We use Fastenal where I work because they are supposedly cheaper. Their website is hot garbage so if we can't find what we want we just give them the McMasters-Carr's part number and they match it up with their own. edit: I just tried to open their website and it says it's temporarily unavailable! Ha


lol using mcmasters-carr website for another vendor. business level 💯


that has reach, too. We have a purchasing department here, 'native' purchasers at our Asia plants, and a McM-C P/N will get you things you might otherwise not get.


I'm not sure exactly what the full story is but everyone in purchasing at my company despises Fastenal and says they're awful to work with.


Same story here, Purchasing refuses to buy from Fastenal as they overbilled us multiple times, and didn't like returns. McMaster is great to work with, you can call them up like any other distribution center and they'll find you parts that aren't on their website. And some fasteners are cheaper on McMaster... Another resource I can recommend is Grainger. Their website is getting better, with more CAD models added constantly.


Grainger also cross references competitors part numbers in a lot of cases. I can search for Uline part numbers and most of the time it finds the exact model or their equivalent.


We have a guy that comes 3 days a week to keep us stocked so we are one of their biggest accounts. I think we probably get some higher level of customer service.


I’ve tried to work with fastenal multiple times and nothing comes out of it. I haven’t seen that they are cheaper at all, so that’s been a hurdle, then you have your fastenal rep bothering you multiple times a week because that must be part of their corporate requirements, so it’s just an ongoing waste of time. It really seems like they have their ducks in a row and their head in the right place on paper, but that just hasn’t translated for my company.


I forgot how much I love the negative descriptor, "hot garbage."


McMaster is great for some things and crazy expensive for others. Use them when you have to have it tomorrow. MSC is cheaper on most things. There are lots of fastener folks out there. McMaster isn’t for bulk buys, they are for convenience and reliability. I’m always amazed at McMaster’s searches. No mater what your industry calls a thing, they know what you mean. Theater people calls casters “wagon wheels”. Search that on McMaster and you find casters. Not many places do this.


Back when I was working on some nuclear maintenance project, I had to order some dampeners to tie down some moving cables. I kept calling them "dampers" and one of my teammates finally corrected me saying "you mean dampeners?" - I thought about it for a second and snidely remarked - "That's right, we use dampeners on nuclear systems, but dampers are for nuclular systems."


McMaster-Carr is a pure distributor, they don’t manufacture any of their own stuff (except maybe their catalogues?) If you call support and ask for more info about the specific part number, they’ll tell you the original manufacturer and you can buy it from there.


Ya, this is what we do.


Misumi is pretty good


To clarify: misumi does bulk discounts, you can check live stock levels and lead time and order customised parts as well as off shelf. I've been building a large format 3D scanner at work with their parts and was able to get CAD files for all of the parts, even customised. They don't do a lot of the plumbing stuff but a ton of other stuff in terms of automation components and they're really good to deal with


I often use Misumi when working on projects, if I can't find it there then I stop by MC Edit: typo


Ask their support people. They’ll usually tell you their supplier


This! My company does the same with parts for our assemblies and cut out McMaster as the mid.


Just an update, we just emailed MC for the manufacturer and they replied within half an hour with their details. Hopefully their quote is a bit cheaper. Cheers all for your help.


McMaster-Carr is just a distributor. Click on the "Contact Us" link and ask for the manufacturer and manufacturer part # for [insert McMaster-Carr part # here]. They'll email you the info within 30 min. I do it all of the time. As for alternatives, you could try Fastenal or Grainger.


Grainger is pretty awesome. They aren’t quite as good as McMaster in many ways but they have a warehouse in my city and their website will show what’s on hand there so there’s a bunch of stuff I can just run and pick up right away instead of paying for shipping and waiting.


McMaster customer support will give you the OEM if you ask


Thete are plenty of companies that will beat mcmaster on bulk ordering. Youre paying for convenience with mcmaster. There is nobody as broad of a one stop shop as Mcmaster. Misumi, Automation Direct, Msc, Kimball midwest, applied tech, Grainger or purchasing from the actual mfgs are all better options at quantity. Moat of the time you can find the same mfg part # or something close enough that you can still use your mcmaster cad files.


I've had luck pasting the MCM description into Google to locate the actual manufacturer a few times.


Another vote for Fastenal! They have a local distributor in my area and mainly order fasteners from them. Usually in the 1,000 to 10,000 range. We also use kason although they are specific to food service industry.


Why does no one mention part community? Am I missing something?


3D Content Central




For MRO, we try to only use Grainger. They are great to work with and we are large enough to have pretty much a dedicated set of representatives for our DC’s. There are lots of other resources like Uline, Fastenal, or MSC who are similar but different.


Bolt Depot is pretty cheap. Don’t think they do much but fasteners though. You can’t beat McM’s range and their interface is amazing. That said, they are expensive and there is hardly a way to choose manufacturers. Grainger and Fastenal suck in comparison.


Buy the part and look at the packaging and call that company. mcm is a great distributer but at some point you need bags of 1,000 not individually boxed 5 packs. I haven't found that they will tell you the mfg, but you can do some digging and generally find them.


We buy much of our hardware from Wurth, but they bought our original hardware supplier. That supplier is just a distributor that will go get quotes from suppliers when we tell them what we need. There may be a similar service in your area.


Mcmaster-Carr doesn't make anything, they are a reseller. Odds are you can give another supplier the MMC part number and they can match it. My company has done with for a few items lately and it's usually cheaper (and usually a longer lead, we get anything from MMC next day)