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Author Topic: Thumb Screws  (Read 1072 times)
Commander Data
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« on: April 03, 2016, 10:47:01 pm »

Having a frustrating time finding particular items - and the imperial system isn't helping.

Suffice it to say, I've got a flat piece of wood and a 1 1/2" tall metal dome that need to be sandwiched together. The metal dome is the top and the wood is the bottom (or base).
I have four 3/16" holes in the metal dome with which to stick a fastener through. My main problem is a cool looking thumb nut (or screw head) for the top of the project.

I have two options;
1. 4x pieces of threaded rod with a nut on each end.
2. Use ~1 1/2" long machine screws to go through the metal and onto something like a T-Nut fastened to the wood.

Let's look at option 1:

Threaded Rod:
http://www.amazon.com/Hillman-Group-44818-Threaded-10-Pack/dp/B00JDU8906/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1459714523&sr=8-3&keywords=%2310-32+threaded+rod
Decorative Cap Nuts for the top:
http://www.amazon.com/Hillman-Group-180084-10-Inch-100-Pack/dp/B000R2LIUC/ref=sr_1_1?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1459718847&sr=1-1&keywords=10-32+cap+nut
Regular nuts for the bottom:
http://www.amazon.com/L-H-Dottie-HN1032-No-10-32-100-Pack/dp/B008KMTJMA/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1459718965&sr=8-2&keywords=10-32+Nuts

But I cant settle on that cap nut. I need something cool and unique!

These are great, but look at these obscene prices!:
http://www.amazon.com/Morton-Stainless-Knurled-Thread-Diameter/dp/B00GKYV9O6?ie=UTF8&refRID=PY5E1PEWJ9T7MRWMFBJK&ref_=pd_ybh_a_12

http://www.amazon.com/Blind-Tapped-Steel-Knurled-Select/dp/B002DH7XAI?ie=UTF8&refRID=Q1SDSY60E8S4CP59HEND&ref_=pd_ybh_a_39

http://www.amazon.com/Dia-4-20-Aluminum-Dome-Knurled/dp/B002IBKJRS?ie=UTF8&refRID=Q1SDSY60E8S4CP59HEND&ref_=pd_ybh_a_38

I need 4 of them!

Option 2 has the same issue.
http://www.amazon.com/Steel-Thumb-Finish-Knurled-Threads/dp/B00DD4WJ2M/ref=pd_sim_sbs_328_3?ie=UTF8&dpID=41c9q7ix8uL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_&refRID=0PHDV44ZZ7YCZCV6X736

http://www.amazon.com/Stainless-Steel-Finish-Knurled-Threads/dp/B00DD4ZEBA/ref=pd_sim_sbs_328_1?ie=UTF8&dpID=515aEm%2BTZ0L&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_&refRID=119J9J9Y1NX3KZRSH0N5
I would need 4 at ~2" each!

I'm finding it borderline impossible to find what I need in the sizes I need at a NORMAL price!
I am not going to spend upwards of $40 on SCREWS!




« Last Edit: April 03, 2016, 10:52:52 pm by Commander Data » Logged

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Gozdom
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« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2016, 11:30:38 pm »

Have you tried Ebay? "Thumb nut" brings up quite a few hits, not sure about the size though. There's brass and steel too.
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« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2016, 11:35:02 pm »

I see you're in the US.  I'm not sure if these people have an online catalog, but Zinger's hardware in Austin is my go-to place for hard to find brass hardware.  Shipping should not be more than $6 using United States Postal Service "Flat rate boxes."  The only thing is I haven't seen steel knurled knobs like that.  Sometimes Lowe's hardware also carries the same type of brass knurled knobs.  You should not have to spend $40 either way.
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« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2016, 11:48:21 pm »

When I live in NJ, I used to get a lot of stuff from McMaster - Carr , from Sears Roebuck (though it's gone dowhill now) or from the local branch of True Value.

For most things, I found McMaster - Carr to be competitive on price and great on delivery time and shipping costs. Looking at thumb screws, I get the impression that $4 - $6 each is going to be hard to beat. http://www.mcmaster.com/#thumb-screw-nuts/=11trdlp
« Last Edit: April 03, 2016, 11:53:27 pm by Keith_Beef » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2016, 12:23:54 am »

My local ace hardware has all that and more and you can buy one or two.
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Prof Marvel
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« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2016, 07:02:19 am »

I concurr with Maets -

get thee to an ace , true value, or large oldfashioned independant hardware store and look arounf the lamp parts for finials, knurled nuts and knurled screws.

alternatively go here
http://www.grandbrass.com/catalog.cfm?category=Screws&subcategory=8/32%20Threaded%20Screws

and be prepared to screamover shiopping costs for tiny bits.

yhs
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« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2016, 03:12:33 pm »

Guys,
Thank you so much for your efforts.
I am still looking, so please - continue!

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« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2016, 05:26:56 pm »

Still havent found what im looking for Sad
Perhaps it would be more cost effective to look for cool screws with someone to screw them into like a t-nut or a standoff of some kind?
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« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2016, 02:06:05 am »

How about posting up an image of Exactly what you want? Maybe someone has some to sell or knows where to find them?
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« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2016, 02:12:30 am »

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/3-D-printer-accessory-Ultimaker-2-DIY-print-base-plate-M3-Knurled-Nut-platform-3-Thumbscrew/32282557572.html?spm=2114.01010208.3.2.uvvR9X&ws_ab_test=searchweb201556_7,searchweb201602_5_301_10034_507_10032_508_10020_10017_10005_10006_10021_10022_401_10018_10019,searchweb201603_6&btsid=725ed2b2-a6bf-42c5-8b44-544512dad7cf
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« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2016, 02:17:35 am »

Try looking into guitar pegs?
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« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2016, 02:21:10 am »



Woah - here we go - this looks promising...

Okay, here is where the stupid imperial system comes in.
I need a 3/16" thick screw. What he heck is M4?! Looks like that's 4mm. Okay, but 4mm is 0.15748 inches - close to 5/32". Looks like I need.....4.762mm.
 Huh Huh Huh Huh Huh Huh Angry Angry Angry
*Breaks down and begins to cry*
« Last Edit: April 08, 2016, 02:40:50 am by Commander Data » Logged
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« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2016, 11:35:51 am »

Well 4.762mm is nearasdammit a standard M5 thread. Certainly a lot easier than finding a 10-32 (or even working out what diameter that is).
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« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2016, 07:59:17 pm »

Well 4.762mm is nearasdammit a standard M5 thread. Certainly a lot easier than finding a 10-32 (or even working out what diameter that is).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZWUa5OR3Ho&t=23s
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« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2016, 12:43:30 am »

My Good Commander -

If you cannot find what you think you need,

buy what you can find, preferrably in brass

then buy a small harbor freight tap-and-die set

and modify as reqd.

or just buy brass rod.

It is absurdly easy to re-thread to a near size, or file the diameter a tish and re-thread smaller.

yhs
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« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2016, 04:14:53 pm »

Yes, Professor -you present an interesting option. I have thought about using a tap and die set to create my own fasteners. However, it is more of the head of the fastener that is of concern. Creating threaded rod does not solve my problem. Though i could take other things and turn them into fasteners, its not what I'm looking to do at this time.
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« Reply #16 on: April 20, 2016, 06:19:38 am »

Yes, Professor -you present an interesting option. I have thought about using a tap and die set to create my own fasteners. However, it is more of the head of the fastener that is of concern. Creating threaded rod does not solve my problem. Though i could take other things and turn them into fasteners, its not what I'm looking to do at this time.

Exactly my point -  go shopping, as here:
https://www.google.com/search?q=knurled+brass&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8#q=knurled+brass&tbm=shop

obtaining a knurled brass nut, then use common brass screws or re-tap the nut if the shape is perfect but the thread is uncommon.

I regularly haunt any store that has brass bits, and modify them to fit my use. Most often I find interesting diddly brass parts designed to be used in lamps, electrical, plumbing or air compressor applications, then drill, file, tap and fit to my purposes.

yhs
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« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2016, 07:17:54 pm »

(Sorry if I'm skipping back a few posts, but I've only just got round to reading this topic)  Roll Eyes

Regarding metric and imperial threads, they are not compatible as they have different TPI (Threads Per Inch).  Here's a loooooong video (28m, 20s) of the difference between the two, but the initial part covers what you need to know - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fov8nPzOI6M.

So basically you need to find the hardware you want, and then stick with the metric / imperial thread type of the product you find.  Unfortunately these days, most things are metric, so finding imperial parts is quite hard.

Now, how about this for a thumb screw - http://www.amazon.com/Brass-Thumb-Screw-Knurled-Threads/dp/B00DD4X1BA? ... or this ... or this ... or thisHuh  These took me about 1 minute to find, searching for "brass thumb screw" in Google image search, and then viewing the webpage the image came from (so a little tip, use google's image search to find what you want, and then track back from there Wink ).

If you opt for a thumb screw with a thread, then you need an "anchor nut" to screw it into.  Here's a UK site that sells both metric and imperial anchor nuts (I'm sure there will be a US website somewhere, but I don't have time to search right now).  I'd opt for 'floating' anchor nuts if your angle / drilling / machining is not very precise, or you will cross-thread the screw/bolt into the anchor nut, ruining one, or both (although a big mis-alignment will also ruin them, so you have to be fairly 'close').
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