Let’s Fix It!

11 April 2022


For over 60 years, Simpson Strong-Tie has focused on creating connectors for homes and buildings and it now has more than 1,000 product solutions. Connector plates, nails, screws and collated screw systems are all manufactured by the company, which has a UK base in Tamworth. TTJ asked the company its views on market demand and new developments/trends for fixings

TTJ: HOW HAS THE DEMAND FOR FIXINGS AND FASTENINGS DEVELOPED DURING THE PANDEMIC WITH REGARD TO THE DIFFERENT PRODUCTS THAT SST OFFERS?

SST: Simpson Strong-Tie has seen healthy growth in 2021. Both raw materials and incoming product from all areas proved challenging. However, as a global company with a strong history we have been able to navigate the challenges and are now stabilised in stock supply in 2022.

I think most, if not all, companies would agree this last year has been a very challenging one. We have seen uplift in most business areas both here and in the EU, with particular strength in new business areas such as our new Premium Fasteners range. SST is a lean company with strong internal relationships and this facilitates swift action to customer needs.

TTJ: HOW HAVE PRODUCT AVAILABILITY AND PRICING TRENDS BEEN IN THE INDUSTRY GENERALLY IN THE LAST 12 MONTHS?

SST: Across the industry, all have struggled with delays on docks and unstable prices for both raw materials and incoming stock. We are certainly seeing stability now returning, with continued healthy demand.

TTJ: HOW IS CUSTOMER DEMAND DRIVING THE DEVELOPMENT OF PRODUCTS IN THE VARIOUS PRODUCT SECTORS – PLATES, SCREWS AND NAILS?

SST: As a company born from an entrepreneurial engineering heritage, we are always ready to move fast and to feedback technical, innovations needed onsite.

Innovation in product development is a key focus driven by close communication with our clients and contractors onsite.

The market tells us that productivity is key at a time when contractors and site staff are at a premium due to illness and a smaller EU work force residing in the UK.

We have seen a massive increase in sales across our collated screw range, particularly in large scale commercial buildings such as distribution centres.

In 2021 we launched our collated 19mm flooring screw which the flooring industry told us was much needed.

We are now receiving feedback from ongoing sales that leads us to understand that there will always be high end installers with a primary concern of long-term quality over short-term solutions that might result in call backs.

TTJ: ARE YOU SEEING DEMAND FOR TIMBER CONSTRUCTION PRODUCTS INCREASING AND, IF SO, HOW MUCH IS THIS INFLUENCING NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT?

SST: Use of timber in the construction market has grown over the last 20 years, and that usage has continued to increase in recent years due to its environmental and sustainability credentials.

Timber frame is obviously an exciting growth market for us and a primary focus for us in the Premium Fastener market, as well as in the Connector market where Simpson Strong-Tie is well known.

We are winning more business in specifications where our dedication to quality and design is able to be supported by extensive testing, approvals and load data. This approach to quality will always set us apart from the bulk of competition.

TTJ: WHAT INTERNAL NEWS, INNOVATIONS AND DEVELOPMENTS HAVE THERE BEEN FOR SST?

SST: In short – many! 2021 saw us launch the collated 19mm flooring screw for fixing 6mm ply, helping to negate squeaky floor boards (MTHZ19E). The application is ergonomic for the installer, fast and reliable.

Innovations on our woods screws ranges include: a 17-point driving point to reduce the risk of splitting timber; better milling threads to reduce torque and time in application; and a longer mid-fixing driving shank to assist pulling the two materials together, resulting in higher strength and quality solution.

These types of improvement are most seen within our wood screws ranges TTUFS / SSH and SWD ranges.

The Quik Drive tool can use 19mm collated flooring screws
SST fastener collections