ASTM D3164 Lap Shear TestingASTM D3164 standard methodology for evaluating the load bearing capacity of composite materials in lap shear sandwich construction is a common industry practice.

If you plan on conducting this test we recommend acquiring the test standard from the standards organization. There are many important details regarding this test method that are provided which are key to achieving successful results. Every standard provides important environmental conditions, test sample preparation and conditioning requirements, sample dimensions and test reporting expectations. It’s critical that you fully understand the standard so that you can set up the test, run the procedure, and report the results requirements.

What Is ASTM D3164?

ASTM D3164 helps users compare plastic adherends in single lap shear adhesive joint applications. The test method serves the increased need to test adhesively bonded plastics as a result of their inherent advantages over mechanically fastened joints, which includes the alleviation of stress risers and stress cracking.

ASTM D3164 Test Systems

What Other Standards Are Based on Lap Shear Tests?

What Is Lap Shear Testing?

Shear testing forces are applied parallel to the upper and lower faces of the test specimen and can be either tension or compression based. Shear test strength and stiffness results in tension mode may vary widely from compression mode. Shear tests are commonly performed on adhesives, fasteners including bolts, machine screws and rivets.

Lap shear test samples are economical, practical and easy to make. They are the most popular sample type for development, evaluation, manufacturing quality control and comparative studies used for adhesives and bonded products. They are tested in tension.

Why Perform Tests According to ASTM D3164?

ASTM D3164 can be used to produce comparative shear strength data for joints made from a number of plastics. This test can be used to provide data for R&D, engineering design, quality control, acceptance or rejection under specifications, and for other purposes.

Important Considerations when Testing According to ASTM D3164

The misuse of strength values obtained from lap shear joint as design stress allowable values for structural joints could lead to product failure, property damage, and injuries.

ASTM D3164 Test Specimens

Two rigid substrates are used for ISO 4587. The specific types of substrates vary considerably from brass, copper, aluminum, titanium, steel, plastic and composites. A single lap shear geometry consists of two identical substrates with a defined overlap section where adherend is applied.

Test Machines for Lap Shear Tests per ASTM D3164

Our universal test machines serve multiple adhesive testing applications and are capable of performing all quasi static tension/compression tests, such as tensile, peel, adhesion, and flexural testing. The machine force capacity should be chosen by taking into account the highest force needed over the lifetime of the equipment. Machines feature a uniform constant rate of loading (CRL) and rate of extension (CRE), or constant velocity control mode. Force measurement complies with ISO 7500-1.

Given that the standard D3164 test is based on 12.7 mm (0.5 in) adherand overlap x 1 in wide specimen geometry, and assuming the maximum shear stress is 1400 psi, then the tensile load required would be 700 lbf. If purchasing a new machine, then a minimum safety factor of 3:1 would result in a need for a 2000 lb capacity load frame.

The controller needs to be set so that the specimen is controlled at a stress rate of 8.3 to 9.7 MPa (1200 to 1400 psi) of shear area per minute. The tensile force applied to the specimen translates into a shear stress applied to the area of the adhered area 12.7 mm(0.5 in2).  Alternatively a test speed of 0.05 ipm which is the equivalent crosshead displacement can be used.

What Grips Are Required for ASTM D3164?

ISO 4587 is a test performed on rigid specimens bonded via a lap joint, which causes the ends of the specimen to be offset from the load line of the test. Load string alignment is a unique gripping challenge associated with single lap shear testing. The geometry of the test specimen naturally causes the two clamped ends of the specimen to be offset. Side loading occurs if the grip selection does not account for that offset. G154 and G240G mechanical vise action grips and several models of pneumatic vise action grips have integrated offsets which allow you to manually adjust the jaw faces to the left or right. This functionality is important so that the operator can ensure that the applied force coincides with the center line of the load string.

This setup requires mechanical grips with offset jaw faces to account for this overlap to ensure a true shear force application.

Articles Related to ASTM D3164

ASTM D3164 Testers

ASTM D3164 test machine

140 Family Dual Column (Aluminum)

4.4 kN (1000 lbf) to 9 kN (2000 lbf)

The 140 family smooth column electromechanical universal test machines are configured to your application at an affordable price to match your budget. The 140 family provides increased column spacing for large samples and is capable of testing tensile, compression, creep and stress relaxation properties. 

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311 Family Electromechanical Universal Test Machine

10 kN (2,250 lbf)

The 311 family tabletop machines are configured to your exact needs including performance, flexibility, simplicity and affordability. This frame is best for smaller loads and a higher speed.

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ASTM D3614 Test Fixtures

ASTM D3164 Test Machine Software

ASTM D3164 Test Machine Controller Software

ASTM D3164 Test Machine Controller Software | ND3164

Application specific module features preset settings, test calculations, and graphical test report contents.

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ASTM D3164 Test Machine Controller Software

Video Recording and Playback Software Module | TestVideo

High resolution video capture of the test. Playback is time synchronized with load data.

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Note: This is not a complete summary of the standard. Anyone planning to conduct this test should read the full standard.