The function of a locking device is to prevent loosening or disengagement of mating components which may be operating under varying conditions of stress, temperature and vibration. The effectiveness of the locking device may be vital to safety.
One of the simplest locking devices is a locknut and these are generally thin plain nuts which are tightened against ordinary plain nuts or against components into which male threaded items are assembled. To ensure efficient locking, the bearing surfaces of the nut and component must bed together evenly and the correct degree of tightness obtained by applying the designed torque loading. The locknut should not be overtightened as this may result in the stripping of the nut threads or overstressing of the male component. In cases where rotation can occur, the plain nut must be held stationary whilst the locknut is tightened.
Fig. 16.21 Bolts, nut and locknut
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