There’s a lot of garage advice that gets handed down and repeated unquestioningly. Don’t put a battery on a bare concrete floor. Tire dressings help preserve the rubber in tires. Hex wrenches are better than 12-point box-end wrenches. To set the record straight on that latter bit of advice and on a number of other beliefs about commonly used tools, the Torque Test Channel – which normally focuses on power tools and as a result has developed a robust testing apparatus – recently started testing hand tools to their limits and recording the results. What we appreciate most of all is that the tester at the channel has an understanding of the technical specifications behind his tests, he tries to document everything as scientifically as possible, and he tries to gather as many examples of the tool in question to provide a fair and unbiased test.
He started off with a massive comparison of flare nut wrenches, often mistakenly blamed for the frustration that comes with rounding off those soft steel brake bleeders and other crucial nuts, then followed that up with a pliers-versus-wrench comparison and a hex-versus-12-point-versus-spline wrench comparison. Finally, he also waded into nuts and bolts with a look at exactly what separates the various grades of fasteners, focusing mostly on the ones we’re likely to encounter in automotive work but also throwing in a few more exotic grades. It appears these sorts of videos have proven popular, so we’d expect to see more hand-tool torture tests and comparisons from the channel in the future.