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In the end, you should be able to:

Distinguish aircraft hardware from common
Know the AN numbering convention,
Be able to match a fastener to its AN number,
Select the proper hardware from a blue print
Be able to order hardware from a supplier,
Know where to find AN information.

A ircraft
H ard w are

Hardware is the term used describe the various

types of fasteners and small items used to
assemble aircraft structures.

Only hardware with traceability to an approved

manufacturing process or source should be used.

Threaded fasteners and rivets are the most

commonly used fasteners.

A ircraft
H ard w are

S p ecif i
cation C on ven tion s
AN Air Force / Navy
NAS National Aerospace Standards
MS Military Standards
AMS Aeronautical Material
SAE Society of Automotive Engineers
MIL Military Specifications

Fasteners, or fastening devices, are used to

create secure joints between two or more
Types of fastening devices, used on aircraft,
vary in accordance with the materials, which
require joining, and the importance of the
joined components, or structures, to the
safety of the aircraft.
Only those fastening devices approved by the
aircrafts maintenance manual are allowed to
be used, as substitution with incorrect parts,
can cause fatal consequences.

The environment in which the joint must

operate and the frequency and ease with
which the joint may need to be
disassembled, for inspection, replacement or
repair, will also influence the choice of
fasteners to be employed.
Fasteners may be metallic or non-metallic
(or composites of both types).
They may be flexible or rigid (or a
combination of both) and may be used to
form the three basic categories of joints.

Temporary joints are used where the
joint can be disassembled without
damage and where, usually, the same
fastener can be used to reassemble
the joint.
Bolts and nuts, circlips and quickrelease fasteners are, typically, used
in temporary joints.

Permanent joints. are those which are
not intended to be disassembled on a
frequent basis (if at all), and are joints
where either the fastening medium or
the joined components will suffer
damage in their separation
Adhesives, rivets and welds are
examples of uses of permanent joints.

Flexible joints allow movement of the
joined components relative to each
Anti-vibration mounts, universal
couplings and hinges are devices
which may be employed in flexible

Whatever fasteners are used to make a
particular joint, it must be ensured that only
the approved materials are utilized and that
their legality is confirmed.
This can be done by reference to published
Part Numbers, which are to be found in
Aircraft Maintenance Manuals, Wiring
Diagrams, Structural Repair Manuals,
Illustrated Parts Catalogues (also called
Illustrated Parts Lists) and other, approved,

The use of non-approved fasteners can lead to expensive

and,possibly, fatalfailures in aircraft and their associated

Threaded fasteners allow parts to be
fastened together with all of the strength that
unthreaded fasteners provide.
However, unlike rivets and pins, threaded
fasteners may be disassembled and
reassembled an almost infinite number of
times. Due to the large range of different
available fasteners, great care must always
be taken to select the correct fastener for
each particular installation.

Aircraft bolts, nuts, screws and studs are

manufactured to the many, different,
International Standards and in a variety of
different thread forms, as can be seen in Table
Most aircraft now use Unified or Metric threads
but, however, some older aircraft use British
Association (BA), British Standard Fine (BSF) or
British Standard Whitworth (BSW) thread forms.
None of these are compatible with the Unified
or Metric thread forms.

Th e In clin ed P lan e an d th e H elix

The value of the wedge, as a means of

transmitting motion, is well known. For a
constant effort applied in driving a wedge, a
smaller angle of inclination between the
planes will cause a greater force to be
exerted through a shorter distance.
Conversely, a larger angle will cause less
force to be exerted through a greater

This is readily appreciated when the angle is

large (the larger the angle of inclination
becomes, the more readily is the motion
reversed), but no matter how small the angle
may be, the resultant of forces applied will
still tend to produce movement. Friction
between the surfaces may prevent movement
from actually occurring.
When a continuous, inclined plane is cut
around the outside (or the inside) of a
cylinder, then a spiral or helix is produced
(refer to Fig. 2). The helix angle is important
in screw threads, because it dictates the
number of threads, which can be cut, per
axial length on or inside the cylinder.

In a similar manner to
the previously
mentioned wedges, a
thread with a small helix
angle (a fine thread),
will exert a greater force
than one with a larger
helix angle (a coarse
thread) for a given
Helix Angle
cylinder diameter.
Helix Angle of a Screw

There are two basic types of screw thread
fastener, these being the bolt and the screw.
A bolt is considered to have a plain shank
portion in addition to a threaded section,
whilst a screw has threads running the full
length of the shank with no plain portion.
There are exceptions to this general
statement, as shown by American AN
structural screws having a plain shank.

As there are variations with screw

thread terminology, the correct way of
describing a threaded fastener is to
use the correct terminology, found in
the relevant aircraft Illustrated Parts
Catalogue when ordering replacement

B ritish S tan d ard (B S )

Th read ed Fasten ers

BS threaded fasteners use the term Nominal

Length (refer Fig. 3) to describe the

A m erican S tan d ard

Fasten ers

The American method of length measurement

uses two terms, Length and Grip (refer to
Fig. 4) to describe threaded fasteners. The
Grip is the portion of the fastener that is

Screw threads are usually formed with a

clockwise turning groove and are referred to
as right-hand threads. There are occasions
where a thread is formed with the groove
spiraling in an anti-clockwise direction and
these are designated as left-hand threads.
While a traditional thread shape can be used
to illustrate the terminology associated with
screw threads (refer to Fig. 5), the actual
profile of a thread is determined by the
standard, or specification to which it is
manufactured. This of course, will also be
influenced by the use to which the threaded

The following additional terminology also refers to

screw threads:
Single Start Thread: Term used when there is only
one screw thread (helix) cut in the material
Multi-Start Thread: Consists of two or more
separate, parallel threads cut into the material
carrying the thread. This method is used in order
to achieve a quick-acting motion between two
threaded items
Runout: The part of the thread where the minor
diameter increases until it equals the major
diameter and merges with the plain portion of the
shank. The runout cannot be used and any nut,
rotated onto the runout, would become thread-

S crew Th read Form s

The type of screw thread utilized for any
application is dependent on the function
of the component.
Typically a bolt or screw will use a V
shaped threaded form similar to the
metric thread, whilst the Acme, Buttress
and Square threads are utilized to
transmit movement in vices and flap
screw jacks (refer to Fig. 6).

S crew Th read Form s

C lasses of Fit

C lasses of Fit

A nut on class 1 fit bolt can be tightened

by hand along the threads entire length,
Class 4 or 5 fit requires a spanner to be
used throughout the tightening

C lasses of Fit
The Class 3 fit is the standard type mostly
employed on aircraft, and would be typical of
a thread which is designed for use in a hightemperature environment and may require the
application of an anti-seize compound before
By comparison a fastener that is to be
subjected to high tension or shear loads,
associated with the securing of aircraft engine
parts, would need to be a Close tolerance type

Standard airframe bolts are

manufactured with a Class 3 fit.

M easu rin g S crew Th read s

It is not considered a normal operation to
measure a screw thread, as its identification
can be found by using the manufacturers part
One method is to identify the screw by means
of various marks, normally found on the head
of the screw. These marks may give a clue as
to which type of thread the screw is using,
whilst a measurement across the thread
crests, using a micrometer, would give the
diameter of the screw in question. The
identifying head markings would also give the

Two useful tools (refer to Fig. 7) may be used

for different stages of thread measurement.

The profile gauge can be used to

ensure that the tool, which is cutting
the thread, is of the correct type.
The pitch gauge can be used to find the
thread size by simply fitting the various
blades of the gauge against the screw
thread until a match is achieved.

Aircraft use a large number

of machine screw and selftapping screws. Screws
are used to fasten
inspection panels, cowling,
fairings, and similar
components not requiring
high-strength fasteners.

B olts


The bolts used in the construction of aerospace
components and structures, have evolved into a large
range of materials, shapes and sizes, all of which are
dictated by the applications for which the items have
been designed.
It is stressed here, that only the approved design
materials may be used for aerospace components.
While a selection of some of the bolts are presented
in these course notes, by way of introduction, the
relevant AMM, SRM and IPC will be the sole authority
for deciding the correct type of bolt that is to be used
in a particular application.

B ritish B olts

An extensive range of bolts and screws is

provided for, in the specifications drawn up
by the Society of British Aerospace
Companies (SBAC). The following
abbreviations (some of which have, already,
been discussed are in common use:

Id en tif c
iation of B S U n if i
B olts

British Standard Unified (BS Unified) bolts are

identified by the use of an alpha-numeric
code, which provides information relating to
the type, material, surface finish, length,
diameter and other important characteristics
of the threaded device.

Id en tif c
iation of B S U n if i
B olts

Reference to the table shows that the code A102

signifies a hexagonal-headed bolt which is made of
high-tensile steel, while the code A175 represents a
100 countersunk-headed bolt, made from an

Refer to the book

A m erican B olts

American aircraft bolts and nuts are threaded

in the NC (American National Coarse), the NF
(American National Fine), the UNC (Unified
National Coarse), and the UNF (Unified
National Fine) thread series.
The item is often coded to give the diameter
of the threaded portion and the number of
Threads Per Inch (TPI).

A m erican B olts

Aircraft bolts may be made from HTS,

Corrosion-Resistant Steel or Aluminum
Head types may be hexagonal, clevis,
eyebolt, internal wrenching and
countersunk (refer to Fig. 8) and head
markings may be used to indicate
other features such as close tolerance,
aluminum alloy, CRS or other types of

A m erican B olts

Id en tif i
cation of A N
S tan d ard B olts

While there are several different US

Standards, there is only need to discuss one
type for the purpose of these course notes,
as the others are very similar.
AN bolts come in three head styles,
Hexagon Head, Clevis and Eyebolts and
Table 12 provides an indication of the
various code numbers in use.

For identification purposes the AN number is

used to indicate the type of bolt and its
diameter. In addition a code is used to indicate
the material, length and presence of a split pin
or locking wire hole as follows:
Diameter: The last figure or last two figures,
of the AN number indicates thread diameter,
1 = No. 6, 2 = No.8, 3 = No.10, and 4 =
with subsequent numbers indicating the
diameter in 1/16 increments. Thus an AN4
is a hexagon headed bolt of diameter
and an AN14 is a hexagon headed bolt of
7/8 (14/16) diameter.

Lengths: The length of a bolt, in the case of

a hexagonal headed bolt, is measured from
under the head of the first full thread (refer
to Fig. 9) and is quoted in 1/8 increments
as a dash number. The last figure of the
dash number represents eighths and the
first figure inches, so that an AN4 12 is a
diameter hexagon headed bolt, 1

Position of Drilled Hole: Bolts are normally

supplied with a hole drilled in the threaded
part of the shank, but different
arrangements may be obtained:

Drilled shank - normal coding



Un-drilled shank - an A added after dash No.

AN24 15A

Drilled head only - an H added before the dash

number and replacing it and an A added after
the dash number

Drilled head and shank an H added

before dash No

Material: The standard coding applies to a

non-corrosion-resistant, cadmium-plated
steel bolt. Where the bolt is supplied in
other materials, letters are placed after
the AN number as follows:

1. C - Corrosion Resistance Steel (CRS)

2. DD - Aluminum Alloy
Thread: When the bolt is supplied as either
or UNC threads, a UNC thread is indicated by
placing an A in place of the dash.

Special-to-Type Bolts
The hexagon headed aircraft bolt AN3 AN20
(refer to Fig.10), is an all
purpose structural
bolt used for
involving tension
or shear loads
where a light drive
fit is permissible.

Alloy steel bolts, smaller than 3/16

diameter, and aluminum alloy bolts smaller
than are not used on primary structure.
Other bolts may be used as follows:

Close Tolerance Bolts are machined more

accurately than the standard bolt. They may
be hexagon headed (AN173 AN186) or
have a 100 countersunk head (NAS80
NAS86). They are used in applications where
a tight drive fit is required the bolt requires
the use of a hammer to drive it into position.

Internal Wrenching Bolts (MS 20024 or

NAS 495) are fabricated from high-strength
steel and are suitable for tensile or shear
applications. The head is recessed to allow
the insertion of a hexagonal key used for
installing or removing the bolt. In Dural-type
material, a heat-treated washer must be
used to provide an adequate bearing
surface for the head.

Clevis Bolt

heads are either round or

slotted, for a standard screwdriver, or
recessed, for a cross-pointed screwdriver. This
type of bolt is used only for shear loads and
never in tension. It is often inserted as a
mechanical pin in a control system.

Eyebolt is designed for the attachment of

cable shackles or turnbuckles and the bolt is
used for tensile loads. The threaded end may
be drilled for wire locking.

M etric B olts

The identification of a Metric bolt is by the

use of the diameter in millimetres,
immediately after the capital letter M. In
this way, M6 represents a 6 mm diameter
bolt. The length is also shown in millimetres,
so the bolt M6 -15 will be a 6 mm diameter
bolt, which is 15 mm long. The basic
terminology, for identifying bolts of the
Metric system, involves the nominal length,
the grip length and diameter (refer to Fig.

***Unless otherwise specified, bolts

should be installed with their head on
top or forward.

Review and Exercises:

Bolt Identification



Aerospace standard nuts are made in a variety

of shapes and sizes. They can be made of
cadmium-plated carbon steel, stainless steel or
anodised 2024T aluminium alloy and can have


As a general rule, nuts are

manufactured from the same material
as the bolt or screw to which they are
attached, with the exception of hightensile steel bolts, when mild steel
nuts are used.

Castle Nuts are used with hexagon headed

bolts or studs, eye bolts and clevis bolts and
are rugged enough to withstand large tensile
loads. The slots or castellation are designed
to accommodate a split pin for locking

Engine Slotted Nuts are similar in

construction to castle nuts and are
used in similar applications, except that
they are normally used for engine use
only. Shear Slotted Nuts are a much
lighter nut, used for miscellaneous light
tensile requirements.

Plain Hexagon Nuts

are of
robust construction and suitable
for shear and tensile loads. Some
plain hexagon nuts have a built
in collar or shoulder to give them
additional strength and thickness
for certain applications.

Wing Nuts

are used

the desired tightness can
obtained merely with
using the fingers and
where the assembly is

Stiffnuts Nuts
-A plain nut will depend upon friction

between the engaging threads to ensure its

tightness. Vibration can cause the nut to
slacken off and in extreme cases unwind
itself completely from the thread. In areas
where this might occur locking devices are

These either increase the frictional resistance

between the threads, or take the form of
positive a security, which prevents movement
of the nut once they have been tightened.

A recognized rule for serviceability of a stiff nut

is that they should be discarded when they can
be screwed along the entire thread using only
finger pressure.

Nyloc is a standard hexagonal nut, which has

a plastic insert in the counter-bored end. This
insert is initially unthreaded and has an
internal diameter slightly smaller than the nut
thread so that as the nut is screwed on the
bolt, the plastic insert is displaced and a high
degree of friction is created. A fibre lock nut
is a similar type of stiff nut uses a fibre insert
instead of nylon.

Nyloc Capnut is another type of plastic

stop nut that completely seals and is
used with pressurized components such
as fuel and oil tanks. Nyloc nuts should
never be used in areas of extreme
temperatures, hot or cold.

Oddie nut has a slotted end consisting of six

tongues, which form a circle slightly smaller
than the bolt or stud diameter. As the nut is
turned a friction load is imparted onto the
threaded device.

Philidas nut has a circular crown, which has

horizontal slots in two places. The thread on
the slotted part is slightly out of phase with
the rest of the thread, so that increased
friction is achieved when the nut is turned.

Aerotight are similar to the Philidas in

appearance and locking method, except that
the slots are vertical.

Lightweight nuts have the locking section

slightly oval in shape and this causes
increased friction when the thread passes
through it. Metal hexagonal type stiff nuts
may be re-used provided they retain their

Anchor nuts
They allow threaded devices to be turned from
one side only when access to the back of the
fastener can not be achieved. They are usually
secured to the inside of structures by rivets during
construction, with their shape and size being
dictated by the amount of space available.
Anchor nuts are supplied with single or double
attachment points and may be either fixed or floating
in a cage. The anchor nut may be a single unit stiff
nut integral with the base plate, or an assembly
comprising stiff nut, cage and base plate. Single
attachment types are used in corners or where space
is limited and have two adjacent fixing points. Double
anchor nuts have a hole either side of the stiff nut.

Tinnerman nuts are cost economical nuts that

are stamped out of sheet metal. They should
only be used in non-structural applications
such as cockpit panels.

Strip Nuts (gang nuts) are a number of

anchor nuts ganged together on a strip for
ease of attachment and are used to secure
large panels. Both anchor and strip nuts are
usually of the floating variety and are all
attached to the structure by riveting.

Review and Exercises:

-the most commonly used threaded
fastener in aircraft construction, and they
differ from bolts as they are generally made
from lower strength materials.

Great care must be taken to replace screws

with the correct items, by using the markings
on the screw, the IPC and any other systems
used by the supply department, to protect
against incorrect screws being installed.
There are major differences with terminology
between the British and American names for
screw heads.
When the British refer to as a countersunk
headed screw, the Americans call a flat
head or flush screw and mushroom headed
screws are known as truss heads in the USA.

Machine Screws
-are used extensively for attaching fairings,
inspection plates, fluid line clamps and other light
structural parts. The main difference between
aircraft bolts and machine screws, is that the
threads of a machine screw usually run the length
of the shank, whereas bolts usually have an
unthreaded grip length.
A common machine screw used in aviation is the
fillister head screw, which can be wire-locked using
the drilled hole in the head. The countersunk head
screw is available with single or cross-point slotted
heads. The round head screw and the mushroom
head screw, provide good holding properties on thin
metal sheets.

*** Aircraft machine screws normally

have Class 2 fit.


Structural screws are made of alloy steel, are
heat-treated and can be used in many
structural situations.
They have a definite grip and the same shear
strength as a bolt of the same size. They are
available with fillister, countersunk or washer
The washer head screw has a
washer formed into its head to
increase its holding ability with

Self-Tapping Screws
- have coarse threads and are used to secure soft
materials and thin sheets of metal. The type A screw
has a sharp point or gimlet, and the type B has a
blunt point with threads that are slightly finer than the
type A. There are four types of head in normal use,
round head, countersunk oval head, truss or
mushroom head and flush countersunk head.

- are metal rods that are threaded at both ends.
In general they are used where it is not possible, or
desirable for a bolt to be used.

Standard Studs
-most widely used stud is the standard
(plain or parallel) type, in which the diameter
of the whole stud, along its length, is
constant. Standard studs are classified by the
thread type, diameter and overall length. The
metal thread is usually, finished very slightly
oversize to give a tight fit into the tapped hole

Waisted Studs
-are used where reduction of weight,
without the loss of strength, is of paramount
importance. The diameter of the plain portion
of the stud is reduced to the minor diameter
of the end threads, thus lightening the stud
without impairing its effective strength.

Stepped Studs
This type affords a stronger anchorage
than the standard type, if the metal
end of the stud has to be housed in soft
metal. The thread of the metal end is
one size larger than that of the nut
Stepped studs are also used as
replacements for standard studs when
the tapped stud-hole has to be redrilled and tapped with a larger thread,
due to damage.

Shouldered Studs
-used where maximum rigidity of assembly

is of prime importance. The stud is machined

from oversize bar and a projecting shoulder is
left between the metal end of the thread
and the normal diameter plain portion. The
shoulder seats firmly on the surface of the
metal and gives additional resistance to
sideways stresses. The clearance hole in the
second component, through which the nut
end and plain portion of the stud passes,
must be machined at the inner end to give
clearance to the stud shoulder.

A simple method of fitting and

removing a stud is by running two
plain nuts down the nut end of the
stud and cinching (locking) them
together using two spanners. The
stud can then be screwed into or
removed from the material.
Breaking the cinch then separating
and removing the nuts completes
the operation.

-are a means of providing a stronger
anchorage, for bolts, screws or studs, in the
comparatively softer metal alloys (aluminium,
magnesium, bronze), wood, plastics or
composite materials. They may also be used
when it is necessary to do a repair to a
threaded hole that has suffered damage.
2 BASIC Types of Thread Inserts
1. Wire Thread Inserts
2. Thin Wall Inserts

Wire Thread Inserts

-consist of a very accurately formed helical coil of
wire, which has a diamond (rather than a round)
cross-section and is usually made from corrosionresistant steel or heat-resistant nickel alloy.
Specifically sized drills, taps and thread gauges
(provided by the insert manufacturer) are required to
form the tapped holes for the inserts and another
special tool is necessary to insert the wire coils
correctly into their prepared holes.

Thin Wall Inserts

-are available in a variety of designs,
materials and surface finishes. They
consist of a thin tube, which is
threaded internally and may, or may
not, be threaded externally. Special
tools are required from the
manufacturer to prepare the holes for
the inserts and various methods are
adopted to secure each particular type
of thin wall insert into its hole.

Thin Wall inserts include:

Key-Locked Inserts are threaded both internally
and externally, and after being screwed into the
prepared hole, are (as their name implies), locked into
their holes by tiny wedges or keys. The keys are then
pressed (or hammered) into place between the insert
and the wall of the hole.

Swaged Inserts are also threaded internally and

externally and again, are screwed into the hole before
a tool is used to deform or swage the insert so that it

Ring-Locked Inserts with internal and

external threads, are screwed into holes which
are counter bored, to allow a special lock-ring
to be installed, (after the insert) and yet
another special tool is used to complete the
locking action of the lock ring.

Bonded Inserts are usually only

internally threaded (to hold the bolt,
screw, or stud) and are secured in the
prepared hole by the use of adhesives.


DOWELS- are rods or pins of the appropriate
material which are fixed (often permanently) in one
of the components of a joint such that the
protruding shank of the dowel locates with a
corresponding hole in the item being attached, thus
ensuring accurate assembly.
Two examples of the use of dowels may be found
where a Propeller Control Unit is attached to an
engine casing and there is a requirement for
absolute accuracy in the alignment of the oil tubes.
Also when the segments of an engine compressor
need to be joined with precision so that the rotating
members do not foul the stationary parts.

Roll Pins
- used to secure a pulley to a shaft or to provide a
pivot for a joint where the pin is unlikely to be
A roll pin is normally made from flat spring steel that
is rolled into an incomplete cylindrical shape that
allows the pin to compress when it is pressed into the
hole, and creates a spring action that holds the pin
tight within the bore of the hole. To remove a roll pin it
must be driven from the hole with a correct-sized

Clevis Pins
- used for hinge pins in some aircraft control
systems. They are made of cadmium-plated steel and
have grip lengths in 1/16-inch increments. When a
clevis pin is installed, a plain washer is usually placed
over the end of the shank and a cotter (split) pin is
inserted, through the pre-drilled hole in the clevis pin,
to lock it in place.

Taper Pins- designed to carry shear loads

and are manufactured from high-tensile steel.
The pins do not allow any loose motion or
play and are used for joining tubes and
attaching collars to shafts.
-Metric type has a taper of 1:50
-Imperial version has a taper of 1:48


forced into the hole,
which has been reamed
to the specified size
with a Taper Pin
Reamer, and is held in
place by friction alone.
similar to the plain pin
except that its small
end is threaded to
accept either a selflocking shear nut or a
shear castle nut with


Spring Washers- are assembled with plain

facing washers between the spring washer and the
component. This is done to prevent damage to the
surface finish when the spring washer is compressed
although, with steel assemblies, the plain washer is
usually omitted.

It is good practice to renew spring

washers during overhaul or repair.
This procedure is most essential in
engines and engine components as
well as where units have reciprocating
parts, such as in compressors or
pumps. In normal circumstances,
spring washers can be re-used if they
have retained their springiness and

Single and Double Coil Washers -are

manufactured from rectangular sectioned steel and
formed into a portion of a helix, the single and double
coil are the most common types of spring washer to
be found on aircraft components.

Crinkle Washers are usually

manufactured from either copper alloy
or corrosion resistant steel. They are
often used with lightly loaded
applications such as instruments and
electrical installations.

Cup or Belleville washers are manufactured

from spring steel and are dished to form a
spring of high rating. The flattening of the
washer during tightening, exerts an axial
load to the nut, which will
resist any tendency
of the nut to lose
torque. Assembly
should always be
in accordance with
the manufacturers

Shake-Proof Washers
-are manufactured from steel or phosphor bronze
and are used in place of spring washers. In some
circumstances conical shake-proof washers are used
for locking countersunk screws.
Either the internal or the external diameters can be
serrated, the serration being designed to bite into the
component and nut to prevent rotation.
All shake-proof washers should be used ONLY ONCE.
It is rare for these washers to be specified in
assemblies where an anti-corrosion treatment of the
components has been specified, as this could
damage the treatment.

Tab Washers
-are normally used on plain nuts. The
washers are manufactured from thin metallic
sheet material and have two or more tabs
projecting from the external diameter. They
can also be designed for locking two or more
Once the washer is installed, one tab is bent
against the component or inserted into a hole
provided, whilst a second tab is bent against
the flat (or flats) of the nut, after it has been
torque down correctly. Multi-tab washers can
be re-used until all tabs have been used

Lock Plates
-are used where positive retention of a nut is
required. The nut is torque loaded and then if
necessary, turned a small amount, (< 1/12
revolution) until its flats align with the hole in the
lock plate . The lock plate is used where the nut is
frequently removed the plate can be used
indefinitely providing it retains a good fit with the

Split (Cotter) Pins

- is to lock slotted and castellated
nuts as well as for securing clevis pins.
The nuts are locked onto their bolts by
passing the pin through the hole in the
bolt and the nut castellation. The legs
of the pin are spread in one of two

- Wire-locking (or Safetying as it is
known in the USA), is the commonest
form of locking in use throughout the
aircraft industry.
- a positive method of securing
items such as bolts, pipe unions,
turnbuckles and nuts. Components
designed to be wire-locked have holes
in the appropriate positions to enable
the lock wire to pass through.

Some forms of wire-locking are done with a

single strand of the specified wire, especially
in cases of where a complete ring or similar
formation of nuts is found (refer to Fig. 28).
The wire is passed in sequence, through the
holes in their respective nuts and bolts (or
screws), until the wire ends meet.
Again the wire must be
threaded so that any
tendency, of a nut or
bolt, to attempt to
slacken off, will add
tension to the wire.

Single Wire Locking for Close

Spaced Drilled Head Screws

U se of Lockin g W ire w ith

Tu rn b u ckles

As with any threaded fastener, turnbuckles

must be locked to prevent them from coming
loose and jeopardising the control runs they
are connecting. There are a number of
different types of wire-locking used on
turnbuckles and the AMM must be consulted
to find which method is specified. Methods
used include the single wrap and single wrap
spiral as well as the double wrap and double
wrap spiral.

The single wrap and single wrap spiral use a

single strand of the appropriate wire that
passes through the hole in the centre of the
turnbuckle, finishing up wrapped around each
The single wrap spiral also uses a single piece
of wire that is spiralled around the turnbuckle
barrel and passed through the centre hole
Two pieces of wire are used in the double wrap
method, which are basically two single wraps,
one in each direction. A double wrap spiral
consists of two single wrap spirals, again one

U se of Lockin g W ire w ith

Lockin g Tab s

When locking tabs are used, they should be

installed in such a way that the tabs and the
wire are in complete alignment (refer to Fig.
29). Whenever possible, the closed end of the
wire should be in the tab and the twisted end
at the component to be locked, although the
exact method may be found in the AMM.

U se of Lockin g W ire w ith

Lockin g Tab s

Thin Copper Wire (Tell-Tale wire)

Thin copper wire is used to hold some switches
and levers in a set position and, thus,
prevents the accidental operation of those
switches, which control certain critical systems
such as emergency circuits.
A secondary purpose of copper wire is as an
indicator or witness, where a broken wire
indicates that the switch or control has been
operated. This method is employed on systems
where it is necessary to know when a
component, such as an engine fire extinguisher

Special fasteners have been
designed to hold fairings,
cowlings and inspection panels
in position and to allow their
rapid removal and replacement
during servicing.

Dzus Fasteners
- Cowling and other inspection access doors will
usually be found with Dzus fasteners, that can be
locked and unlocked by a quarter turn of the stud.

Oddie Fasteners
-have a central stud, which is held in
position in the panel with a rubber washer or
a coiled spring. A two-legged clip is fastened
to the fixed component (usually with rivets).
The stud is bullet-shaped and has two
recesses opposite each other at the joint end.

Camloc Fasteners
- consist of a spring-loaded stud assembly
and a receptacle. The stud assembly is
fastened to the removable panel whilst the
receptacle is fastened to the airframe.

Airloc Fasteners
- consist of a stud with a cross-pin in the
removable cowling or door, and a sheet springsteel receptacle in the structure. The fastener
is locked by turning the stud through a quarter
turn. The pin drops into an indentation in the
receptacle and holds the fastener locked.

Locking Indications
Most quick release fasteners utilise a simple
method to indicate when they are in a locked
or unlocked position. This indication is
normally two painted or etched lines on
either side of the fastener head. The fastener
is locked when the marks align with the
screwdriver recess in the head

-are used in assemblies where it is
necessary to rapidly remove or reposition
components. They usually take the place of
more permanent bolts.

Circlips and Locking Rings

Circlips and locking rings (refer to Fig. 36) are
manufactured from spring sheet metal or
spring steel wire. They may also be specially
designed for a particular purpose. Hardened
and tempered to give either and inward or
outward spring,
they can be used for locking several
parts together, locating components
within bores or for locating components
onto shafts.

Spring sheet circlips have holes in the ends to

allow circlip pliers to be inserted, enabling the
circlip to be removed or installed as required.

Spring wire rings usually have one bent end

that is inserted into a radial hole, drilled
through the component, which matches an
inner or outer ring.

Keys and Key-ways

- can be found where chain-wheels or
pulleys are located on shafts. A key with
its associated key-way (the slot or
channel cut into the pulley or shaft), is
used to transmit the driving force from
one part to the other.
There are different types of keys and
key-ways, the main ones being the
Gib Head (Taper), Feather and
Woodruff Key.

The Gib Head Key (refer to Fig.37) can

only be used where the wheel is fixed to the
outer end of the shaft. A recess is cut into
the pulley and the shaft allowing the taper
key to connect the two components together.
The key secures itself in the slot through
friction alone.

The Feather Key (refer to Fig. 38) is

parallel and fits into a pocket milled
into the shaft and the cut into the
pulley. This allows small amounts of
axial movement with a positive
rotational drive.

The Woodruff Key (refer to Fig.39) is a

semi-circular shaped key that slots into a
groove on the shaft, whilst engaging into a
channel in the pulley. This allows the key to
float making it self-aligning. A special milling
cutter is required to make the pocket in the

Peening-(or Buring) is a method of

preventing a threaded device (bolt, nut
or screw), becoming loose by distorting
the end of the thread, after installing
the device (refer to Fig. 40).


- these are permanent joints in which
an adhesive is used to join two, or
more, materials together. The materials
can be any of the large variety of
fabrics found in the aerospace industry
(metal, paper, plastic, rubber or wood).

-materials being joined may or may not be similar
and the joints can be made proof against the leakage
of gases and liquids.
- normally good electrical insulators, which can
greatly reduce dissimilar corrosion on metal joints,
and are not normally affected by temperature
- not only saves the weight (and costs) associated
with threaded fasteners (and rivets), but also
eliminates the need to make holes in the structure,
for those fasteners, which avoids the possibility of
potential stress raisers.
-The absence of fasteners in an aircrafts skin
results in a smoother airflow around the aircraft, and
thus contributes to its aerodynamic efficiency.
- Adhesive bonded joints also provide greater
stiffening to the structure, compared to that achieved

- the items to be stuck together
(the adherends), must be free from
grease, oil or dust,
- the type of adhesive must be
suitable for the conditions or
environment in which it is intended
to be placed.
- Fumes from adhesives can be
narcotic, toxic and extremely
flammable, so that great care must
be taken when applying adhesives.

Locking by Adhesives
- such as Shellac or Araldite to DTD 900
specification, may be used to lock many small
components, particularly those in
instruments, valves, and switches. Adhesive is
applied to the outside of the nut face and the
protruding screw thread, or to the component
and screw head, after tightening, and
prevents movement between relevant parts.

It is good practice, when using Araldite,

to mix a separate sample under similar
conditions, to check that it hardens
within the specified time period.

Thread Locking Adhesives

- such as Loctite are liquid sealants,
used for locking metal threads.
When using these adhesives, it is
advisable to degrease the parts to
achieve maximum strength. If the
threads are not degreased, about 15%
of the locking strength is normally lost.
Loctite should only be used when
specified by the approved drawings or
instructions, and applied in accordance
with the manufacturers directions.

Synthetic Resin Adhesives

- usually consist of two separate
parts, namely the resin and the
hardener. The resin develops its
adhesive properties only as a result of a
chemical reaction between it and the
Testing of Adhesive Joining
Frequent tests would be made to ensure
that joining techniques are satisfactory.
Whenever possible, tests should be
done, using off-cuts of actual
components from each batch. Where