RevolverRob
RevolverRob New Reader
12/24/20 12:00 p.m.

Because I'm starting my garage over from scratch, I lack any significant number of fasteners. I want to start out by simply buying a few assortments, then I'll go to buying in bulk those fasteners that I use the most of. But since I don't have anything here on hand, running to Home Depot three times in a day is untenable.

I know I NEED fasteners in SAE Fine Thread and Metric 'Fine Thread' for the things I have around here. And I wouldn't mind having a smaller assortment of SAE Coarse on hand as well. In addition to needing fasteners, I need storage for them.

Finally, a question on grading. I'm an 'overkill is underrated' individual most of the time. Is there a compelling reason to not just go with Grade 8 (SAE) and 10.9 (Metric) for all the fasteners I might use on my cars? I know the Grade 5 and 8.8 fastener assortments are cheaper, but not that much cheaper, and moving up to 8/10.9 seems like cheap insurance overall.

 

Purple Frog (Forum Supporter)
Purple Frog (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/24/20 12:12 p.m.

I use Skybolt Aerospace Fasteners in Lakeland Florida.

for a few at a time, I use McMaster-Carr.

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
12/24/20 12:41 p.m.

I have 50 full baby food jars, 20 full coffee cans, and 4 little parts multi drawer setup  thingies (one from my grandfather - below) and I don't have the right bolt.  

However yesterday I did have 2 eye hook screws I needed instead of going out. 

FieroReinke
FieroReinke New Reader
12/24/20 1:19 p.m.

Part out one of the types of cars you like to play with and save all the fasteners.  I still have three or four coffee cans worth of nuts bolts and washers from mistake that I parted out for my Locost build.   its a good start at least.  As far as grade 5 VS 8,  grade 8 isn't necessarily better, it just has different properties and you need to match the bolt grade to the application and there are times a grade 5 is the better suited bolt.   

obsolete
obsolete New Reader
12/24/20 2:14 p.m.

I've taken to hitting up Zoro for anything I can't find in my local hardware store (or these days, to reduce my number of trips out). They are associated with Grainger, stuff usually ships out of Chicago, and FAST. Great selection, reasonable prices for the most part, and they usually have some good coupon codes going too.

NOHOME
NOHOME MegaDork
12/24/20 2:28 p.m.

McMaster Carr is an easy button. 

 

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/24/20 3:13 p.m.

Fastenal, and McMaster Carr are my go-tos.

For not critical stuff, I use Amazon as well.  I don't mind buying trusted brands to make sure they're quality but some Amazon fasteners are questionable.

spandak
spandak HalfDork
12/24/20 3:23 p.m.

I've used Bolt Depot for the times I need a few of a specific type and not 50. McMaster is probably best for building stock. Both have assorted boxes I think. 
I trust the quality from both places. Local hardware store metric hardware is almost always trash. I've stripped 10.9 grade bolts from Lowe's without even trying. 

Amazon. They sell the bolts and the bins. 

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/24/20 4:53 p.m.

As far as grades, it basically has to do with their properties.

Grade 2 (no lines on the head) is general purpose stuff.  Bolting a fender on a car, nut for a ground strap, etc.
Grade 5 (a very logical 3 lines on the head) is higher strength, both in shear and tension.  Usually rated for a certain strength.  Good for more critical things like bolting an alternator or bellhousing to a block.
Grade 8 (an also logical 6 lines on the head) is much higher strength.  Always rated for strength.  Good for really critical things like head bolts, suspension bits, or overhead lifting.

An important note if you're trying to pick grades:  As you go up in grade, you go up in hardness and down in ductility.  While a grade 8 bolt has a higher shear strength than a grade 5, if it's something that has the opportunity to bend, a grade 5 will give, but a grade 8 won't.  I've lifted dozens of motors by a bent 3/8" grade 5 bolt screwed into the block, and snapped a couple grade 8 bolts doing the same thing.  If you're using a grade 8 bolt for something like that, it should be placed in tension... that is to say, don't just screw it in loosely on a chain link, screw it in and tighten it down on the chain link.  Don't give it a chance to bend, cause it won't.

stukndapast
stukndapast Reader
12/24/20 4:56 p.m.

I'm not sure that it is every store, but my local Tractor Supply has a very nice selection of hardware in Grade 5 and Grade 8 and it is all sold by the pound.  Grade 8 is around $4.50 and Grade 5 is like $3.80 or so.  Almost certainly Chinese sourced, but if you aren't relying on it for overhead lifting or keeping the wheels on, it is all good stuff.  It takes a surprising number of small (1/4, 5/16,3/8 or metric equivalant) nuts, bolts and washers to make up a pound.  Same pricing applies to all sorts of other hardware items too.  It beats the stuffing out of the local Ace Hardware.  Grab 'em by the handful.

stukndapast
stukndapast Reader
12/24/20 4:58 p.m.
NOHOME said:

McMaster Carr is an easy button. 

 

Not easy on your wallet though.

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/24/20 6:04 p.m.
stukndapast said:
NOHOME said:

McMaster Carr is an easy button. 

 

Not easy on your wallet though.

Very true for most things.  I find most of their fasteners to be very reasonable.  And... of all things... I was shopping for aluminum bar grate last year and McMaster was cheapest by far.

But you're totally right.  You might have a grade 5 bolt that is 49 cents, but if you want the fully threaded version, it's $4.55

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/24/20 6:05 p.m.
stukndapast said:

I'm not sure that it is every store, but my local Tractor Supply has a very nice selection of hardware in Grade 5 and Grade 8 and it is all sold by the pound.  Grade 8 is around $4.50 and Grade 5 is like $3.80 or so.  Almost certainly Chinese sourced, but if you aren't relying on it for overhead lifting or keeping the wheels on, it is all good stuff.  It takes a surprising number of small (1/4, 5/16,3/8 or metric equivalant) nuts, bolts and washers to make up a pound.  Same pricing applies to all sorts of other hardware items too.  It beats the stuffing out of the local Ace Hardware.  Grab 'em by the handful.

And if you live near a hardware store that isn't blue or orange (like red for instance) they often have a wide selection at reasonable prices.

eastpark
eastpark HalfDork
12/24/20 6:11 p.m.

In reply to NOHOME :

Pete, how has McMaster Carr been for shipping to Canada? Or do/did you ship to a US address. Assuming when the border re-opens. 

matthewmcl (Forum Supporter)
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
12/24/20 6:49 p.m.

Fastenal will tell you the source country for your bolts, McMaster does not do that as well.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
12/24/20 7:35 p.m.

boltdepot.com

/thread

NOHOME
NOHOME MegaDork
12/24/20 9:06 p.m.
eastpark said:

In reply to NOHOME :

Pete, how has McMaster Carr been for shipping to Canada? Or do/did you ship to a US address. Assuming when the border re-opens. 

Problematic in that they require a business address and wont ship to a house. Other than that, it is next day delivery.  As I will be retiring end of Jan, this will be an issue.

Rons
Rons GRM+ Memberand Reader
12/24/20 9:16 p.m.

In reply to NOHOME :

Would they accept a private po box? A UPS box can be addressed as #101 1495 Mariine Dr city and the UPS store accepts packages from all couriers (at least the ones I've dealt with)

RevolverRob
RevolverRob New Reader
12/24/20 9:59 p.m.
matthewmcl (Forum Supporter) said:

Fastenal will tell you the source country for your bolts, McMaster does not do that as well.

I checked the McMaster-Carr app and all the bolt assortments listed show country of origin as United States. You can't search by country of origin - but the info is there. When you click on the link to "add to cart" click "Product Details" above  

Bolt Assortments, Inch Sizes, 910 Pieces, Zinc-Plated Grade 5 Steel

https://www.mcmaster.com/91340A112/

Edit: Thanks for the thoughts folks. Despite ordering regularly from McMaster-Carr they slipped my mind a source. Being in Chicago has perks - I can pick up orders at Will Call and avoid shipping charges. 

pirate
pirate HalfDork
12/24/20 10:31 p.m.

For a home shop trying to stock fasteners in right size, pitch, length and grade is very expensive and in my opinion not a great use of resources. When I'm building a car or working  on a project I tend to buy what ever is available at the local box store during my mock up. After I'm satisfied with mockup I then make a list of proper grade, size, length, etc and either got to Fastenal or place an order. After doing final assembly with proper fasteners I put mock-up/slave bolts, nuts, screws, etc in plastic bags for future project mock-ups or general use.

 

chaparral
chaparral Dork
12/26/20 11:18 a.m.

Metrics Unlimited, Warren, Michigan. Unbeatable for 12.9 grade bolts and nuts.

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UberDork
12/26/20 12:08 p.m.
RevolverRob said:

Finally, a question on grading. I'm an 'overkill is underrated' individual most of the time. Is there a compelling reason to not just go with Grade 8 (SAE) and 10.9 (Metric) for all the fasteners I might use on my cars? I know the Grade 5 and 8.8 fastener assortments are cheaper, but not that much cheaper, and moving up to 8/10.9 seems like cheap insurance overall.

There are some bolts on the car where you do not want grade anything.  The problem with hardware store bolts is that there are no guarantees that they were manufactured correctly, no protection against unscrupulous suppliers skimping on the expensive materials or production processes that are critical to achieving the advertised strength.

When considering using a hardware store bolt for a particular application in a car, think about what would happen if that bolt were to fail and whether or not that failure could kill someone.  If the answer is yes (say for something that's holding the the steering and suspension components together) then you probably want to spend the money for an OEM bolt from a trusted supplier like the dealer.  If there's no OEM option for a home-built car then the fallback is to get aircraft hardware.  Generally speaking there are no non-critical bolts on an airplane. :)

 

RevolverRob
RevolverRob New Reader
12/26/20 8:54 p.m.

The trouble with finding OEM bolts is the OEM has been defunct for longer than I have been alive. So, that's going to be a no go on both getting new OEM hardware and on sourcing stuff from a junkyard. 
 

I am evaluating the things I take off the car to determine what can/cannot be reused. But still I'll need some more hardware at the end of the day for a variety of purposes. 
 

I like the idea of aero fasteners for critical bits. 

buzzboy
buzzboy Dork
12/26/20 10:06 p.m.

Tractor Supply sells hardware by the pound. When we're after something specific we'll grab a few extra of this and that just to slowly build up a collection.

For my personal collection I disassembled two cars and kept every fastener sorting as I went.

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