Greg's FAQs

Manufacturers vs Distributors

What is the difference between a bolt manufacturer and a fastener distributor?

In the fastener industry, there are two different types of fastener companies… distributors and manufacturers. The following FAQ will address the differences between fastener distributors and bolt manufacturers and provide some insight as to when to consider utilizing each type of company for your fastener purchases. What is a fastener distributor? Fastener distributors serve a... Read more

Fastener Substitution Liability

What are the liability issues involved in substituting one fastener grade or configuration for another?

Have you ever had a fastener company try and talk you into substituting A193 grade B7 all thread rod for F1554 grade 55 anchor rods, claiming it’s “better?” Have you allowed them to substitute an all thread rod with a nut tack welded in lieu of a headed bolt? These are scenarios that come up... Read more

Rolled vs Cut Thread Bolts

What is the difference between a bolt with rolled threads and one with cut threads and does a fastener with a reduced body and rolled threads meet ASTM specifications?

Threads of a mechanical fastener, regardless of whether it is a headed bolt, rod, or bent bolt, can be produced by either cutting or rolling. The differences, misconceptions, advantages, and disadvantages of each method are described below. Rolled Threads Roll threading is a process by which steel is extruded to form the threaded portion of... Read more

Headed Bolts vs Rod with a Nut

Can a rod with a welded nut be substituted for a bolt with a forged head?

When a rod with a nut is substituted for a bolt with a forged head, two issues come into play. In-house mechanical testing performed by Portland Bolt on headed bolts versus rods with a nut, both from the identical lots of steel, the rod with a nut developed up to 12% less strength than the... Read more

F1554 Grade 36 All Thread Rod

Does commercially available mild steel all thread rod meet ASTM F1554 grade 36?

In almost all cases, commercially available all thread rod will not meet F1554 grade 36. First, it is rare that distributors or manufacturers keep lot control on all thread rod. In other words, different heats of all thread rod are commingled so that it is difficult to determine the exact certification document that corresponds to... Read more

Large Diameter SAE Bolts

Are SAE Grade 2, 5, and 8 bolts available in diameters over 1½"?

No, the SAE J429 specification only covers bolts up to and including 1½” diameter. SAE J429 (1999), the specification that includes Grade 2, 5, and 8 fasteners, states, “This SAE standard covers the mechanical and material requirements for inch-series steel bolts, screws, studs, SEMS, and U-bolts used for automotive and related industries in sizes to... Read more


What is an A325T bolt?

An A325T bolt is a fully threaded version of an A325 heavy hex structural bolt. The A325 specification is very specific when it addresses thread lengths. Standard A325 bolts have very short thread lengths due to their application as a bolt intended for use in structural steel connections since often it is undesirable for threads... Read more

Bolt Thread Pitch Series

What are my thread pitch options when ordering bolts?

There are several different thread series available for construction fasteners. Below are the three of the most common thread series utilized in the fastener industry.  Coarse Thread Series Unified National Coarse (UNC) – Coarse threads have fewer threads per axial distance than fine threads and a larger thread form relative to the diameter. Coarse thread... Read more

Galvanizing Bolts for Pressure Treated Wood

Are current ASTM galvanizing standards suitable for use with the new chemicals being used in pressure treated wood? Some people have told me I need to use double or triple dipped fasteners. Is this true?

Since the new chemicals (alkaline copper quat [ACQ], copper azole [CBA-A and CA-B], and sodium borates [SBX]) now being used in pressure treated wood have been shown to be up to two or three times more corrosive than the previously used chromate copper arsenate (CCA), the recommended galvanizing thickness for materials being used with the... Read more

Galvanized Bolts and Chased Threads

Can threads be chased after hot-dip galvanizing for proper nut fit?

Absolutely not! Externally threaded fasteners should never be “chased”. During the hot-dip galvanizing process, excess zinc has a tendency to build up in the threaded portion of a fastener. Chasing threads is a term used to describe re-cutting threads after galvanizing to remove this excess zinc gained during the galvanizing process. Chasing threads will not... Read more