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Old 04-12-2006, 03:46 PM   #1
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Torque Wrench

Anyone have any info on a good torque wrench. I've purchased 2 cheaper torque wrenches from shows and they never hold up. I know 5 million dollar snap on's are nice but anyone know where I can get one for a decent price? eBay????

What about digital? Should I trust them?

Thanks

Erick
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Old 04-12-2006, 05:13 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keddie
Anyone have any info on a good torque wrench. I've purchased 2 cheaper torque wrenches from shows and they never hold up. I know 5 million dollar snap on's are nice but anyone know where I can get one for a decent price? eBay????

What about digital? Should I trust them?

Thanks

Erick
Try Craftsman at Sears. Catch them on sale and they aren't expensive, and you can use the lifetime warranty if something happens. Mine have been OK so far.

Jack
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Old 04-12-2006, 05:42 PM   #3
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I personally have a biased opinion because I sell Cornwell hand tools but I would really reccomend an SK torque wrench or a Craftsman if you wanted something cheaper.


-andrew
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Old 04-12-2006, 07:01 PM   #4
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I picked up a really nice snap on from our local second hand place (Hock Shop) and sent it to Snap on to be tested to make sure it's accurate. They calibrated it for me for 10 bux and I picked it up. Pretty good for $50.
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Old 04-12-2006, 07:01 PM   #5
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I heard Snap-On makes good tools.
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Old 04-13-2006, 07:12 AM   #6
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I think it depends on what you are going to use it for. If you want/need a torque wrench basically to set the torque on your wheel nuts, then a Craftsman clicker type is great.
If you are going to use one for engine assembly, then you might want to invest a little more in a dial or digital wrench, and then have it calibrated so that you KNOW how accurate it is.
Garage sales and tool auctions can be great places to get quality tools at good prices, but you really have to know your stuff with regard to values or you can end up paying over retail for used eqpt.
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Old 04-13-2006, 08:21 AM   #7
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Hi,

As mentioned, the Click Type are fine for general use, but their accuracy isn't linear. They tend to be off at either extreme of their scales. But, the best is still the old Beam Type. They're not sexy, but they are inherently more accurate - the Best Engine Builders still rely primarily on this type. And, they are also magnitudes less expensive and don't require inconvenient recalibrating, which should really be done annually regardless of how much you use it.

I read an SAE random study of 500 Click Type Torque Wrenches (from various manufacturers, including the well-known brands). Their research indicated that 50% of these were off, and of these, 30% were off by more than 50%!. I use both, but stick to the Beam Type for serious work...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 04-13-2006, 08:46 AM   #8
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The beam type have an additional advantage... they allow you to sneak up on the torque you are trying to achieve. That is especially important when working with aluminum.
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Old 04-13-2006, 08:50 AM   #9
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Well, for torquing rims or general stuff you can't go wrong with a craftsman or Snap-On (more expensive, better quality).

If your rebuilding motors then one torque wrench will cost $5,000.

KRZ
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Old 04-13-2006, 09:17 AM   #10
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'But, the best is still the old Beam Type...'

Interesting. Do you mean the type that has a graduated plate with a pointer??

Many years ago when I bought my first torque wrench I went to the Snap On shop and asked for one of those. The guy behind the counter sneered and said "We sell torque wrenches, not guessers."
I was effectively put in my place and ultimately bought a Snap On 150 lb/ft dial type wrench for $65, a pretty good pile of money for a torque wrench in those days.

As for $5,000 for a torque wrench, a hell of a lot of engines have been rebuilt using wrenches that cost a lot less then that. A commercial rebuilding shop might be able to justify such a device, but I bet the reason for using it has more to do with repeatibility and durability over thousands of operations than strictly accuracy.
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Old 04-13-2006, 09:24 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by JackG
The beam type have an additional advantage... they allow you to sneak up on the torque you are trying to achieve. That is especially important when working with aluminum.
Hi,

You're quite correct. But, if using a Click Type, you should ALWAYS torque a Fastener in 3 steps of 1/3, 3/4 and then the Final Torque Spec. This allows the Fastener to relax between settings and allows the Wrench to work through a broader range. Both will insure greater accuracy.

Also remember, unless specified, all torque settings assume a Dry Thread. Threaded Fasteners work by stretching a pre-determined amount and there is a significant amount of friction between the threads to be overcome. If you use any type of agent on the threads - Lok-Tite, Thread Lube, Teflon Tape, or even if it's just greasy, you need to lower the torque value by 50% or you will be overtightening the Fastener, because you've eliminated the friction which the torque spec allows for.

This is a general rule, but if you don't reduce the torque when using an agent on the threads, you will either Shear, Strip or Stretch the Fastener, or worse, strip the Tap, especially if the part is Aluminum. Hope this helps...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 04-13-2006, 09:35 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronzi
'But, the best is still the old Beam Type...'

Interesting. Do you mean the type that has a graduated plate with a pointer??

Many years ago when I bought my first torque wrench I went to the Snap On shop and asked for one of those. The guy behind the counter sneered and said "We sell torque wrenches, not guessers."
I was effectively put in my place and ultimately bought a Snap On 150 lb/ft dial type wrench for $65, a pretty good pile of money for a torque wrench in those days.

As for $5,000 for a torque wrench, a hell of a lot of engines have been rebuilt using wrenches that cost a lot less then that. A commercial rebuilding shop might be able to justify such a device, but I bet the reason for using it has more to do with repeatibility and durability over thousands of operations than strictly accuracy.
Hi,

A Beam Type wrench uses Physics as opposed to Engineering in the mechanical Dial or Click Type. It is the most accurate, but does require the user to properly read the scale, which is where the guessing you mentioned comes into play. There are many things which can fail in the mechanical types which the Beam is immune to, it relies on simple, known deflection.

In truth, there are so many variables, including the ambeient temperature, whether or not you're using an extension, etc. that Accuracy is really more of a concept than a reality. But, the Beam Type has fewer variables which must be correct to achieve an accurate torque.

With better machining tolerances in today's manufacturing, the trend is to rely less on a Torque Value in favor of a Torque Angle Value. This takes into account the material used, the size and pitch of the threads and results in a tighter tolerance when torquing a Fastener. A Torque Angle Meter is a simple tool similar in simplicity to a Beam Type Wrench. You use a Torque Wrench to achieve maybe 3/4 of the spec and then continue to rotate the Fastener an additional specified Angle to achieve the proper tightening...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:30 AM   #13
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MNBoxster:

What is your opinion on digital torque wrenches? How do they compare to beam?

Thanks for everyone's input. I really appreciate it.

Keddie
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:51 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Keddie
MNBoxster:

What is your opinion on digital torque wrenches? How do they compare to beam?

Thanks for everyone's input. I really appreciate it.

Keddie

Hi,

All can be very good. But, the Beam Type is the simplest, so less to go wrong and more accurate readings.

The digitals have a complex mechanism which converts the mechanical torque into an electrical signal and subsequently an LCD Readout. I guess that the cheap ones won't match the accuracy and longevity of the more expensive ones. They are all bound to be relatively fragile because of the sensitive electronics they contain.

The important thing is to keep it calibrated and don't play rough with them, keep them away from heat and humidity and it'll probably serve the DIYer well...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 04-13-2006, 11:36 AM   #15
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I have the Split Beam one from TireRack.com....$249.
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Old 04-13-2006, 11:47 AM   #16
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What size driver did you get for 249.00? 1/2". I'm assuming that is all I'll need for anything I'm going to do on the Porsche. I noticed I can get it on eBay for like 169.00
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Old 04-13-2006, 11:52 AM   #17
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I was off its $235...But heres the link

http://www.tirerack.com/accessories/tools/pi_c3fr250f.jsp
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Old 04-27-2006, 03:50 PM   #18
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I purchased a Sears Craftman's Microtork Torque Wrench today on sale at 50% off. It cost me about $54. I hope this works just fine for the Racing Dynamics Front Strut Tower Brace I purchased yesterday for the new car!!
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Old 04-27-2006, 04:58 PM   #19
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I purchased a Sears Craftman's Microtork Torque Wrench today on sale at 50% off. It cost me about $54. I hope this works just fine for the Racing Dynamics Front Strut Tower Brace I purchased yesterday for the new car!!
Hi,

Although most Torque Wrenches are least accurate at the extremes of their scales, I'm sure it will be fine. Just remember to torque the nut in stages until the final torque of 26 ft. lbs. is reached.

These Strut Studs are, given their importance, are pretty fragile and easily snapped off if overtorqued - 26ft. lbs. OK, 30-35ft. lbs. may be a problem. This is REALLY BAD because if snapped, you have to buy a new supporting mount and remove the Strut to change it out. 26 ft. lbs. is not very much torque at all, especially if you have the leverage of a long-handled wrench working for you.

I would suggest practicing first by putting a Wheel Lug Nut sized socket on the wrench, set it to 26 ft. lbs. and torque the Wheel Nut. This will give you a feel for how little torque 26 ft. lbs. actually is so you have some idea once you're doing it for real how much torque you s/b applying.

Not to alarm you, as I'm sure all will be OK, but it'll scare you a bit until the wrench clicks, at least it did me...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99

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