Timber engineering hardware and connectors

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This 2016 edition contains revisions to the CE marking section, on account of new terminology und the Construction  Products Regulation, 2011, as well as several minor corrections.


The term 'timber engineering hardware' encompasses a diverse range of metal components, made of steel plate, sheet or strip, which are used to connect timber members together, usually in conjunction with dowel-type metal fasteners.


Timber engineering components have widely replaced traditional carpentry joints, due to their ease of use, ready availability and the avoidance of complex machining of timber members.


This Wood Information Sheet (WIS) is an overview of the wide range of different timber engineering hardware available, as well as the different materials which can be used to create them. It also contains some of the different types of product certifications to which engineering hardware should adhere to.



  • Materials
  • Metal plate fasteners
  • Connectors used with bolts
  • Product certification
  • Fire resistance
  • Durability and protection

This Wood Information Sheet was reviewed in February 2017 and minor corrections were made.

Suggested Reading

Design of structural timber connectionsnavigation-arrow

Connections are an essential part of any structure, and in timber structures they are often the most critical part of a design. The timber section size is often determined by the strength of the section remaining after drilling holes for bolts or dowels, or by the spacing requirements for the...

27/02/2017 |  Wood Information Sheet  

Round timber in construction: An introductionnavigation-arrow

Wood is man's oldest structural material, and prior to the introduction of tools such as saws it was largely used in its natural round form, often connected together with lashings rather than by mechanical jointing.

This document gives readers an outline of the applications of round timber, including the...

01/01/2004 |  Other Technical Guidance  

Fasteners for structural timber: nails, staples, screws, dowels and boltsnavigation-arrow

Timber designers usually consider connection design to be the most difficult area in timber engineering. The traditional mechanical fasteners for structural timber are divided into two groups depending on how they transfer the forces between the connected members - 'dowel-type fasteners' and 'metal connectors'.

This Wood Information Sheet...

13/06/2016 |  Wood Information Sheet