HEICO-LOCK wedge lock products can be used as replacements for traditional locking systems because of their ability to stay secure and in place even under the most extreme vibration and dynamic load applications, says fastener distributor The Fastener Factory MD Darryl Campbell.
“There are currently three types of HEICO products available in South Africa – wedge lock washers, ring lock washers and wedge lock nuts, which are all used in different applications,” he says, adding that The Fastener Factory has been distributing the HEICO-LOCK products in the country since July 2015.
The wedge lock washers can be used with traditional hex nuts as a replacement for existing Nyloc, Cleveloc, metal lock nuts, double nuts, spring washers and other locking systems. The system works on preload force rather than friction to secure the application at both low and high preload levels. When the bolt is tightened, the external radial teeth of the HEICO-LOCK washers embed themselves in an interlocking fashion with the respective mating surface.
The cams on the inside of the washer prevent loosening as they have a greater pitch than the bolt. The Fastener Factory says the washers are easy to install and remove, and are reusable and suitable for use with all grades of fasteners up to 12.9 grade. The washers are also available with a larger outer diameter, and materials include S/S 316 and others on request.
Campbell points out that HEICO-LOCK wedge lock nuts can decrease the cost of production failures that can be caused by faulty bolted connections. The flanged nut and HEICO-LOCK wedge lock washer are combined in a captive and rotary way, so that they are fixed permanently in the correct position, ensuring that assembly time is reduced and the wedge lock washer can be installed by a nonspecialist without loss of quality or function of any bolt.
HEICO ring lock washers can be used in applications where repeated use of the washer is required and the polyamide ring ensures that these washers remain in the correct position permanently. The blue ring also serves as confirmation that the application is secured with the HEICO-LOCK ring lock washer.
“The wedge lock nut is available from M6 up to M22, which also includes the M22 × 1.5 wheel nuts which are used to prevent the common problem of loosening of nuts on vehicle trailers when subjected to heavy loads, potholes and rough terrain. The wedge lock washers are available from M3 to M76 in steel and stainless steel and ring lock washers from M4 to M24 in both steel materials. At The Fastener Factory, we carry a full range of stock of the washers up to M42,” explains Campbell.
HEICO-LOCK products are being used in the automotive, energy, rail, electrical and construction industries to reduce the overall cost of operations; they can also decrease the maintenance and downtime associated with the loosening of fasteners.
Campbell concludes that the Fastener Factory is aiming to expand its operations to major centres: “The Fastener Factory currently sells through a number of distributors and we are looking for distribution partners in sub-Saharan Africa for the HEICO-LOCK products.”