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The correct bolt for the job

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Derek Lane23/11/2020 08:58:43
393 forum posts
83 photos

I could not resist this after seeing it.



Edited By Derek Lane on 23/11/2020 09:02:04

Tim Hammond23/11/2020 09:17:01
52 forum posts

Excellent! Love it!

Clive Foster23/11/2020 09:22:47
2588 forum posts
87 photos

Suspect this engineering joke has been doing the rounds in one form or another since Whitworths time.


I have actually made versions of the first and last as "get out of jail" jobs when welded fabrications and the like were not correctly lined up.

Used the first one on a car exhaust system where the slotted bolt holes on a pattern back box collar didn't match the plain hole spacing on a factory pipe.

The second was on an angled flange where the supplier had, I think, welded it on back to front so the angle was on the bolt head side rather than the joint side where it gave a slight offset angle.

Frankly the worst part of the jobs was cleaning off the tube or so of Bodgeitt & Bend Incs finest super hard Joint Sealer (Failed) previously applied in a vain attempt to bodge the unbodegable by a Basgitt'n Twist franchise holder


not done it yet23/11/2020 10:33:37
5596 forum posts
20 photos

Most can be bonafide solution to a problem - in certain circumstances.

The first can be particularly useful where subsequent alignment of edges is reqired or for replacement parts that are not easily welded up and redrilled.

The second example simply wastes effort with a hex head - it could be any shape.

Fifth one is close to the well used torx idea - but external. Particularly useful in a counterbored hole suitable for a specialised socket (security of device)

Sixth one could be a rough and ready dowel and seventh is just a reduced version of a locking tab of a flat ended version of a U bolt (useful for places where access to the bolt head is not available.

The last one would normally use a normal bolt with a tapered washer - lots used on bridge workings where the support surfaces are not perpendicular.

peak423/11/2020 13:08:54
1354 forum posts
151 photos

I made some location dowels a while ago, to allow for where I really should have re-drilled the holes.
I wanted to play with the offset as it was all a guesstimate.Herbert Junior Surface Grinder Recommissioning.


DMB23/11/2020 15:18:36
1062 forum posts

I saw a stationary engine at the Brighton Modelworld exhibition many moons ago and like everyone else, never noticed all "hex" headed bolts on it were in fact pentagonal. The retired toolmaker who built it was laughing after the exbn that no one seemed to have noticed.


old mart23/11/2020 15:26:31
2670 forum posts
176 photos

As they predate things like photoshop, somebody with a sense of humor must have spent a lot of time making them.

We have some Gypsy Major engines at the museum. They were originally of French design, but ours all have Whitworth heads on all the metric threaded fasteners as the Air Ministry was too mean to buy the metric spanners.

Edited By old mart on 23/11/2020 15:31:21

not done it yet23/11/2020 16:19:02
5596 forum posts
20 photos

I doubt it was money pinching - more like keeping toolboxes as light (and standard) as possible and allowing more fitters to work on the engines. Likely saved a lot of fasteners with rounded off corners, too.

Peter Cook 623/11/2020 17:42:16
61 forum posts
16 photos

On the subject of bolts is it an immutable law of the workshop that however big your collection of bolts you never have the one that the job at hand needs!

Last weeks invocations included a need for a 10mm M4 cap head - I only had 8 & 12 so off with 2mm on the lathe. Then I had M2 and M3 bolts, but M2 head was too small for the hole in the part and M3 was too big for the post it went on.

Oily Rag23/11/2020 17:51:30
310 forum posts
126 photos

Ahhh! that last one is easy Peter. You need a #2 - 64 UNF or #2 -56 UNC or better still an 8BA (if you prefer metric!)

Peter Cook 623/11/2020 18:01:52
61 forum posts
16 photos

None of which were in my collection! Amazon provided M2.5 bolts on next day delivery, along with a tap.

That job broke two of my rules

1) never try to repair something for someone else

2) never work on clockwork devices that post date the arrival of plastics in mass production.

It was a small (and probably expensive) cast pewter Winne the Pooh musical box. Quality I thought! Inside it was a cheap diecast & plastic Chinese movement. never intended to see the light of day let alone a repair.

Oily Rag23/11/2020 18:07:23
310 forum posts
126 photos

Ahh So! I take it being Chinese and celebrating Winnie the Pooh it is in veneration of the Great Leader himself Xi Xinping! How rovery.

Nigel Graham 223/11/2020 23:37:32
1052 forum posts
16 photos

Derek -

were you the gentleman who did in fact exhibit these in the metal, at one of the major shows quite some years back?

I could have done with one of the first - Bolt, M10 x 25mm, Offset - the other evening, to save wear on my round file slotting the mis-placed hole in Part B to match correctly-placed hole in Part A.


Peter -

The corollary to that Law states that when N fixings are required, you will only ever have (N-1) in stock.


The Bolt, Special, Serrated, reminds me of the owner I used to know, of a 7.more 25-inch g. 0-4-2 tender loco that ran well more despite than thanks to, him. A wonderful character he were, sadly now long re-allocated, as happily eccentric as any on an engine.

His running-shed tool-set appeared to be an long-spouted oil-can used in a way the rest of us called " point and squirt " , a 2lb hammer for breaking coal and mending broken things - and in keeping with those special bolts, a big pair of serrated-jaw pliers for the union nuts that had long since given up being hexagonal.

I wonder where that loco is now? Called " Welsh Pony " , I hope it still canters around one club track or another somewhere; but it won't have known itself if its new stable had treated it to hexagonal unions.

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