Different Types of Fasteners and Their Uses

As there are a wide range of fastener types available on the market, figuring out all their slight variations can be difficult. Fasteners also differ according to use and application, meaning that while some fasteners work optimally for heavy-duty use, others may only work well for smaller, less demanding projects. In this blog, we will go over various types of fasteners and their unique features.

Permanent v. Temporary Fasteners
To begin, there are two major categories under which all fasteners fall: permanent and temporary.
Permanent fasteners are generally single-use, are meant to join two materials, and cannot be removed once they have been installed. They are utilized in an array of industry verticals, including automotive and consumer electronics, and some of the most common permanent fasteners are rivets, nails, and welds.
Rivets are permanent fastening solutions that allow users to join larger, flatter materials like metal sheets or plates. For example, solid rivets serve as the most common type, consisting of a solid shaft and a head on one side. The side without the heat is often deformed using a rivet gun to create a solid hold. Moreover, solid rivets are frequently used in applications where safety and reliability are critical. Other common types include blind rivets and tubular rivets.
Nails are small metal fasteners often found in woodworking and construction.
Welds are used to produce strong, permanent connections between steel and the fastener.
Temporary fasteners are manufactured to join two materials or objects, and they can be easily removed or reused without damaging the objects they hold together. Popular examples of this type of fastener are bolts, screws, studs, nuts, and washers.
Externally-threaded fasteners are distinguished by their externally-threaded profile. As such, bolts, screws, and studs fall under this subcategory.
  • Bolts are mechanical fasteners with an external male thread that require a matching pre-formed female thread, such as a nut.
  • crews are made of metal and they have a helical ridge called a male thread.
  • Studs are used to join two materials through internal threads on each component. More than that, they lack a head and are threaded on each side.
Nuts can be used alongside a bolt to assemble multiple components together. Of all their varying types, hexagonal nuts are most popular. Hexagonal nuts utilize the object to generate friction, keeping them securely in place. However, there are also lock nuts, shear nuts, and wing nuts.
Washers are used with nuts and bolts to better distribute the force load for durability. Like their counterparts, washers are made in numerous types, such as flat, spring, cup, and repair washers. Flat washers are the most common, those which evenly distribute loads during the tightening process.
How Fasteners Are Used in the Aviation Industry
In the realm of aircraft construction and repair, fasteners are utilized to join multiple parts together into assemblies. Generally, fasteners used for aircraft must adhere to strict standardization objectives outlined by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), ensuring that they are airworthy and safe for implementation on aircraft. As aircraft are subjected to a wide range of stressors and operating environments, the type of fastener used is critical. More than that, fasteners that may be utilized for blades or rotors may not be suitable for use near the motor or engine. That being said, selecting the right type of fastener for your aircraft is probably one of the most important decisions you will make; thus, having professionals to guide you can help the process go smoothly.
Simplified Purchasing is a leading distributor of fasteners, all of which have been sourced from top global manufacturers on our Approved Vendor List (AVL). Browse our expansive listings and take note of any items that spark your interest. For more information on any particular part number, fill out and submit a Request for Quote (RFQ) form. When filling out a form, we ask that you please include your part requirements like target prices, operational deadlines, and desired quantities. If you have additional questions about our other offered services, contact one of our expert team members directly to learn more today!


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