We often hear the question, "Which torque wrench is right for me? Should I buy a preset torque wrench or an adjustable torque wrench?"
The answer is simple. It depends on your torque application. If you are fastening the same torque value over and over again, then a preset wrench makes sense.
But what if you have 3 different torque values? For example, those torque values might be 38 ft-lbs, 47 ft-lbs, and 60 ft-lbs. Do I need three different preset torque wrenches?
Let's step away from the torque for a second and let's look at the application. How experienced is your workforce? Do you have a lot of staff turnover? Are the people new to assembly or are they experienced? This question is more important than you might think.
You are using a torque wrench to create consistent, repeatable results. You are trying to eliminate errors, not create them. Without a torque wrench, there is no way to tell how tight or loose a particular fastener may be.
ny time you allow some operators to change torque values, you increase the opportunity for errors. Human influence is the largest variable in any torque application. A torque wrench is repeatable. Humans? Not nearly as much. Humans have bad days. A torque wrench rarely has a bad day. A torque wrench rarely stays out too late at night or argues with a spouse and brings that emotional burden to work.
There are lots of highly professional, highly skilled assembly professionals who take their craft seriously. They can readily change from one torque value to the next without introducing errors. If your workforce has these kinds of individuals, then an adjustable torque wrench can be the right tool for the job. Or, you can select a digital torque wrench.
And, you can buy fewer wrenches. That also means fewer wrenches to calibrate each calibration cycle.
When you look at the torque specifications and your workforce, you can weigh all the factors and buy the right torque tools.