Selecting Ferrules to Pair with Your Stud Welding Products

Three main kinds of stud welding operations are utilized in a range of industries. Capacitor discharge (CD) welding is useful for rapid, clean operations with thinner diameter studs and pins. Common applications of CD stud welding include insulation installment, electrical enclosures, and food service equipment. Another operation, drawn arc stud welding, can be used for larger diameter fasteners. Drawn arc studs are used in heavy-duty construction projects like bridges, roadways, and multistory buildings. Short cycle welding is the third type of stud welding operation used across industries. Essentially a drawn arc process, short cycle welding can be automated more easily, performed faster, and done on uneven or coated surfaces. No matter what kind of welding operations you use, you can find all the stud welding products you need at Northland Fastening Systems (NFS). We supply a comprehensive range of welding tools for rent or purchase, drawn arc and CD welding studs, welding accessories, repairs for most models, and the expert advice of our own technicians.

Ceramic Ferrule

In most cases, drawn arc stud welding will utilize a ceramic ferrule placed at the point of the weld. Ferrules help control the weld by containing molten metal and providing some temperature regulations. However, because drawn arc welding can be done on many kinds of surfaces—including at various angles, for different profiles, and with a broad range of dimensions—there is an equally diverse selection of ferrules you can choose from. Picking the right ferrule depends on the conditions of your weld.

 Stud Welding Products

There are 10 standard ceramic ferrule stud welding products you can choose from, including:

  1.  Flat and flat heavy-duty: These ferrules are used with down-hand operations and can be paired with headed studs, deformed bars, fully threaded studs, and in vertical applications with studs under ⅜” diameter.
  2. Collar: These are used with collar studs, studs with short applications, or low-profile studs.
  3. Reduced base: Studs with reduced bases, such as ones with unthreaded sections at the tip, work best with reduced base ferrules.
  4. Pitch: These are used with partially threaded studs to accommodate the pitch in diameter from the wider threaded portion to the slimmer unthreaded portion.
  5. Thru-deck: Thru-deck welding is a common construction operation, and it requires thru-deck ferrules. These are most useful in composite construction with steel and concrete.
  6. Thru-deck wired: Similar to thru-deck ferrules, these are used with ¾” stud diameters that can be installed in rapid operations.
  7. Angle: When studs need to be installed at an angle, these ferrules can be utilized with inside or outside angle positioning.
  8. Vertical: Studs can be installed on vertical surfaces, but the operation needs to use a vertical ferrule to contain the molten metal and prevent drips.
  9. Flat heavy-duty special: Special ferrules have finer teeth at their base, which helps with ½” vertical applications and the installation of deformed bar anchors.

To learn more about ferrules and other stud welding products, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.

Comparing Different Fixing and Fastening Systems with Stud Welding

From tools as simple as a nail and hammer to as complex as an industrial-grade adhesive, many parts attach systems together. The right attachment method depends on the materials used, function of the assembly, operational stress, and aesthetic finish. When it comes to attaching metals together or to other materials, several techniques are available to manufacturers. One common application of metal fastening systems is welding. Different kinds of welding have been around for thousands of years, with rudimentary forge welding dating back to the Iron Age around 1200 BCE. Today, there are four main types of welding with multiple subtypes in those categories. Stud welding is one type of welding operation that was developed in the early 1900s for the shipbuilding industry. If you are working with stud welding, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) has a comprehensive supply of studs and welding accessories as well as tools for rent or purchase, and our repair services to help you get the job done.

Fastening Systems

Unlike the commonly used tungsten inert gas (TIG), metal inert gas (MIG), and stick welding, which are used to connect metals along a linear path, stud welding operations are unique formats that connect metals at a point. As far as fastening systems go for attaching metals, we consider stud welding to be the superior operation for a variety of reasons.

For a full picture of why we like stud welding better than other operations that could be used in its place, we’ll take a look at those options.

Drilling and tapping:

This combo operation creates an insert for a fastener that can then be drilled into the surface material and secured with a bolt. While effective in many cases, drilling and tapping is a slow process. It also requires a lengthier stud, and can only be used in cases when the parent material is thick and doesn’t have a backside.


To install a metal backed insert, the parent material needs to be punched and deburred, which can weaken it. Inserts can also work loose over time, and they tend to crack paint and stain surfaces. Additionally, the backside of the parent material can be bent outward or otherwise warped.

Back welding:

Back welding installs fasters by welding on the reverse side of the parent material while the stud is held in place. This significantly alters the backside of a surface unless the excess weld is ground down. This entire process is slow and weakens the parent material.

Through bolting:

Through bolting is effective, but requires access to the backside of the parent material for two-handed installation. Bolt heads can also stain surfaces, weaken the parent material, and create an unsealed leak point.

Welding as a fastening Systems

Consequently, stud welding is the best system because it’s a strong connector, it doesn’t weaken the parent material, it can be done in a single step, it leaves a mark-free reverse side, and it’s a fully sealed connection point.

For more information about stud weld fastening systems contact NFS at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.


Human vs. Robot: How to Choose Your Stud Welding Equipment

In most industries today, manufacturers have a range of technician-operated and automated tools and equipment they can utilize for production. In most cases, a facility will have a combination of hand-operated and CNC or robotic fabrication tools. Even fully-automated production lines, however, require human interaction at some point in the process. Stud welding is a versatile manufacturing operation that has both automated and handheld operations. Because there are benefits to both kinds of operations, it’s important to understand the best applications for each before purchasing equipment, establishing a fabrication setting, training employees, or investing in additional welding materials. Whether you’re working with technician-operated handheld tools or fully automated production systems, Northland Fastening Systems has the supplies you need. We provide a complete selection of stud welding equipment, including tools for rent or purchase, welding studs, accessories, and more. Our own welding technicians also offer expert advice for fabricators working on all kinds of projects, and we service and repair most welding tool models.

Stud Welding

Stud welding as an operation in general is versatile and offers simple, yet powerful, solutions to fastening and composite building. When it comes to choosing automated or manual stud welding equipment, consider the application, materials, welding process, location, and volume of your targeted production.

Handheld (manual) models:

Most welders are trained to use handheld welding guns for drawn arc and capacitor discharge (CD) operations. The main benefits of a handheld model are the flexibility and portability of the tool. Handheld welders can be easily transported from place to place for onsite welding, and it’s relatively easy to train new operators on manual tools. Manual welding tools are also usually cheaper than full production systems, and they can often be calibrated quickly to accommodate studs in various dimensions, different welding materials, and the type of stud.

Robotic (automated) welding:

If you have the facilities for production welding systems and require rapid, large-scale welding with significant repetition, you may want to consider different automated welding setups. Production welding technologies are highly advanced for the manufacturing process. They are built to be fully programmable and handle automatic feeds of studs and welding surfaces quickly. Using an automated welding system also reduces the risk of operator injury and fatigue with heavy duty, rapid load jobs. Most automated welders can perform 40 to 60 stud welds a minute or more with integration into a production line.

Stud Welding Equipment

Both automated and manual stud welding equipment offer precise, strong connection points for fasteners and composite construction. Either option also gives you variety in the materials, dimensions, and additional specifications. For more information about both types of welders, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. Request a quote online to get started with us today.

Stud Welding Products Affected by Coronavirus Pandemic and It’s Impact on Manufacturing

Since the start of the COVID-19 outbreaks in early 2020, there have been many different levels of impact on various industries. Some of these impacts were predicted, while others were wholly unexpected. Many of the long-term effects were significantly underestimated as we still see substantial challenges to supply chains and distribution. However, even in the face of a global pandemic, manufacturers and engineers still continue the development of new technology, smarter designs, and more sustainable systems. Throughout 2020, 2021, and now, as we continue through 2022, the stud welding industry faces changes brought on by the pandemic. Despite the difficulties, many still foresee similar market growth to that first predicted in early 2020. For anyone working with stud welding operations on a large or small scale, Northland Fastening Systems has the supplies and tools needed to get the job done. We provide a wide selection of stud welding products, including tools for rent or purchase, welding studs, accessories, and the support of our own technicians.

Predicted Market Growth

The predicted market growth for stud welding products and the welding industry in general was marred by a sharp decrease of about 3.5% of the global GDP in 2020. That decline, though significant, was not the 5.2% shrinkage predicted by the World Bank Group, and currently, the World Bank predicts a global economic expansion of about 4% in 2022.


After the initial impacts of the coronavirus pandemic on the global economy, we seem to be entering the recovery period. By 2028, the market size will likely be far greater than its pre-pandemic equivalent.

Greatest Damage to Manufacturing

The greatest damage the pandemic did to the manufacturing world was the unanticipated severing of thousands of supply chains for multiple types of raw materials, parts, and other products. Illness among workers led to limited production time, forced plant delays, and decreased expertise, while government-mandated shutdowns over long periods of time severely lowered manufacturing, inventory, and distribution capabilities.

Government Loans

At the same time that government loans supported many companies, that assistance was not enough for some. Throughout 2020, mass layoffs and company closures led to almost 50 million people being unable to work. In 2021, that number dropped to around 8 million. As of now, the number of unemployed people in the U.S. is about 3.6%, which is the lowest since February of 2020.

Stud Welding Products

For the stud welding industry in particular, the most severe impacts of the pandemic are the supply chain shortages and delays we are still experiencing to some degree. At NFS, we’ve worked hard to continue to be a reliable resource for all our customers. We’re happy to say we’ve been able to keep supporting clients in the construction and industrial markets throughout the pandemic, and we plan to continue maintaining a comprehensive supply of stud welding products.

To learn more about our supplies and services, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770. Request a quote online to get started with us today.

How New Technology and Better Stud Welding Products Make Industry More Sustainable

Since the beginning of the 20th century, stud welding began to be used more prevalently throughout industries beyond its original applications in shipbuilding. The several wars that the United States and much of the rest of the world faced also played a large role in the expanded use of strong, fast connecting systems like stud welding in manufacturing. Today, stud welding is used in most industries, from automotive to food grade equipment. However, many changes in the way people build are causing stud welding to develop once more to keep up with sustainability and energy-efficient designs. Over the last 10 years, engineers and fabricators have worked to improve the functioning lifespan, weight, and other properties of welded studs. If you are a manufacturer working with drawn arc, capacitor discharge (CD), or short cycle stud welding operations, you can find the high-quality supplies you need at Northland Fastening Systems (NFS). We provide a complete range of stud welding products, including tools for rent or purchase, studs, welding accessories, and our own welding technicians expert advice.

Stud Welding Products

Modern stud welding products already offer some of the most efficient systems for installing quick, powerful connection points and fastening technology. However, fabricators and manufacturing companies are still working to increase the range of those capabilities.

Setting Standards

Two major industries are setting sustainability and cost-saving guidelines for the rest of those who use stud welding on a large or heavy-duty scale. Power plants and shipbuilders have both researched and found ways to improve their use of studs with less waste and for longer use.

Power plants:

Most power plants use studs installed in operating furnaces to act as heat transfers into boiler tubes. These studs are typically made of 430 stainless steel with a refractory coating, and they have to be fully replaced about once a year. The replacement of these studs requires a large factory shutdown, which is both expensive and time-consuming. Some newer kinds of studs made from an iron and aluminum alloy have shown to last three to four times longer than 430 stainless steel studs. This new stud technology runs colder than older studs, transfers heat better, and forms anticorrosive aluminum oxide when exposed to furnace temperatures of 1,600-1,800ºF.


Shipbuilders, especially those manufacturing naval vessels, have also found a way to eliminate cost and improve sustainable designs. A study released in 2012 showed that newer studs welding equipment with lower energy consumption during idle (between welds) could reduce shipbuilding costs on large vessels by $0.128 to $0.154 per stud. For shipyards that build destroyers and other navy warships, that could mean a reduction in cost of $589,000 to $708,000 in energy alone.

Newer technology across industries using stud welding products will only continue to prove how much more efficient and sustainable they can be. To learn more about the newest stud welding machines and the other products we offer, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.

Highlighting Our Video Resources for Stud Welding Equipment

Northland Fastening Systems provides a complete supply of stud welding equipment to the construction and industrial markets, including tools for rent or purchase, studs in a wide range of dimensions, custom stud options, welding accessories, maintenance and repairs, and the expert advice of our own welding technicians.

Stud Welding Equipment

To provide some technical support and highlight tools and operations, we produce a variety of stud welding equipment media content. This includes the following videos that can be found on the NFS YouTube channel:

Stud gun check:

This video demonstrates checking a standard type of welding gun to determine if cleaning or other services are required. If you do require tool maintenance, take advantage of our services for most stud welding gun models.

Studs welded on top of each other:

This video showcases shooting 3/4” x 6 and 3/16” studs onto a weld surface and then welding an additional stud directly on top of the first, both using drawn arc welding systems.

CD stud welding quality:

This video shows the inspection of a CD welding unit, cable set, and weld results for quality control. Visual and mechanical diagnostics are done to show the strength of the weld.

CDi 502 demo:

This video demonstrates using a CDi welding unit, including covering the strength, pressure, sizing, time, release, and cost.

KARE11 commercial:

In 2019, NFS was featured in a North American Banking Company commercial. The commercial highlights NFS as a family-owned, long-standing business offering services and supplies to a global industry.

Automation stud welding:

This video demonstrates the versatility of the automation tool QUICK BOY and the rapid operations it allows.

NFS Stud Welding Automation:

This stylized video shows the power and speed our automated systems can provide on a production line.

HBS Visar 650 with 150’ of cable:

This video shows that the HBS VISAR 650 can be used effectively with cable lengths upwards of 150 feet on a fabrication site.

HBS VISAR 650 highlight:

This video further demonstrates the specifications, features, and operation of the VISAR 650 drawn arc welding unit.

Headed anchor stud welding:

This video shows an example of how headed bar anchors can be attached quickly with strong results.

Automated CD stud welding:

  • This video demonstrates the speed and precision of an automated CD machine with a VBZ-3 stud feeder.

Stud welding nameplate studs:

This video shows an example of a break-off nameplate stud and how those specialty studs are attached easily and quickly with CD welders.

Weld thrudeck stud welding:

This video shows an operator performing thru-decking fastening of studs with a drawn arc tool.

NFS CD stud welding:

This video demonstrates CD stud welding with a chuck and collet system using an HBS CDi 1502 unit.

For more information about the content shown in these videos, our team, or about our stud welding equipment, contact Northland Fastening Systems at (651) 730-7770, or request a quote online to get started with us today.

International Standards for Stud Welding Supplies and Operations

Industrial standards for manufacturing operations, equipment, facilities, worker safety, materials used, and all other aspects of large-scale production work have developed over time since the turn of the 19th century. Today, industrial standards are highly regulated with hundreds of different certifications, licenses, and requirements that manufacturers and processors can meet to exhibit the quality of their products and the reliability of their practices. In the stud welding industry, many resources help companies receive certifications and follow the best standards available internationally. As a comprehensive supplier of stud welding supplies, Northland Fastening Systems (NFS) follows international standards, including the ISO 9001:2015 certification for quality management systems.

ISO 9001:2015

ISO 9001:2015 standards require an industrial facility to demonstrate its ability to consistently offer services and products that meet its customers’ needs and improve customer satisfaction while adhering to applicable regulations and requirements. This is a generic ISO standard, but there are thousands of other ISO certifications, including ones that apply to the welding industry and stud welding supplies.

For stud welding, including drawn arc, capacitor discharge (CD), and short cycle operations, one international standard that gets into specifics is ISO 13918:2017.

ISO 13918:2017

This ISO standard applies to the use of studs and ceramic ferrules in drawn arc welding. It can be used to cover standards for other metalworking industries, but it’s most useful for arc stud welding processes. ISO 13918 covers requirements for using stud types and ferrules, including dimensions, mechanical properties, and materials used.

Details apply to fully-threaded, partially-threaded, and virtually-threaded studs as well as threaded studs with flanges, studs with internal threads, and threaded studs with reduced shafts. Regulations also cover shear connectors and insulation pins.

Ceramic Ferrules

In addition, these standards cover the use of ceramic ferrules that contain molten metal at the connection point. Because ferrules need to be removed easily after the weld is performed, they need to follow strict rules for size, materials, and fabrication process.

ISO standards like 9001 and 13918 provide important guidelines for everyone in the stud welding industry. By following internationally accepted industry standards, companies are able to provide better services and products to their customers; operators can perform safer, long-lasting welds; and parts manufacturers can fabricate tools, studs, and welding accessories in universal formats.

To learn more about our services and full selection of stud welding supplies for drawn arc, CD, and short cycle operations, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770. You can also request a quote online to get started with us today.

Renting vs. Owning Stud Welding Equipment

If you’re working with stud welding operations on your job site or production floor, you can find all the tools, studs, accessories, and expertise you need at Northland Fastening Systems (NFS). Not only do we offer a complete supply of studs for drawn arc, short cycle, and capacitor discharge (CD) welding, and stud welding accessories, but we also work with customers who need custom stud dimensions. Our team of skilled technicians can work with you to determine your exact needs, including the purchase or rental of stud welding equipment and tools.

NFS supplies stud welding tools that fit a variety of operator needs. We have available, for rent or purchase, portable, lightweight welders that are ideal for moving to different locations on a job site; heavy-duty handheld welding guns for installing shear connectors in a composite build; fully automated systems that can be integrated easily into existing facilities; and everything else in between.

Stud Welding Equipment

There are benefits to both renting and owning stud welding equipment, depending on your priorities and situation. If you’re looking to get started in stud welding but aren’t sure whether renting or owning equipment is a better fit, consider the following benefits of each.

Renting Benefits

  • By renting stud welding equipment, you avoid the majority of maintenance and repair expenses.
  • You can also avoid downtime if unexpected and expensive repairs are needed.
  • Rented tools are easier access and cheaper options for short-term projects or one-time jobs.
  • You can pick and choose from a variety of newest and specialty models.
  • You don’t have to commit to one tool that might be perfect for one job and slightly imperfect for another.
  • Extra studs, accessories, ferrules, and other components are supplied with rental tools in case one breaks.
  • You can become a more versatile welder if you have the opportunity to work with multiple brands, welder types, and processes by renting tools.

Owning Benefits

  • By owning a stud welding equipment, you can perform your own maintenance, so you’ll always know what to expect.
  • Tools are conveniently at hand.
  • For long-term jobs or if you are a stud welder by trade, owning your own tools is by far the cheaper option than renting.
  • You get to know your tool very well and can improve your precision with practice.
  • You learn how to repair your own tool.
  • Owning your own tools improves your professional image.
  • The better you learn your tool, the faster you can work, which saves you money, time, and physical fatigue.

When you get your tools from NFS, you’ll get the continued support, repair service, and advice of our technicians no matter whether you rented or purchased equipment. To learn more about our supply of stud welding equipment, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770. Request a quote online to get started with us today.

Automated Production Stud Welding Machine Rundown

When used correctly, stud welding is a highly efficient, powerful, and flexible operation in any application. From handheld, portable welders for operating on multiple job sites to fully automated production welders integrated into a facility, stud welding creates long-lasting connection points in many conditions, and it’s a critical component in most steel and concrete composite constructions. At Northland Fastening Systems (NFS), we support all kinds of drawn arc, short cycle, and capacitor discharge stud welding operations with a complete range of supplies. Not only do we provide welding studs in a broad range of dimensions with custom sizing options available, we also have tools for rent or purchase, and a variety of welding accessories. In addition to a quality selection of portable and handheld welding tools, we also provide effective solutions for automated production stud welding machines.

Production Welders

Production welders are computer numerical control (CNC) automation systems that have a range of structures. Some welders have single-head, hand-loaded welders, while others are fully automated, multi-headed welding systems. Any automated stud welding machine can be integrated into a facility to streamline the production line, increase output, and improve precision.

Stud Welding Machine

If you’re ready to integrate new automated welding systems into your production floor, you can choose from several options, for example:

  • PAH-1: This handheld stud welding gun is automatically fed studs for a rapid-fire range. The PAH-1 is best suited for contact, gap, or short cycle welding on thin sheets at least 0.5 mm in thickness. This lightweight gun is ergonomic and adjustable with convertible stud lengths. For fast, electronically-controlled welding on thin materials, this is an ideal automation choice.
  • PC-S: The PC-S (Production Center Standard) performs all types of stud welding with manual or automatic stud feeding. Its handling systems are customized to your needs, and it has a short setup time. The PC-S is controlled with a microprocessor for extreme precision, and its protected work plate holds up to wear and tear. For versatility and accuracy, the PC-S is a great investment.
  • CPW 0604: This CNC production welder uses tip ignition, drawn arc, and short cycle welding systems and shielding gas modules for a broad range of fully automated applications. It saves costs and time, and it’s one of our most user-friendly tools. The setup for CPW 0604 welding is quick and easy, and the work system’s precision has long-term reliability. For exact welding applications with shielding gas in a controlled environment, the CPW 0604 CNC tool is a quality selection.
  • MPW 1010/2010: For full bench automation and CNC multi axis production, the MPW 1010/2010 is a high-powered, heavy-duty tool. In addition to most variants of stud welding, it also performs simple CNC milling. This bench tool is one of our most high-powered, fully automated systems with programmable sequences and control of all welding details.

To learn more about our other options for an automated stud welding machine, contact NFS at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.

Accessories for the Stud Welding Process

Stud welding is a complex process in many ways, but simple in others. The operation of a stud weld itself is a strong but straightforward connection point that fuses the metal of the stud into the metal of the base material. However, the actual process takes a deep understanding of arc generation, materials, dimensions, and the tools involved. In order to perform an accurate weld, you need the background knowledge and the right tools for the job. At Northland Fastening Systems, we provide the tools, studs, and accessories necessary for drawn arc, capacitor discharge (CD), and short cycle processes. When it comes to the accessories important to any stud welding process, our team of expert technicians can help you find exactly what you need.

Since 1987, we’ve supported and worked to continually improve the stud welding industry. One aspect of stud welding that is often overlooked is the use of accessories in the CD and drawn arc process. These accessories are completely necessary for an effective end result, but they can be taken for granted sometimes.

For the drawn arc and CD stud welding process, NFS accessories include the following.

Drawn Arc Accessories:

CD Accessories:

NFS supplies a broad range of stud accessories that pair perfectly with industry-standard studs and welding tools. To learn more about the supplies that we provide for the drawn arc, CD, and short cycle stud welding process, contact Northland Fastening Systems today at (651) 730-7770 or request a quote online.