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MM-Welding® - Fastening Technology that pays off

Importance of detailed information

Manufacturing companies do not only expect proven technologies, but also efficiency and low cost when selecting fastening solutions. Bur how do you find the optimal process among so many available options?

The tip of the iceberg

"Let's first take a look at cost: Customers of KVT-Fastening are often surprised when they learn that it's not the fastener itself, but the adjacent areas that account for most of the cost," says Florian Beer, Managing Director KVT-Fastening Germany. As a rule of thumb, only 15 percent of the total cost are incurred by the fastener itself and the remaining 85 percent are incurred in the areas of development, testing, procurement, warehousing, assembly and logistics. The total cost of ownership (TCO) can therefore be compared to an iceberg: Only the tip rises out of the water, the rest is hidden and only reveals itself on closer inspection.

"For this reason, we look at the entire process and determine together with the customer what possibilities exist to optimize the overall cost. This includes not only the fastening technology itself, but also the customer's requirements for the installation process: "Examples for these special requirements are maximum flexibility, optimization for large quantities, cost optimization or the integration of process monitoring," explains Beer.

Individuality pays off

KVT-Fastening's Solutioneering approach is focuses on overall efficiency and shows the company's emphasis on innovative solutions to address new trends. Fastening technology for lightweight materials and constructions are a good example to illustrate KVT-Fastenings differentiating approach..

"There is a wide range of materials that can be used in lightweight construction, such as fiber-reinforced plastics, aluminum, high-strength steels and sandwich structures. In modern lightweight design, combinations of different materials are also common. Honeycomb and sandwich structures are considered efficient designs due to their high stiffness and low weight. However, they represent a huge challenge for conventional fastening technologies. MM-Welding® technology is particularly suitable for addressing these challenges with porous materials and foams. Thermoplastic fastening elements are melted into the cavities of the structures in fractions of a second. The melting creates a form-lock, thus ensuring a permanent and strong connection. Which special joining technique is actually best suited, however, must always be derived from the customer requirements and the manufacturing process of the component," Beer knows.

Depending on the specific application, process reliability or flexibility in the choice of a fastening element can be limited. KVT-Fastening therefore always looks beyond its own nose and looks for solutions that are both efficient and safe.

MM-Welding® - what else?

The MM-Welding® process is ideal for attaching not only  separate fastening elements, but also directly integrate them into functional elements (e.g. hinges) that need to be attached to sandwich structures. In a specific customer project, a lightweight and highly stable load floor with a paper honeycomb core had to be fitted with fasteners. Depending on the car equipment ordered, the load floor is required by the customer in various thicknesses and with or without optional functional elements. In addition to a grip strap, each variant has also a series of fastening elements that engage in the body and centre the loade floor. "The particular challenge resulted from the fact that these fasteners had to be placed extremely close to the edge of the load floor," explains Beer. In order to meet the specific requirements of the application, special welding pins were developed together with the customer. MM-W technology allows these fasteners to be placed directly on the edge, invisibly from above, according to the customer's specifications - this would not have been possible with any other solution.

> Details on the MM-Welding® technology portfolio