<VV> Torque Values

Smitty Smith vairologist at verizon.net
Sat Oct 10 15:40:19 EDT 2009

Smitty Says;  One of the most eye opening events concerning torque occured many years ago.  I was running a Naval Air Strutural repair shop.  The Quality Assurance Division was on a Navy backed campaign to increase the use of torque wrenches.  They came into my shop and asked me to muster all personel.  They had a set of various size bolts threaded into a piece of boiler plate which they clamped in a vise.  Then starting with the most senior mechanics, they had them tighten all the bolts with their choice of wrenches to their estimated proper value.  They checked the torque of the bolts and recorded the results.  By the time they got down to the most junior Airman they had lots of data.  They provided me with a copy.  Believe me guys, if you think you are even getting close to proper torque on your bolts without a torque wrench then you are s**ttin yourself.
I agree airplans are more critical than cars.  I also agree that over a period of years an old guy can approch the breaking strength of a bolt without breaking it.  But proper torque to insure maximum distribution of load and sufficient clamping strength?  Nope.  It's just a matter of "good enough" and "right".
Having said all this, Do I use torque wrenches.  Sure, where I know it is vital.  Rods and mains, flywheel hub, engine end castings and block cover and many places like that.  Where I consider things to be less crtitical, I do like the rest of you.  But I am the old guy now. 

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