Staying on Track with Wedge-Locking Washers

Loosening of nuts and bolts is a problem that unites professionals and hobbyists in a quest for the ultimate, secure bolted joint. For spare-time drag racer Sam Retke, wedge-locking washers are the answer.

Wherever you find bolted joints, chances are you will also find loosening and slackening nuts and bolts. And no matter if you are designing for massive infrastructure construction projects or getting absorbed in your own spare-time pet project, you have a common goal: to secure the bolted joints as effectively as possible. 

Sam Retke is an excellent example. In his free time, you will most likely find him in his garage back home in Las Vegas, working on his VW drag racer. A sales representative by profession, he has been racing since 2016 but got the car racing bug already as a boy. 

“I used to watch track racing on TV,” he says. “My uncle Brian was a VW guy when I grew up, so that’s why I got into VW racing. But I’m self-taught, learned from reading articles and watching YouTube videos.” 


Extreme vibrations a challenge 

Retke competes in quarter mile drag racing (approx. 400 meters), where often spectacularly rebuilt and painted VW models race each other. His current car, a 1984 VW Rabbit, hasn’t made it down the track yet, but the initial goal is 10.5 seconds.