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clicker torque wrench... any good?


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13 replies to this topic

#1 brus brother

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 10:05 PM

Just saw Harbor Freight selling a 1/2" cicker torque wrench for $13.00. Has anyone used these and can comment on accuracy and durability? Would you trust it to torque a head with one of these?

#2 nipper

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 10:24 PM

Yes they are very good, but the ones from harbor freight i wouldnt trust. in tools you get what you pay for.


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#3 tcspeer

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 10:31 PM

I use Harbor Freight torque wrenches, they are not the most expensive, but they are better than not having anything. I would trust them to torque a head.

Just saw Harbor Freight selling a 1/2" cicker torque wrench for $13.00. Has anyone used these and can comment on accuracy and durability? Would you trust it to torque a head with one of these?



#4 shimonmor

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 11:19 PM

Just saw Harbor Freight selling a 1/2" cicker torque wrench for $13.00. Has anyone used these and can comment on accuracy and durability? Would you trust it to torque a head with one of these?


I wouldn't use it on a head. But that's me. It may be accurate out of the box within 10% but I bet it won't last. Only way to be sure is to have it calibrated once in a while but that would cost more than original wrench. You don't always get what you pay for but I would bet in this case you do. Either spend more $$$ and get a good one or rent/borrow one that is of higher quality or has been calibrated.

I have a variety of torque wrenches from 1/4" to 3/4" from Snap-On, Matco, SK & Craftsman and have had them calibrated (my work pays for calibration) and the Snap-On torque wrenches are consistently accurate while the others get out of cal. Of course the Snap-On wrenches are very pricey.

#5 Setright

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 11:44 PM

"It is not always true that you get what you pay for, but unless you pay for it, you certainly do not get it."

The eloquent Leonard Setright in CAR Magazine, April 1990




(I stole his name for my tag/alias)

#6 Smpol19

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Posted 28 June 2006 - 11:54 PM

I've got one, had it for a little over a year. It feels like it's about right. Also has a life time warranty, knowing the people that work at the Harbor Freight near me (Woodbridge, VA) I'm pretty sure if it ever seemed off or i just wanted a new one I could tell them it wasn't accurate and they'd hand me a new one. On the other hand if I had something that required real precision I would probably bump up to a Husky or Craftsman.

#7 brus brother

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 02:38 AM

Well then, does it make a substantial Woofa Woofa Woofa Woofa sound when you hurl it across the room in disgust?

#8 ccrinc

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 09:15 AM

Well then, does it make a substantial Woofa Woofa Woofa Woofa sound when you hurl it across the room in disgust?


:clap: :lol:

Naw, you probably have to pay extra for that too!

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#9 nipper

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 10:11 AM

Well then, does it make a substantial Woofa Woofa Woofa Woofa sound when you hurl it across the room in disgust?


but they are cheap enough to watch hit the wal and self destruct ... can be god therapy, buy a few of them.:banana:
hahaha lifetime warrenty, thats assuming they have them in stock.

nipper

#10 NorthWet

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 11:05 AM

I am reasonably happy with mine. I had an S/K for 20+ years, until it broke internally, and then I needed something quickly and cheaply. (Torque wrenches don't break in the tool box but usually in the middle of something that shouldn't be interrupted.) If nothing else, it makes a wonderful breaker bar, and cheaper than most BBs.

#11 a97obw

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Posted 29 June 2006 - 01:31 PM

Yes and yes. When I replaced the head gaskets and everything else on my 97 Outback this past February, I used both the 1/2 inch drive ft. lb. and 1/4 inch drive inch lb. torque wrenches that like you say were $13-$25 at Harbor Freight. (compared to much more expensive torque wrenches you could buy 4 or 5 of them and have redundancy in your measurements)

With regard to torquing the heads, +/- even 10% isn't going to matter, because the actual torque setting is merely a "starting point" for which you are then going to follow the procedure of tightening/loosening the head bolts by X degrees of rotation to achieve the final "torque".

Now, what I would do is test the torque setting each time you change it on some benign bolt or wheel lug. If you set it for say 40 ft. lbs and then try it on a wheel lug and you lift the car, something is not right! As for the small inch lb. wrench, a good "benign" bolt would be the ones at the top radiator support in the chassis of the car.

7500+/- trouble free miles on the Outback so far since the repairs.

#12 mnwolftrack

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Posted 17 September 2007 - 04:26 PM

Interesting read. I have a regular 1/2" drive ft lbs torque wrench, but I noticed in my Haynes manual that the head bolt torque procedure I will need to be doing later this week calls for inch lbs. I was thinking of checking out Northern Tool or Sears. I don't want to be spending a lot of money on this, becuase this is the first time I've ever needed to use one. Head bolts are about the most critical thing to torque on a car, but I'm used to it always being a ft lbs unit.

#13 cookie

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Posted 17 September 2007 - 04:40 PM

As mentioned before on Subaru head bolts a torque wrench does not matter much.
I picked up a Craftsman on sale for cheap and use that for most stuff. I do have a number of things from Harbor Freight and the quality is not that great but for a home user they do the job. Better any torque wrench than none. You can always test them by tightening a bolt to a spec in the vise. Then you test it against another known good wrench. Much better to do it on a liner scale but this can work for home use.

#14 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 17 September 2007 - 07:02 PM

I've done a dozen or more HG's with my $10 HF wrench - never had one blow yet.

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