There are different solutions available to temporarily join multiple parts. You can use a threaded fastener, for instance. The problem with threaded fasteners, though, is that they are oftentimes difficult to remove. If the parts require frequent joining and separation, you may want to choose an alternative solution, such as a bent hitch pin.
The Basics of Bent Hitch Pins
Also known as R-clips, bent hitch pins are metal clips that are used to temporarily join multiple parts. They consist of a single piece of metal with two arms. Most of them are made of metal wire. One of the arms is straight, whereas the other arm is bent. Bent hitch pins are also known as R-clips because they resemble the shape of the letter R.
How Bent Hitch Pins Work
Bent hitch pins work like other types of clotter pins. The straight arm is pressed into the hole of a part, which allows the bent arm to press into a separate and adjacent hole. The bent hitch pin then “snap” into place, thereby securing the part or parts until it’s removed.
Most bent hitch pins are used in fastening applications that involve a round shaft. The natural curvature of bent hitch pins makes them ideal for these applications. With a round shaft, the straight arm is inserted into a straight hole in the center of the shaft. Doing so will allow the bent arm to wrap around the curved side of the shaft.
Tips on Choosing Bent Hitch Pins
When choosing bent hitch pins, don’t forget to check the material from which they are made. Different types of bent hitch pins are made of different materials. Most of them are metal wire. They consist of metal wire that’s formed and manipulated into the shape of the letter R. With that said, the specific type of metal from which they are made varies. Some bent hitch pins are made of carbon steel, whereas others are made of stainless steel.
Bent hitch pins, of course, are available in different sizes as well. You’ll need to choose a size based on the parts with which you use them. Pay attention to the pin diameter, hole diameter and length when choosing bent hitch pins.
You can also find bent hitch pins in different finishes. The finish is the outer layer. It essentially covers the underlying material from which a bent hitch pin is made. Common finishes for bent hitch pins include zinc and vinyl. Both zinc and vinyl finishes are designed to protect against corrosion.