someone ask for a self tapping screw, they really are looking for a self-drilling screw. One that has a point sometimes described as looking like a shovel, but in fact, is actually a small drill bit. The confusion comes with so many different names describing the same screw. Some are brand names that have just been used for so long that they have become synonymous with the part. Some names have just been used incorrectly for so long, that you kinda have to give in an say ok. Like “dove” which is now commonly referred to as “dived”.
Here are the most commonly used terms for the screw that looks like this:
• Tek Screws
• Self-Drilling Screws
• Self-Tapping Screws
• Bit Tip Screws
Here is a really helpful Self-Drilling Screw Chart that can be used for submittals.
Please feel free to contact us with your questions regarding self-drilling screws, often called tek screws. If we don’t have the information you need, we’ll do our best to point you in the right direction!
Self-Tapping Zip Screws – Oodles of Options!
Zip screws, aka needle point screws, have self-piercing points and twin-fast threads that are perfect for screwing through light gauge metal.
We suggest them for 30 gauge down to 24. Everyone is familiar with the versions that are zinc plated. They are very popular with the HVAC industry for round and square duct work. These are generally used for interior projects where rust isn’t a major concern.
Another version of the zip screw, needle point screw, is one that is designed for the gutter industry. With a high profile 1/4″ hex head on a #10 shank, rather than the normal 5/16 hex chuck. It also features a fillet underneath the head for extra strength
If additional rust resistance is required due to weather or application, ceramic coated zip screws and stainless zip screws are available.
In addition to 1000 hour salt spray protection, the heads of these screws are also frequently painted to match siding, gutters or metal roofs!
Bonded Neoprene washers can be fitted for metal roofs.
Zip screws with the Type 17 point, or auger point, helps the screws to start easier. The ‘cut out’ at the point of the screw allows the displaced wood to escape and, therefore, keeps the wood from splitting. The high/low threads contribute to stronger fastening and greater resistance to pull out.
Most zip screws are simply zinc plated, however, for areas where rust might be a concern, there are stainless steel needle point screws available. They are available in magnetic (410 stainless) and non-magnetic (18-8 stainless). The benefit of 18-8 stainless is that here is no carbon steel so there is no surface rust at all, however, that means the screws will not be magnetic. The 410 stainless zip screws will be magnetic, however, overtime, some surface rust will become apparent. We have gone one step further to protect from surface rust. Our 410 stainless screws also have a ceramic coating for additional protection.
And finally, there are zip screws with ceramic coated with 500 to 1000 salt spray tested plating. These are also available with their heads painted to match gutters or metal roofing.
We Love Christmas!
All Points Fasteners would like to celebrate an old Christmas ritual. Merry Christmas from All Points Fasteners!
It’s time to set aside the day to day job of selling tek screws and zip screws for now ’tis the season for gifts, great food, family and travel. Most of us can relate to the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, running around town for last minute Christmas gifts, coordinating holiday plans and travel, grocery shopping, cooking, decorating the house, etc. But, what’s it really all about? We put in all this time and effort to create an atmosphere of cheer and wonder for the holiday season. In keeping with the spirit of the season, what do we think would be the perfect capper on any evening of Christmas celebration?
All Points Fasteners Fasteners would like to take time out to remind us of the forgotten art of Christmas Storytelling!
Picture it: you’ve just had dinner, you’re stuffed, and now the kids run to sit in front of the television, in some other part of the house while all the grownups sit at the table and discuss…. Business, politics, or family matters.
What happened to gathering around the fireplace and telling a story?
There was a time when everyone would gather around the consummate “storyteller” of the family and listen to that timeless classic “Twas The Night Before Christmas”,or some such other Christmas classic, in front of a group of enthralled children and…dare we say it… adults.
Let’s dust the cobwebs off of the long, lost tradition of storytelling during Christmas. It’s a great way to bring everyone together, in an organic and festive way.
How great would it be to watch your children’s eyes light up as you recount any classic Christmas story of their choosing?
Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer
A Christmas Carol
The Little Drummer Boy
The Twelve Days of Christmas
These classic Christmas stories can be told at any point during the Christmas season and are a great way to bring your family even closer together, during the holidays.
Pull up a comfortable chair, dim the lights (all but the Christmas tree!), gather the kids around and open up one of these story books. Delight the kids and honor a wonderful, old tradition: Tell a Christmas story for the whole family!
We hope this idea lends itself to a very wonderful Christmas experience for you, and your family.
Everyone here at All Points Fasteners would like to wish you a very, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Gutter Zip Screws – Our New Primer!
Gutter zip screws primer. We are proud to present the third in our series of product primers.
Gutter screws. They’re not what they were during the 80’s or 90’s. Like everything else, time has evolved from what used to be a standard 8 x 1 1/2 hex washer needlepoint zip screws to our beefy 10 x 1 1/2 hex washer head needlepoint zip screws with a high profile 1/4″ hex head and a fillet underneath the head to give it extra strength. One nice feature of this screw is that even though it has a #10 shank it has a 1/4 hex head which is standard with a #8 screw. Since the gutter and siding industry uses #8 screws, the #8 style head was used on this screw so that the installers wouldn’t have to constantly be changing the chucks in their drills from 1/4 inch to 5/16 inch magnetic drivers. In addition, there is a high profile head on the screws so that they will stay in the drivers and not fall out.
Another option for zip screws used in siding and gutters, is the choice to have a ceramic coating, anywhere from 500 to 1200 salt spray hours of testing,
Screws with this Dacromet® coating are perfect for areas that are exposed to moisture and wet weather. They are also available with the heads painted to match popular siding colors.
For copper gutters, there are many more options available than what was in the past. Stainless steel zip screws, magnetic and non-magnetic, and copper plated stainless zip screws match the copper gutters.
So many more choices for gutter screws!
It’s Not So Difficult Ordering Self-Tapping Screws!
So you picked a self-tapping screw off a job site and it was just what you have been looking for but it didn’t come in a box that was labeled – it was just sitting there on the floor. What do you do? How can you ask for something when you’re not really sure what to ask for? The nice thing is that it isn’t so difficult if you know what dimensions to measure when you are asking your fastener sales representative to help you.
First describe the head. Is it a…?
- Hex Washer Head
- Hex washer head with a neoprene washer attached
- Modified Truss Head
- Oval Head
- Pan Head
- Bugle Head
- Pancake Head
There are other style heads available but these are the most common head styles that you should know. Once you can identify the head style that you are looking for, it makes things much easier.
To identify the shank size of the screw, it’s much easier if your screw is a hex head. When considering the shank size, think dress size. The smaller the number, the thinner the shank. The bigger the number, the thicker the shank.
The standard for the industry is:
• 1/4″ Hex Head = #6 or #7 or #8 shank size
• 5/16″ Hex Head = #10 or #12 shank size
• 3/8″ Hex Head = #14 shank size
Of course there always have to be exceptions just to keep things interesting.
In our case, we have needlepoint screws (aka zip screws) developed especially for the gutter industry with have high profile 1/4″ hex head but #10 washers and #10 body shanks. In the 70’s and 80’s, standard #8 screws worked fine for the gutter industry but when the quality of the wood used for homes changed, it was necessary to increase the thickness of the shanks so that the screws wouldn’t snap when hitting knots in the wood. We also added a filet underneath the head to give the screw a little extra strength.
Next, there is TPI or threads per inch to consider. As a rule of thumb, the less threads per inch, the screw is intended to be used in wood. The more TPI, the screw is meant for metal or metal studs. These are sometimes called out as ‘coarse threaded’ or ‘fine threaded’ screws. If you try and use a coarse threaded screw in metal studs or hard woods, the quality of the screw can’t really be blamed when it snaps although that happens all the time. It is simply misapplication and the more you know what screws were made for what applications, the less problems you will have when using your screws.
Now we get to the points of the screws.
Does the point look like a pencil point?
Does the point look like a drill bit tip?
There are other type points like Type 17’s used with woods and others but the two listed above are the most common.
And lastly, you should remember to state the plating that you need. Zinc plating is most common with under normal situations will last you about two years on average. Hot dipped galvanized is generally five years. But these are old school type plating. We have started stocking Dacronized®, ceramic type plating, which we normally have stocked in 500, 1000 and 1200 hour salt spray tested. They give you extra protection and even are available with the heads painted as well to match exterior applications.
When you are looking at a label on a box, the screws will generally be labeled something like “8-18×1 HWH SDS Z/P”. This would translate to #8
shank, 18 TPI by 1 inch long, hex washer head, self drilling screw (tek type point) zinc plated.
This is not everything that there is to know about self-tapping screws, zip screws and tek screws included, but it will give you a good baseline to start!
Not Just Zip Screws and Tek Screws!
Having been in the fastener industry for contractors since 1986 selling zip screws and tek screws you would think there would be nothing new to learn. Wrong! Although we specialize in screws mainly used by the Heating and Air Conditioning and Gutter industries , more and more I am hearing from OEM’S or engineers who are desperately looking for screws that don’t exist. They needs head diameter’s that are smaller so that they will fit in between narrow grooves, points that will penetrate hard plastic, then go through 30 gauge steel and then tap into stucco then into wood. And they are being used outdoors in the snow but should be rust proof but not as expensive as stainless steel. And all in the same screw! It’s a wonder I have a hair left on my head!
In years past, designer screws were a source of frustration for me because one of my contractors would pick up a screw that he really liked on a job site and then want me to locate a source for them. After many hours, maybe days, of diligent searching, I would finally find out that someone like a major hotel chain had the screws made especially for them to install the cabinets in their hotels and getting the same screws with the same dimensions was never going to happen.
Well the good news is that some manufacturers have changed their willingness to do smaller orders so that the chance of having these ‘designer screws’ manufactured is much higher now than it was in the past. Within recent months, we have been successful in procuring parts that in the past would have been impossible to supply. Of course, there are still minimums to be met but instead of having to order containers of screws in order to get the manufacturers interested, we can get away with a pallet or two. Good news for some but still not low enough for others.
Still, there are many more options available to choose from than there were 20 years ago, starting with coatings to keep screws from rusting as quickly. Take a look at our ceramic coated zip screws, available which with painted heads as well. These parts work great in areas where weather conditions are moist. We will soon be supplying needlepoint screws which are stainless steel as well as ceramic coated which will bring increased rust resistance.
Reamer Teks – Screws Best Kept Secret!
There are several different types of self-tapping, self-drilling screws, commonly known as tek screws. Each serves its own purpose and deciding on the proper part for the job is critical in order for the screw to perform correctly.
One relatively unknown tek screw is the reamer tek. The reamer tek screw is the ultimate wood-to-steel fastener. The reamer tek screw typically has a flat head using a Philips drive. There are also ‘wings’ right above the drill bit tip. Reamer tek screws have been developed for the function of going through wood into steel. The screws are manufactured with wings which ream out the wood to prevent early thread engagement into the timber prior to the drill point drilling in the metal. The wings are made to snap-off when they connect with steel that is 16 gauge (.060″) or thicker. These fasteners are not produced for use in steel thinner than 16 gauge. The fasteners are built with finer threads, typically 16 to 24 threads per inch, so that the drill bit can get a chance to drill in the thicker metals without snapping. There is additionally a slot in the shank that carries the metal shavings from the screw’s drill motion and stops them from interfering using the fastener threads as they tap into metal. There are a lot of uses for this little known fastener such as wood fencing, truck beds, trailer decks, horse trailers, snowmobile trailers, 4 wheeler trailers and more. These reamer tek screws will include the choice of whether #3, #4 or #5 tek screw points.
An additional choice will be what material will be used in manufacturing. Usually, these are made with normal carbon steel, but for applications requiring resistance to corrosion, similar to being utilized on wood docks close to water, there are stainless steel reamer tek screws available that are coated for additional rust resistance for use with ACQ lumber. For the ultimate rust resistance, there are bi-metal reamer tek screws where the body of the screw is completely non magnetic stainless but the point is made of hardened carbon steel. This allow the bit tip to do all the hard work but the body remains completely rust free and non corrosive. The downside is that they are costly but, for some, very worth the price!