Draw latches are members of the group of mechanical fasteners known as latches, which strive to hold two separate surfaces or objects together. Draw latches, which are also sometimes called toggle latches or tension latches, are latches that are designed to forcibly pull and secure surfaces together. Once secured, the closure of a draw latch should be immobile.
Quick links to Draw Latches Information
Applications of Draw Latches
A very versatile type of latch, draw latches are found all over the home and office, where they serve products and items including jewelry boxes, trunks and chests, tool boxes and suitcases and briefcases. Made up of two plates and a strap, many other types of latches fall under the draw latch umbrella. Among others, latches such as these include gate latches and door latches.
Draw Latch Design and Function
Draw latches can be manufactured using a variety of different materials, manufacturing processes, and configurations. The most common materials with which draw latches are made include stainless steel, rubber, and plastics. For heavy duty applications and those applications that will likely encounter corrosion-causing elements in outdoor or marine settings, stainless steel latches are the best choice. This is because stainless steel is durable and highly resistant to corrosion. In addition, the extra security that they provide can be enhanced by the application of finishings or coatings designed to increase their positive physical characteristics. For applications that require a little or a great amount of flexibility when joining their two surfaces together, rubber or plastic latches are a better choice. Both rubber and plastic allow draw latches to stretch and bend to the varying degrees required for them to fit around tight corners and onto difficult hinges. They also provide shock absorption and work well with mobile parts. Depending on the materials involved, the manufacturing processes used to create draw latches are stamping (in the case of metals), molding (in the case of rubber or plastics), or both. After they are initially stamped or molded, the draw latch parts are assembled into finished pieces that can be quickly and simply installed.
Though they are found in many different designs and configurations, all draw latches consist of the basic components mentioned above: two plates and one strap. To work, each plate is attached to an adjacent surface or panel. Then, the strap is permanently attached to just one of these plates. The strap then serves as the element that bridges the two surfaces and the plates upon them. When inserted into a groove or a clip in the plate across from it, the strap fits snugly and securely into the adjacent panel. To open that which the draw latch is holding closed, one need only unhook or strap from the groove or clip so that it may return to its original panel. It is important to note that tension generated by a strap is the factor that truly holds two surfaces together and keeps them from opening. Depending on the material with which the strap is constructed, this tension is created differently. This tension is created in how the strap is moved to connect to the adjacent plate. If the strap is, for example, made of steel, then it will flip into place. If, on the other hand, the strap is made of rubber or plastic, it is stretched until secure.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing Draw Latches
Manufacturers produce draw latches for customers based on the requirements of their application. For example, for industrial applications and those applications requiring the fastening of enclosures, trailer windows, and/or trailer panels, manufacturers are more likely to make larger scale draw latches. Likewise, for the fastening of items like storage units, small compartments, jewelry boxes, and other products that do not require as much strength, manufacturers typically choose to create smaller scale draw latches. Draw latches, regardless of their size or material configuration, are also typically available to be coated or finished with surface materials that enhance their physical appearance or enhance their physical properties.
If you are unsure whether your application requires an enhanced draw latch, speak with a manufacturer. He or she will be happy to look at your specifications and guide you to the right latch. Also turn to manufacturers with questions about latch installation and maintenance. Whether you need draw latches to fasten a pasture gate, a trunk, a tool box, a briefcase, or an industrial complex, the right option for you is out there. Let one of the many talented and hardworking latch companies listed on this page help you. Contact one or more of them today for a quote.