Failure mechanisms of dowel-type fastener connections perpendicular to grain

J.C.M. Schoenmakers, A.J.M. Jorissen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)


Dowel-type fastener connections perpendicular to grain may fail in either a ductile or a brittle fashion. Whether the failure mechanism should be classified as ductile, depends on the definition of ductility utilized. Generally, the load–slip response is considered as a means of ductility quantification. In this respect, the elastic potential energy is calculated (being the area underneath the load–slip response) or the ratio of the ultimate slip and the slip at the onset of yielding is used, amongst others. Another approach relates to the European Yield Model which is commonly adopted in design standards to calculate the load-bearing capacity of dowel-type fastener connections. In this respect, ductility may be considered to be associated with plastic deformation of the steel fasteners solely since the deformation ability of connections with dowel-type fasteners at yield is much larger compared to situations with non-yielding fasteners. In the case of connections with rigid dowel-type fasteners, it therefore may be suggested that less ductility is exhibited although it is recognized that timber in compression perpendicular to grain exhibits plastic capabilities as well. Whether these connections behave either brittle or ductile is related to the spacing requirements as well. In this paper, first an overview of potential fracture and failure mechanisms of dowel-type fastener connections is provided. Experimental results of a variety of connections and corresponding failure mechanisms are presented. Based on mechanical models to predict the load-bearing capacity, classification of these connections in terms of ductility is provided, and the governing parameters involved are distinguished. This paper does not intend to provide a quantification procedure of ductility. Yet, an extensive overview of failure mechanisms and an analytical analysis of parameters involved are given providing expressions to calculate the failure mechanism being governing.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3054-3063
Number of pages9
JournalEngineering Structures
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2011


Dive into the research topics of 'Failure mechanisms of dowel-type fastener connections perpendicular to grain'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this