How to Choose the Right Shoulder Bolts
If you've ever worked on building something with a pivot, then you've probably encountered shoulder bolts. These small little bolts come in a few different materials, all of which have different uses. It's important to know the differences between these materials before buying shoulder bolts, so that you get the right material for your project. By the end of this article, you should have no problems picking out the type you need.
The first material shoulder bolts are often made of is alloy steel. Alloy steel is heat treated, and extremely strong and hard. If you have a project that needs this kind of strength in the bolts, then alloy steel may be the right choice for you. This is only the case if you won't be using your bolts in an outdoor situation, however, as they aren't meant to be exposed to the elements.
The other common material for shoulder bolts is stainless steel, particularly the 18/8 type. This particular alloy is extremely resistant to corrosion, making it great for use outside or in situations where the bolts may be in contact with water. They are more expensive to make than alloy steel, but if you need the corrosion resistance, they are certainly a good deal.
Alloy steel and stainless steel are by far the most common materials used to make shoulder bolts, but they are by no means the only materials. You can get shoulder bolts in aluminum, brass, bronze, titanium, and many other materials. You should know that if you want your bolts in one of these other materials, though, you likely have to place a custom order, as they aren't nearly as widely sold as the other two types.
Understanding shoulder bolt materials isn't as complicated as it may seem. Just use alloy steel if you need strength and are using them in an indoor situation, and stainless steel if you're using them outdoors. If you have a special need for another material, then you can custom order it. That's all there is to it.