Your Guide To Choosing The Right Fastener For The Right Application


With so many different types of mechanical fasteners to choose from – such as those you can find here – how can you be sure you’ve chosen the right one for the right job? 

Selecting the most appropriate fastener for the application in hand is crucial, however, as not only can productivity be affected if you don’t make the right choice, but safety of the process as a whole, along with that of the workers, can be severely compromised. 

With productivity and safety in mind, here’s a brief guide to choosing the right type of fastener for the right type of application:

Firstly, it’s important to fully understand the application

Only when you fully understand the limits and requirements of the application in hand, can you ever choose the right fastener or structural nuts. Study the necessary requirements of the application in great detail first, then choose a fastener that will not just fit, but which will also stand up to the right amount of torque, and hold the necessary components securely together. In some instances, a longer flange may be required to secured hold a number of components together.

You may also need to think about omitting some of the fastener threads, to guarantee the safety of both the material, and any personnel involved. Should you come up with a number of fastener options that you believe would suit the application, you might need to consult help from professionals to determine which one would be the best.   

Then, focus on thread selection

A vital aspect of any fastener, are the threads, and you’ll need to decide upon fine threads (UNF), coarse threads (UNC), or eight-thread. Enabling quicker component assembly, coarser threads may be more suitable for use in a particular application, while fine threads offer a higher level of thread engagement. Either way, all thread types have their advantages, and you’ll need to choose the one that offers you superior capabilities when it comes to load-handling. 

Think about what fasteners are made from

Carbon steel is most frequently used in the construction of mechanical fasteners, and this mainly due to its superior strength and properties that make it highly workable. Other fasteners may be made from alloy steel or stainless steel. Such fasteners are ideal for use in areas in which moisture levels are high, or in which there may be exposure to chemicals, highly corrosion resistant, materials such as bronze, aluminium and brass are sometimes used.  

In circumstances in which friction caused by a build-up of pressure might induce fusion of the fastener, or seizing, a fastener constructed from a hard material would reduce the risk of galling or thread stripping. 

Then, consider what the fastener will be exposed to

Before choosing a fastener, you must think carefully about the types of temperature the fastener is likely to be exposed to. In some instances, extreme changes in temperature can cause fastened joints to expand and contract, and over time, this can lead to connections becoming loose. 

You will also need to think about what level of vibration the fasteners will need to endure, and to prevent them from loosening over time, you may need to use a prevailing torque locknut if there are likely to be high vibrations. 

Ultimately, selecting the right fastener becomes a great deal easier when you seek professional guidance, and with an experts help, you’re bound to choose a fastener that will be the perfect match for your needs. 

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