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FDB enclosure hardware hinges

Hinges for enclosures and cabinets are core to our Online offer where we provide urgent ex-stock availability on specialist industrial hinges of all types including lift-off, polyamide, zinc die, steel, stainless steel, parallelogram, continuous (piano) spring and friction types.

FDB- enclosure hardware

The team here at FDB Panel Fittings have noticed that in the past thirty years or so electronic devices have almost completely replaced electrical controls and yet the type and style of housing have remained remarkably constant through that time. From small boxes, desktop cases, and wall-mounted enclosures to complete suites of cabinets primarily in steel and stainless steel they have all required locks, hinges, fasteners, gaskets. For research, development, pharmaceutical production, instrumentation and controls for motors, machines and systems, all our weighing, sorting, processing, controls for other machines and equipment is done with electronics housed in purpose-designed enclosures of some kind.

Looking at housings for these electronic assemblies the trend has been that security needs have grown to accommodate the more sophisticated controls and their associated risk of data theft, which has become a factor with digital equipment that simply was not there in the past. In addition, the internal equipment itself is more vulnerable to physical damage from unauthorised access, so that today there is a greater need than ever for small quarter turns, special coded locks or keys, concealed hinges, gasket profiles in small sections for boxes and small enclosures, or in large sections for bigger cabinets.

Standard hardware for boxes, cases, desktop equipment, wall mount enclosures, free-standing and desk mounted control panels has been developed over time to meet these needs, and a whole marketplace of quite specialist but yet standard and ex-stock hardware has grown up.  This is a marketplace that adjusts quickly to panel manufacturer/installer needs to facilitate the production of equipment such as graphic instrumentation panels, electronic pump controls, specialist panels for industrial controls and motor control centres. Often this adaptation is accomplished with simple modifications to established designs to create a custom variant that can readily be achieved through your supplier/manufacturer.

It is especially in the area of large 19in data racks and cabinets where Mechatronic locking swinghandles are growing in popularity and where sophisticated simple components like ¼ turn pop up fasteners are called for e.g., on removable front panels to make installation and removal so much quicker than previously.

Electronic systems are found everywhere and each installation calls for a protective housing with suitable hardware – from stainless steel oil rig panels to railway rolling stock and locomotive or line-side control boxes. There are rugged specialist standard products available ex-stock designed for the purpose. Likewise, specialist vehicles for recycling, or emergency services such as police, fire, ambulances, chemical plants, sewage processing systems, controls for stores, warehouses and distribution centres for things like chillers and H&V installations, gas heating controls.

Simple locking systems include IP65 three-digit combination quarter-turn lock or IP65 cylinder quarter-turn locks with finger pull or dust cover. Common in computer-related applications is the key-operated or push-button snap lock with cylinder style key for small housings while quarter-turn wing handles in black or chrome with or without cylinder lock are a common sight on small enclosures and housings.

Push-fit pin hinges like the concealed 120-degree SNAP-LINE are suitable for side panels of 19in racks and light-duty cabinets. Their compact clip-in design allows for an easy and quick installation and removal of the door. Larger weld-on/bolt-on concealed 120-degree hinges are offered for surface mounted doors. For larger doors and more arduous environments, there are AISI 316 Stainless steel external hinges with reverse stud fixing which offer 180 degree opening and are suitable for nested doors.

IP65 swinghandles in zinc die (black or chrome) or reinforced polyamide – suit 5 or 7 pin profile cylinders, combination lock or inserts. We are looking forward to the new E-LINE vandal-resistant electronic swinghandle range for the security of larger electronic cabinets in outdoor/public environments.

For easy lifting and manual transport, there are simple low-cost black polyamide bridge handles with through fixing – handles in moulded reinforced plastic or in steel to enable stainless steel (AISI 303) carry/bridge style handles with reverse fixings. IP65 recessed side mounting handles with positive grip D-SNAP technology allow easy lifting of electronic equipment.

An extensive range of gaskets is available on the market, along with customized sections based on a customer’s unique application needs. Depending on a customer’s requirements, manufacturers can provide gaskets made of PVC, EPDM, Neoprene, NBR, or a combination of foam rubber and PVC.

For example, many of the EPDM seals by FDB Panel Fittings sales partner DIRAK adhere to UL (Underwriters Laboratories) safety standards. This certification constitutes the basis for a final UL approval for the entire enclosure/cabinet and is increasingly useful as the UK gears up for growth in worldwide export markets.

In addition to standard self-locking door sealing profiles, insert profiles and rectangular self-adhesive sections, FDB offer edge protection designs and window glazing gasket. Where electromagnetic compatibility is necessary, they can also supply special profiles with EMC/RFI shielding in combination with water and dust sealing.

Panel Fittings for every enclosure from FDB

Our association with the company Dirak and their extensive range of standard enclosure hardware has enabled us to support our customers through the past couple of “Covid years” with Brexit disruptions and subsequent regrowth of our industrial sector.

As a main distributor, we rely on our principle manufacturers so that you can rely on us. We wish you a Happy New Year and a successful 2022.


Traditional Stainless Steel L and T handles for cabinet locking from FDB Panel Fittings

Traditional style L and T enclosure handles in stainless steel with or without cylinder key locking mechanism, are now available ex-stock from the FDB Online store. Special versions are designed for use in hygiene areas in food, pharmaceutical and related areas, where it is important to manage and minimise the accumulation of biological material – by design, by manufacturing quality and by pressure washdown. More generally they are suited to stainless steel or plastic enclosures/cabinets for machine controls or power management – also for office, industrial, and other heavy-duty environments where their high performance characteristics are desirable.

Gary Miles, M.D. at FDB Panel Fittings explains that “traditional L and T style handles are now available from our Online Store – these are increasingly used in place of other materials for their robust mechanical characteristics as well of course for their corrosion resistance. We have AISI 316 versions sealed to IP65 with matching cams to suit quarter turn latching applications from electrical cabinets, specialist control panels and enclosures to storage units and HVAC units.”

The Panel Fittings online range includes high-performance handles which meet Hygiene requirements acc. to DIN EN ISO 14159 and DIN EN 1672-2 with housing and handle in mirror-polished AISI 316 L stainless steel featuring especially smooth designs for RH or LH application. Sealing is in FDA compliant blue silicone to IP 65/67 DIN EN 60529.

The FDB team are able to simplify assembly and logistics issues by organising specific site delivery pre-assembled with cam upon request – under their Rocfast program. This allows the whole assembly to be installed in a standard 20.1mm cut-out as a pass-through operation, with securing backnut and serrated screw for electrical earthing also in stainless steel. Handles are lockable or non-locking (latch handles) to varying sealing degrees, although most are to IP65 or higher.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from FDB Panel Fittings and FDB Electrical
Extended range of Stainless Steel enclosure hinges from FDB Panel Fittings

Here at FDB Panel Fittings we are delighted that over many years we have accumulated a wide range of ex-stock stainless steel hinges to accommodate the many types of enclosure or cabinet that may be demanded of specialist builders for industrial purposes – in offices or on a workshop or warehouse floor. These range from weld on bullet hinges and simple lift off removable pin types to sophisticated parallelogram and friction torque designs. Once highly expensive to specify (even made to order) stainless steel hinges are now much more commonly used for their robust reliability and corrosion resistance, and are available ex-stock for urgent delivery.

In particular we have a stylish new DIRAK stainless steel hinge which offers increased protection against unauthorised access due to its specific design and construction. This especially robust 180° hinge, with interlocking leaves, features welded-in-place, non-removable hinge pins and welded mounting studs which are not accessible from the outside of the cabinet – so providing greater security when used in outdoor/public areas, e.g. for communications or public services.

Our increasing popular Online store has AISI 303, 304 & 316 components, allowing customers to make up full panel sets for harsh environments from hygiene rooms with frequent wash down to offshore or shoreline situations.

Stainless steel components of course suggest the most rugged use – and coupled with advanced design they ensure a choice of sealing protection to IP65, IP67 or IP69.

Also from the Online store are the PINET 90° opening stainless steel and steel hinges for concealed installation – with two options available, the 3520 with pins and links in 430 stainless and the 3625 in 316L stainless. The parallel link design offers tough corrosion-resistant functionality for nested or surface-mount doors – LH or RH in horizontal or vertical installation. These compact hinges are suitable for steel or wood/composite doors and enable easy opening in industrial or office/domestic cupboards, cabinets and enclosures.

Stainless steel hygiene locks from FDB Online

Designed especially for use in hygiene defined areas these classically designed L and T handles in AISI 316L with or without cylinder key locking mechanism, are now available ex-stock from our Online store. They are designed for use in hygiene areas of food, pharmaceutical, medical, laboratory and related areas, where it is important to manage and minimise the accumulation of biological material – by design, by manufacturing quality and by pressure washdown. They are suited to stainless steel or plastic enclosures/cabinets for machine controls or power management and are vibration resistant for vehicle or machinery applications.

We can deliver these handles from the Online store, pre-assembled with cam upon request, so that the whole assembly may be installed in a standard 20.1mm cut-out as a pass-through operation, with securing back nut and serrated screw for electrical earthing also in stainless steel. Sealing is with red or blue FDA conforming silicone washers and “O” rings – locking is by means of SW13 style insert to ensure easy cleaning.

DIRAK multi-point-locking-system from FDB  Panel Fittings

Where greater security is required for specialist enclosures or cabinets then an important first step is to increase the number of closure points – three-point closure is a common solution but in cases where this is not adequate then five or more points may be needed. The DIRAK crank system offered in RH or LH versions at our Online shop is a reliable option to suit larger doors or simply to enhance tighter closure.

Cranks can provide more closure on very long door edges or can be used to redirect rod systems around corners to provide closure along the top or bottom edges of a cabinet.


Stainless-steel-hinge from FDB panel fittings

We are pleased to have this AISI 304/303 stainless steel 180° hinge in our range for adjacent cabinets with surface-mounted doors. Its lift-off style and 270° capability for single cabinets with M5 screw fitting make it an excellent choice for specialist panel builders.

It’s rugged design is suitable for 20mm door returns on all types of industrial enclosures where the strength and corrosion resistance of stainless steel is required.

FDB Panel Fittings – Indexing Plungers

Indexing plungers with spring-loaded handle also with rest position enables fixing of covers and flaps in defined positions. The spring-loaded handle is fixed by pulling and then turning 90°.
They avoid linear movement between two parts and are installed using a simple push into the preformed cutout in material thicknesses of 1 to 8mm.
Indexing plungers are available with various head heights of  2, 3 and 4 mm for different gap dimensions. They can also be used as a pin hinge eg for side panels.