New answers tagged design
To shorten a bolt, get two nuts with the matching thread. Screw them onto the bolt and "lock" them together (tightened against each other) such that the nut surface farthest from the head lines up with the place where you want to cut. Place the bolt in a vice (taking care to not mash the threads) and use a fine-toothed hacksaw or other cutting device to ...
I believe you are taking about a bolt, rather than a nut ( nuts hold bolts onto things ). Anyway, you aren't going to damage the bolt if you file it down or cut it with a metal cutting saw, it's done all the time.
Smaller components need much finer machines (higher cost) to manufacture. When precision scales up, so does cost of manufacture. Larger items are easier to manufacture. When it comes to performance, apart from materials, there is often a large cost associated with the type of manufacturing process involved.
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