What are they?
Camlock fittings or cam and groove couplings are a type of hose coupling. They bring simplicity to the hose coupling process and are used as a way to connect or disconnect a hose or pipe in a quick and efficient way without having to use complex tools or equipment – only hand pressure. Camlock fittings offer a replacement for the old, unsafe method of nut, bolt flange, and drift pin methods of pipe connection.
They are manufactured in a variety of different sizes – between 1/2” and 8” – and made with different materials such as aluminum, stainless steel, brass, polypropylene & fiberglass reinforced nylon.
Here are several types of camlock fittings you might run into:
- Type A: male-end adapter with a female thread
- Type B: female-end coupler with a male thread
- Type C: coupler with a shank (aka hose barb)
- Type D: coupler with a female thread
- Type E: adapter with a shank
- Type F: adapter with a male thread
- Dust cap - female
- Dust plug - male
How do they work?
Camlock fittings guarantee a tight and secure bond because of the way that the cams lock into place. There are two parts on a camlock – a male adapter and a female coupler. These male and female ends are designed to align perfectly with each other. When the lever is rotated to the locked position it pulls the male end into the female socket. This creates a tight seal against a gasket within the female socket. The way the arms lock into position prevents accidental decoupling. The groove on a camlock is cut all the way around the male end so there is no rotational alignment necessary to couple. This also prevents cross-threading. The result is an error-resistant coupling operation. Camlock fittings also eliminate the possibility for over-tightening and under-tightening the fitting. This is because the compression between the two fittings is limited by the size of the cams on the end of the levers and rotation of the levers themselves. Furthermore, camlock fittings reduce the possibility of leaks. This is because the pressure against the sealing gasket is consistent from one coupling operation to the next. Additional safety features can also commonly be found such as safety pins and self-locking levers on the female-end.
Who uses them and why?
There are many diverse markets for camlock fittings and lots of different uses. This is because of their many varied sizes, materials and styles. But in comparison to various other kinds of hose couplings, camlock fittings often are preferred. For example, since camlock fittings provide a coupling that does not leak when disconnected it is preferred by septic tank pump trucks and chemical or fuel tanker trucks. Camlock fittings are also great for any situation where a frequent change of hose is required, such as on a petroleum truck, or rapid filling of chemical drums or by factories that have dye, paint or ink transfers. Camlock fittings, however, are NOT recommended for any type of compressed gas or air, steam or any other high-pressure applications.
Are you looking for the perfect camlock fitting? Fuel Transfer LLC has lots of different camlock fittings available and would love to help! You can check out our selection here or contact us with questions.