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Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:06 pm

You know those standoffs with the small collet that are threaded, or those standoffs with the nub? I wants them.

I browsed through McMaster-Carr, DigiKey, Newark, Amazon, Ebay, mod supply websites, Newegg and countless other searches and supply places (including alibaba) and I can't seem to find these for sale anywhere. I contacted several of the above distributors and some case manufacturers who I know supply them with cases and they thought I had inhaled too much blue smoke, knew exactly what I was talking about and were dumbfounded they didn't carry it, or refused to disclose where they source them from or sell them to me in "bulk" (no I didn't want to buy a hundred case screw packs with 1 included in each pack for 5$ a pack).

I could see myself buying a max of 100 of them, so it's not like I need a steady source for manufacturing.

If I knew exactly what they were called I might be able to find them from a supplier but so far anything I've tried that describes their extra flangeiness only results in other fools hopelessly asking the same question without any answer.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:15 pm

They're called motherboard standoffs - I did a quick search on Amazon and they have a ton of options.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:31 pm

frumper15 wrote:
They're called motherboard standoffs - I did a quick search on Amazon and they have a ton of options.

I'm aware of the standard ones. I am not interested in those, I have a whole coffee can full of them and if my coffee can doesn't have the exact one I'm after I know where to order non-standard ones from the sites I listed.

I'm interested in the "special" self-centering ones that you find with some cases. They have a small collet around the top where you thread your screw in that is about the same thickness of the motherboard so it "locks" in place. Though I will settle for the "nub" version that protrudes out of the motherboard hole and has no thread option.

*Edit* Maybe this will help:
Image

The top left brass one is the "nub" one I'm trying to explain. The zinc coated one that is in the bottom row, second from the left, is the "collet" and is the second and preferred variety I'm trying to explain.
Last edited by Convert on Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:11 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:08 pm

I have not seen those come with a case in a while. IIRC I had a few cases that used those a decade or so back?

I agree, they do make mobo installation easier since you're not trying to simultaneously line things up and put the first screw in. But I also felt like they made the motherboard slightly less secure (referring to the "nub" style ones). I was never enough of a fan of them to figure out where to buy them ala carte.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:16 pm

Wow - reading comprehension fail on my part. Sorry about that. The best I can tell what you're looking for appears to be called a "swage threaded standoff". At least that seemed to give results that look like your collet variety. I wasn't able to find a good source but I hope that helps
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:31 pm

just brew it! wrote:
I have not seen those come with a case in a while. IIRC I had a few cases that used those a decade or so back?

I agree, they do make mobo installation easier since you're not trying to simultaneously line things up and put the first screw in. But I also felt like they made the motherboard slightly less secure (referring to the "nub" style ones). I was never enough of a fan of them to figure out where to buy them ala carte.


I don't really care for the nub ones either but I may settle for them, if I can find them. The last few CoolerMaster cases I bought and all of the InWin cases that come with our Nobilis whitebox systems have them so I'm thinking they're still a novelty found in some modern accessory bags.

frumper15 wrote:
Wow - reading comprehension fail on my part. Sorry about that. The best I can tell what you're looking for appears to be called a "swage threaded standoff". At least that seemed to give results that look like your collet variety. I wasn't able to find a good source but I hope that helps


Swage threaded standoffs aren't the right ones either. I came across those in my search but their purpose is similar to a rivet nut where they are used in a force fit application. The flange or "swage" is expanded out causing it to be friction fitted to the material. It is true that this collet is what I'm after, but swage force fit standoffs don't seem to come with a male thread since this isn't their intended use.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:37 pm

How do the "collet" style ones attach to the case? Or are they effectively just a spacer attached to the back of the motherboard, but not anchored to the case itself? I prefer to anchor the motherboard firmly to the case at all mounting points, if possible.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:57 pm

In the previous picture I linked to, you can see the threads of the collet version (zinc standoff that's second from the left). Basically it's just a standard standoff that is slightly longer than intended and a shoulder is machined down to the same height as a regular standoff. This way everything is anchored in place but the shoulder still provides ease of mounting much like the nub style ones.

I guess collet probably isn't the right terminology either as I now recall seeing a more true collet standoff design back in the day where it kind of snapped in place due to the nature of the collet design: https://www.google.com/search?q=collet& ... 34&bih=682

Imagine the first image result as a standoff. Going back to the first image I posted though I guess a shoulder would be the best way to describe it?
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:10 am

Ahh, my bad, more reading comprehension fail. I was referring to the center one in the top row. :oops:
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:14 am

It doesn't help I didn't bother to specify which ROW I was talking about :lol:
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:00 am

Any reason you are looking for these in particular?

I like the idea of the collet standoff, but in the real world there is enough variance in the position of the standoff holes compared to the expansion slot covers and the IO cutout that you'd usually want to do some adjustment - the fact a regular standoff gives you about a millimeter of wiggle room is usually enough to align things nicely so that the PCIe slot and expansion slot cover leave your GPU nice and horizontal.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:45 am

I haven't seen them in a while and the ones I do have are too tall for my case.

The two cases ago (athlon) case I had these kinds of stand offs, my cases since then are the wrong height for the standoffs.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:02 am

Grind the head off a standoff screw and thread it in. Viola! There's your centering nub.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Fri Jul 20, 2018 3:05 pm

I do a lot of custom projects for cases and enclosures and find the centering standoffs are helpful for alignment, plus mounting motherboards is easier when there's something to hold on to the board before you get your first screw into it.

I can have something professionally made, or even do myself if really necessary. I was just thinking that these parts are fairly "mass produced" and therefore should be available somewhere for a few cents.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Sun Jul 22, 2018 2:40 pm

 
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:49 pm

Is this the standoff your looking for? I noticed my Phantek case had one pre-installed in the middle (Primary PCIe slot) and one up between the 8-pin CPU connector, and DIMM slots.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:51 pm

Dposcorp wrote:

None of those do what he's looking for though. The idea is to have a standoff that is anchored to the case on the bottom end, and has an unthreaded post on the other, which centers the motherboard to make installing the rest of the screws easier.

The flat bottom ones you linked are nice for when you have a motherboard with some holes that don't correspond to mounting points in the case, but that's a different issue.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:10 am

I've done the trick of tightening down a too-long screw into the standoff and then taking a dremel to the head. You end up with a male/male standoff that permits a nut to tighten down when the board's in place.

I also like to use steel standoffs instead of screws, as I find using a magnetized hex driver much easier to maneuver than a screwdriver and cheap screws. Weird, I know.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:36 am

Convert wrote:
In the previous picture I linked to, you can see the threads of the collet version (zinc standoff that's second from the left). Basically it's just a standard standoff that is slightly longer than intended and a shoulder is machined down to the same height as a regular standoff. This way everything is anchored in place but the shoulder still provides ease of mounting much like the nub style ones...

That's a rivet, designed to be placed into the housing, not the board, due to the forces after deformation. Called "Self Clinching panel fastener". Obviously you need to do the search in order to locate particular p/n according to your requirements.
 
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:22 pm

olegtf wrote:
Convert wrote:
In the previous picture I linked to, you can see the threads of the collet version (zinc standoff that's second from the left). Basically it's just a standard standoff that is slightly longer than intended and a shoulder is machined down to the same height as a regular standoff. This way everything is anchored in place but the shoulder still provides ease of mounting much like the nub style ones...

That's a rivet, designed to be placed into the housing, not the board, due to the forces after deformation. Called "Self Clinching panel fastener". Obviously you need to do the search in order to locate particular p/n according to your requirements.


It's not. You are describing something similar to a swage standoff that has already been discussed:
Convert wrote:
Swage threaded standoffs aren't the right ones either. I came across those in my search but their purpose is similar to a rivet nut where they are used in a force fit application. The flange or "swage" is expanded out causing it to be friction fitted to the material. It is true that this collet is what I'm after, but swage force fit standoffs don't seem to come with a male thread since this isn't their intended use.


biffzinker wrote:
Is this the standoff your looking for?

Yes, that is exactly it!
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:50 pm

Convert wrote:
Yes, that is exactly it!

I was hoping someone at the forums would happen to know the name for that standoff variation, because I have no idea. Collar?
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:58 pm

Convert wrote:
Yes, that is exactly it!

Ahh, I thought you wanted the rounded nub (top left in your pic), not the raised center with screw threads. I guess either way it helps center the board though.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:06 pm

Either one, I described both but would prefer the raised center with screw threads.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:09 pm

Ahh, right. The one in the bottom row. I guess I was still not 100% un-confused from the earlier confusion! :lol:
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:19 pm

just brew it! wrote:
.......... guess I was still not 100% un-confused from the earlier confusion! :lol:


You weren't the only one........I was way off base. lol
 
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:42 am

all right do this:

find a long fine thread screw that fits in the stand off and screw it all the way in after applying loctite.
Let the loctite or gorilla glue set.
Cut the head off the screw.

use a deep well socket to screw the standoff into the mainboard.

There you go...
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:34 am

Convert wrote:
olegtf wrote:
Convert wrote:
In the previous picture I linked to, you can see the threads of the collet version (zinc standoff that's second from the left). Basically it's just a standard standoff that is slightly longer than intended and a shoulder is machined down to the same height as a regular standoff. This way everything is anchored in place but the shoulder still provides ease of mounting much like the nub style ones...

That's a rivet, designed to be placed into the housing, not the board, due to the forces after deformation. Called "Self Clinching panel fastener". Obviously you need to do the search in order to locate particular p/n according to your requirements.


It's not. You are describing something similar to a swage standoff that has already been discussed: ...

Yes, that is exactly it!

well your answer is quite confusing, anyways I just wrote you description from catalog at work, soooo like it or not its the way it goes in purchasing department here...
 
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:56 am

AFAIK the length of the standoffs aren't standardized like the positions of them as specified by the ATX spec.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:07 am

olegtf wrote:
well your answer is quite confusing, anyways I just wrote you description from catalog at work, soooo like it or not its the way it goes in purchasing department here...

I apologize for the confusion and appreciate the help, I'm at a loss for descriptive and accurate terms since I don't know what it's really called (then again if I did I might be able to find it!). It's easy to confuse what I want with a self clinching rivet, but if you know the actual parts it's clear they are different and not interchangeable. Maybe a self clenching/swage standoff would work if they had the right tolerances but I've already exhausted that line of investigation prior to posting here. They just aren't made to do the same thing.
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Re: Where to buy centering/nub motherboard standoffs

Tue Jul 24, 2018 12:02 pm

strangerguy wrote:
AFAIK the length of the standoffs aren't standardized like the positions of them as specified by the ATX spec.


They have to be at least 6.4mm long and no wider than 10mm X 10mm according to the ATX spec. It's not uncommon to find them longer than 6.4mm because of case design decisions.
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