Application of Stainless Steel and Studs for Food-Grade Welding

Over the last 100 years, huge leaps have been made in the global food supply chain and the protection of food safety. The first federal regulations that began our national food safety journey started as early as 1906 with the Federal Meat Inspection Act. Later, the Poultry Products Inspection Act of 1957, the Egg Products Inspection Act of 1970, and several other hallmark legal changes were made to our food supply system. In more recent years, the Federal Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011 began to shift the focus of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from reacting to events of foodborne illness to instead working actively to prevent those occurrences. There are many ways our food industry can work to reduce, and eventually eliminate, outbreaks of foodborne illnesses, including in the design and construction of food-grade equipment. Food service equipment from the factory floor to commercial kitchens can all see vast improvements to hygiene when they are built with stainless steel and stud welding operations. Stud welding is one of the most sanitary manufacturing operations when it comes to food safe assemblies. If you’re working with food-grade welding for any type of service equipment, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) has the supplies and tools you need to get the job done. We provide a comprehensive selection of welding studs, accessories, tools for rent and purchase, and the expertise of our own welding technicians.

Food-Grade Welding

There are many aspects to food-grade manufacturing, including eliminating the risk of harborage by removing nooks and crannies, building in full washdown capabilities for sanitation, utilizing anti-microbial materials, and sealing all connection points.

Building with stud welding and stainless steel goes a long way in establishing food service and industrial food processing equipment as “food quality.” Both stainless steel and the use of studs as fasteners are significant components of food-grade welding under FDA and NSF/ANSI regulations.

FDA and NSF/ANSI Compliant

Both the FDA and NSF/ANSI work to regulate different sections of the food industry to support safety and quality. This ranges from daily practices of manufacturers to the sourcing and distribution of materials.

1. Fasteners: All types of fasteners for food equipment should meet strict FDA and NSF/ANSI specifications. Fasteners must be made from noncorrosive materials that can seal, rather than bolt, framework. Because of this, studs are an ideal fastening system for food-grade equipment. Not only does it seal a surface permanently, it can also be installed with access to only one side of a work surface and result in a clean, low profile connection.

2. Materials: Studs can readily be used to connect frameworks made from stainless steel parts, sheeting, and other components. Stainless steel is fortified against corrosion and can offer a highly sanitary, low-microbe work surface for food preparation.

Whether you are building with food-grade welding or another application of stud welding, we can help. Contact NFS at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online for more information about food safety and our supplies.

Building Complex Sanitary Conveyor Systems with Food Grade Welding

The global food industry is one of the largest economic systems in the world. Its success relies on intricate webs of distribution lines. With a world population of almost 8 billion people, the demands on the food industry to support access to everything from safe, nutritious foods to international delicacies are immense. When it comes to the industrial equipment used throughout the food industry, reliability and hygiene are some of the most important factors that engineers and fabricators should build into any design. For many kinds of automated food production equipment used in factory settings, stud welding provides strong, clean fastening systems without risk of harborage or corrosion. If you are working with food grade welding studs to build your food production equipment designs, Northland Fastening Systems has the tools and supplies you need. We provide a complete range of welding tools, studs, and accessories, as well as repair services and the advice of our own welding technicians.

Food Production Equipment

There are many different purposes that various types of food production equipment serve. One of the most essential systems in an automated facility is the conveyor belt operations. To prevent the risk of contamination in the complex parts of a conveyor belt, food grade welding with stainless-steel studs is used to build many components on an automated production line.

Conveyor Belt Systems

Conveyor belt systems meet a wide range of automated food production needs. In the process of moving goods from one operation to the next, most facilities need to maintain precise control over the product quality and load. Some aspects of a conveyor system built with sanitary stud welding include:

Laning and sorting:

Products moving downstream from operation to operation need to be accurately sorted into lanes or sections of a conveyor system. This keeps the production line running smoothly and prevents cross contamination, damage, or unnecessary loss of goods.


In many parts of processing in the food industry, products need to be handled in multiples. For the packaging industry in particular, food items often need to be stacked on top of each other while they move seamlessly through a factory. With sanitary automated stackers, production lines can reduce human error and contamination.


Like sorting systems, transfers also need to occur as products are moved on a conveyor system between different stages. Transfers built into an automated conveyor system keep the process running quickly through lateral or multi-level moves.


Most factories today are incorporating intelligent rejection systems to remove damaged or misshapen goods. These reject systems use laser measurements, weight, imaging, and other smart technologies to determine if goods meet the correct specifications and remove flawed products from the production line. With a reject system on a conveyor, automation can continue through that stage of processing.

Food grade welding contributes to the sanitation and quality of many operations that can be incorporated into a conveyor belt system and an automated production line in general. To learn more, contact Northland Fastening Systems today at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.


Building Stainless Steel Furniture with Food Grade Welding

One of the reasons why stud welding is such a prolific manufacturing operation is its versatility. Stud welding can be used to form powerful fastening systems for a variety of materials, including composite construction for bridges and other important infrastructure. Composite construction combines concrete and steel into a strong material that can resist enormous amounts of shear force, weight, and tension. Without the shear connectors and deformed bar anchors used in composite construction, we wouldn’t have the roads, bridges, multi-story buildings, and other large-scale structures that are key components of our modern world. The use of stud welding in composite construction is just the tip of the iceberg. Stud fastening systems are utilized across industries for anything from sheet metal construction to sanitary fabrication with food grade welding. No matter what industry you work in, you can find all you need for tools, supplies, and support with Northland Fastening Systems. NFS provides quality stud welding tools for rent or purchase, drawn arc, CD, and short cycle weld studs in a complete range of dimensions, custom stud options, welding accessories, and a repair program.

Food grade Welding

Stainless steel is a primary material used in food grade welding for many reasons, but, as a unique set of metal alloys, it can also be used for many other purposes when it comes to building furniture. Using stainless steel to construct various types of furniture with stud welding has many benefits. From aesthetics to practical purposes, manufacturers, artists, designers, and furniture companies build with stainless steel and stud welding to take advantage of their properties.


For food service equipment, commercial and residential kitchen appliances, and other instances where good sanitation and hygiene are critical, stainless steel is a remarkable material. Because stainless steel has antiseptic properties and is highly cleanable, it pairs well with the smooth, crevice-free results that stud welding can achieve to build sanitary furniture and food grade equipment.


Stainless steel also has corrosion resistant properties. The chromium content in stainless-steel alloys creates a passive film on the material’s surface. The presence of oxygen allows this film to self-heal when abrasions, cuts, and other damage occur. This means furniture made with stainless steel and stud welding operations can withstand corrosive environments and last longer than other metals.


With its sanitary and anti-rust properties, stainless steel is already a practical material for building furniture of all kinds. Its durability, strength, and flexibility only add to its value as a furniture building material. Compared to many other materials used to build furniture, stainless steel is one of the strongest and most practical.


For design purposes, stainless steel offers a great range of finishes, from the lustrous sheen of a polished, bare surface to the vibrancy and color ranges that annealing, plating, and other finishing treatments can yield.

If you are working with food grade welding or other operations for furniture and equipment building with stud fastening systems, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online today.

Food Grade Welding Eliminates Harborage

Not only is stud welding a key operation for the construction industry, including composite construction with shear connectors in bridges, roads, and other infrastructure, it’s also utilized on smaller manufacturing scales for equipment like electrical enclosures, food grade instruments, and commercial kitchen appliances. In the food industry, stud welding serves an important purpose when it comes to manufacturing factory processing systems and equipment. Because stud welding creates clean results and strong welds without marking through on the reverse surface, it can be used to build smooth surfaces with full wash-down capabilities. If you’re working with food grade welding for the production of food industry or commercial food equipment, Northland Fastening Systems has the supplies you need for drawn arc, capacitor discharge (CD), and short cycle welding. We provide tools for rent and purchase, studs in a complete range of dimensions with custom options available, welding accessories, automation support, the advice of our own skilled technicians, and services and repairs for most models.

Food Grade Welding Makes Equipment Easier to Clean

Food grade welding with studs makes equipment easier to clean, helping commercial kitchens and food production facilities maintain sanitation practices and support good hygiene. Food products made on an industrial scale can be one of the main sources of foodborne illness epidemics. To eliminate the risk of food contamination, stud welding reduces the potential of harborage.

What is Harborage?

In the food industry, harborage occurs when particles are trapped in crevices, bends, and other hard-to-clean nooks and crannies in equipment. Not only does this introduce rotting or pathogenic food particles that can damage the integrity of other products; it can also increase the risk of rodents and insects in a facility. Stud welding reduces harborage by removing the crevices potentially left by other types of fastening systems.

Connection Points are Clean

Stud welding connection points are clean, smooth, and fully fused. Food grade stud welding processes also use antiseptic stainless-steel surfaces that resist corrosion or oxidation. With most designs, stud welding engineering can also reduce external angles and corners, eliminate risks of overstressed surfaces, and fully seal connection points from microscopic pitting.

Where Can Harborage Occur?

Harborage can occur in equipment that is not manufactured to the highest food safety standards in several areas, including control panels, equipment legs, cracks, crevices, hardware, moving parts, HVAC equipment, multiple surface types, and any wet areas. To fully remove problems with harborage in these areas, stud welding systems should be installed whenever possible.

Full Wash Down

With a tight connection point and no crevices, zero marks on the opposite side of the weld surface, low-stress surfaces, and corrosion-resistant materials that are compatible with full wash down capabilities, food grade welding can significantly reduce the risk of harborage in industrial processing and commercial kitchens.

For more information about fastening systems for food equipment and the welding supplies we provide, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770, or request a quote online to get started with us today.

The History and Role of the American Welding Society for Fastening Systems

While the origin of forge welding can be traced all the way back to the Bronze Age, the history of welding with electrical current only dates back to the early twentieth century. The first resistance welding technology was used extensively in manufacturing military equipment and vehicles for World War I. To establish the importance of the resistance welding industry even after the war ended, former President Wilson appointed Comfort A. Adams, an electrical engineering professor at Harvard College, as chair of the new Welding Committee of the Emergency Fleet Corp. Since then, the committee combined with the National Welding Council to become today’s American Welding Society (AWS). As a provider of stud welding supplies, including tools for rent or purchase, studs in a complete range of dimensions, and welding accessories, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) follows the standards that the AWS sets for the industry.

High-Quality Stud Welding Equipment

NFS is a comprehensive supplier of high-quality stud welding equipment, and our selection of tools, studs, and accessories, along with our services, meet international standards for operations. In addition to our own standards for quality, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and all our other customers follow AWS regulations, and many hold specific AWS certifications.

Since its establishment in 1919, the AWS has been pivotal in advancing and expanding national fastening systems and welding industries in many ways.

A Brief History

After the Welding Committee of the Emergency Fleet Corp and the National Welding Council combined to create the AWS in 1919, the society brought together industry leaders. In its first year of operations, the AWS increased to 217 members and introduced the Journal of the American Welding Society. Although this journal only published one issue, it preceded today’s Welding Journal. The AWS also moved into its new headquarters at the Engineering Societies Building in New York City.

In 1922, the AWS held its first annual meeting, and by then, had established sections in eight major cities. For the next 49 years, the AWS headquartered in New York City, but in 1971, moved to Miami, FL, and then in 2012, moved again to its current location in Doral, FL.

Role of the AWS

In addition to the monthly publication of the Welding Journal, the AWS also offers multiple certification programs, including endorsement certificates, testing facilities accreditation, and fabricator certifications. Certifications include specific programs for welding inspectors, educators, radiographic interpreters, engineers, welders, sales representatives, robotic arc welding, and supervisors.

The AWS also has a membership program and publishes specifications and codes for the industry. Membership is available for individuals, welders, corporations, and students. Currently, the AWS has 250 international sections and student chapters.

As a member of the welding industry, NFS values the history and current global role of the AWS. To learn more about our stud welding equipment, products, and services, contact us by calling (507) 387-7200 or online.

Understanding the Sanitary Properties of Effective Food-Grade Welding

Using stud-welding operations for fabrication in many industries provides several benefits to manufacturers. Not only is stud welding a quick fastening process that results in a powerful connection point, it also provides clean results without marking the other side of the weld surface or creating rough finishes. Stud welding is useful to many manufacturers working in large-scale construction, heavy-duty composite building, thin pin installation, and even food equipment production. For food equipment, in particular, capacitor discharge (CD) stud welding supports sanitation regulations and hygiene standards for the food production, packaging, and processing industries. If you’re using studs for food-grade welding operations, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) has the supplies you need. We provide a broad range of tools for rent or purchase, studs in a complete range of dimensions with custom options available, and a full selection of stud welding accessories. Our team of expert welding technicians can also provide advice and information, and our tool repair services eliminate excess production downtime.


Via the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) established many guidelines and requirements for every player in the food industry, from farms to food equipment manufacturers. Rules for food-grade welding were also outlined in this act. These rules set specific requirements for finished surfaces, connection points, materials, and all other aspects of manufactured food equipment.


Some basic requirements the FSMA sets for stud-welded food service equipment include:


  1. Sharps and burrs should be eliminated to prevent microscopic cavities that can house bacteria. When stud welds are performed correctly, there is no risk of micro burrs or sharps around the connection point. Too hot or too cold welds can, respectively, leave molten splatter and burrs, or create a slight ledge underneath the stud.
  2. Materials that are too dissimilar should not be used. While multiple kinds of materials can be welded together in other applications of stud welding, food-grade products should typically be limited to stainless steel or other treated metals that will hold up to corrosion.
  3. Internal corners and angles should be radiused. The FDA requires fabricators to manufacture designs that only use internal angles and corners so that exterior angles are softened and easy to fully sanitize. Sharper angles create crevices for bacteria and other cross-contamination to hide and be difficult to reach even when equipment is fully washed down.
  4. Surfaces should be manufactured without overstressing. When welding is not performed correctly, material surfaces can be overstressed, leading to corrosion, cracking, reduction of protective surfaces, and many other problems that compromise food safety. Accurately applied welds will protect food safety and prevent cross-contamination in the long term.


In addition to these requirements, stud welding also makes it possible for manufacturers to support the rule that frameworks should always be sealed and never bolted.


To learn more about food-grade welding and our supply of stud welding equipment, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770. You can also request a quote online to get started with us today.

Making Intermodal and Specialty Freight Containers with Food Grade Welding

To support global demand for food products from pantry staples to specialty and exotic goods, the food grade transport and storage industry is a highly evolved system. Advanced storage systems for transportation, short-term holding, and long-term climate-controlled storage are utilized for all kinds of food products and other perishables, such as pharmaceuticals. Containers for the food industry play a huge role in the transportation and storage of goods, and because of this, highly specialized containers have been developed over the years. Shipping and storing containers made from steel, aluminum, and other metals are frequently manufactured using stud welding operations. If you are fabricating intermodal freight units and other containers for the food industry, you can find everything you need for food grade stud welding processes at Northland Fastening Systems (NFS). We provide stud welding tools for rent or purchase, welding studs in a comprehensive range of dimensions, customizable options for studs, and stud welding accessories as well as the expertise of our own welding technicians.


There have been many designs for food grade shipping and storage containers over the years, but intermodal freight containers helped to standardize sizing and structure to enable better bulk transit and storing. Intermodal freight containers as large as 40 feet long are a commonly used storage option for many goods, including packaged food products. Using food grade stud welding to build these units helps manufacturers meet food safety standards, including Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations.


In addition to standardized intermodal units, there have been many specialty containers fabricated using food grade stud welding as a key to food safety. Containers for food grade liquids such as oils, dairy products, and others are repeatedly exposed directly to the food goods. Because of this exposure, it’s critical that these containers can be completely sanitized regularly and protected from corrosion. Any compromise of the container will damage food products and pose health issues.


Food grade stud welding is a solution for many manufacturers producing food storage and transport containers. Not only does food grade stud welding create a smooth, mark-free surface without craggy areas that can collect bacteria, it is also an operation that can use antibacterial metals like stainless steel. Containers made with stud welding are easily sanitized between uses, and the metals used will hold up to strong chemical disinfectants. Weld points and materials used will also withstand exposure to acidic or alkaline food products without harming the composition, flavor, or integrity of the goods.


To learn more about the details food grade stud welding and the tools used in those operations, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. You can also request a quote online to get started with us today.

Catering Equipment Made with CD Stud Welding

At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), we offer quality stud welding supplies to a broad range of customers. From welding studs to stud welding tools for various types of welding processes, our expert technicians can help you get what you need to finish a project. Whether you’re working with drawn arc welding methods or capacitor discharge (CD) welding processes, NFS has a comprehensive selection of tools for rent or purchase, welding studs in many dimensions, custom stud options, and welding accessories that our customers working in many industries need. One industry in which CD stud welding, in particular, is key is the food equipment industry. Food grade welding is a highly specialized process that requires training and the right set of tools.


Within the food industry, the catering profession requires its own set of tools and equipment designed to transport, store, and serve food safely and without compromising quality. Because CD stud welding is a rapid, efficient, and extremely clean operation, it’s an ideal tool for manufacturing a number of different types of catering equipment. For example:


  1. Transportation equipment:
    1. Outdoor and portable coolers
    2. Insulated tray carriers
    3. Warming trays
    4. Totes and other nonheated/cooled carriers
    5. Storage boxes
    6. Large-scale transportation ware, such as castored shelving units
  2. Food preparation equipment:
    1. Offsite pre-event food prep equipment like ovens, stoves, and other standard commercial kitchen appliances
    2. Chef station appliances for onsite cooking, such as hot plates and induction burners
    3. Portable grills
    4. Temperature-controlled holding cabinets
    5. Dry holding cabinets
    6. Onsite food transportation units for moving food during an event
  3. Serving equipment:
    1. Portable trays and shelves
    2. Chafers
    3. Utensils
    4. Food pans
    5. Heated or cooled trays
    6. Ice containers
    7. Hot and cold beverage dispensing equipment
    8. Portable bars
    9. Coffee stations
  4. Sanitation equipment:
    1. Hand washing stations
    2. Dish washing stations
    3. Garbage cans and other food waste processing equipment
    4. Transportation shelves and tools for dirty dishes
    5. Portable sink systems for events with no water hookup
  5. Energy supplies:
    1. Many catered events don’t have energy sources at the location, and caterers often need to bring generators and other portable power supplies along with them.
    2. Battery powered equipment is also a key part of catering energy supplies.


Catering equipment is just one small part of the food grade stud welding industry. CD stud welding is highly conducive to food grade equipment because of its ability to eliminate marking on the opposite side of the weld. This alone limits problem areas where bacteria and germs can collect. Food grade welding with CD stud welding tools help our customers fabricate streamlined stainless steel products that can be easily sanitized.


Whether you’re manufacturing catering equipment or equipment for other areas of the food industry, NFS has the CD stud welding supplies you need. Contact us at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online to get started with us today.

Specifics of Sanitary Food Grade Welding

Welding of all kinds plays a large role in commercial-grade food equipment. From the shelving units used to store fresh, frozen, and dry foods to stoves and ovens used daily, welding operations are used in the manufacturing process. Stud welding, in particular, is a commonly used manufacturing technique for many types of equipment used in restaurants, hospitals, hotels, and other commercial kitchens as well as in food production and packaging industries. Even some equipment in home kitchens is made with certain components of stud welding. Northland Fastening Systems provides everything you might need for all applications of food grade welding, from studs of all dimensions to tools for rent and purchase in addition to the expert services of our own technicians.


Equipment used in the food industry must meet U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards for sanitation, including the very specific requirements of the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). This means, every step of the fabrication process must guarantee that end results meet those standards. When it comes to stud welding, regulations are in place for food grade welding processes.


The foundational requirements of food grade welding include:


  1. Precise Finish: A smooth finish with the elimination of burrs and sharp particles of metal of all kinds must be accomplished. Even microscopic burrs or sharps can compromise a food grade piece of equipment. Rough surfaces should also be smoothed and finished in a way that removes any spaces for food particles to get caught and build bacteria colonies.
  2. Sealed and Bolted: The full framework of a piece of equipment should be sealed at connection points. Simply bolted connection points can have opportunities for increased vulnerability to corrosion or storage of bacteria. Components that can be detached for cleaning must also be built in a way that reattaches with a full seal.
  3. Correct Design: The equipment should be designed in a way that only uses internal angles or corners. External angles create spaces in which bacteria can thrive, which compromises any food grade equipment.
  4. Surface Working: Surfaces should be worked in a way that doesn’t overstress the materials. Overworking can leave any layers protecting against oxidation susceptible to being quickly stripped away.
  5. Compatible Weld: The stud and the surface material must be compatible. Any incompatible welds are more vulnerable to corroding and contamination food or cracking under thermal stress.


If you are fabricating food grade equipment of any kind, it’s critical to consider these requirements and any other standards outlined in the FSMA before beginning your project. To learn more about food grade welding, and stud welding overall, contact Northland Fastening Systems today at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online to get started on your stud welding project.

Faster, Stronger, and Better Looking: The Benefits of CD Studs for Food Grade Welding

The food industry is a fast-paced field that’s required to meet the strictest standards for health, sanitation, storage, and production. Whether you work in the restaurant business, food packaging, a grocery store, or otherwise, you face daily challenges that are helped along by reliable, long-lasting equipment.

The last thing anyone working in the food industry needs is for that equipment to fail, leaving them with one more critical problem to solve. That’s why Northland Fastening Systems provides high-quality food grade welding using non-flanged stainless-steel CD studs to fabricate reliable equipment that looks great for long-term use.

CD studs are the best method of industrial stud welding for equipment utilized in the food industry. Not only is CD stud welding a faster and more cost-effective process, it also creates a product with spic-and-span lines and a clean finish. Northland Fastening Systems specializes in a range of stud welding operations, and our CD stud welding capabilities are perfect for food grade equipment.

Because of the nature of CD stud welding, our welding technicians are able to connect components of food grade equipment without needing the flux, oxidation, and time that typical welding requires. This means we can perform food grade welding for components faster and without heat concentration, which in turn allows us to weld smaller and thinner components without leaving unsightly marks behind.

CD stud welding is effective in welding components as small as 14 gauge to as large as  ⅜“ diameter with a strong connection. With this method, we’re able to create food grade equipment with benefits including:


  1. Smooth connection points and lines that offer an easy clean and eliminate pits, cracks, or divots that could catch and hold onto dirt and food products.
  2. Faster welding time so our customers save time, money, and stress in ordering and receiving equipment.
  3. Strong equipment with long-lasting materials that won’t rust or stain over time.
  4. Components that can be easily repaired with additional CD stud welding if they experience severe stresses leading to a break.


Food grade equipment made with CD stud welding is the most relied-upon equipment in all areas of the industry. Even the most delicate stainless-steel kitchen equipment is made strong and durable against the stresses of daily use with the help of CD stud welding.

For high-quality, cost-effective CD stud welding for your food grade equipment, look no further than Northland Fastening Systems. Contact us at (651) 730-7770 for industry-leading food grade welding and other stud welding capabilities or to get started on a project today with Northland Fastening Systems’ expert welding technicians.