In aerospace engineering, fasteners—pins, nuts, bolts, screws, and more—are designed to withstand intense pressure changes, temperature extremes, and force. These tiny parts are high quality and precise because quite literally, they hold an aircraft together. With so much on the line, it’s no wonder that aerospace fasteners undergo rigorous quality standards to meet the FAA’s requirements.
According to the FAA, any part manufactured without the agency’s approval is an “unapproved part.” Unapproved parts include counterfeit parts, parts used beyond their time limits, approved parts that were not properly returned to service, stolen parts, parts with fraudulent labels, production overruns that were not sold with the agency’s permission, and untraceable parts.
As far back as the 1970s, counterfeit parts have plagued the aerospace industry. Counterfeiting puts lives at risk and has been the proven cause of many NSTB-investigated crashes over the years. Additionally, persons found guilty of selling, acquiring or manufacturing counterfeit aircraft parts face hefty fines and jail time. Still, despite the terrible consequences, counterfeiting is a problem found in the industry to this day.
For anyone involved in aerospace part procurement or supply chain management, counterfeit part awareness and avoidance is essential. Here are some ways to keep counterfeit parts out of your supply chain.
#1: Know who you are buying from and who is in your supply chain. Take the time to find companies that have a reputable, traceable history in the industry.
#2: When it comes to combating counterfeit products, the Internet is not your friend. Most counterfeit products are marketed online, which means tracking down their origin is very difficult.
#3: Don’t be afraid to educate your customers. Education of consumers as well as enterprises along the entire supply chain plays an important role. Lowest price isn’t always best. In fact, companies with very low parts pricing are red flags and should be heavily investigated.
etaGLOBAL fasteners are specially designed for the aerospace industry. Our fasteners are sourced from leading manufacturers that meet our strict quality standards. When you purchase from etaGLOBAL, you can rest assured that complete and detailed product sourcing documentation will always be provided. We’ve been a trusted source for aerospace fasteners and parts aerospace and defense industries for more than 47 years.