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Problem Part Solutions

‘Quick Spin’ Nut

In 2008 American Standard developed a concept to replace the standard plastic wing-nut used to mount faucets. Because faucets can be mounted on countertops, decks and sinks of varying thickness, faucets come standard with shanks long enough to accommodate all these types of surfaces. Because of these long shanks, standard nuts required many rotations to ride up the shank and seat against the mounting surface. In addition the installation work area is usually difficult to access. To address this complaint from plumbers and/or installers, American Standard decided to develop a two piece nut design.

The design, pictured here, would have threads on semi flexible fingers. This would allow the nut to easily be slid up the shank to the seat position, and then rotated for only a couple turns to tighten. The nut would save time and effort during the installation of new faucets. The design however, represented unique tooling challenges and several design unknowns. Interrupted threads cannot be unscrewed from molds, molding and locking angles had to be determined, thread forms determined and various materials needed to be evaluated to determine the best balance of performance vs. cost vs. molding ability.

Tri-Tech Tool was selected as the development and production vendor due to onsite tooling ability, product development skills, low tooling cost structure and local location. Working with our customer from the onset, Tri-Tech recommended several design modifications to make tooling feasible and facilitate assembly of the product. Tri-Tech provided samples of several different thread angles, locking angles and materials before a design was reached that met the performance specifications. Tri-Tech then applied what was learned during the development process to design and construct production tooling capable of millions of units per year.

Currently, Tri-Tech produces and assembles this design in two thread sizes for American Standard. In addition we recently developed equipment to semi-automate the assembly process cutting assembly costs by 25%. You can find ‘quick spin’ nuts packaged with select American Standard faucets at plumbing supply, home centers and hardware stores.

For more information or details on how Tri-Tech Tool can develop a plastic mold making solution for you, call Bill Weber now at 732-469-5433 or contact us online.