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Do it Yourself with Tina!
Fascinating fasteners: Part two
By Tina Rotolo

As discussed last month, many home projects require some type of hardware fasteners. Most ready-to-assemble furniture and products come with the necessary hardware, but there are many other projects requiring some sort of fastener. Determining the proper fastener for a job is crucial to success.

Last month we focused on the many types of screws available, and this month we look at nuts, bolts, washers, and a few more fasteners you might need in your home projects.

Carriage bolt

· Square shoulder under head pulls into soft materials such as wood and prevents bolt from turning while nut is tightened
· Coarse, partial threads and smooth, rounded head

Machine bolt

· Comes with regular, square, hex, button, or countersunk heads
· Square heads fasten joints and materials 
· Button heads work best where smooth surfaces are needed
· Countersunk heads for flush surfaces


· Small metal circles that provide a hard surface against which screw is tightened
· Matches the size of the screw being used with


· Screws onto the threaded end of bolt to tighten
· Most common are hex and square (or full) nuts
· Wing and knurled nuts used where frequent adjustment is needed
· Locknut type has self-locking feature

Cotter pin

· Versatile device of various diameters and lengths
· Inserts into hole in a bolt or shaft
· Eye on one end prevents pin from going through while prongs at other end bend back to lock in place


· Securely fastens something
that can be reached from one side only
· Used in metal, plastic and composite materials
· Ideal for installing gutters and large appliances

Tina Rotolo is the store manager and human resource director at Cole Hardware
on Polk Street. She loves helping customers with do-it-yourself projects. Contact Tina or her staff at 415-674-8913 for any questions with your projects

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