Most people are familiar with lag bolts such as the Inconel 500 hex lag bolts. However, most usually don’t know how they work, and this in turn means that they would not know how to use them properly and what to expect from them. This is despite the fact that these types of bolts have been around for quite a long time, and have become one of the most widely used fasteners in many industries.
What are lag screws?
Lag screws are also known as lag bolts, and have a reputation for being one of the toughest types of fasteners in many industries. Since they are very sturdy, they are usually used to fasten items that are subjected to huge forces, such as lumber. In many cases, types of lag bolts such as the Nitronic 60 hex lag bolts would be the only option you have if you wanted to fasten a material that will be subjected to massive forces. In many cases, they are usually very large in terms of physical size, sometimes being an inch long and a quarter of an inch in thickness.
If you look at a lag bolt or screw, you will notice that part of the shaft of the screw will not have any threads. This is usually an area of variable thickness next to the head of the screw. This is known as the lag portion, and is the part of the screw that is usually responsible for giving it its unique properties. The presence of the unthreaded area means that when the fastener is tightened, it will create massive compressive forces in this part of the screw. This in turn means that the materials will be held together more tightly, and this means that it will be able to resist more forces.
How lag screws are used
The first step in using any lag screw is making sure that the materials you are fastening together are aligned. This is important, since you don’t want to have to undo the bolt and nut later on due to a misalignment. In many cases, you will need to use a clamp to keep the items aligned. If this is not possible, it will be necessary to improvise in order to ensure that the same results are gotten.
Once this is done, a pilot hole is then drilled through the materials you will be fastening. It is important to make sure that the diameter of the pilot hole is slightly smaller than the diameter of the screw you will be using. It is also important to make sure that the hole you drill spans the entire distance you will need the lag screw to be in. Once this is done, you can then screw the fastener in place, and then use a bolt to tighten it afterwards. The normal precautions such as making sure that the fastener is lubricated before use also applies when you are using the lag bolts and screws.
In addition to that, you also need to keep in mind that other issues such as the material from which the screw is made will also affect the performance of the lag screw, so you should always insist on high quality ones.
Started my career in the fastener world in 1969 at, Parker Kalon Corp. a NJ based screw manufacturer located in Clifton, NJ working in inventory control, scheduling secondary production and concluding there in purchasing. In 1971 I accepted a sales position at Star Stainless Screw Co., Totowa, NJ working in inside sales and later as an outside salesman, having a successful career at Star I had the desire with a friend to start our own fastener distribution company in 1980 named: Divspec, Kenilworth, NJ. This was a successful adventure but ended in 1985 with me starting Melfast in August 1985 and have stayed competitive and successful to date. Melfast serves the OEM market with approximately 400 accounts nationally.