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Thread: Torque Tools?

  1. #1
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    Torque Tools?

    Do you really use torque requirements ?

    I'm considering getting some type of torque screw driver for panel boards ( or even devices ) and torque wrench for 1/4 " sockets for panels and meter pans...

    any suggestions?

    I tried one years ago on a meter and it didn't seem like the bolts were tight.. Also did some rework in massive switch gear (union) years ago......... torqued to spec then told to tighten things up more any way ???

    Waste of money these tools ??
    " I'm at a crucial part of my painting "...........Monika Danneman

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ritelec View Post
    Do you really use torque requirements ?

    I'm considering getting some type of torque screw driver for panel boards ( or even devices ) and torque wrench for 1/4 " sockets for panels and meter pans...

    any suggestions?

    I tried one years ago on a meter and it didn't seem like the bolts were tight.. Also did some rework in massive switch gear (union) years ago......... torqued to spec then told to tighten things up more any way ???

    Waste of money these tools ??
    Torque values marked on some meter sockets is less then what most people will typically apply if not using a torque wrench.

    Years ago I was making connections in a meter socket - POCO guy watched me land and torque load side conductors. He then said he could to the supply side, and that I should go connect my panel.

    He then overtightened one and broke the lug

    If he wouldn't have done that we would have been energized that day - instead he had to come up with replacement and come back the next day.

    That same particular socket has a little different design today and looks like it can probably take more torque - but IIRC still has about same value listed on the information label as it always did.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

  3. #3
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    There are good reasons for torque specs being provided, we always use calibrated torque wrenches on our connections followed by a mark across the bolt in the techs assigned color sharpie.

  4. #4
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    Meter sockets are generally junk. We've used a torque wrench when tightening them for 20 years ever since my brother broke one with a Spintite on a service upgrade on a Saturday afternoon.

    For CB's in a panel I like Whia torque screwdrivers.
    Rob

    Moderator

    All responses based on the 2014 NEC unless otherwise noted

  5. #5
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    this exact topic was discussed not too long ago, many posted the tools suggested, search for it.

    with small torq specs, unless the threads are properly lubricated you'll be in that ±50% range when torq'ing. the crude rough cut un-finished threads used on most electrical stuff simply does not allow for accurately torq'ing w/o the threads being lubricated in some way. i have seen the full spectrum after torq'ing and come back later with a std hand driver, some would seem to be really too tight, others would seem to be "loose".

    too loose can be just as bad as too tight and vice-versa.

    the best you get is, "i torq'd it to spec using my XYZ tool, so that cant be the reason why the place burned down".

    surely for some nuts/bolts, the hardware is good and perhaps does not need lubrication and torq'ing it does yield good repeatable results, etc.

  6. #6
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    I remember reading a good piece on torque wrenches, maybe it was in machinery's handbook. Basically, and along the same lines as FionaZuppa mentioned, tensioning fasteners by torque is not very accurate due to many factors such as non standard tolerances, , thread classes, surface finish, and lubrication .
    Ethan Brush - East West Electric. NY, WA. MA

    "You can't generalize"

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by FionaZuppa View Post
    this exact topic was discussed not too long ago, many posted the tools suggested, search for it.

    with small torq specs, unless the threads are properly lubricated you'll be in that ±50% range when torq'ing. the crude rough cut un-finished threads used on most electrical stuff simply does not allow for accurately torq'ing w/o the threads being lubricated in some way. i have seen the full spectrum after torq'ing and come back later with a std hand driver, some would seem to be really too tight, others would seem to be "loose".

    too loose can be just as bad as too tight and vice-versa.

    the best you get is, "i torq'd it to spec using my XYZ tool, so that cant be the reason why the place burned down".

    surely for some nuts/bolts, the hardware is good and perhaps does not need lubrication and torq'ing it does yield good repeatable results, etc.
    I think the only two situations where we would toque things up were pressure mounted semiconductors (hockey puck) and bus bars with high tensile bolts.
    And yes, lubrication can make a significant difference.

    Well, not quite the only circumstances. The all alloy engine of one of the cars I had needed the cylinder head bolts to be torqued or risk thread stripping. But that's an entirely different area......
    Si hoc legere scis nimium eruditionis habes.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ritelec View Post
    Do you really use torque requirements ?

    I'm considering getting some type of torque screw driver for panel boards ( or even devices ) and torque wrench for 1/4 " sockets for panels and meter pans...

    any suggestions?

    I tried one years ago on a meter and it didn't seem like the bolts were tight.. Also did some rework in massive switch gear (union) years ago......... torqued to spec then told to tighten things up more any way ???

    Waste of money these tools ??
    Never use them on resi work, only large switch gear, etc.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FionaZuppa View Post
    this exact topic was discussed not too long ago, many posted the tools suggested, search for it.

    with small torq specs, unless the threads are properly lubricated you'll be in that ±50% range when torq'ing. the crude rough cut un-finished threads used on most electrical stuff simply does not allow for accurately torq'ing w/o the threads being lubricated in some way. i have seen the full spectrum after torq'ing and come back later with a std hand driver, some would seem to be really too tight, others would seem to be "loose".

    too loose can be just as bad as too tight and vice-versa.

    the best you get is, "i torq'd it to spec using my XYZ tool, so that cant be the reason why the place burned down".

    surely for some nuts/bolts, the hardware is good and perhaps does not need lubrication and torq'ing it does yield good repeatable results, etc.
    is this of what you speak? or probably one of many... ? http://forums.mikeholt.com/showthrea...ight=torqueing

    Reading here and there it seams like it's not to reliable.. do manufactures say to lube it before torquing.probably not. so that could be considered wrong I think..??? Is the wrench or screw driver calibrated? Does temperature have anything to do with it... seams all not quite definite..... but I used a torque smh

    I don't know... tight is tight ...stripped is stripped....... broke is broke........
    " I'm at a crucial part of my painting "...........Monika Danneman

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ritelec View Post
    is this of what you speak? or probably one of many... ? http://forums.mikeholt.com/showthrea...ight=torqueing

    Reading here and there it seams like it's not to reliable.. do manufactures say to lube it before torquing.probably not. so that could be considered wrong I think..??? Is the wrench or screw driver calibrated? Does temperature have anything to do with it... seams all not quite definite..... but I used a torque smh

    I don't know... tight is tight ...stripped is stripped....... broke is broke........
    I agree. Just landed conductors on 200 amp main yesterday in the reasonably warm (seemed hot because only a few weeks ago we still were dealing with winter conditions) weather and it seemed to take a lot more turns of the socket to reach proper torque then it did for essentially the same connection in same equipment a few weeks ago. Makes you wonder which one is truly the better connection.
    I live for today, I'm just a day behind.

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