Useful and affordable little torque wrench

Brockrock

Member
Region
USA
I was doing a bit of maintenance on one of my bikes today, and I wanted to properly torque several of the little screws that I was putting back in, but the only torque wrenches I have are 3/8" and 1/2" drives, and their lowest settings are WAY above the torque specs on a lot of the little screws on a bike, and particularly an eBike. Long story short, involving a lot of online searching at places like Home Depot and Lowe's - with no same day results - I found a small 1/4" drive at Auto Zone which I will link below. It's rated 0-80 in/lbs (0-9 Nm) and ideal for a bicycle. The wrench is a deflection beam style torque wrench, and although maybe not as absolutely precise as a digital or 'click' tool for a lot more money, IMO, it's good enough, and it would certainly avoid over torquing some of the smaller fasteners. Probably the best part for me was that it was in stock, and now it's part of my kit..


https://www.autozone.com/wrenches-p...4in-drive-0-80-in-lb-torque-wrench/752621_0_0
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I use a torque wrench on the crank bolts, particularly with square taper bottom brackets. I don't really see the point of using one on most bolts or screws on a bike. I am always looking for an excuse to buy new tools though.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
That will work but it is way too big and bulky to carry on a bike. Check out this compact torque wrench (costs more but much more useful) set that you can easily pack on your bike:


ebc9bf8b-c7f1-40a4-b667-230cc8c110b9.jpg
 

RunForTheHills

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I don't think I would carry it on my bike, but that one looks tempting. I know people with carbon frames have to be careful, but most of my bikes are steel. Maybe all of them now. I gave my wife's old aluminum mountain bike to my son-in-law.
 

smorgasbord

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I didn't know they still made those old-fashioned analog beam torque wrenches anymore.
@Alaskan 's option is fine. You might also want to consider the Park ATD-1.2. It only supports 4, 4.5, 5, 5.5, or 6 Nm, but those are what you need for everything except wheels and some brakes. The bits store in the handle. It's more costly, but Park quality and the easy of adjustment and packability are superb.
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
While the use of excessive torque can particularly damaging to carbon fiber frames. Too little torque can result in bolts loosening up on any bike and could lead to a sudden and potentially dangerous loss of functionality on any bike. Likewise too much torque can result in component failure on any bike as well, carbon, alloy or steel. Many pay little heed to proper torque but doing so is rewarded by fewer problems.

 

Gionnirocket

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Y. O.
That will work but it is way too big and bulky to carry on a bike. Check out this compact torque wrench (costs more but much more useful) set that you can easily pack on your bike:


View attachment 86243
I've never had a need, nor would I ever want to carry a torque wrench on the road.
A simple snug by a light and simple wrench will get you home if you didn't torque things correctly from the start.
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
There exists another torque wrench thread somewhere on the site that has some good suggestions from not too long ago.
 

Brockrock

Member
Region
USA
As long as there are newbies coming on board who don't bother looking for the search function, there will be duplicate threads here. It's just the nature of things.
Sorry. Admittedly, I am new here on the forum, and I did not search for torque wrench threads, but I thought this tool was a good deal for the price and fairly useful for certain types of bike maintenance. I also don't think there was another option like it anywhere near me same day. I literally had it in hand 10 minutes after I found it online, and I'm sure that could be the case for others with such a need. I get it though, don't clutter up the forum..
 

Gionnirocket

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Y. O.
Sorry. Admittedly, I am new here on the forum, and I did not search for torque wrench threads, but I thought this tool was a good deal for the price and fairly useful for certain types of bike maintenance. I also don't think there was another option like it anywhere near me same day. I literally had it in hand 10 minutes after I found it online, and I'm sure that could be the case for others with such a need. I get it though, don't clutter up the forum..
Don't worry... They'll survive and it doesn't bother most.
 

Merle Nelson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
Glad you brought up the conversation Brockrock. I've thought about it but wanted to avoid spending what I assumed from a bit of looking would be $400 for a couple of torque wrenches. I'll see if I can find the other thread and link it in here.
 

Merle Nelson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA

This one appears to have the most posts. I don't see @reed scoot in either of those. Is there a better thread?
 

Alaskan

Well-Known Member
Sorry. Admittedly, I am new here on the forum, and I did not search for torque wrench threads, but I thought this tool was a good deal for the price and fairly useful for certain types of bike maintenance. I also don't think there was another option like it anywhere near me same day. I literally had it in hand 10 minutes after I found it online, and I'm sure that could be the case for others with such a need. I get it though, don't clutter up the forum..
No problem. My comment was not personally directed at you, but rather in response to the comment by Reed Scott. Stuff gets repeated quite often around here.
 

m@Robertson

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
I'm a big fan of using proper torque specs and a torque wrench. Most bike parts helpfully have the Nm spec written right on the side of the part and using the right tension usually means no loosening and no thread locker needed. And gadzooks if I had a dollar for every crankarm catastrophe where the square-taper bolt wasn't given proper love... I'd have my bar tab paid off.

I'll limit my comments in this thread to the beam wrench. I bought one not so long ago to see how it would work. Not really a fan. But in a pinch if it is the difference between saying "that oughtta do it" and knowing you are in the ballpark at least, its well worth the 25 bucks. If everyone used at least this the world would be a better place.
 

Brockrock

Member
Region
USA
I'm a big fan of using proper torque specs and a torque wrench. Most bike parts helpfully have the Nm spec written right on the side of the part and using the right tension usually means no loosening and no thread locker needed. And gadzooks if I had a dollar for every crankarm catastrophe where the square-taper bolt wasn't given proper love... I'd have my bar tab paid off.

I'll limit my comments in this thread to the beam wrench. I bought one not so long ago to see how it would work. Not really a fan. But in a pinch if it is the difference between saying "that oughtta do it" and knowing you are in the ballpark at least, its well worth the 25 bucks. If everyone used at least this the world would be a better place.
I come from an aviation maintenance background - as well as being a commercial pilot - and all but the simplest of fasteners on aircraft are torqued to spec - or should be. Also, this beam style wrench would never be used for aviation purposes, but rather, we used frequently calibrated digital and mechanical 'click' feedback style wrenches...and they all cost hundreds and hundreds of dollars along with frequent calibration fees.

I think I would trust a beam style wrench's accuracy a bit less as it related to the higher torque values of crank arms, cassettes, bottom brackets axle bolts..., but for the very low torque values that this little guy supports, I feel pretty confident that I'm within an acceptable range, and no batteries to replace after not using it for several months...👍... For the higher torque values, as mentioned in the initial post, I do have a full range of mechanical click feedback wrenches, and I enjoy the peace of mind knowing that the important things are installed correctly when I'm rolling at 35MPH + down that hill.

Now, if the wind would only die down a bit here in New England, comfortable riding could resume. I find that gusts of 40 + kts in the face along with the sand still on the roadways after a snowy winter...well, you get the picture..