What Are Nuts, Bolts and Washers?

An aircraft fastener is an important part type which is used to secure two or more components together. Fasteners are what allow for the assembly of the aircraft, ranging from structural components to the installation of flight instruments. Fasteners are so critical to the construction of an aircraft that a single Boeing 747-800 is composed of around 3,000,000 fasteners, accounting for half of the total number of parts. Due to their importance, it can be very beneficial to understand the various fasteners that make up assemblies, as well as their differences. In this blog, we will discuss a few of the common fastener types such as nuts, bolts, and washers.


Nut part type components come in the form of a fastener with a threaded hole and belong to FSC 5310 - Nuts and Washers. Nuts are almost exclusively used alongside bolts for the assembly of items, and the two keep parts together with thread friction and compression. For installation, the bolt is passed through the hole of a component, and the nut is tightened from the other side by matching their threading. In the case of an assembly where there is a chance of loosening due vibration or rotation, special fasteners such as lock washers or jam nuts may be used. A jam nut is a low profile fastener that is jammed against a standard nut to lock the fastener in place.


Bolts are another fastener type, consisting of a cylindrical shaft that is partially threaded, as well as a head. Bolts are similar to screws, though they are more often used to secure unthreaded components together with the aid of a nut. In regards to the assembly of an aircraft, bolts are most often used in areas where there is a desire for a high strength fastener. Bolts that are manufactured for aircraft are typically made from alloy steel, stainless steel, aluminum alloy, and titanium. Bolts may vary in the shape of their head, often dictating which tool may be needed to properly tighten them.


Washers are fastening components that come in the form of a thin plate with a hole. Washers are a fastener that is most often paired with a nut and bolt assembly to distribute their loads evenly across the plate. Washers may also serve as a wear pad, spacer, sprint, preload indicating device, locking device, or to mitigate vibration. Washers are typically manufactured from metal or plastic, and some materials may be used to prevent galvanic corrosion between assemblies and fasteners due to different metals.

Altogether, nuts, bolts, and washers are very important for the assembly of an aircraft to secure together components and evenly distribute loads. Finding the correct fastener types can be very important for a project or operation, and considering the materials, grades, amount needed, and other factors can help in your decision. When it comes time to begin sourcing the nuts, bolts, and washers that you need for your next project or operation, NSN Fulfillment has you covered with everything you are searching for from top manufacturers such as Honeywell International Inc. and Boeing. NSN Fulfillment is owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, and we can help you find the aircraft hardware and other components that you are searching for, new or obsolete. As a premier supplier of parts for the aerospace, civil aviation, and defense industries, we're always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7x365. ASAP Semiconductor is an FAA AC 00-56B accredited and ISO 9001:2015 certified enterprise. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at sales@nsnfulfillment.com or call us at 1-714-705-4780.


September 27, 2018

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