In materials science, shear refers to a sliding failure that occurs along a flat plane of a sample. During shear testing, force is applied to a material in a parallel direction, rather than holding it in tension. Element can perform a variety of shear testing methods and techniques, and we are committed to providing you with the most accurate results possible.

Shear testing of materials

Shear testing is particularly important for materials that might experience a multi-directional force, such as fasteners, adhesives, or even shear testing of composites. Testing is performed by applying a load to the material until the materials shears, or slides, apart. The point at which a sample fails is defined as its shear strength.

Shear strength is often used as a way to compare different materials to determine fitness for an application, or to ensure that all the materials being used in a system are uniform.


Our Shear Testing Services

Element can perform shear testing at both elevated and reduced temperatures and can accommodate a variety of sizes. We have experience testing a range of material types and are always open to assisting with large, complex or unique projects. For more information, or to request a quote, contact us today.

Shear Test Methods 640 x 480
Shear Testing

Shear Testing Methods

Element offers multiple shear testing methods for different materials types and applications.

Some of the methods that Element offers include:
Adhesive Shear Testing

Single Lap Shear Testing: This method tests one adhesive layer between two bonded pieces. The two parts are pulled in different directions until the adhesive fails. While the bonded pieces are usually metals, they can also be plastics or composites.

Double Lap Shear Testing: Very similar to single lap shear, a double lap shear tests involves two layers of adhesive material. The top and bottom of a single sample piece are coated with the adhesive, and bonded pieces are affixed on both sides of the sample. The two bonded pieces are then pulled in opposite directions until the adhesive layers both fail. 

Composite Shear Testing 

In-Plane Shear Testing: Typically used for layered composite materials, in-plane shear testing measures the response of material in the plane of lamination. It may be performed by pulling a specimen in tension using a +/- 45 degree layup. In addition to the shear strength of the material, this method provides data on shear strain and elasticity.

Short Beam Shear Testing: This method bends a material using a short beam to provide an approximation of interlaminar shear strength.

V-Notch Shear Testing: This method uses a “v” notched specimen that allows for testing shear strength and modulus at all possible directions.

American Society for Testing and Materials

ASTM A263/264, ASTM A265, ASTM B565, ASTM B769, ASTM C1292, ASTM C1425, ASTM C273, ASTM C393, ASTM C394, ASTM D1002, ASTM D2295, ASTM D2344, ASTM D2557, ASTM D2919, ASTM D3080-04, ASTM D3163, ASTM D3164, ASTM D3165, ASTM D3166, ASTM D3518, ASTM D3528, ASTM D3846, ASTM D3914, ASTM D4255, ASTM D4475, ASTM D5379, ASTM D5448, ASTM D5656, ASTM D5868, ASTM D5961, ASTM D624 (Types B, C and T), ASTM D7078, ASTM D7078, ASTM D7249, ASTM D7250, ASTM D732, ASTM D7616, ASTM D7617, ASTM D953, ASTM E143, ASTM F606/F606M

SAE International

SAE J2258, AMS-STD-401

International Organization of Standardization

ISO 14129, ISO 14130, ISO 9018

European Harmonized Standards

BS 1377, BS 2782, BS 4994, BS 4482, BS 4483, BS 5350

BS EN 2243, BS EN 2563

EN 2377, EN 2667 (PRen)

EN ISO 14273, EN ISO 15630 NADCAP AC7122/1 (1.3.2)(1.3.3)(1.3.5)(1.3.6)


AITM 1-0002, AITM 1-0019, AITM 1-0030, AITM 1-0047

Aerospace Industries Association

NASM 1312-13, NASM-1312-20

American Welding Society

AWS B2.1, AWS B2.2, AWS B3.6M, AWS B4.0, AWS D17.2/17.2M, AWS D8.9M


American Society of Mechanical Engineers


German Institute for Standardization

DIN 50141, DIN 50162

The Suppliers of Advanced Composite Materials Association


Other International Standards

IGC 04-26-346



SS 18, SS 32, SS 427, SS 456, SS 561

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