Fluids are a common element of aircraft operations, coming in the form of oil, coolants, refrigerants, air, and even combustion gasses. In order for all of these fluids to be efficiently and effectively handled, aircraft take advantage of tubes and hoses to route such substances to where they need to be. While tubes are generally rigid structures, hoses tend to be much more flexible with elastic materials for their construction. Since the two are regularly used alongside one another, it is essential that they can be connected securely without having any risk of leaking. In order to guarantee such security, components known as tube-to-hose adapter fittings are commonly used.
While some hoses and tubes may be easily connected as is, there is not always a guarantee that the assembly will hold up during use. For example, pressurized gasses and fluids are regularly transported through the hoses and tubes of aircraft, and this pressure could build up to a point where a leak begins to occur. With the use of a tube-to-hose adapter fitting, this chance is greatly decreased for improved reliability and safety.
Tube-and-hose adapter fittings are fairly straightforward in their use, allowing tubes to be connected to hoses with ease. Generally, one end of the adapter will have threading, and this section is designed to connect with the interior threading of a tube so that the two components remain securely together. Once the tube connection is established, the unthreaded end can then be inserted within a hose. To keep these two parts together, a traditional hose ring can be installed and tightened over the connecting portion of the hose.
Depending on the application in question, there are a variety of tube-to-hose adapter fitting options to choose from. When shopping around, one of the most important things to keep in mind is what material is best for the situation. For example, some fluids will require a material that is strong and corrosion-resistant, with a common choice being aluminum. As one of the most common materials used for adapter fittings, aluminum provides ample corrosion protection and strength while being lightweight. As keeping weight low is a crucial aspect of aircraft design, this can be a major benefit.
Beyond the choice of material, there is also great importance in choosing the right size and dimensions of the adapter fitting itself. To find the correct fit, both the outside diameter of the tube and the inside diameter of the hose must be checked as the adapter fitting will need to accommodate both. Alongside determining the right size and dimensions for the inner and outer diameters, the threading of the adapter fitting is also important. In some cases, a fitting may present coarse threads for connection, while others have more fine threads, and like size, this difference can have a major impact on compatibility.
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