If you are new to industrial solutions, you may have heard of the term bulk industrial components and have been unsure of what it refers to. In this article, we will examine what the term means, what each of these components are and what they do, and examples of applications across sectors. If you are new to industrial solutions and wish to learn more about the topic, you can read on to find out more.
Bulk industrial components refer to large quantities of standardised parts or materials used in industrial manufacturing processes. These components are produced in large volumes, and they are commonly used across various industries, including – but not limited to – manufacturing, automation, and digitalisation. Some examples of bulk industrial components are fasteners, bearings, pipes and tubes, electrical cables and wires, gears, valves, and other raw materials.
Fasteners are very common in industrial systems, and they come in a wide variety, serving different purposes. Fasteners include bolts, nuts, screws, and rivets, and they are essentially components that join or secure parts together. They are widely used in industries like automotive, aerospace, construction, machinery, and electronics.
Bearings reduce friction between moving parts, and they enable smooth rotation or linear movement. They come in the form of a ring, and they consist of a row of balls as rolling elements. Bearings are commonly used in the manufacturing, robotics, automotive, and aerospace industries, and they are also often used in heavy machinery.
Pipes and tubes
Pipes and tubes are essential for the transportation of fluids, setting up structural applications, and conveying materials. Industries such as oil and gas production, chemical processing, and water treatment rely on pipes and tubes made from various materials, such as metal, plastic, and rubber. They are also very commonly found in HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning).
Electrical cables and wires
Cables and wires are some of the most common bulk industrial components, and most people are familiar with them and use them in the workplace and at home. They can be used for electrical power transmission, data communication, and to set up control systems. Many fields require electrical cables and wires, including the standard office set-up. Other applications include electrical engineering, audio and visual, and tech.
Gears are components with toothed wheels. They transmit torque, and they allow machinery and equipment to function within a controlled speed or direction. They are used extensively in the automotive, manufacturing, aerospace, and power generation industries, which require precision in the use of machinery of different sizes.
Valves are components that control the flow of gases and fluids, and they open and close passages. They can be add-ons to customised pipes and tubes, and they can be installed in systems to regulate liquid and gas flow. Due to this, valves are commonly used in the oil and gas industry, manufacturing, water management, and chemical processing.
Seals and gaskets
A gasket is a type of mechanical seal that fills the space between two surfaces. Seals in general function to prevent leakage from or into joined objects, and they can also provide air-tight functions. They are efficient in plumbing and manufacturing, as well as industries such as automotive, aerospace, and petrochemicals.
Springs are coils, and they store and release mechanical energy. They can enable movement, maintain tension, or provide suspension to machinery or between other components. The automotive, aerospace, and machinery industries are reliant on springs of different strengths and sizes. Consumer products manufacturing may also rely on springs.
Finally, bulk components may refer to raw materials, such as metals, plastics, rubber, and composites. These are all important in manufacturing and packing, and many businesses bulk order raw materials to produce their finished goods. For example, the manufacturing of electronic devices will require large bulk orders of various metals, cut and melded into different shapes, to create products.
If you are newer to the industry, you may be wondering where you can procure these bulk components. In fact, they can be purchased from various sources, including:
Industrial suppliers and distributors
One of the most common places to procure bulk industrial components is through an industrial supplier or distributor. These are specialised industrial suppliers that offer a wide range of components, consolidating products from different brands and manufacturers. These suppliers often have extensive networks of connections and distributors, and they provide online platforms and catalogues for customers to browse and purchase components. A well-known example is RS Components, which is one of the leading bulk industrial components suppliers in the APAC region and beyond.
There is also the option of online marketplaces like Amazon and eBay that consolidates components from multiple brands and provides a platform for sales. These platforms allow for easy price comparisons and convenient purchasing, depending on the buyer’s location and shipping options.
Of course, buying industrial components directly from manufacturers can be a good way to source items if you are set on a specific manufacturer and you are interested in specific products. Some manufacturers of components sell them directly to customers, and they have online stores or sales representatives that can assist with bulk orders.
Trade shows and exhibitions
Finally, there is the option of attending trade shows and exhibitions if you are a B2B stakeholder. These may not come by as easily, but they can be an excellent way to connect with suppliers and manufacturers. These events also often have exhibitors showcasing their latest products, so they can be a great way to keep up to date with industry solutions developments and gather information.