When you need to buy stainless steel fasteners, it’s usually a good idea to know as much as you can about them. This is important since it makes it easier for you to understand what you can expect out of them. There are many people who use heresy as a basis for deciding on which fasteners to use, as well as how to use them. However, this can result in the loss of a lot of money as well as customer goodwill particularly if you intend to use the fasteners in the long term.
In the case of stainless steel fasteners, there are a number of facts that you may ignore but which you should probably account for when you decide to use them. Some of the most important of these include:
Stainless steel fasteners can still corrode
One of the major selling points of stainless steel hex nuts, stainless steel socket set screws and other similar products is the fact that they do not corrode. However, the fact is that this quality usually depends on other variables. In order to be protected from corrosion, the stainless steel usually reacts with oxygen to form a thin invisible layer that prevents contact of the underlying material with water, oxygen or other corrosive materials. When the fasteners are exposed to low oxygen levels when this layer has not formed, it’s easy for the metal to corrode when exposed to chemicals that can cause corrosion.
Stainless steel fasteners are not non-magnetic
Stainless steel fasteners are usually thought to be non-magnetic, which makes them ideal for use in scenarios where this quality is needed. However, this is not always the case. Most alloys used in making stainless steel have a little magnetism. Only a handful of stainless steel types including 316 are made in such a manner that they are completely not magnetic, making them ideal for use in a scenario where this quality is not needed. This means that if you intend to use the fasteners and want them to have no magnetic properties, you will need to pay attention to the type of stainless steel fastener you get.
Stainless steel fasteners are self-repairing
One of the major benefits of stainless steel is the fact that the protective surface it has is usually self-repairing. When it is damaged by scratches, the exposed inner layer of the material will react with oxygen to form a new layer which will then protect the underlying material. This essentially means that you need not worry about scratches increasing the risk of corrosion when using stainless steel.
These are just a few of the little-known facts about stainless steel. Knowing about them makes it easier for you to make decisions such as which subtype of stainless steel to use in a particular application. One of the benefits of working with a reputable vendor is the fact that they have a lot of experience with the material, which means that they will have all this information and more. This makes them the best people to turn to for advice on selection and use of stainless steel fasteners.
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.