Have you ever heard about screw eyes? And no, we’re not talking about anything obscene or profane.
Screws prominent fasteners worldwide. You can see one in your house, at work, and even in the mobile phone in your pocket.
Now, you might ask, what does that have to do with screw eyes? Well, it’s in the name.
There are different screws available in the world. One good example is the eyelet screw.
Screw eyes are used in many different types of projects. They are often used to hold cables, wires, and ropes.
In this article, you’ll learn more about the screw eyes size chart, installation tips, and answers to relevant questions.
After reading this post, we’re a hundred percent sure you’ll be knowledgeable about screw eyes. Let’s get started!
What are Screw Eyes?
A screw eye is a type of screw characterized by its unique looped hoop as its head.
You might be wondering, so it isn’t a screw?
By definition, screws are metal pins with a raised helical thread running around them, and eyelet screw fit that description.
Unlike the screw eye hooks, the majority of screws have slots in their heads. These slots (or drivers) are used as a guide for the screwdrivers.
Flat-head screws may be tightened using a flat-head screwdriver, and you must tighten Philips-head screws with a Phillips-head screwdriver. However, as they have a distinctly looped head, it’s a bit hard to tighten screw eyes with a standard screwdriver.
Most people use their bare hands to install the eye screw. It is much easier but a little tiresome on your part.
Some use an Allen wrench or an L key due to their unique 90-degree bend. If you don’t have that, insert a screwdriver in the loop and turn it to fasten the screw.
Sometimes called an eye screw, it is usually made from stainless steel and brass. Other manufacturers make screw eyes from aluminum, titanium, copper, and proprietary alloys.
It can also be galvanized and have added corrosion resistance. Moreover, you can also find plastic and rubber eye screws available in some DIY stores.
A lot of people often mistake eye bolts and screw eyes. Although they operate on a similar principle, they have different characteristics, intensities, and uses.
A big difference between the two is eye bolts have a completed loop while screw eyes don’t. The screw eyes have a small space where it doesn’t achieve the full circle.
Moreover, eye bolts are made to withstand heavier loads, while eye screws are for lighter applications. Still, some manufacturers make sturdier screw eyes that can hold out against more serious (and industrial) applications.
How Do Screw Eyes Work?
Now that you know what a screw eye is, you might be wondering how one works. We’ve got you covered.
You may use an eye screw in homes in simpler tasks such as hanging something on a wall. They are also used to connect wires to support things.
It requires minimal time to install if you have the right tools. Typically, installation entails drilling a pilot hole in the surface and physically tightening the eye screw into it.
You can also use a screwdriver, Allen wrench, or an L key if you have one of them lying around. If you’re feeling innovative, use a spoon or anything hard that can slide through the eye screw’s loop.
Another thing, screw eyes can only take a specific amount of weight. They are best suited for holding light to medium-weight items.
As a result, it is not the ideal choice for heavy construction. Still, as said earlier, some manufacturers produce heavy-duty eye screws.
Sturdier eye screws are used in different applications such as lifting and tensioning. As a guide, here are some considerations you need to ask yourself when picking the right eye screw:
- How will it be used
- Where will the eye screw hook be installed (wood, metal, engineered lifting point, etc.)
- If the load angle is vertical or horizontal, or if there is angular loading
Standard Screw Eyes Sizes
Screw eyes come in different sizes. Before diving into the dimensions, you need to know the various parts of the screw:
- Wire – the looped head of the screw
- Shank – the rod below the head with the helical thread
- Eye – the hollow space in the wire
- Shoulder – the part where the wire and shank meet, and it’s sometimes reinforced to withstand breaking
Now that you know the parts, eye screws are measured in three ways:
- Wire diameter, or the length of the line through the center, including the width of the wire
- Eye diameter, or the size of the line in the space in the wire
- Shank length, or the measurement from the shoulder to the tip of the shank
Screw Eyes Size Chart
Some also add the overall length of the screw. It is the measurement starting from the top of the head up to the end of the shank.
The screw eyes are divided into different categories depending on the diameter of their wire. Some manufacturers name the types as large, small, and medium, but some by dimension.
Other companies put “.056” wire or “.365” wire as the name of the classification. Screw eyes under each category are differentiated with their shank’s length.
How Much Weight Will An Eye Screw Hold?
Aside from its distinctive head, a screw eye is distinguished by another feature. It’s the only screw that’s made specifically to handle weight or loads.
The eye screw’s capacity is described as rated capacity. It is defined as the maximum force the screw can support when oriented at 0 degrees through the shank.
The rated capacity depends on different factors. It can be dimension-wise (shank’s length), the material used to create the screw, and angular lifting.
There are different opinions about the range of angle and the reduction to the rated capacity. Some say that at 15°, the rated capacity is reduced to 20%, but some say its 55%
However, all agree that between 0° and 5°, there will be no change in the rated capacity. Also, more people acknowledge that screw eyes shouldn’t have an angular lift of 46° or more.
You can attach a shoulder and typically a collar to support angular lifts over 46 degrees. Still, it can vary with the type and size of the screw.
Another thing, if you have a heavier load to put on the screw eye, you should get one with a longer shank.
Tips on Installing Screw Eyes On Different Mediums
Consequently, now that you have a little background about the screw eyes, let us raise the difficulty a bit. Here are ways you can install those screws on different mediums:
Screw Eyes on Wood
Screw eyes used in woodwork are sometimes called vine eyes or turned (or burnt) eye lags.
For masonry mounting, you can incorporate these screws with plastic wall plugs. Other frequent applications include plant training and wire trellis repair.
When you’re putting screw eyes on a wooden surface, remember to have the following other than the screw:
- A drill and drill bit
- A tape measure
- A marker
- Safety gear (depending on the task at hand)
Here are the instructions on how to install a screw eye on wood:
- Mark the area where you want to put screw eyes.
- Measure the wood’s thickness.
- Get a screw eye. Make sure that the length of the screw’s threaded area is less than the wood’s thickness.
- Use the drill to bore a pilot hole in the wood. Take off the sawdust and insert the screw eye.
- Turn the screw until all the threads disappear. Remember not to over-tighten the screw eye.
Screw Eyes as Hooks
You can also use screw eyes as hooks for your hanging garden or even a coat rack.
Now, the materials you need are very simple. You need a drill with its matching drill bit, a hook eye screw, pliers, and a marker.
Here are the steps in making screw eyes as hooks:
- Mark the place where you want to insert the screw eye.
- Measure the wood’s thickness and get a screw eye shorter than its thickness.
- Use the drill to bore a pilot hole in the wood, remove the sawdust, and insert the screw eye.
- Insert the hook eye in the drill and connect its end to the screw eye.
- Pull the drill’s trigger slowly to let the screw eye sink in and don’t bend.
- Once it’s secured, you can pry open the screw’s head with a pair of pliers to make it a hook.
Screw Eyes On Plaster Walls
Plaster is the most common coating for ceilings, walls, and room partitions. It’s quite troublesome to install screw eyes, and you have plaster ceilings and walls.
When not done properly, you can damage your walls and lead to pricey repairs. Here are instructions on how to appropriately install screw eyes on plaster walls and ceilings:
- Find a suitable and sturdy area on the plaster wall or ceiling, maybe a wall stud or a ceiling joist. You can use an electronic stud to find one then mark it.
- Drill the mark with a drill bit shorter than the screw eye’s shank.
- Insert the screw eye into the pilot hole but not too tight.
- Once done, you can now hang anything.
Screw Eyes On Concrete
It is sometimes challenging to put a screw in any material, more so if it’s concrete. Concrete is a difficult material to handle and requires more elbow grease.
Some screw eyes are specifically made for bricks and concrete. These screws have excellent grip and can accept oversize holes caused by power drilling.
Now, if you need to put a screw eye in concrete, follow these steps:
- Clean the area first and mark the specific location you want to put your eye screw.
- Use a heavy-duty drill, and a drill bit specifically made for concrete to bore a pilot hole. Put colored tape on the drill bit as a guide for when you need to stop drilling.
- Once you’re drilling a hole, use a can of compressed air to clean the inside of the pilot hole.
- Put your screw eye in the pilot hole and secure it properly.
Frequently Asked Question (FAQs):
We know that the information we put in this article is a lot to consume. To help you understand, here are some of the most frequent questions about an eye screw:
How are screw eyes measured?
There are three methods for measuring eye screws:
- First, the diameter of the wire or the length of the line across the center is a consideration. It would be best if you incorporated the wire’s width for this measurement.
- Second, the diameter of the eye or the length of the line in the space between the wire.
- Lastly, the shank length or the distance between the shoulder and the tip of the shank is also considered.
What are the different uses of eye screws?
You can use screw eyes to hold or hang items such as painting and potted plants. They are perfectly suited for holding light to medium-weight things.
Some sturdier ones are beneficial for industrial purposes such as lifting and tensioning.
How do you install a screw hook without a drill?
Here are the steps on installing a screw without a drill:
- Get a nail smaller than your screw eye.
- Hammer the nail to the area you want to put the screw. Make sure not to get the pin stuck.
- Remove the nail and insert the screw.
The method is often not a recommended way of installation but can work for non-sensitive installations.
What is the heaviest weight a screw eye can handle?
A 2-inch screw eye can withstand 35,000 lbs. However, it still relies on the angular lift and the materials used in creating the screw.
What is the difference between an eye bolt and a screw eye?
The main distinction is that eye bolts contain a full loop, whereas screw eyes do not. Furthermore, eye bolts are designed to resist greater weights, whereas eye screws are designed for lighter applications.
An eye screw is a kind of screw that is distinguished by its looped head. They are usually used to hang tiny things and objects.
Eye screws come in a variety of measurements according to the screw eyes size chart. Some are longer threaded or have a bigger head than others.
Additionally, they are from steel, aluminum, copper, and titanium. Whatever the case, eye screws are handy fasteners for DIY and industrial applications.
“The only way to make a machine work again is to break it down and fix it again. Take out the screws of your life, examine and work on yourself, fix your life again and get going.”
That’s what Israelmore Ayivor, an inspirational writer, once said. Whether it’s “personal” screws or a metal one, like the screw eyes, they are amazing in keeping things together.