Standoffs and spacers are two modest little fastener elements that do essentially the same thing in slightly different ways: they’re used to keep one component off another. And while some might use the terms standoffs and spacers interchangeably, they’re actually designed and utilized differently.
At Electronic Fasteners, we have a fully-stocked inventory of standoffs and spacers, including:
- Hexagon swage spacers
- Round spacers
- Metric spacers
- Knurled standoffs
- Female standoffs
- Male/female standoffs
- And much more
A standoff is a threaded separator of a specific length used to raise one assembly above another. They are usually round or hex-shaped to enable wrench-tightening, and they are often made using aluminum, brass, or nylon. Standoffs come in male-female or female-female forms. In electronics they are frequently used to raise a printed-circuit board above a surface. Standoffs are ideal fasteners for keeping printed circuit boards both stationary and elevated away from surfaces, such as the interior of a computer chassis.
Insulating standoffs keep two parts from touching each other to prevent electrical shorts. When used to fasten cable connectors such as “D” connectors together, they are called “jack screws.”
While there are some similarities between standoffs and spacers, spacers are quite different from standoffs in terms of both function and design. In contrast to standoffs, spacers are typically unthreaded pieces of tubing which accommodate the entire bolt. However, the interiors of spacers can be either threaded or smooth and, like standoffs, their exteriors can be round, hex, smooth, or knurled.
Unlike standoffs, spacers are designed solely to maintain spacing between components. A bolt running through the center of the spacer is required to fasten. Also meant for spacing applications in electronics, spacers are completely hollow. They are generally made from metal tubing, compared to the metal rods used to manufacture many standoffs. Spacers are often used for an unintended — but effective — secondary application: bundling small wires together.
Since they cannot be tightened, they are usually round.
At Electronic Fasteners, we carry a complete inventory of standoffs and spacers for a wide range of industries and applications. Our stock of standoffs and spacers include virtually every size, shape, and material to accommodate a variety of commercial and industrial uses – from microelectronics to massive electrical systems.
Not sure what you need for standoffs and spacers? Contact the experts in standoffs and spacers here at Electronic Fasteners. Chance are we have what you need, in stock and ready for delivery.