Product design and development at Rawlplug is a long-term, ongoing process that affects almost every department and aspect of the company’s operation. While the process from design to production is often complex, our core objectives are simple – to produce high-quality, innovative products that exceed our customers’ expectations, are competitively priced, contribute to environmentally responsible building practices and help to secure the sustainable future of Rawlplug.
Core design principles
Rawlplug endeavours to design and develop innovative products that promote environmental and economic sustainability. The process is led by a team of experienced product-development engineers who are experts in their respective fields.
Throughout the design and development process, we are guided by a set of core principles:
We strive to deliver products that will enhance the user experience for our clients and end users. This means creating products that are high quality, safe and durable.
Our goal is to reduce the costs of our products – both production costs and the final costs paid by our clients. We do this through the continuous rationalisation and improvement of our production processes and through careful selection of materials and suppliers.
Ease of use and ergonomics
We design and produce products that are simple to assemble, install and use. We believe that the easier we make such tasks, the more time we will save our customers and the happier they will be.
We go to great lengths to research and analyse the materials available to us for each new product.
When choosing which materials to use, we aim to:
- Rationalise and reduce our use of finite natural materials
- Limit or, where possible, avoid the use of hazardous substances or materials
- Where possible, source from local suppliers, thereby reducing the greenhouse gases emitted during transportation.
We do this to reduce the environmental impact at the production and end-of-life stages of the product lifecycle.
Improving the process of prototyping
Constant development of the prototyping process improves efficiency in the implementation of new products. We are aware that through investments and the use of innovative technologies we can reduce the consumption of raw materials and accelerate changes, modifications, and above all the creation of new solutions.
Our Research and Development department already uses these technologies in the initial phases of a project. They allow us to create extremely precise and multivariate prototypes, which significantly shortens the process of introducing new products into the Rawlplug offer, and is beneficial to the environment.
Thanks to the modern Rapid Prototyping technology solutions used in the design of new products, Rawlplug proposals which are prepared by the Research and Development department are reviewed, accepted and implemented more quickly and easily:
PolyJet technology enables the most flexible 3D printing, allowing simulation of the behaviour of most plastics. PolyJet uses gel substances during printing, which ensures a very high performance accuracy, maintaining accurate dimensions and ensuring the precise reproduction of surface quality. We appreciate its use in the development of prototypes, as it facilitates our work and helps us to efficiently manage the time spent on it.
Selective laser sintering (SLS) is a method for applying plastic powder and sintering it into 3D shapes through the use of a laser. Its specificity allows us to develop very complex spatial models, which are characterised by strength and resistance to damage. It does not require a large expenditure of time and the high repeatability of construction elements enables us to accurately verify the potential advantages and disadvantages of the new product.
Rawlplug prides itself on the deep-rooted, long-term relationships it shares with its clients. Understanding that their satisfaction is key to the success of our products, and knowing that our clients depend on us to contribute to their success, we encourage them to be involved in the product design and development processes. In practice, we do this by arranging special preview events for clients, during which we conduct product demonstrations, arrange testing sessions and invite participants to share their views.
In addition to this, we conduct market research and engage with leading academic and industry-specific institutions. We also regularly invite students to test our products as part of our efforts to engage with the local community.
Environmentally aware design
For every product, we dedicate a special stage of the design and development process to analysing the environmental implications of the new product. This means evaluating the materials to be used, the production methods available to us, the practicalities and efficiency of transportation, and the ease and environmental impact of disposal once the product reaches the end of its useful life.
These same considerations are evident on the packaging that accompanies these products. In addition to adhering to all applicable regulations related to product packaging, we include information about the environmental impact of our products. We do this to demonstrate to our clients that we are a partner that is both transparent and trustworthy. Also, as a company that places huge importance on sourcing products in the most environmentally responsible way possible, we make every effort to ensure our customers can do the same.
Rawlplug products for green building
Rawlplug is dedicated to helping further the development of the ‘green’ building sector.
Some of our most recent innovations have been in the area of insulation fixings for flat roofs and facades. The products we have developed in this area help to improve insulation in buildings and so enable reductions in energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
Specific examples of this are:
The TFIX range of facade insulation fixings helps to improve the energy efficiency of buildings and, thanks to the over-moulded plastic head on the screw, helps to minimises thermal bridging. This means less energy is required to keep the building at its optimum temperature. What’s more the simple design means fewer components and less reliance on power-hungry drilling.TFIX Product card (1.8 MB)
Zinc coatings on steel anchors
In 2007, REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) legislation came into effect, restricting the use of hexavalent chromium (Cr6) in all EU Member States by putting all hexavalent chromium compound on the SVHC (Substances of Very High Concern) list. Rawlplug took the proactive decision to remove Cr6 from our products. Today, our zinc-coated anchors – whether silver or gold in colour – are coated with the more environmentally friendly trivalent chromium (Cr3).
Rawlplug’s Cartridge-Free System for resins is a soft-foil package that allows easy dispensing of its contents, without the need for individual plastic outer cartridges or other resource-intensive packaging. This lighter, leaner approach to packaging enables more efficient transportation, without compromising the quality or usability of the product.CFS+ Product card (251.2 KB)
This styrene-free polyester resin has been designed for use in non-cracked concrete and a wide range of solid or hollow masonry structures. The resin has an A+ rating in the French regulations on VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) from construction products, which is the best rating currently available. It also carries two European Technical Approvals, ETA-12/0394 and ETA-12/0528, providing performance data for 15 substrates, What’s more, R-KEM II is CE marked, which means that the product is fully compliant with the Construction Products Regulation 305/2011 (CPR). It is available in Rawlplug’s innovative, environmentally friendly cartridge-free packaging system (CFS).R-KEM II Product card (2.1 MB)