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Cotter pins, or split pins are fasteners that are split down the middle to form 2 prongs that are inserted into an object, and then bent around that object to hold it in place. Cotter pins are often used with hitch pins and clevis pins to hold them securely in place. There are 4 types of cotter pins: standard, hairpin, hammerlock and retaining, and all come in a variety of lengths and finishes. If you use a lot of cotter pins, there are assorted boxes that contain multiple sizes and lengths for you convenience.