When you decide to run a large scale manufacturing or assembly line, you will need to figure out how to procure the fasteners you need for the job. A common mistake for many first time business owners in such a position is thinking that since fasteners such as Inconel hex head cap screws and Nitronic […]

When you decide to run a large scale manufacturing or assembly line, you will need to figure out how to procure the fasteners you need for the job. A common mistake for many first time business owners in such a position is thinking that since fasteners such as Inconel hex head cap screws and Nitronic 50 hex nuts are all the same, they can get them from pretty much any vendor they come across. However, it’s important to note that it’s easy to make many mistakes when you are picking such a vendor. Some of the most common ones include:

Not finding out if the fastener supplier can serve your volume needs

There are some firms that will need a large number of fasteners on a regular basis. A good example of this is if you are in charge of assembling mechanical items such as cars. In such settings, you may end up picking a fastener vendor who is not in a position to maintain a constant supply of fasteners according to your needs. As a result, you are likely to end up having frequent delays in production, and this will ultimately lead to poor business.
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If you are going to need a large number of fasteners on a regular basis, you need to first assess the rate at which you will need them. Once this is done, you will then need to identify a firm that has the capacity to maintain this supply. This can be done by examining the company profile, as well as by consulting the vendor directly. You could even come up with an agreement that guarantees uninterrupted supplies, so that you can then impose penalties in case of failure to meet these conditions.

Not exploring price fluctuation issues

If you are going to buy fasteners from one vendor over a number of years, you need some sort of guarantee that the price you pay for them will be fairly stable. There are some firms that will keep changing the price of such fasteners, and this is something you have to specifically look out for. When discussing the terms with the prospective vendor, you should get some assurance that they will not arbitrarily keep changing the price of such fasteners on a whim. This will also help you in planning, since you can then budget with the knowledge that you will not have to pay more in future.

Not knowing if the fastener supplier offers the types of fasteners you want

One other common oversight is not paying attention to details in terms of figuring out if they provide exactly what you are looking for. Are you sure that the vendor provides the fasteners in the specific design you are interested in? if not, you might need to spend more time finding a vendor who does.

Not agreeing on quality control issues

Ideally, the fastener supplier you are working with should have mechanisms that will ensure that quality control standards are met. This way, you will rarely have to worry about a particular batch of fasteners being of low quality.

About the Author

Larry Melone
By Larry Melone
President

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.

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