Strain gauges were mounted on 12 maxillary pre-molars which were subjected to a sequence of restorative procedures for MOD preparations. An occlusal stress was applied using servohydraulics, and the cuspal flexure was assessed using a strain gauge. Two bonded and three non-bonded restorative procedures were tested for each tooth. The two bonded conditions showed significantly higher cuspal reinforcement when compared with the MOD preparation and the non-bonded restorative procedures. The non-bonded restorations showed some intragroup differences, with one non-bonded composite showing useful cuspal reinforcement. However, this was much less than that afforded by the bonded technique. The deformation of the cusp under occlusal force in restorations bonded by the acid-etch technique showed much less hysteresis when compared with non-bonded restorations.