Torque wrench

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by verdugist, Oct 20, 2015.



Want to donate to imtbtrails?



  1. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    Mikie likes this.
  2. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    Unless you have a calibrated wrist you will never know. If you have lots of experience you can get close.

    Check Harbor Freight for a good price. Just remember to get it calibrated once a year and/or if it is dropped.
     
    Faust29, Mikie and verdugist like this.
  3. doublewide

    doublewide iMTB Rockstah

    Name:
    Mark
    Current Bike:
    Ride Life Ride Giant
    Or some common sense....but that can be pretty sparse these days.
     
    Luis, Cyclotourist, Faust29 and 3 others like this.
  4. BigTex

    BigTex Member

    Location:
    Ladera Ranch
    Name:
    Richard
    Current Bike:
    Pivot Les
    Harbor Freight. Or the torque keys that you can now find in any bike shop or online. Pre-configured to a single torque spec (and the ones that you're likely to need on a bike - 4, 5 or 6 Nm), they're simple and relatively cheap. And a lot cheaper than a new carbon seatpost or handlebar should you torque it incorrectly. Here's an example: http://www.jensonusa.com/Giant-Bikes-Tool-Shed-Torqkey
     
    Faust29, Mikie, UPSed and 1 other person like this.
  5. Redman

    Redman Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Cypress, Ca
    Name:
    Kevin
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Nomad CC 27.5
    Harbor Freight..... sure. just remember one thing, you get what you pay for. imo, NEVER BUY CALIBRATED EQUIPMENT FROM HARBOR FREIGHT.
     
    DangerDirtyD, Mikie and verdugist like this.
  6. rossage

    rossage iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    East Sacramento
    Name:
    Ross Lawson
    Current Bike:
    Highball
    Torque wrench is worth the price. I have never once had a fastener come loose or get stuck using a torque wrench.
    Make sure to grease or loctite the fastener as indicated.
     
    Varaxis, Mikie and verdugist like this.
  7. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    I'm not very familiar with Harbor Freight and it doesn't seem to be a bike-specific company so maybe more like Sears.

    I am worried about the calibration of any of these keys/wrenches. If they are off, you could easily over-tighten or under-tighten a bolt. And yes, if you have years of experience as a mechanic, then you may know with +/- 10% of 5 Nm applied but I'm very sure I won't.

    Also, the torque key was an interesting recommendation but I'm not sure if that would be as easy to use in terms of gaining leverage to "crank" compared to the wrenches.

    And I'm also thinking, at least in my specific case, where I only own one bike, and typically only replace tubes, tires, brake pads and don't typically do a lot of wrenching, that it may be easier/cheaper to have the LBS install the new rotors and brake system that is currently shipping. But I wanted to also learn how to do that.

    Do you guys check torque on bolts all over the bike every year? I bought this bike used and so far no major issues but I have no clue who/how they assembed this bike and with all the constant vibration esp. DH's... :cautious:
     
    Mikie likes this.
  8. Redman

    Redman Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Cypress, Ca
    Name:
    Kevin
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Nomad CC 27.5
    also, only use torque wrench to "torque". Do not use it to loosen. I have even read that you shouldn't even use the ratchet. that using the ratchet and or using to lossen can affect the accuracy/calibration. I own four different torques wrenches, all of them are ratchet style. And, I only use them to torque. Every year when my tools go into our calibration shop to be calibrated. They are always within spec.
    Use a normal wrench or ratchet to tighten, then the torque wrench to... torque.
     
  9. riiz

    riiz Member

    Location:
    Redlands, CA
    Name:
    Eric
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Heckler/Killmaleon
    I'm using a Craftsman inch-lbs wrench. Cheaper than a bike branded model and has a lifetime warranty. Also its cheaper to buy it online and pick it up than purchase in store, same with their hex sockets.
     
    Mikie and verdugist like this.
  10. Cyclotourist

    Cyclotourist iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Redlands
    Name:
    David
    Current Bike:
    Tallboy Upgrade
    I have a 5Nm one, and love it. One of my most used tools. I used to just wing it by feel, but with this tool, it's so easy to properly torque, I use it a lot.

    I also have a Craftsman inch/pound model like riiz suggests. Don't use it a whole lot as it's kind of a hassle.
     
    Mikie and verdugist like this.
  11. Rob S.

    Rob S. Member

    Location:
    La Habra, CA
    Name:
    Rob Skinner
    You really need very few tools that are "bike specific." And don't be deceived by the common misperception that a whiz-bang torque wrench will magically make you a top-notch mechanic. Nevertheless, it's a tool that can be useful, regardless of your skill level. Remember that a torque wrench is a delicate instrument, and if you treat it as such, it will last you a lifetime and remain accurate without recalibration. Store it in it's own box, or at least in a drawer in a good tool box. If it's a click-type, always back off the spring before putting it away. A beam style or dial type are more accurate, but neither are the best for what you'll be doing. Buy the clicker.

    Harbor Freight is a retailer of cheap Chinese tools. They have everything from junk that isn't worth the effort to carry home, to tools that are pretty darned good, and a great deal when you consider the price. My home shop is very well equipped, surely better than any mere bike shop, and I'm not ashamed to say that I have a variety of gadgets that came from Harbor Freight. Look them up online, and you'll find a location near you. If you get an online coupon, you'll come home with a reasonable torque wrench for under twenty bucks. Make sure to get one in the torque range you'll need.

    There's a lot to fastener longevity besides proper torque. A common cause of buggered up fasteners is worn tools. Allen wrenches become worn over time, resulting in rounded tips. These rounded tips will round out your screw heads, eventually stripping them if they're allowed to get too bad. Grind your wrenches to restore squareness, as needed. This could be the subject of another thread. I've already become too verbose.

    As someone else mentioned, NEVER assemble bike fasteners dry. Grease, butter, or KY Jelly are better than nothing, but not much better than nothing. Buy some proper anti-seize and use it on everything with threads.
     
  12. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    DangerDirtyD and Mikie like this.
  13. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    Mikie likes this.
  14. Obsidian

    Obsidian Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Costa Mesa
    Name:
    Obsidian
    Current Bike:
    2017 Intense Tracer
    This is the one I have. Was recommended by many on MTBR in a similar thread to this one.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00811WQT8

    It's OK. The main drawback is it is only marked in 2Nm increments so things like 3 & 5 are a bit of guesswork. Cheap and effective though.
     
    Mikie, verdugist and Faust29 like this.
  15. Mikie

    Mikie Admin/iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Lebec, California
    Name:
    Mikie Watson
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Hightower/Yeti 5C
    Mikie's opinion...
    If you are going to "wrench" on your mountain bike.... You need a torque wrench, period.
    Mountain bike parts are not heavily over engineered anymore. The world of guessing bolt tightness is gone.
    For example, steering stems have specific torque and can be deadly if under torqued to the point of loose, or over torqued and stripped. There are plenty of video's of handlebars coming off the bike in the hands of their rider and the forks falling off while in a jump.

    Or simply the grip on the fork tube so loose that the wheel goes left or right when you are intending on going straight, at speed.

    Question: Are you willing to put your health and potentially your life at risk, guessing you have your bike right? Not I...
    If you are going to work on your own bike, get a good torque wrench. There really is not much of a debate to exercise here.

    But, we can keep talking about it...cuz that is what Forums are for. :sneaky:
     
  16. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    That was the wake up call. Thanks for the heads up. I would hope that if I had the LBS install the coming XT brake system (with ICE tech rotors), that it would be safer than me attempting the same and that way I guess I wouldn't need a torque wrench. Although that job doesn't really seem overly complicated to me other than cutting the lines if they're too long.

    Now I'm worried that I have no clue who assembled my bike and what torque settings on the fasteners were applied, etc. But so far no major issues. I think at this point I got the point and there's no need to discuss this any further. Thanks all for the feedback, at least I know more now than before!
     
    Mikie likes this.
  17. Mikie

    Mikie Admin/iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    Lebec, California
    Name:
    Mikie Watson
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Hightower/Yeti 5C
    No worries!:thumbsup:
    You have two very simple options.
    Take your bike to a reputable bike shop and ask them to go through the bike to ensure all bolts are torqued to spec and to look for any safety issues.

    OR,

    Buy a torque wrench and download the specs from the manufacturer for every component on your bike and go through it yourself.
    It's really not anymore complicated than that. Easy to learn and do.
    Totally up to you my friend! :)
    Bike On!
     
    verdugist likes this.
  18. mtnbikej

    mtnbikej J-Zilla

    Location:
    Orange
    Name:
    J M
    Current Bike:
    SC Chameleon SS, SC Hightower
     
  19. riiz

    riiz Member

    Location:
    Redlands, CA
    Name:
    Eric
    Current Bike:
    Santa Cruz Heckler/Killmaleon
    That is too expensive, the Craftsman I use was only $55, plus the range of the Park is too low of a range for crankset installs or servicing suspension equipment or linkages.
     
    Mikie likes this.
  20. Obsidian

    Obsidian Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Costa Mesa
    Name:
    Obsidian
    Current Bike:
    2017 Intense Tracer
    Even people who do not do much of their own wrenching need one. I get my service at The Path and I don't think they even use torque wrenches at this point. I always check the torque after they work on my bike because it is usually too low, sometimes dramatically.

    I don't want to rip them too badly, but let's just say I will never again pick my bike up from them and go directly to the trail without checking the torque settings.
     
    DangerDirtyD, verdugist and Mikie like this.
  21. Varaxis

    Varaxis Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Perris
    Name:
    Dan Vu
    Current Bike:
    Yeti SB5c ('16 Yellow v1)
    I don't like those clicky torque wrenches since people seem to think that using one calibrates their arms eventually, and they tend to be handled carelessly (placed on any nearby surface when working with another tool) and get whacked out of calibration when they drop to the ground.

    I have a pair of beam torque wrenches, a 1/4" drive 1-7 Nm and a 3/8" drive 0-70 Nm. Can prob find them for $25 each. Doesn't need to be name brand. They're very robust and should last a lifetime. The main downside is their size and how you need to angle your head to get a reading, which isn't a problem on bikes. I also have no delusions of having a calibrated arm after using this, so I use it on everything. Like rossage, I don't get loose or stuck fastener using one.

    Wish I could find the video showing how many "mechanics" failed a test rig set up to see how many of them had their arm calibrated accurately enough to do 5 Nm.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XKIIKOM/?tag=imtbtrails-20

    Can't find a decent low cost 3/8" one that has a more bike friendly range (ex. cranks), but there's this one:

    http://www.craftsman.com/craftsman-3-8-in-dr-beam-style-torque-wrench/p-00932999000P
     
    Runs with Scissors and Mikie like this.
  22. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    I'm sorry but that's scary and totally messed up. I'm sure there are many shops that operate like this. :eek:

    This is a very helpful read: http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/torque-specifications-and-concepts

    This as well: https://wiki.ezvid.com/best-torque-wrenches

    Precision Instruments seems to be a highly regarded brand, made in USA and not cheap.
     
    Mikie likes this.
  23. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    So according to this: http://bicycletutor.com/torque-specifications/

    Disc mounting lockring (rotor to hub) Shimano® 40 Nm 350 in lbs

    Disc mounting bolts (6 M5 bolts) Shimano® 2~4 Nm 18~35 in lbs

    I guess it must be either or for one of the above. I mean it doesn't even give a precise Nm value, instead it's a range from 2~4 Nm which I guess means it depends on the exact rotor model, etc.

    It seems that if you're going to do a lot of wrenching, you need 2 different torque wrenches for multiple Nm ranges, and this is getting complicated and expensive. Those 3/4/5/6 Nm torque keys are not sufficient for all the jobs. :bang:
     
  24. gunga din

    gunga din Member

    Name:
    steve villmer
    pft works on most.as told to me when I asked a bike mechanic:)
     
  25. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    I'll be picking up a torque wrench...

    I had to replace the chain on my XTC, so I decided I'd remove the crankset, clean it up really well, grease as needed, and retorque. The plastic screw-in cap on the left crank was barely finger tight. I know that won't get torqued, but jeez. The pinch bolts didn't seem tight enough when I backed them out, but I won't know until I can torque them back in.

    With that little bit of putzing around, I think I'll be checking everything. It has been almost 1,300 miles.
     
    verdugist, Mikie and Faust29 like this.
  26. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    Mikie likes this.
  27. Runs with Scissors

    Runs with Scissors iMTB Hooligan

    Location:
    West Anaheim
    Name:
    Mark Whitaker
    Current Bike:
    2015 Giant XTC Advanced 1 29er
    Performance Bike has a torque wrench, 1-24 Nm range, twist adjust, on sale for $69. I just bought it. Works well as far as I know. I backed off and retorqued all fasteners on my MTB tonight. (I did NOT use the torque wrench to back off the fasteners, before any of you chastise me in that vein)

    And then went and pulled a WTF. I need remove the missing link again and reroute the chain so it doesn't chafe the retainer on the RD. D'oh!!!
     
    Mikie and pperrelle like this.
  28. pperrelle

    pperrelle Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Carlsbad
    Name:
    Paul
    Current Bike:
    Ibis Ripmo, Ripley V4 & DV9
    I think everyone who wrenches on their own bike has done that at least once. I did it on a derailleur replacement, but luckily caught it while the bike was still on the stand. I had a buddy that did a 35 mile ride with us like that after a chain swap. Definitely a d'oh moment when he got home and figured it out.

    Back to the torque wrench topic, I have 3 in my tool box. A dial indicator 1/2" inch pound wrench and 1/2" and 3/4" Craftsman foot pound wrenches mostly for wrenching on motorcycles.
     
    Mikie and Runs with Scissors like this.
  29. verdugist

    verdugist Member

    Location:
    glendale, ca
    Name:
    Akhmani Boon eleh Ak
    Current Bike:
    Diamondback Overdrive Comp
    So long story short, I installed the 180 ice tech on the front wheel and almost did likewise on rear except the last T25 head got stripped. :bang:

    I torqued to 4 Nm on the front torx, that Tekton seemed to work well, the guy in the YouTube install video had Tekton too.

    How do you remove a stripped torx T25? Don't tell me if I take the bike to LBS to get XTs installed they'll say I need a new wheel/rim... :(

    Ok I found this:

    Anybody tried this?
     
    Mikie and Redman like this.
  30. Rob S.

    Rob S. Member

    Location:
    La Habra, CA
    Name:
    Rob Skinner
    Torx fasteners don't just "get" stripped. Read my previous post about maintaining your tool bits. If your fastener is buggered, throw it out before it becomes a problem. But now there's an even bigger problem, so none of that matters at this point. Let's focus on fixing it.

    Can you loosen the fastener? Usually the fastener becomes rounded in one direction, so you might be able to loosen it. If not, then get out your Dremel tool with a cutoff wheel. Carefully cut a slot in the fastener head. Careful. Don't cut all the way through the head. Keep the slot perfectly square and perfectly straight. Now get a screwdriver that is in perfect condition, and loosen the damaged screw. Don't slip. You don't have a lot of tries before you bugger it up even worse.

    If it gets screwed up even worse, I'd put the whole wheel in the mill and drill it out with a left-hand drill. An EDM would cut it out, but you'd need to disassemble the wheel, first. There's no reason that you can't do it with the Dremel, if you're careful.
     
    Mikie, Redman, verdugist and 2 others like this.
Loading...



Want to donate to imtbtrails?