Whats your take on pre set torque wrenches?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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NGMN
Posts: 1536
Joined: Mon May 30, 2005 7:13 am

by NGMN

It seems a good amount of the damaged products we see on this site are from people using the pre-set torque wrenches. I'm guessing part of the problem is that most products have a "max torque" equal to that of the wrench setting which results in damage either as a result of slightly off wrench settings or user error.

Maybe all of these torque wrenches should be 1nm lower and if a person still has slipping they take it to the pros at their LBS.

by Weenie


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rmerka
Posts: 618
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Location: Austin, TX

by rmerka

I never use them on carbon parts. Only my trusty adjustable Park ones. I do use the preset ones on things like cleats on my shoes though.

gospastic
Posts: 266
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Location: Chicago

by gospastic

I used a pre-set Ritchey torque-key on the only carbon bars I've ever crushed.

FIJIGabe
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by FIJIGabe

I use the Bontrager one. I figure that if I'm using their part, and I have a problem with it, Trek won't be able to argue that I was using a third-party part.
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em3
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by em3

NGMN wrote:It seems a good amount of the damaged products we see on this site are from people using the pre-set torque wrenches. I'm guessing part of the problem is that most products have a "max torque" equal to that of the wrench setting which results in damage either as a result of slightly off wrench settings or user error.


+1....many (perhaps most) people do not realize that the MAX torque specification stamped on stems, seatpost clamps and other parts, is NOT the recommended torque spec. More importantly, I suspect that most people do not realize that the MAX torque spec has nothing to do do with torque needed to mate the parts being installed (e.g. torque needed for stem plate to hold handlebars), it is instead the MAX torque rating for the BOLT, not the part. The APPROPRIATE torque for installing/mating parts is simply the minimum amount of torque needed to affix the mated parts, without going over the MAX torque rating of the bolts. If you reach the MAX torque and the parts are still not securely fixed then its a no-go.

When I hear people using Ritchey and other pre-set wrenches to install carbon bars, ham-fistedly and carelessly torquing bolts up to the rated 5 Nm on the wrench, I cringe...a four bolt stem plate will seldom need more then 3.5 - 4 Nm per bolt to fix the handlebars securely.

EM3
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savechief
Posts: 302
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 2:36 am

by savechief

I love my Wiha 2-8 N-m torque screwdriver.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B002R0EI2 ... 10&pi=SL75" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I typically use 3.5 N-m (max, sometimes 3.0) for all stem-to-steerer, stem-to-handlebar and seatpost clamp bolts, and I've never experienced any slippage.
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vwo05
Posts: 38
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 7:39 pm

by vwo05

Don't have a take on pre-set torque wrenches but I have an adjustable torque wrench from Nashbar. I took it to the calibration lab at my work and tested it on the torque analyzer. Everything tested within our acceptable specs.

shadwell
Posts: 575
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:25 am
Location: Gold Coast Australia

by shadwell

I use one of these.

http://tohnichi.com/products/preset-tor ... h-BQSP.asp

Sadly many instances of damage are also likely from people using thier adjustable / preset torque keys incorrectly....
There is certainly a skill to tightening correctly and accurately, that same site has some information on it for those interested....

Have only ever had 1 bolt fail and that was well before target (not max) torque was reached on the bike... defective fasteners do exist.
Still a total prick to retrieve the threaded shaft from the part... makes you all the more careful....

thisisatest
Shop Owner
Posts: 1980
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Location: NoVA/DC

by thisisatest

Most items say 5nm, so I stock the CDi preset torque keys at 4nm. They are similar to Ritchey Torkeys, but much nicer to your hands. And if you try to keep turning it after the click, it clicks again, and again, and again, making it impossible to go over the set torque. We even use them in the shop and sales counter for quick seatpost height changes, stem swaps, etc. when the PB Swiss adjustable torque handle may be out of reach.

topflightpro
Posts: 800
Joined: Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:35 am

by topflightpro

I keep a Ritchey torque key in my race toolbox. It's fairly convenient if I need to adjust something on the fly. I don't, however, rely on it for normal wrenching.

by Weenie


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euan
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Joined: Sat Sep 05, 2009 11:20 am

by euan

Much like speed limits people see the max torque spec and use it as a minimum and a goal to reach
"Step forward the climber and all those who worship at the altar of lightness" - R. Millar

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