ARVC Logo  [SureBolt] [ Video ] Home ] Up ] Contact ] Contents ] [ Independent Consultant ]

See NASA quote.

Case Study
Future Tutorial
Bolted Joint Tutorial

Why SureBolt?

Measures tension not torque,

Patented whole echo method,

Graphs tension changes in real-time,

Instrument is built into the PC,

  13.3" Color TOUCHSCREEN
ToughBook Open & Closed

Friction varies too much, bolt to bolt,

Not fooled by friction variations,

Using lubrication still leaves large friction variations,

Avoid flange leaks,


Prove to safety you took a reliable tension reading,

Far greater reliability,

All other bolt gages are one-point bolt gages,

No more zero-crossing peak jumping,

ALL other bolt gages have problems with peak jumping,

Dramatic improvement due to a new patented DSP technique,

Proven by NASA,

Can record over a million bolt tensions with their waveforms,

Playback built in,

Excel compatible data files,

Flange bolts easily grouped together,

Critical bolts,

Verify your design,


Tension verification,


Much easier to use,

Graphical help,

On-line help,

Dynamic help,

13" Color Screen instead of 5" black & white screen,

Full keyboard instead of a few cryptic keys,

Record field notes with your tension data,

You can use long file names,

Large on-screen buttons,

Familiar WinXP/2000 operating system,

Full featured laptop - Panasonic Toughbook Model 72 computer,

1 year limited warrantee,

No need to transfer data to another machine,

No hidden information,

To sum it up, vastly easier and more reliable.

Press here for a detailed point by point comparison to all other bolt gages.

Technical Information and Links


If you know of other good web pages, let us know and we will add them below. Be sure to scroll down to find the links to over 25 web pages of technical information on bolted joints.

The technical information comparing SureBolt to all other bolt gages is in the product comparison table. SureBolt is compared to all other bolt gages with many of the details explained. 

The links to the left are:

bulletSee FAQ for the typical questions on bolted joints, like "What is a joint diagram?" (FAQ)
bulletSee the case study done by Bolt Science. (Case Study)
bulletIf we get enough requests, we will have our own bolted joint tutorial. (Tutorial)
bulletBolt Science has a great bolted joint tutorial ("Bolted Joint Tutorial")
bulletSureBolt has a patent on the new technology. (Patent)
bulletBolted joints and links to other useful sites. (Joints)
bulletGreat torque conversion calculator and unit calculator (Calculators)


Quotes from "An Introduction To The Design And Behavior Of Bolted Joints (3rd ed. by John Bickford) Probably the best bolted joint resource available. No affiliation with SureBolt or FAST-DAQ.

(pg 373) Measuring or controlling bolt stress or strain ultrasonically is not uncommon at the present time. The equipment and techniques are relatively new, ...  ultrasonic equipment is used primarily in applications involving relatively few bolts in critically important joints, or is used for quality control audits, or to set up and calibrate other types of assembly equipment (torque, torque-turn, etc.), or to conduct laboratory or field experiments.

Currently available ultrasonic equipment is ideal for the QC (Quality Control) and laboratory roles because it can monitor bolt tension not only as it is being developed in a bolt during assembly, but at anytime afterward. It can measure residual preloads after embedment or elastic interactions, it can observe changes in bolt tension as external loads are applied, it can monitor the effects of temperature change, etc. It's a low-cost alternative to strain-gaged bolts in all sorts of studies -- "low cost" because such bolts can cost several hundred dollars each.

Currently available instruments can be used on virtually any kind of bolt material, including steel, aluminum, titanium, Inconel, MP35N, and other exotic materials. There are however, some practical limitations ...

(pg 403) ... As a result, we feel that the equipment is capable of residual preload measurements with an accuracy approaching +-5% in most field situations, and can approach +-2% in laboratory work. There are even well-documented examples where +-1% was achieved consistently in aerospace applications; but ...

We highly recommend you purchase Mr. Bickford's book. See the links below.

For an excellent tutorial on bolted joints see Bolt Science's web page. 

If you think calculating torque is easy, just see:

No affiliation with SureBolt.

Here are some other useful links:


Structural Analysis Reference Library

ASTM: Practice E1685-00 Standard Practice for Measuring the Change in Length of Fasteners Using the Ultrasonic Pulse-Echo Technique

Bolt tension & joint behavior:

NIST: Fastener Quality Act

Failure of Attachment Bolts at the Rotating Bearing on a Crane

Hex Head Bolt Markings

An Introduction to Failure Analysis for Metallurgical Engineers


Bolt Science: M24 Engine Mounting Bolt Failure

Bolt Science: Information on Screw Threads

G.M. Powertrain Fastener Lab. "Smartools for Fastening"

Nut Factor Selection Form

Book: Guide to Design Criteria for Bolted and Riveted Joints. Used by the Research Council on Structural Connections, 2nd Ed, 2001, 6.8MB PDF, 352 pages.

Hydraulic Torque Videos: Hytorc tools

Other links:
Ultrasonic Velocity Table
National Institute of Standards and Technology
NDT Resource Center
The e-Journal of Nondestructive Testing
NDTCabin "The Internet Magazine for NDT Professionals"
ASTM International


Bickford, John, An Introduction to the Design & Behavior of Bolted Joints; 2nd Edition. Marcel Dekker, Inc. 1990. There is a newer edition. See below.

Industrial Fasteners Institute, Fastener Standards; 6th Edition. Industrial Fasteners Institute. 1988.

Blake, Alexander, Design of Mechanical Joints. Marcel Dekker, Inc. 1985.

Blake, Alexander, What Every Engineer Should Know About Threaded Fasteners. M.D. 1986.

Kulak, Geoffrey; Fisher, John & Struik, John, Guide to Design Criteria for Bolted and Riveted Joints; 2nd Edition. John Wiley & Sons. 1987.



And how does SureBolt compare to all other bolt gages?


Links to John Bickford's books (Barnes & Nobles).

An Introduction to the Design and Behavior of Bolted Joints
An Introduction to the Design and Behavior of Bolted Joints
In Stock:Ships within 24 hours .
John H. Bickford / Hardcover / Marcel Dekker / July 1995
Our Price: $135.00
2. Gaskets and Gasketed Joints
Gaskets and Gasketed Joints
In Stock:Ships within 24 hours .
John H. Bickford (Editor) / Hardcover / Marcel Dekker / November 1997
Our Price: $165.00


Handbook of Bolts and Bolted Joints
In Stock:Ships within 24 hours .
John H. Bickford (Editor),Sayed Nassar (Editor) / Hardcover / Marcel Dekker / April 1998
Our Price: $195.00


Visitors since 1-22-02 Hit Counter



Let us know how we can help you.

(800) 732-7832
Postal address
1022 Antelope Trail, Winter Springs, FL 32708, USA

Send your email to with questions or  comments about how we can help. Contact us here, or type in the email address shown above (Due to spam, we have replaced the text email address, with the image email address shown above).

Note: Privacy. We will NOT give your contact information to anyone.

 No more guessing as to which "one point" is the right point.


The FIRST whole echo method (patented DSP Technique).

SureBolt picture

Built into a 
Panasonic Toughbook

Weather proof keyboard.

Visitors Since 1-22-02 Hit Counter
Last Modified: September 27, 2011