Joining methods inspiration database

Hi everyone

I’m developing an open inspiration database with joining methods for product designers and engineers. This is a part of my project ‘design to connect’.

New materials, requirements and technologies lead to new joining solutions and how to join different parts and materials remains an important issue in design. Besides, the aesthetics of the joint is in many products an important aspect but is not considered in many textbooks and websites. Joining methods are mostly considered from the viewpoint of manufacturing and engineering. However joining methods can be an integrated part of the design and even create an added value to the product.

You can visit the database on:

The aim of the open database is to collect inspirational joining solutions applied in products, furniture, …
As a designer you can browse through the visual interface or search using the keywords to find meaningful inspiration.

At the moment, the database contains already 650 examples. I’m currently looking for more inspirational examples to expand the database. If you have some nice ‘joining’ examples, you can send them to my email or reply on this post.

Off course you also can give comments and remarks about the database!

Thanks in advance.


Welcome aboard Tore. Interesting stuff there; more than a few hours of perusing to be spent.

Thanks for posting.

Nice eye for connections Tore. Cool collection. Anyway to make the thumbnails larger?

Your Nov 15 Ball socket recalls all of the light mounts for underwater cameras I have seen. Here is one with an o-ring to add to the grip.

PEM style self cinching nuts for sheet metal.

Thanks for the comments!

@ nxakt: Nice examples. I’ll add them to the inspiration database.

a good start, agreed that you have a lot to peruse. Like the purely visual, also agreed that the thumbnails on-click should be bigger.

Some suggestions, apologies if they are already there and I missed them:

Molded plastics joining including threaded inserts, studs, heat staking, ultrasonic welding, chemical welding.
T-slot extrusions with various T-nuts i.e. Bosch, 8020.
Welding as an entire category seems missing other than generic laser welding
Self adhesive parts, labels, windows.
There’s an entire world of tensioned fabric design with myriad joining mechanisms, some of which are alluded to.
Quick-connects i.e. slip-ring ball-detents used on high pressure hoses
Chemical fittings such as luer and other bayonet or high-helix turn fasteners.

Keep it going, it’s a worthwhile effort.