Standard shoulder bolt sizes

Written by jeff gatlin
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Standard shoulder bolt sizes
Different sizes of shoulder bolts. (bolt image by martini from

Shoulder bolts, also known as stripper bolts, have a threadless section at the top that protrudes above the threads and is not inserted into whatever the bolt is being screwed. Also important is the shoulder bolt's distinctive blunt end.


Shoulder bolts can be broken down into standard size ranges of small, medium and large. Small shoulder bolts have a shoulder length that ranges from 1/8 inch to 5/16 inch, with respective thread length of 3/32-inch to 7/16-inch. Medium shoulder bolts range from 3/8 inch to 1 inch with thread length of 1/2-inch to 1-inch. Large shoulder bolts range from 1 1/4 inches to 2 inches with 1 1/8-inch to 2-inch thread length.


Shoulder bolts are often used to make a point on which something can pivot. Pedals, cables, pulleys and springs are all examples of items which can be placed around the shoulder section of these bolts. The blunt end of the bolt means holes must be pre-drilled, but increases the strength and versatility of these attachments.


To determine the strength and thickness of the shoulder bolt needed for a particular job, grades of the bolt need to be considered. The high end of grades in these bolts is eight. It would take 28 tons to snap a grade eight bolt, so it is clear this high a grade would not be necessary for a cabinet or ceiling fan. Even a grade one bolt, however, can handle 10 tons, so shoulder bolts can be depended on for just about any household job.

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