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Questions tagged [bolts]

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79
votes
8answers
447k views

Should a washer go on nut side, or the bolt side?

Often I take something apart and when I go to reassemble it, I don't remember which side the washer was on. When there's only one washer, does it generally go on the nut side (pressed up against the ...
64
votes
11answers
84k views

If metal expands when heated, how does heating a bolt loosen it?

If you're having trouble removing a stuck bolt, common advice is to heat the bolt up. But if metal expands when heated, wouldn't heating up the bolt just make it harder to remove? How does heating ...
25
votes
1answer
2k views

What is this bolt in my basement floor?

In my concrete basement floor, there is a rather large bolt and washer. The washer is about 4 inches in diameter, and the bolt has a 1 inch head. What is it? All I can think of is that it's some ...
21
votes
10answers
5k views

Turning a hard to access nut?

Working on the propane conversion of my gas stove. One of the orifices to be changed is in a very hard to access location - shown in the photo. The orifice is the "nut" I'm referring to, which you can ...
17
votes
5answers
13k views

How do I optimally cut a bolt to length?

Once in a while I need a bolt of exactly the right length and it is not one of the lengths available in stores. So I get a longer bolt and cut it to length. Here's the procedure I follow. I screw one ...
16
votes
7answers
52k views

When bolting down a porcelain toilet, how tight is “too tight”?

Tightening bolts on the base of a toilet is the one thing about toilet installation that has me the most nervous. They say not to over-tighten, but how tight is too tight before the porcelain is ...
10
votes
2answers
673 views

Identify this screw head (was: Security Torx)

Am attempting to open an old device cover (an adapter) and it has these screws (please see attached image, sorry for the bad quality, I couldn't get better focus than this.) Would really appreciate ...
9
votes
5answers
21k views

What is this kind of security bolt head called, and how can I remove it?

A previous owner fitted the light fitting pictured above, and has not left me a tool to remove the bolt. The bulb has blown so I need to get in to the unit. The head diameter is about 12mm and the gap ...
8
votes
9answers
11k views

How can I cut off the rusted closet bolts holding my toilet?

I need to change the wax ring on my toilet. The closet bolts that hold it in place are rusted so I need to cut them in order to remove the nuts. I thought of trying bolt cutters. The bolt cutters I ...
8
votes
4answers
3k views

How do I use threaded inserts?

I got these fasteners with table legs that I bought for a formica table top. I get that I need to embed the outer part with the big thread into the table, and then use an Allen key to fasten the bolts ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Fix drywall that lost strength due to hanging curtain rod

Here is the issue. I can use the toggle bolts, but it looks like drywall has lost strength. It can be seen in the pictures that drywall around the place of the bracket holes is swelled and about to ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What kind of bolt is this?

I'm trying to dismantle some wall boards, but I don't know how to remove the pictured bolt - close up attached. Its head has the dome shape of a carriage bolt, but there is a hole in the center, with ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

Why do lag screws have the unthreaded body between the head and the threads?

Why do lag screws have the unthreaded body between the head and the threads? And why is that 'Body' the same diameter as the outer 'Thread' diameter? Why doesn't the transition immediately abut the ...
7
votes
3answers
5k views

How can I tell the handedness of a bolt?

I have a craftsman lawnmower (with a Honda engine) and I'm trying to remove the lawnmower blade to sharpen it. It seems really tight. I'm wondering if I'm turning the bolt the wrong direction. Does ...
6
votes
6answers
3k views

What is the name of this Allen-head furniture fastener?

I have a couple of boards that are parts of a table I am assembling, and I wish to know the name of the metal piece of hardware circled in red, below. I would have thought it was called a bolt, but I ...
6
votes
4answers
43k views

How strong are bolts compared to welding and what qualities to look for in foundations?

I'm planning on building a home climbing wall, made from a mild steel subframe. It will probably be around 10 feet tall approx. I was thinking along the lines of using mild steel angle, cutting to ...
6
votes
4answers
22k views

How to remove rusted tank bolts

We have a really old toilet in one of our bathrooms which has started to leak around the tank bolts. I was going to replace the bolts and washers but the nuts are completely seized and rusted to the ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

How to attach an appliance bracket to a stainless steel table?

I need to attach this base plate to a stainless steel table in a commercial kitchen. It'd be attached to the top surface off to the side. It's for a commercial size can-opener. How do I go about ...
6
votes
5answers
34k views

What type of lag bolts should I use for a deck?

I am looking at galvanized lag bolts (for the ledger) and carriage bolts (for attaching the beam to the post) for a deck. I can't find "hot-dipped galvanized" bolts/lag screws only galvanized. Is ...
6
votes
2answers
19k views

Which way should an internal star lock washer go?

I want to attach a rear basket to my bicycle and I don't know a thing about nuts/bolts. I got a plastic bag full of nuts, bolts, washers, and what I believe (according to what I could find on the ...
5
votes
16answers
55k views

What can I use as a thread “tightener” compound for a free-running bolt?

(I'm familiar with thread "locking" compounds, purple, blue, and red, but that's not what I'm looking for here. They lock once and then upon breaking the joint, do nothing further.) I'm looking for ...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

What ikea screwdriver type is this?

I am trying to disassemble by bedframe and the Screwdriver that I have seems too loose. Where can I find a screwdriver to do this?
4
votes
3answers
9k views

Are these toilet bolts installed properly?

I had my bathroom renovated and had a new toilet installed. I noticed the white caps on the toilet screws were not secure---- looked like the contractor tried to secure them with some sort of caulking....
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there different thickness heads/nuts for hex bolts?

The hex bolts in my local home depot (specifically the size 3/8-16) all have the same thickness of the hex head. It looks to me to be about 3/16 of an inch thick. I need to recess a hex screw inside ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

What is type of screw is this?

This cylinder-like screw is screwed into an opening on the inside of a table. It basically "locks" into the screw that is facing down from the top. Kind of like this: I'm trying to get them out, yet ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it better to use two nuts, rather than a single long nut on the bolt?

Working on the roof, several J-bolts appeared to have been fastened with more than a single nut. Without exception each such bolt was almost flush to the cement sheet. I saw this done on a car wheel ...
4
votes
3answers
291 views

Correct orientation for t-shaped shelf bracket to minimize stress on anchor bolts

I have a t-shaped shelf bracket that looks like this: | <- screw hole here | <shelf> |----------- <wall>| | | | <- screw hole here This is a ...
3
votes
5answers
16k views

How do I attach a ledger board if I have no interior access?

I would like to build a small, 24" high deck, for a new entry door to the house. I have the deck plans all laid out, and am in need of a 2x10 ledger board under the door to attach the deck to. Most ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I attach structure via oval holes in panel struts in a panel van?

I am trying to build storage for a panel van. My problem is how to make use of pre-existing holes for attaching bolts to. The loading space in the van has vertical structural beams which have holes ...
3
votes
2answers
6k views

How to remove a bolt with a broken-off head

I'm looking for advice on non-destructively removing a bolt with a broken-off head. While loosening a bolt on some exercise equipment, I broke off the head completely, leaving the shank recessed ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

Should I put some glue in the pre drilled hole before installing an eye screw?

Going to put in some eye screws under the deck for a swing. Should I add some glue in the predrill for extra durability? I've also read vaseline is good for easier installation, but that's ...
3
votes
1answer
82 views

Help with strange type of bolt

I'm hoping someone can help me identify what type of bolt(if it is even a bolt) this is, what it is used for and most importantly how to remove it. This is used to attached a boat engine to a transom,...
3
votes
5answers
20k views

What is the meaning of the letters on the top of a common hex bolt?

I recently drilled and tapped a 5/16"-18 in a piece of soft steel, then found that the 5/16"-18 bolt I had chosen wouldn't fit (the bolt was slightly too large). When I found that other 5/16"-18 ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

What should I do if one of the screws for a TV mount breaks?

My wife & I spent a fair amount of time setting up a VideoSecu heavy articulating wall mount in a position & height that we liked. Problem is, the top-left lag screw (5/16" thick, 3" long) ...
3
votes
4answers
15k views

Can I use bolts to attach a bed to the walls of my room?

I plan on mounting my bed to the walls of my room. You can say that it will look like a loft bed without the legs. To make it look like it really is floating, I won't be using angle brackets. Instead, ...
3
votes
2answers
100 views

How do I get this lag bolt out?

As you can see, the (3/8") lag bolt broke off about 1.5cm beneath the surface. I have a 18V cordless drill and a corded high speed dremel at my disposal. My initial idea was to use some sort of EZ-...
3
votes
4answers
131 views

Re-using lag bolt holes?

Can holes in wood studs that previously held lag bolts be re-used with lag bolts of the same diameter or will this not hold safely? More detail: I have a piece of fitness equipment mounted to wood ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I put a knob on a threaded rod?

I need to create a "thumb screw" or "hand wheel" out of a 1/2-20 UNF threaded rod to serve as fine linear adjustment screw for a heavy load. (I can't find ready-made knobs with this thread, nor thumb ...
3
votes
1answer
13k views

Plywood plate for mounting to wall

I would like to attach a projector arm to my drywall, but the mounting plate of the arm is a bit wider than a wall stud. http://www.amazon.com/Pyle-PRJWM8-Universal-Telescoping-Adjustment/dp/...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Fixing a bent bolt?

I'm subletting an apartment for the fall, and the only table is broken: a bolt for attaching one of the legs to the tabletop is bent. See the attached photo. How should I repair it?
2
votes
1answer
12k views

How can I securely fasten a carriage bolt?

I recently made a bracket for mounting a TV onto a custom pipe mount that I built. I was advised at my local hardware store to use a carriage bolt here for the following reasons: These counter-...
2
votes
1answer
188 views

Are all toilet bolts installed from under the floor?

My mom has an older toilet. When is became loose, in order to tighten the bolts she had to hire someone to go under the house. We just got a new toilet. I was hoping to install it as a d.i.y project....
2
votes
3answers
359 views

How to fasten rotating pieces without self-tightening (or loosening)? [closed]

I'm trying to make a "slider crank" mechanism for cheap out of 1/4" x 1.5" aluminum, where all the movement is in the xy-plane (parallel to the ground). Total linear movement is ~6 inches. Not my ...
2
votes
2answers
65 views

Shorten bolt with a sleeve of some sort?

I have a reverse osmosis kit, and the faucet has a really long bolt which you use to attach it to your countertop. I can't get a tool up there to tighten it because the sink basin is in the way. I ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

What tool should I use to remove a screw from cramped spaces?

I don't tackle many DIY projects. But when I do, the most frustrating thing is knowing that I'm doing things inefficiently. I watch a YouTube video where the guy says it should take 5 minutes to ...
2
votes
1answer
161 views

What is this nut clamp called and how do you remove it?

I would like to remove the wheel that is being held in by this contraption: I tried to use a standard socket wrench, but couldn't get just the right size: 1/2" or 13mm seems too small; 5/8" or 14mm ...
2
votes
1answer
867 views

What type of bolt has a shoulder portion above and unthreaded region below threads?

I have a couple Rex folding lounge chairs: However, during my move one of the bolts connecting the base to the side came loose and was lost. I took out the one from the other side and I've never seen ...
2
votes
4answers
967 views

How can I hold a nut underneath a deck with no clearance while screwing a bolt into it?

I have an existing deck with composite wood planks. My kids bought me a gazebo for my grill that I would like to bolt to the deck. Is there a tool I can use to hold the nut and washer in place under ...
2
votes
1answer
513 views

Why might a weld be weaker than a bolt? [closed]

I've heard that bolts should be used for connections that must be secure, rather than welds. To me this seems odd; I was under the impression that the whole idea of a weld was to make the two pieces ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

How to remove carriage bolts from a basketball backboard?

How can I remove these carriage (or perhaps round head) bolts? (How were they ever tightened to begin with?) There seems to be no way to access behind the backboard.