Screws are a common sight around the home, and while they may not look like much, they play a critical role in everything from wall framing to furniture-making. If you’re looking to get into woodworking, it’s important to understand the different types of screws and their sizing so that you can pick the right ones for your projects. The screw aisle at your local hardware store can be overwhelming, but our article on #5 screw diameter is here to help you make sense of it all so that you can find the perfect fasteners for any task.
Screw sizing is usually identified by the major diameter and the pitch of the thread. The major diameter refers to the size of the widest part of the screw, and the pitch is the distance from one point on the thread to the next. There are many different systems for screw thread sizing, but the most common are the Imperial and the metric system. Most screws are either Imperial or metric, and if they’re not, they will have the markings on their packaging that indicate which system they use.
The numbering system used for screws also varies, with the imperial screw sizes being designated by a gauge and the metric screw sizes being referred to by a millimeter (mm). Whether you’re using an imperial or metric system, the number on the head of the screw will always correspond to a specific fraction of an inch, so you can match it up to a decimal size using a chart or a calculator.
When selecting a screw for a particular project, the type of screw and its length will also be important considerations. For example, the length of a wood screw should be long enough to penetrate the piece of lumber by about 2/3 of its thickness. Screws are often marked on their packaging with the type of construction or materials they’re designed to be used for, which helps you choose the right one for your needs.
For example, if you need a screw that’s suitable for outdoor use, then it’s important to select an appropriate material that can resist corrosion from moisture and changes in temperature. For this reason, many people choose to use stainless steel screws for outdoor projects.
Screws are also available with different heads and drives, and these can change the way you insert them into a piece of lumber. For instance, finish screws are designed for attaching trim and molding and have smaller heads than wood screws, so they can be inserted underneath the surface of the wood, leaving just a small hole that can easily be filled with wood putty. For this reason, they typically have a star-shaped head, while utility screws are usually round. Other types of heads include flat head, oval countersunk and hex. Having an understanding of these different screw options can help you make more informed decisions when you’re at the hardware store, and it can also make your next screw shopping trip a whole lot quicker. #5 screw diameter