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Looking for 6-32 Threaded Screws in the UK

Discussion in 'Electronic Components' started by Costas Vlachos, Jul 1, 2003.

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  1. Hello,

    First of all, apologies for the off-topic question but I thought some of you
    may be able to help. I'm looking for "6-32" threaded screws, whatever that
    means. I've checked Farnell and RS (I'm based in the UK) and they mostly
    have the standard ISO Metric (M3, M4, etc.) screws. I can also find screws
    in some weird specs like BA, Imperial (BSW, UNC), but I haven't seen
    anything resembling the "6-32" designation. I ordered something called 6BA
    screws, but those turned out to be teeny weeny little ones, much smaller
    than the ones I'm after. Any ideas?

    Many thx!

    Costas
    _________________________________________________
    Costas Vlachos Email:
    SPAM-TRAPPED: Please remove "-X-" before replying
     
  2. Mark (UK)

    Mark (UK) Guest

    Hiya!

    Checked RS you say?? Weren't looking very hard were you?

    RS 274-5171 is a 6-32 cross head in half inch length. they do from 1/8th
    to 1+1/4 inch.

    Yours, Mark.
     


  3. Hi Mark and thanks for pointing it out!!! I guess I wasn't looking very
    hard....... Probably too tired after searching Farnell (which probably has
    them too, somewhere in their chaotic web site) ;-)

    Also many thx to all who replied.

    Costas
     
  4. These are commonly available in any hardware store in the US,
    unless you want some strange length or material. I thought this post
    was somewhat ironic as I have had problems finding metric screws. If
    you need them bad enough to pay trans-Atlantic shipping, I could
    suggest a few hardware catalogs. What length and material do you
    need? Is it feasible to drill the holes out and tap them to a metric
    size?
     


  5. Thanks for the reply. Another poster pointed me to a UK store that stocks
    them. Not a great variety like the metric sizes, but good enough. I wonder
    why there is no standardization in sizes... I guess it's like miles and
    kilometres or inches and cm... I thought of tapping the holes to M4 metric
    if I couldn't find them, but all is good now.

    cheers,
    Costas
     
  6. Me? I just move on to sheet metal screws. ;-)

    Jonesy
     
  7. I thought UNC was the name for the US style threads - I'm sure I've seen "6-32 UNC" in a hard-drive
    spec somewhere
     
  8. Mark (UK)

    Mark (UK) Guest

    Hiya!

    Going through Farnells website is enough to break the hardest of
    spirits!! It's so completely SHITE compared to RS.

    Glad you found what you want.

    Yours, Mark.
     
  9. Funny, but I used to have the opposite situation. Years ago I could
    get 6-32 screws just about anywhere - they are used for holding light
    switch covers to the wall - but I couldn't find a metric screw. That
    has now changes where many hardware and auto stores carry a decent
    selection of metric stuff. And of course we can still get the
    American screws there, too. So when I was a kid I often tossed those
    metric screws from old radios or other electronic equipment into a
    screw and nut box, because they were rare and often needed.

    So, 25.4 mm divided by 32 threads per inch, gives a pitch of .79375,
    which is real close to .8 mm. So if you could find a metric screw
    with the proper diameter and a pitch of .8, it would probably work
    okay. If you screw it into a regular nut, it shouldn't have a
    problem. If you screw it into a deeply tapped thread, such as a
    standoff, it might bind at some point, but then that point might not
    be reached normally.



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    Don't be ripped off by the big book dealers. Go to the URL
    that will give you a choice and save you money(up to half).
    http://www.everybookstore.com You'll be glad you did!
    Just when you thought you had all this figured out, the gov't
    changed it: http://physics.nist.gov/cuu/Units/binary.html
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  10. [snip]
    Yeah, as long as you use them without the circuit boards and stuff
    inside the equipment. If you put the sheet metal screws into the
    holes with the stuff inside, you are liable to get metal shavings into
    the works, and you'll have a much bigger problem. :-(

    --
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    ###Got a Question about ELECTRONICS? Check HERE First:###
    http://users.pandora.be/educypedia/electronics/databank.htm
    My email address is whitelisted. *All* email sent to it
    goes directly to the trash unless you add NOSPAM in the
    Subject: line with other stuff. alondra101 <at> hotmail.com
    Don't be ripped off by the big book dealers. Go to the URL
    that will give you a choice and save you money(up to half).
    http://www.everybookstore.com You'll be glad you did!
    Just when you thought you had all this figured out, the gov't
    changed it: http://physics.nist.gov/cuu/Units/binary.html
    @@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@@[email protected]@[email protected]@@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@@
     
  11. Are metric screws difficult to find in the US ? I was expecting just about
    every hardware store would stock the major sizes as they are found on
    vehicles, electronic equipment and machinery of Japanese or European
    origin and increasingly used by US manufacturers as well.
     
  12. UNC stands for Unified National Coarse and is the coarse thread pitch series of screws that were
    introduced in the mid 20th century in the US and also used in Canada and the UK. The fine thread pitch
    series is called UNF or Unified National Fine. I think that UNC and possibly UNF were slight
    adaptations of a screw thread pattern developed in the US in the 19th century. The original purpose of
    UNC and UNF was to develop a standard system of fasteners used by the military in the US, Canada and
    the UK during WWII.

    UNC and UNF sizes smaller than 1/4 inch in diameter are specified by numbers rather than their
    diameters in inches. They were commonplace in the US but rarely encountered in the UK apart from in
    imported American machinery which is why they are so difficult to find in UK hardware stores. After
    WWII Britain (un)officially abandoned its BSW and BSF series of fasteners and adopted UNC and UNF
    until metrication crept in during the 1970s. For sizes smaller than 1/4 inch in diameter Britain stuck
    with BA which is still in use today as it provides a better selection of sizes than offered from the
    ISO metric range.

    6-32 means size number 6 and 32 threads per inch. This fastener can also be specified as #6 UNC.
     
  13. In the UK light switch and electrical outlet covers are held to their backboxes
    using an M3.5 screw. This is about the only situation where one of these screws
    is used.
    I don't think that any of the numbered UNC and UNF screws will mate with any
    metric nuts.
     
  14. There is a small reference book that is handy for all kinds of reference
    material. "pocket Ref" third edition by Sequoia Publishing ISBN
    1-885071-33-7

    I picked up my copy at Harbor freight, but it is available on line.
     
  15. UNC and UNF fasteners are hard to find in the UK. Sizes 1/4 inch and larger
    were available from most automotive parts suppliers but they rarely stock them
    today as very few post 1980 vehicles use them. BSW and BA fasteners and
    studding are sold from some of the better hardware suppliers but DIY stores
    only sell metric. Electronics and model making suppliers normally sell BA
    fasteners as well as metric. BSF fasteners are also hard to find as well.

    I have a photo that looks as if it was taken some time in the 1970s containing
    a screw cabinet display from a British hardware store. All sizes are UNC, UNF,
    BSW and BA. No metric.
     
  16. Been on holiday for a while, so coming in here late.
    Unfortunately, the 'metrication' in the UK, has made some of the imperial
    sizes quite difficult to source. RS does a few (very few), and decreasing
    with each catalogue. However 6-32 bolts are readily available (for a bit
    more money), from all the aviation suppliers. Basically probably 75% of the
    World's aircraft, use the UNC threads, and hence these sizes are readily
    available. :)
    Specialist fastener suppliers will also be able to help (for instance,
    'Group Components', in Waltham Abbey, ESSEX, have some in stock, and will
    source others if larger quantities are required, and I am sure most of the
    similar suppliers round the country will help).
    Historically, the larger UNC sizes, are normally listed as (for instance)
    1/4 UNC, while the smaller sizes use the '-' designator. The UNC sizes are
    very close to many of the Whitworth threads (except one uses a 55degree
    tooth form, while the other uses a 60degree tooth). You should also be able
    to find large quantities of the 6-32 size, in shorter lengths, at many
    computer shops, and amateur radio rallies, since this is the thread commonly
    used in disk drives made for the US market (you will find some drive makes,
    have models with M3 threads for European distribution, and 6-32UNC, for
    American units...).

    Best Wishes
     
  17. [snip]
    Many CD drives come with both metric and US kits of four screws each,
    so if the metric screws set does the trick, then the 6-32 screws are
    left over and are often discarded. But they are usually only 1/4 inch
    long, maybe 6 mm. If you need longer, then you'll have to hunt for
    them as was stated in the part I snipped.

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    ###Got a Question about ELECTRONICS? Check HERE First:###
    http://users.pandora.be/educypedia/electronics/databank.htm
    My email address is whitelisted. *All* email sent to it
    goes directly to the trash unless you add NOSPAM in the
    Subject: line with other stuff. alondra101 <at> hotmail.com
    Don't be ripped off by the big book dealers. Go to the URL
    that will give you a choice and save you money(up to half).
    http://www.everybookstore.com You'll be glad you did!
    Just when you thought you had all this figured out, the gov't
    changed it: http://physics.nist.gov/cuu/Units/binary.html
    @@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@@[email protected]@[email protected]@@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@[email protected]@@
     


  18. Just tried some leftover screws from a hard drive and they are indeed 6-32!
    I don't need large quantities anyway, and 6mm length is just right for what
    I want.

    Thanks guys!

    Costas
     
  19. Tim Shoppa

    Tim Shoppa Guest

    M5x0.8 is *almost* interchangable with 10-32. As you point out after
    you get a few turns in then you start to notice the difference in pitch.

    Tim.
     
  20. Tim Shoppa

    Tim Shoppa Guest

    I remember back in the 80's when we got a Russian rack that had built-in
    plumbing for water cooling. (Big rack of Soviet ECL!) The drawings we got
    with it specified some seemingly strange (lots of decimal places)
    metric thread for the chilled water lines. We called all
    over the greater Chicago area for several days trying
    to find any sort of connector that might fit, but all the supply houses
    (and even manufacturers who specialized in metric threads) had never heard
    of this metric thread specification.

    Eventually I stopped looking at the drawing and went to look at the rack,
    and immediately recognized the connector as being identical to the thread
    used on plain old garden hose!

    Lesson: when you see something specified to 5 decimal places in a metric
    measurement, you should convert it back to inches and see if it's a nice
    standard number :)
    One supplier that I use is MSC. They're on the web at
    http://www.mscdirect.com/ . They're sort-of like Granger's meets DoAll
    but they have no problem at all shipping their gigantic printed catalog
    to small-time buyers like me, and no problem at all shipping small orders
    either. When I place an order it arrives the next day via UPS ground.
    It's 5-40, and it hasn't disappeared yet. 3-48 I still occasionally see too.

    Sizes 7, 9, and 11 really have disappeared.

    Tim.
     
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