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ITW Red Head Trubolt+ Anchor

Published by Robert Carlisle on Jan 30th 2018

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Red head logo

ITW, the abbreviation for Illinois Tool Works, is a very large multi-billion dollar corporation operating in 50 countries with over 800 businesses. Red Head is one of their companies and the Trubolt is a brand name given to their anchor. The Red Head company invented the very first self-drilling anchor in 1910, and revolutionized the concrete anchor industry by inventing the first one piece anchor. The Trubolt has gone through many revisions but has kept the basic design of operation.

Trubolt Anchors

Today there are two Lines of Red Head Trubolt anchors, which are the original Trubolt and the Trubolt+. The Trubolt is used when installing into concrete and masonry that ICC approval is not required. The Trubolt+ anchor systems have the ICC approval rating and can be used in all applications and substrates. The ICC approvals allow for the Trubolt+ to be used in seismic, cracked and uncracked concrete, and range in diameters from 1/4" to 1". The 1/4" Trubolt+ is the ONLY anchor of this type with the ICC approvals. The anchor bodies of both are proudly manufactured in the United States of America.

Differences between Red Head Trubolt and Trubolt +

Red head trubolt
  • Trubolt - has been the industry standard for many years.
    • It features a one piece stainless steel expansion clip, a fully threaded stud anchor body, and is packaged with the correct number and size of nuts and washers.
    • Trubolt Anchor bodies are manufactured in carbon steel that is zinc plated, carbon steel hot-dipped galvanized, type 304 stainless steel and type 316 stainless steel.
    • The end that is exposed after the Trubolt anchor has been installed is stamped with a length identification letter, i.e. "A", "B", "C", to allow for inspection of embedment depth.
    • The use of a carbide tipped drill bit is required, and it must be manufactured in accordance with ANSI B212.15-1994.
    • Trubolt anchor are tested to ACI 355.2 and ICC-ES AC193 and are listed by local building code: ICC-ES, UL, FM, City of Los Angeles, California State Fire Marshal and Caltrans.
    • Not approved for use in seismic or cracked concrete.
    • Anchor body is fully threaded feature eliminates subsurface obstruction problems.
    • The fully threaded design accommodates various material thicknesses at the same embedment. One anchor length saves time and money.
    • The fully threaded design is standard on all sizes of anchors up to 3/4’ in diameter and 10" length.
    • The hole diameter required to be drilled into the concrete is the same diameter as the anchor being installed.
    • The expansion clip provides 360 degree contact with the concrete and assures full expansion for reliable working loads.
    • Eliminates hole spotting because it can be installed through the work fixture while it is in place.
    • Zinc plated Trubolt is for use in dry indoor applications.
    • The 304 stainless steel Red Head anchor works well at withstanding rusting in architectural and food processing type environments, resisting organic chemicals, dye stuffs and many inorganic chemicals.
    • Type 316 stainless steel contains more nickel and chromium than the Type 304, as well as 2%-3% molybdenum, which gives it superior corrosion resistance. It is especially more effective in chloride environments that tend to cause pitting.
Red head trubolt
  • Trubolt+ - is the industry’s most versatile anchor, combining the strength and performance values that are required to meet both seismic and non-seismic applications.
    • The Trubolt+ comes packaged with a hardened washer, tighter interior dimensions and thickness to minimize or completely eliminate washer deflection from over-torqueing.
    • The fully threaded Red Head anchor body covers a wide range of applications, including varying embedment depths, fixtures or plate thicknesses all with the same size anchor.
    • Anchor body is made from USA steel and manufactured in America providing maximum steel strength for the most demanding applications.
    • Patented clip provides the maximum holding value, the expansion clip on the Zinc plated anchors are made from carbon steel and are zinc plated, which is unlike the Trubolt that utilizes a stainless steel clip.
    • Only available in zinc plated as of January 1, 2018. The hot-dipped galvanized, 304 stainless steel and 316 stainless steel will be introduced over the next year.
    • Can be installed with certainty because the superior tension and shear performance values ensure secure attachment in un-cracked, cracked concrete and seismic conditions.
    • Productivity is boosted because the superior performing smaller anchors may be able to be substituted, saving drilling time, torqueing effort and less cost of the Trubolt + anchor itself through using smaller anchors.
    • The ITW Red Head anchor is the first and only anchor with ICC cracked/seismic approval, thereby replacing the need for a 3/8" anchor when a 1/4" diameter is suitable to do the job.
    • The Trubolt+ line has the broadest range of anchor sizes that are ICC approved, and allows the right anchor size to be used for a specific application.
    • The job may be simplified by stocking one anchor type that covers the widest range of applications and reduces the possibility of selecting the wrong anchor.
    • Approved for use in concrete, concrete-filled metal deck and grout-filled block, allowing for only one anchor for use with a various base materials.
    • The Red Head Trubolt + replaces the need for a separate wedge anchor for cracked, uncracked and seismic applications. Can be substituted for all of the following: Hilti KBV, KB3, KBTZ, KBVTZ, DeWalt (Powers Fasteners) Power Stud, SD1, SD2, Simpson Wedge-All and Strong Bolt 2.
    • The ITW Red Head Trubolt + has the following approvals:
      • Tested in accordance with ACI 355.2 and ICC-ES AC193 for use in structural concrete under design provisions ACI 318( Strength Design method using Appendix D / Chapter 17).
      • Code compliant with the 2015 IBC, 2015 IRC.
      • Evaluated and qualified by an accredited independent testing laboratory for recognition in cracked and uncracked concrete, including seismic and wind loading (Category 1 anchors)
      • International Code Council, ICC Evaluation Services, ESR-3772 for Concrete & ESR-4058 for Masonry
      • FM approval # 0003053725
      • UL certified # 20140925-EX971
      • City of Los Angeles # 26086
      • Florida Building Code

Installation Differences

The Trubolt + is approved for use applications where the standard Trubolt should not be used. The ITW Red Head has been independently tested for use in applications in cracked concrete and where seismic activity may be present. There are several sizes of the Trubolt + that are not approved for use in these types of applications, which are 1/4" x 1-3/4", 3/8" x 2-1/4", 3/8" x 2-3/4", 1/2" x 2-3/4", 5/8" x 3-1/2" and the 3/4" x 4-3/4". These anchors are not approved because they do not meet the minimum nominal embedment required for strength design. The minimum nominal embedment is the embedment depth after the anchor has been driven into the concrete, the nut turned and the anchor set. As the nut is turned, the anchor body is pulled up, decreasing the depth the anchor is embedded. The shorter sizes of the anchors are not long enough to meet the needs of the material being fastened plus the nominal embedment depth. The minimum nominal embedment depth is deeper than the old minimum embedment depth.

Difference between Manufacturers

The link below shows graphic detail of the features and holding strength of the ITW Red Head Trubolt+ over other manufacturers’ anchors that are approved for use in cracked and seismic applications. The Red Head anchor provides more flexibility when it comes to minimum edge distance. The Trubolt + is 1-3/4" and the competition ranges from 2-1/4" to 6". In all cases of pullout strength, the Red Head outperforms the competition because in each case the concrete failed before the anchor did. With the exception of one, all others pulled out of the concrete before the concrete failed. Anchor spacing is another category where the Trubolt+ allows for closer spacing than other major brands. Trubolt + comes in at 2" and the rest of the competition ranges from 2-1/2" to 3-3/4"

ITW Red Head brochure

Applications for Red Head Anchor

The Trubolt+ is forged for strength and engineered for simplicity, making it the industry’s most versatile and affordable line of anchors. From seismic to non-seismic requirements, and from heavy-duty to light duty.

  • Railings for fencing
  • Curtain wall and cladding
  • Conveyor systems
  • Warehouse racking
  • Overhead ductwork and pipes
  • Structural steel columns and beams
  • Electrical conduit, cable trays and panels
  • Anchoring of equipment and machinery
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Signs
  • Seismic bracing and hold downs

ITW Red Head Trubolt+ Installation steps and warnings

  1. Select a drill bit that has a carbide tip with a diameter equal to the diameter of the Trubolt+ being installed. The hole in the concrete must be a minimum of 1/4" deeper than the anchor embedment.
  2. Remove any excess dust/debris using pressurized air or vacuum to clean hole out.
  3. Assemble the nut and washer provided on to the anchor body, leaving the nut one half of a turn from the end to help protect the threads. Using a hammer, drive the anchor through the fixture to the specified embedment. Fasten nut and washer flush to the surface of the fixture.
  4. Expand the Trubolt+ anchor by tightening the nut to the specified torque value.
Anchor Diameter & Drill Bit SizeInstallation Torque Ft. Lbs.Minimum Nominal Anchor EmbedmentMinimum Hole Diameter in Fixture
3/8" 25 2" 1/2"
1/2" 45 2-1/2" 5/8"
5/8" 90 3-3/8" 3/4"
3/4" 100 4-1/2" 7/8"
    • Use in concrete ONLY.
    • Always wear safety glasses and other necessary apparel for protection when installing or working with anchors.
    • Use of core drills is not recommended to drill the holes for use with the Trubolt+ anchor.
    • Never use an impact wrench to set or tighten the anchor.
    • Not recommended for use in concrete that has not had sufficient time to cure.
    • The carbide tipped bit must meet ANSI Standard B212.15 to insure proper hole tolerance with the Trubolt+ anchor.
    • Anchor installation locations, i.e. spacing and edge distance, are the responsibility of the engineer of record

Trubolt+ and Trubolt Nomenclature

The Trubolt nomenclature helps designate the type of material the Trubolt anchor is manufactured from as well as the diameter and length of the anchor. The zinc plated Trubolt part number starts with a WS-, and the galvanized start with a WS- with a G at the end of the numbers. The 304 stainless steel Trubolt starts with a WW- and the 316 stainless steel starts with a SWW-. The first two numbers following the dash refer to the diameter, i.e. 14 for 1/4", 38 for 3/8", and so on. The third number in the sequence is the first number of the length, i.e. 1 for 1", 2 for 2" and 3 for 3". The last number is in eighths and completes the length of the anchor, which means that a 6 is equal to 6/8 or 3/4, and a 4 refers to 4/8 or 1/2". Examples are WS-3822 is a zinc plated Trubolt, 3/8" x 2—1/4", WW-1226 is a 304 stainless steel Trubolt, 1/2" x 2-3/4".

The Red Head Trubolt+ has a similar nomenclature as the Trubolt with the exception of the letters at the beginning of the part #. The four letters at the beginning of the zinc plated Trubolt+ part # are TB4C-, standing for TruBolt for Cracked Concrete. The numbers following the dash refer to the diameter and length of the anchor. The first two numbers are the diameter, i.e. 58 refers to 5/8", and 34 refers to 3/4". The third number is the length, i.e., 5 for 5" and 7 for 7". The fourth number is the rest of the length based on eighths. The number 4 refers to 4/8 or 1/2" and a 2 refers to 2/8 or 1/4".

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