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Fastener question...


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Hey guys, thought maybe someone here might have a suggestion that I haven't thought of...


I recently installed some .250" aluminum letters on a .063" aluminum canopy. The letters are drilled and tapped on the back for 10-24 studs.There is also tape on the letters but it's too thin to really adhere to the canopy due to different factors. So the normal process is to drill holes in the wall/canopy so the studs can slide through. Along with silicone, this is usually plenty to hold the letters in place. Since the metal fascia is so thin, silicone isn't a great option. So as you can see in the photo, I bent the studs down which 'pulls' the letters against the fascia and keeps tension against them. 


My issue is that it looks pretty ragged. The studs need to be cut off so they only extend about ½" or so beyond the back of the canopy and I need to put some sort of mechanical fastener on the studs.


Two problems: When I put the studs in the letters, I give them a little twist with the pliers so that they're tight. I also bent them down, although I can bend them back up again. Because of those two things, the threads are boogered up.


...Long story for a short question: Any thoughts on what might be a good way to mechanically fasten these letters using the existing 10-24 studs?


My thought was to bend the studs back to straight, and put/force nylon nuts on, figuring these would deform enough to deal with the boogered up threads. Then I could cut the excess portion of the studs off. I'd prefer to use some sort of metal nut though.


Are there any metal nuts that are extra-soft (brass? corrosion/compatibility issues) to deal with boogered up threads? 


Since nuts are typically softer than the bolts, I was also thinking of using a thinner half nut or NyLock that would possibly thread and be able to conform/deform to the boogered threads.


Drawing (studs are shown bent down) and photos attached. Letters are on all four sides.


Wide open to ideas.

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