Just like glue holds paper projects together, washers hold mechanical items and woodworking projects together. A bolt and nut alone can slip or loosen, which can cause damage to the item it is meant to hold in place. While many people feel washers don’t do anything at all, the reality is they are a strategic part of many assembly type projects, such as cabinetry and furniture. They are also a key component in machinery and objects that have moving parts. Failing to use flat washers when they are called for in a design plan may result in an object becoming wobbly or unsteady over time. Failure to use them may also increase the likelihood of surface damage occurring, which can detract from an object’s overall appearance.
Basic washers come in several sizes and thicknesses. They can be made from a variety of materials, including stainless steel, neoprene, aluminum, brass, and copper. Washers are also available in a host of thickness options to deliver the proper spacing solution for any project. Using washers correctly can allow easier tightening or loosening of components. It’s important to choose the correct washer for a project, as not doing so can result in uneven distribution of pressure. This can damage a project instead of providing the necessary support the assembly requires.
Standard washers are an important part of many types of machinery and building projects. A washer is usually positioned under the bolt or screw head before tightening it. However, it may also be placed between the nut and the surface it is being fastened to. In either case, a washer will strengthen the finished project to give it stability.
Washers play a strategic part in holding things in place. Besides the plain washer, there are other types that serve the same basic function. However, they are designed differently. These include the lock washer and spring-loaded washer. The lock washer has teeth on it to prevent the unscrewing rotation from occurring, once installed. The spring loaded washer has axial flexibility to help the fasteners stay in place during times of vibration, such as in a lawnmower or automobile engine. If an assembly project calls for a specific type of washer to be used, one should make sure the washer is not overlooked or left out.