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All about torque wrenches


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I believe there was a discussion a while back about using torque wrench adapters and how to use them without screwing up the result.  We also talked about lubing fasteners and how the clamping force changes, I was shocked at how much it changed.  Another thing that surprised me was how much it changed by changing where on the tool you put your hand, I wouldn't have believed if if I didn't see it.

 

 

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I was taught to never use an extension (busted), always keep the wrench beam 90* to the fastener (technically true), hold the wrench ONLY at the handle (true), and pull smoothly and evenly at 90* to the handle (untested).  Follow assembly instructions, if the torque value given is with the fastener lubed in one specific area and you lube the whole thing, or don't lube it at all, or use the "wrong" lube, torque will be wrong (seems to likely be true from the video).  Also, repeatedly "checking" torque can cause torque creep and fastener failure (untested).  Always return the wrench to zero (true).  Don't ever use a torque wrench to loosen a tight fastener (untested, but I don't see the issue as long as you don't go too far beyond the torque the wrench is set to).

 

 

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RTFM. Read the fucking manual. It will tell you if/what/when lubricant. 

 

 When assembling motorcycle engine, so gearbox, clutch and the rest under one roof, I use torque wrench for rods, head and big bolts that go around the crankshaft. Everything else goes by "feel".

 Of course some bolts are torque plus angle. Technically I do have ""angle meter" but I don't use it. Seriously, how difficult is to apply 75, 90 or 180 degrees of turn?

 Mark the head of the bolt with sharpie, etc. 

 

Something like sprocket on counter shaft,

clutch basket- electric impact wrench. 

 

Beam type torque wrenches, why? Because they are pure physics, impossible to malfunction and/or wrong reading. Except. 

 

 Once upon the time I had a brain fade and used torque wrench for oil drain plug on XX. Cracked the oil pan. Why? I looked at the wrong scale, standard instead of metric. 😁

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1 hour ago, IcePrick said:

Also, repeatedly "checking" torque can cause torque creep and fastener failure (untested).

 

Tested, cannot cause it to happen with a clicky wrench, didn't try a bar/pointer style.

 

1 hour ago, IcePrick said:

Don't ever use a torque wrench to loosen a tight fastener (untested, but I don't see the issue as long as you don't go too far beyond the torque the wrench is set to).

 

Not a problem with click wrenches, all of mine have stops.  In general now all of my bicycle/motorcycle work is done with a single 1/4 torque wrench that lives on my driveway cart.

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12 hours ago, IcePrick said:

Also, repeatedly "checking" torque can cause torque creep and fastener failure (untested).

I think they verified that as a myth with clickers, but said that it could happen with an electronic.  I don't remember if they showed the test or just spoke of it.

 

After watching my digital reloading scales "drift" I can imagine that any load cell could do that, I assume that's what the digitals use.  If you creep up on a measurement slowly enough the sensor/scale may not react to the small changes.  I've been able to put a huge powder load onto my digital scale just by doing it super slowly.  I learned to double check when I'm trickling powder up to a precise load, sometimes using a second scale as the checker.

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I'm not clear on the variations in load cells versus simpler crystal-based measurement tools and where they get used.  I know the latter can drift.  I have a lot of examples of load cells that are precise "forever" and don't drift in use.  The torque sensors on our ebikes, the water bottle that measures water in and out, etc.

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I haven't watched the video yet but I do like the split beam one I have (also have a couple clickers and beam style).  You don't have to turn the setting down when done.  

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I've never turned one down, and they don't seem to care.  I never release tension on any spring; guns, tools, whatever.  Doesn't seem to matter.  I've been assured that I will fuck up my bandsaw because I don't do it; still waiting after like 15-20 years.

 

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14 hours ago, SwampNut said:

I've never turned one down, and they don't seem to care.  I never release tension on any spring; guns, tools, whatever.  Doesn't seem to matter.  I've been assured that I will fuck up my bandsaw because I don't do it; still waiting after like 15-20 years.

 

I just follow the instructions just like not sticking my finger in an electric closing hatch.  🙂

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Posted (edited)

Yesterday was the first time I ever torqued a bolt with anti-seize on it.  Sway-bar mounting bolts (installed new rubber bushings).  The upper bolts don't have to be completely removed, so I didn't put anti-seize on those.  They torqued normally.  Now I understand why it wasn't hitting the setting on the lower bolts.😬  At least I didn't keep at it until the wrench clicked, but definitely over-torqued.

Wish they had also done that test with WD-40 and plain motor oil.

 

Am I the only one that is thinking I should use anti-seize on everything now, and just torque to half?  My old shoulder thinks that's a great idea.🤔

Edited by jon haney
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On 5/13/2024 at 6:12 AM, blackhawkxx said:

I just follow the instructions just like not sticking my finger in an electric closing hatch.  🙂

Carlos doesn't know it, but I sabotage his torque wrenches when I'm there.  If it's not at 0 I correct it.  Maybe a high quality torque wrench spring won't sag like their tester did, but I won't chance it.

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On 5/12/2024 at 3:16 PM, SwampNut said:

've never turned one down, and they don't seem to care.

You'd only know if you tested it.

 

 

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On 5/14/2024 at 6:45 AM, superhawk996 said:

You'd only know if you tested it.

 

 

+1 as in send it out for calibration. The Prime Air team that was building drones had theirs sent out every Friday for calibration....FAA and all....maybe Boeing should have been as methodical.

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My test was sufficient for needs outside of air/spacecraft.  I measured it a few months apart against the other torque wrench.  I know exactly how that can be problematic but was simply looking for repeatability/change and really don't care about ultimate precision.

 

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22 hours ago, SwampNut said:

My test was sufficient for needs outside of air/spacecraft.  I measured it a few months apart against the other torque wrench.  I know exactly how that can be problematic but was simply looking for repeatability/change and really don't care about ultimate precision.

 


 

I just changed the oil on Molly's Subaru Outback, (SOB) I wish I could find the Subaru Tech who touched it last… FUCKING COCK SUCKING MOTHER FUCKER. 🤬

 

He must have applied the oil fill cap with a specialty tool torqued to about 60 pounds. The OIL FILL CAP!! Who does that?? . After I carefully removed it with a wrench my buddy said, “I bet the oil tech got fucked in the ass for forgetting to put the oil cap on previously.”  Oddly, the Subaru cap appears to have slots for a speciality tool to be inserted for tightening…I’d never noticed that before. 
 

Next, when I tried to remove the oil drain plug with a 14mm socket and a 3/8’ ratchet wrench it wouldn’t budge. So, when I moved to a 1/2’ ratchet and it didn’t budge I began to become concerned. I pulled out the “Big Gun” the DeWalt 3/8’ cordless impact. The same tool I have pulled old, rusty bumper bolts with! Nada. Fucking reefed on.

 

‘’Out comes the DeWalt 1/2” cordless impact gun which I use for pulling wheel lug nuts. 


Well, the mother fucking oil drain plug busts loose, spins off, and I got hit with projectile oil vomit from the Subaru’s 45 degree exit drain plug. A fucking geyser which drenched my pants from the hip to the knee, and these were not my shop pants.

 

I was pretty infuriated as I hadn’t bothered to put on my mechanics coveralls as it was a one bolt job.

 

I decided to,change the oil on the SOB shortly after putting adjustable lower control arms on my buddy’s Jeep TJ. (The one we swapped Rubicon running gear into.)

 

So, the  point of this whole story…? I looked up the torque spec for a Subaru Outback oil drain plug and torqued that bitch to a perfect 25 foot pounds. 😀

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3 hours ago, TOXXIC said:

 


 

I just changed the oil on Molly's Subaru Outback, (SOB) I wish I could find the Subaru Tech who touched it last… FUCKING COCK SUCKING MOTHER FUCKER. 🤬

 

He must have applied the oil fill cap with a specialty tool torqued to about 60 pounds. The OIL FILL CAP!! Who does that?? . After I carefully removed it with a wrench my buddy said, “I bet the oil tech got fucked in the ass for forgetting to put the oil cap on previously.”  Oddly, the Subaru cap appears to have slots for a speciality tool to be inserted for tightening…I’d never noticed that before. 
 

Next, when I tried to remove the oil drain plug with a 14mm socket and a 3/8’ ratchet wrench it wouldn’t budge. So, when I moved to a 1/2’ ratchet and it didn’t budge I began to become concerned. I pulled out the “Big Gun” the DeWalt 3/8’ cordless impact. The same tool I have pulled old, rusty bumper bolts with! Nada. Fucking reefed on.

 

‘’Out comes the DeWalt 1/2” cordless impact gun which I use for pulling wheel lug nuts. 


Well, the mother fucking oil drain plug busts loose, spins off, and I got hit with projectile oil vomit from the Subaru’s 45 degree exit drain plug. A fucking geyser which drenched my pants from the hip to the knee, and these were not my shop pants.

 

I was pretty infuriated as I hadn’t bothered to put on my mechanics coveralls as it was a one bolt job.

 

I decided to,change the oil on the SOB shortly after putting adjustable lower control arms on my buddy’s Jeep TJ. (The one we swapped Rubicon running gear into.)

 

So, the  point of this whole story…? I looked up the torque spec for a Subaru Outback oil drain plug and torqued that bitch to a perfect 25 foot pounds. 😀

 

Poetry.

 

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4 hours ago, superhawk996 said:

The fill cap on some cars like to stick, but it seems likely that that one had been cranked down.  No story about the filter so I guess he didn't go crazy on that.


The oil filter was also super tight, fortunately I have an end cap oil filter removal  tool which I was able to bust it loose with. The nice thing about the Subaru is the filter is on top right next to the filler and the filter sits upside down. 

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9 hours ago, TOXXIC said:

 


 

I just changed the oil on Molly's Subaru Outback, (SOB) I wish I could find the Subaru Tech who touched it last… FUCKING COCK SUCKING MOTHER FUCKER. 🤬

 

He must have applied the oil fill cap with a specialty tool torqued to about 60 pounds. The OIL FILL CAP!! Who does that?? . After I carefully removed it with a wrench my buddy said, “I bet the oil tech got fucked in the ass for forgetting to put the oil cap on previously.”  Oddly, the Subaru cap appears to have slots for a speciality tool to be inserted for tightening…I’d never noticed that before. 
 

Next, when I tried to remove the oil drain plug with a 14mm socket and a 3/8’ ratchet wrench it wouldn’t budge. So, when I moved to a 1/2’ ratchet and it didn’t budge I began to become concerned. I pulled out the “Big Gun” the DeWalt 3/8’ cordless impact. The same tool I have pulled old, rusty bumper bolts with! Nada. Fucking reefed on.

 

‘’Out comes the DeWalt 1/2” cordless impact gun which I use for pulling wheel lug nuts. 


Well, the mother fucking oil drain plug busts loose, spins off, and I got hit with projectile oil vomit from the Subaru’s 45 degree exit drain plug. A fucking geyser which drenched my pants from the hip to the knee, and these were not my shop pants.

 

I was pretty infuriated as I hadn’t bothered to put on my mechanics coveralls as it was a one bolt job.

 

I decided to,change the oil on the SOB shortly after putting adjustable lower control arms on my buddy’s Jeep TJ. (The one we swapped Rubicon running gear into.)

 

So, the  point of this whole story…? I looked up the torque spec for a Subaru Outback oil drain plug and torqued that bitch to a perfect 25 foot pounds. 😀

I am glad for you that the oil plug threads survived the massive over torque.   As far as you pants, I just hate that.  You are just going to do one little thing and bam, something happens.   But at least you didn't have to crawl out from under the car 50 times as you tried different tools and drain the oil like the rest of us peons. 

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4 minutes ago, blackhawkxx said:

I am glad for you that the oil plug threads survived the massive over torque.   As far as you pants, I just hate that.  You are just going to do one little thing and bam, something happens.   But at least you didn't have to crawl out from under the car 50 times as you tried different tools and drain the oil like the rest of us peons. 

I should buy a new plug. The threads appeared unhappy. I agree, having the vehicle lift is a total game changer. Super grateful for the lift just wish I had one starting about 30 years ago.. The  lift is certainly a “friend magnet”. 🤣

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7 minutes ago, TOXXIC said:

I should buy a new plug. The threads appeared unhappy. I agree, having the vehicle lift is a total game changer. Super grateful for the lift just wish I had one starting about 30 years ago.. The  lift is certainly a “friend magnet”. 🤣

I should have said oil pan threads as that would have made a really bad day if they came out with the plug.

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