Definition of wing nut in US English:

wing nut


  • 1A nut with a pair of projections for the fingers to screw it on.

    • ‘Then, you tighten the small wing nut to compress the spring until the alignment indicator shows that you have correctly positioned the squeezer.’
    • ‘Even down to the wing nuts that are in white bronze other parts are polished and lacquered steel, the body is spun aluminium and contains the rotating mirror effect.’
    • ‘One of the dads had cut squares of wood and drilled holes in the corners in advance, and these pieces were sent up to camp along with bolts and wing nuts to tighten the presses.’
    • ‘The lid is held securely in place by a large wing nut and washer for easy installation or removal - a thoughtful, user friendly touch on the part of RCBS ' design team.’
    • ‘The unit is a stout metal tube that slides over the front of the barrel and is secured in place by a wing nut.’
    • ‘A typical Lancashire-pattern wing nut on the heavy screw tightens the blade.’
    • ‘Step 2: Remove the wing nuts that attach the tank to the bowl.’
    • ‘And everything used to break all the time so you had to be really handy with your wrench and your screwdriver and had to know how to fix wing nuts and you had to know how tighten up cables.’
    • ‘When using twin cylinders they are connected together with cylinder bands and the backplate is attached via wing nuts onto the studding that clamps the bands to the cylinders.’
    • ‘The tension on the spring can be adjusted using a wing nut so it can grip the line tightly or loosely, whatever the fishing situation demands.’
  • 2An Asian tree of the walnut family, with a deeply fissured trunk, compound leaves, and characteristic broad-winged nutlets.

    Genus Pterocarya, family Juglandaceae

    • ‘This Wing Nut tree (Pterocarya fraxinifolia) is one of the biggest trees in Cambridge (more than 30m high and more than 10m wide).’
  • 3US informal A mad or crazy person.

    ‘some wingnut down in Finance’
    • ‘Even wingnuts don't like crooked bankers these days.’
    • ‘Like many wingnut "intellectuals" he seems to have some serious developmental problems.’
    • ‘I had to go back through my text and remove words like "wingnuts" from my discussion.’
    • ‘Many thanks to both of them for filling in while I was hanging with the wingnuts.’
    • ‘Better keep your heads down, little wingnuts.’
    • ‘Back then, the wing nut who hit Grogan probably was flagged only for unnecessary roughness.’
    1. 3.1 A person with extreme, typically right-wing, views.
      ‘McCarthyite wingnuts’
      • ‘The only people who are still defending the President are the wingnut hardcore.’
      • ‘This is just the first of many national underground obsessions among the wingnuts.’
      • ‘He's clearly trying to curry favor with the wingnuts.’
      • ‘Whenever the wingnuts go on about "liberal" Hollywood, I always have to laugh.’
      • ‘Anyway, conservative religious wingnuts probably shouldn't opine publicly about sex.’
      • ‘To have wingnuts like her commenting on legal ethics is like asking a wolf pack what they think of sheep herding.’
      • ‘The very annoying Smith, chief wingnut of the Pedestrian Council (membership unknown) wants to stop drivers listening to MP3 players.’
      • ‘The columnists represented there are not wingnuts reviled by the more sensible members of the Republican party.’
      • ‘For some reason, the mainstream media just refuse to believe that he is a wingnut jerk of the highest order.’
      • ‘For the first time ever, the wingnuts went mainstream.’
      • ‘I guess she thinks attacking him for being uppity will head off her wingnut primary opponent.’
      • ‘I'm watching Hillary Clinton school a bunch of wingnuts in the House Foreign Affairs Committee.’
      • ‘On the right, we've got Haiti somehow again attracting the wingnuts.’
      • ‘He is fearless in taking on the right wing, from the crazed harpy wingnut bloggers to the Wall Street Journal editorial page.’
      • ‘Many of my readers know that my father is a blazing, unrepentant right wingnut.’
      • ‘His letter is indicative as to what lengths left wingnuts will go in efforts to get their way.’
      • ‘I think Muntz is right that any tack to the right on "big government" will just further enable the wingnuts.’
      • ‘But in the late 90's the wingnuts rose, the prolife, anti-government folks and thus their nosedive began.’
      • ‘Wingnuts don't think liberals should be allowed to have political heroes.’
      • ‘The problem with wingnuts in popular culture is that they can't seem to attract real creative talent.’


wing nut

/ˈwiNG ˌnət//ˈwɪŋ ˌnət/