best sleeper torque wrench?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by photomike, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. photomike

    photomike Top-notch MoFo

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    Oddometer:
    54
    Location:
    The Great State of Texas
    Looking for a good qulaity, low-cost torque wrench to use on my Land Cruiser as well as the bike.

    I know that Snap On is really good and $$$. Anyone have any mid range quality torque wrenches that they have some experience with?

    Cheers,
    Mike
    #1
  2. pennswoodsed

    pennswoodsed lizards,bugs and me

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,022
    Location:
    Reading,Pa
    Every wrench/wretch/tech in my age bracket has the 1/2 snap on clicker that they blew out for $100 , mine has been used at least 15 times . There must be many good used ones out there. Snappie can check them on the trucks for calibration . I have seen threads on here ? that point towards Craftsman's being as accurate.
    Luck,Ed
    #2
  3. rustycager

    rustycager Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Oddometer:
    4,207
    Location:
    Southern Indiana
    Check out the USA made husky at home depot. It's a armstrong or apex rebanded. I've always been told a big 1/2" isn't accurate for small stuff so look at getting a 1/4" or 3/8" also.
    #3
  4. clintnz

    clintnz Trans-Global Chook Chaser

    Joined:
    May 17, 2004
    Oddometer:
    4,816
    Location:
    Rotoiti, North Is, New Zealand
    You'll have trouble finding one with enough range to do most fasteners on both a bike & a 'cruiser.

    I have a 40-200Nm Teng 1/2" & a 10-100Nm SP 3/8" that work good for mid range $.

    Cheers
    Clint
    #4
    Jack90210 likes this.
  5. k-moe

    k-moe Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2012
    Oddometer:
    6,530
    Location:
    44ยบ W
    E-Bay and garage sales are where you'll find the best deals on good tools.
    #5
  6. MotoChris521

    MotoChris521 expert apprentice

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,962
    Location:
    south west
    You really need three.

    3/8" inch pound
    3/8" foot pound
    1/2" foot pound

    Brand , yeah Snap-On are hard to beat , but $$$.
    But , i own a klr ,so it's Sears for me.
    #6
    cide1 likes this.
  7. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    6,844
    Location:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    the best deal for torque wrenches is ... you guessed it used Snap-on in like new condition. if it looks worst than excellent .. pass .. unless it's got a recent calibration sticker.

    exception is dial type Snap-on wrenches .. those are almost never out of calibration. most folks don't like dial type torque wrenches in favor of clickies. so dial types can be picked up cheap .. most times under $50 for 1/2 drive.

    always keep an eye out .. last 1/2 Snap-on clickie torque wrench was scored on a local gun forum for $95 shipped. it arrived in NEW condition in original case. looked unused just like this ..

    [​IMG]


    bonified tool nut here ... beam torque wrenches are typically more accurate than click types. part of problem is folks don't unwind their wrenches, so spring takes a set. always unwind after use, unless you've got an internal beam clicker.

    here's pics of different types of torque wrenches, including several 1/4 in drive in lb. one beam 0-120 in lb, one screwdriver style 2-36 in lb and clicker style 10-150in lb.

    Snap-on electronic torque meter to calibrate other wrenches and to document precise settings. with 1/4in, 3/8in and 1/2in torque sensors. which are sitting on Snap-on 1/2 dr beam 0-200ft lbs
    note the in oz setting on Snap-on electrotorque meter
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #7
    Lambo likes this.
  8. plodalong

    plodalong Now if we just.....

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Oddometer:
    808
    Location:
    griffith NSW
    trouble with the Break type torque wrenches is users tend to forget to back off the adjustment setting. If they're left with the adjustment wound up they quickly go out of calibration. In a previous job I checked the calibration of aircraft tools and even Snapon get out of calibration.

    The deflecting beam type stay in calibration unless they're really abused. Warren and Brown deflecting beam types were very good and reliable, Not cheap but if you want consistent accuracy I guess you have to pay for it. In my experiance most automotive mechanics dont use a torque wrench except for head bolts and the like. With age and experiance you get a feel for how tight things should be and can't say I've ever had a problem with over or under tightening hardware.

    Warren and Brown website http://www.warrenandbrown.com.au/precisiontools/news_details/255
    #8
    spokester and JimVonBaden like this.
  9. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    6,844
    Location:
    Tulsa, Oklahoma
    sounds like an excellent torque wrench .. but OP is looking for a deal on a low cost torque that's still quality. which eliminates new Snap-on .. but there's loads of used Snap-on torque that comes up at very reasonable prices.

    much rather spend say .. $125 for a used Snap-on beam type in like new condition vs a brand new mid priced torque wrench. would not even consider a used screw style torque wrench unless it's like new and/or have a recent calibration sticker.

    good point about remembering to unwinding screw type torque wrenches. otherwise calibration is quickly gone ..
    totally agree most experience mechanics only use torque wrenches on critical bolt/nuts like the LH crank nut to 133ft lb on KTM 200 I just did. had to use a Snap-on dial type 1/2 in torque wrench that works left handed.
    #9
  10. motu

    motu Loose Pre Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2001
    Oddometer:
    6,446
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #10
  11. tirebiter

    tirebiter Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 8, 2004
    Oddometer:
    499
    #11
    Gravels and REALGRAVEROBBER like this.
  12. mcma111

    mcma111 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Oddometer:
    17,324
    Location:
    San Francisco,Ca.
    Amazon.com has CDI torque wrenches for even better prices than ^
    #12
  13. 2speed

    2speed Puching adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Oddometer:
    936
    Location:
    State of Maximum Density
  14. HanShotFirst

    HanShotFirst Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    Oddometer:
    534
    This...

    I can't say how accurate these are, but I've never had ANY issues with anything I've ever torqued with my Harbor Freight torque wrench. Admittedly I don't use it often, a couple times a year for the past 20 years, but mine has been very good. So good that I went ahead and got a 3/8" when they came on sale; just for giggles.

    But if you're constantly working on stuff that's really critical, then a used Snap-On that's been verified to be accurate is the way to go. Professionals need professional grade tools, simple as that.

    The home hobbyist needs good tools, but doesn't always need the best.
    #14
  15. Langanobob

    Langanobob Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    373
    Location:
    Reno
    Are you sure about the Made in USA? I haven't seen a made in USA Husky tool since they became Home Depot's house brand. I hope you're right on this.
    #15
  16. rustycager

    rustycager Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2013
    Oddometer:
    4,207
    Location:
    Southern Indiana
    #16
  17. ttpete

    ttpete Rectum Non Bustibus Supporter

    Joined:
    May 13, 2009
    Oddometer:
    7,558
    Location:
    Dearborn, MI
    Sturtevant beam type wrenches are accurate and can be found used. I have several, from inch-lb to a big 300 ft-lb one.
    #17
    REALGRAVEROBBER likes this.
  18. B02S4

    B02S4 Aye

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,006
    I prefer beam torque wrenches & find the Craftsmen 3/8" & 1/2" wrenches to be decent value. They also have dual scales for ft/lbs & Nms.
    #18
  19. SHEP_5

    SHEP_5 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2014
    Oddometer:
    946
    Location:
    Western NY, somewhere between Buffalo & Rochester
    after some internet research and shopping around i bought this husky from home depot 3/8" drive and the 1/4" drive when i rebuilt my yamaha 350 motor, worked great
    and yes the 1/4 is made in USA i believe, i can double check but i dont think i would have got it if it wasnt.
    #19
  20. BossMaverick

    BossMaverick Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2012
    Oddometer:
    282
    That's what I use. I wouldn't say that I prefer them to a quality and calibrated clicky style torque wrenches, but the Craftsman beam wrenches are priced well and work well for my purposes.
    #20