What Are HeliCoil Inserts?

When you are creating an assembly and a particular material is either stripped or too soft to accept threading, a component known as a HeliCoil serves as the perfect solution. As a type of threaded insert or bushing, a HeliCoil is a fastener component that may be inserted into a surface to establish a threaded hole. Generally, they are used in the case that a threaded hole has been stripped and needs repair, a material is too soft or thin for a durable threaded hole to be established, units of measurement need to be switched, or other various reasons. In this blog, we will discuss the design and use of HeliCoil components, allowing you to better understand their importance.

As compared to other insert types, the HeliCoil is a coiled-wire variation that can form internal screw threads for a standard-sized fastener to be installed. With a large range of thread diameters to choose from, a HeliCoil may serve numerous thread repair applications. Generally, inserts range in size, accommodating small screws such as the #2 screw size, all the way to those that are 1 ½” in diameter. HeliCoils are also available in metric sizes as well to ensure ease of installation and compatibility. Depending on the thread type and pitch configuration that is needed, UNC, UNF, metric coarse pitch, fine pitch, UNEF, UNS, and pipe thread variations may be procured. Lastly, one may choose an insert HeliCoil by its manufacturing material, common choices being stainless steel, phosphor bronze, titanium, and more.

If a HeliCoil is being used to repair a stripped threaded hole, the first step for installation is to drill out the old threads. It is important that the drill size matches recommendations on the thread repair kit instructions so that the hole is not made to be too large. Then, an STI tap is used to tap the hole before the insert is installed. For the installation itself, the procedure differs based on whether a coarse-pitch or fine pitch-thread is being installed. As both methods use different tools, it is paramount that one discerns which they will follow.

For coarse thread types, the HeliCoil is mounted onto the installation tool, rotated until the tang mates with the tool’s drive notch. Once that is done, the insert is threaded into the hole until the proper depth is reached. At that point, the installation tool is removed. For fine thread variations, the HeliCoil insert is installed into the pre-coil tool, allowing for the insert to be compressed to an optimal size. The install tool is then spun until the insert is fully threaded within the pre-coil body. After installing the thread into the repaired hole and the installer tool is removed, the tang must be removed as well. With a punch that securely fits into the insert, the tang can be hammered until it pops off. At that point, the tang may be removed with a magnet or tweezers.

Whether you require a spring HeliCoil, kit HeliCoil, or housing HeliCoil component for your operations, ASAP Aerospace Hub has everything you need. With over 2 billion items ready for purchase on our website, we can fulfill all your operational needs quickly and efficiently. We also are unmatched in our lead-times and pricing, saving our customers time and money every order. As you explore our catalogs, we invite you to request quotes for your comparisons through the use of our RFQ service. Once we receive a completed form, a dedicated account manager will contact you in 15 minutes or less to provide a personalized solution fit for your needs. Get started today and see how ASAP Aerospace Hub is revolutionizing the part procurement process for our customers.


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