Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench Makes Precision Fastening More Convenient
Torque wrenches have become a fundamental piece of general mechanics as well as maintenance and repair industries. They sometimes even see heavy use in automotive tool reviews when it comes to measuring torque. Such was the case for our last shootout, where we used the 85079 1/2″ Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench to measure the torque output in our best impact driver review article. Here’s what we learned about this Gearwrench Torque Wrench.
- Target Torque Alert gives an audible warning as you approach your torque target
- When you hit your torque target, the handle vibrates and an LED lights up
- 10 torque presets allow quick access for repeat fastening
- 5 torque measurements: ft-lbs, in-lbs, Nm, Kg-m, and Kg-cm
- 3 modes for measuring peak torque, angle, and peak angle
- Handle and housing are oil and solvent resistant
- You can inadvertently knock the battery cap loose
- 60-second auto-off can be annoying in heavy-use situations
It’s got to be pretty tough to mess up the ergonomics on what is essentially an overgrown ratcheting socket wrench. It’s also a challenge to drastically improve the ergonomics over what Gearwrench does while still making room for the batteries.
That said, Gearwrench makes sure that the whole process of measuring torque feels pretty comfortable and natural with their electronic torque wrench. It includes a rubberized handle that feels pretty good to work with. The handle and housing are oil and solvent resistant, so your greasy hands won’t have as much of an effect your grip.
We only have one complaint about the handle. With heavy use, it’s easy to accidentally twist the battery cap loose. Once we became more aware of what we were doing, we were able to avoid it. It’s a relatively minor thing.
We enjoy the flex head and reverse flip switch. The flex head allows us to get into awkward spaces than we can without it. The reverse switch lets us effectively measure the breakaway torque in addition to fastening.
Accuracy is such a huge part of what makes a torque wrench an asset to your shop. Unfortunately, because torque wrenches are more delicate tools than they look, accuracy can get thrown out of whack with as little effort as accidentally dropping it off the workbench.
That’s why we appreciate that Gearwrench houses this torque wrench in its own blow-molded hard case. When we’re not using it, the wisest course of action to keep store your torque wrench in its case to avoid any inadvertent “calibration adjustments”.
To measure the accuracy, we compared the Gearwrench torque wrench to another torque wrench that we knew was spot on. Out of the box, our Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench was calibrated accurately. What’s more, those accurate torque readings show up neatly on the handle’s digital readout.
Ease of Use
Another feature that we like here is the Target Torque Alert. The torque wrench gives you an audible warning as you approach your target torque. When you reach your target, the handle vibrates and an LED light alerts you. It really adds to the convenience factor.
Speaking of convenience, the Gearwrench torque wrench can be set to measure and read out in ft-lbs, in-lbs, Nm, Kg-m, and Kg-cm. Plus, it saves the last torque setting you used, which is kind of nice.
This Gearwrench torque wrench also comes with 10 torque setting presets that allow you to quickly move back and forth to measurements you use frequently. This saves quite a bit of time and hassle.
Because of its convenience features, robust build, and general usefulness around the shop, we feel that the 1/2″ Gearwrench Electronic Torque Wrench presents a solid value for Pros at $237.70. This is marginally more expensive than other 1/2″ electronic torque wrenches on the market, but the build quality and convenience features are there to justify the price. Plus, this has a flex head.
Anyone that does any kind of work on cars from changing lugnuts to working on engines and transmissions should have a torque wrench. With its accuracy, ease of use, convenient digital readout, and auditory alert system, the 1/2″ Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench stands out as a good option for filling that role in your shop.
Gearwrench 1/2″ Flex Head Torque Wrench Specs
- Model Number: Geearwrench 85079
- Overall Length: 25″
- Finish: Full Polish Chrome
- Material: Alloy Steel
- Drive Type: Flex
- Drive Tang Size: 1/2″
- Tooth Count: 72
- Head Width: 1.58″
- Head Thickness: 0.84″
- Min Torque: 25 ft-lbs
- Max Torque: 250 ft-lbs
- Alt Scale Increments: .1 nm, 1 in-lb
- Primary Scale Increments: .1 ft-lb
- Torque Accuracy (20-100% of Full Range): +/-2% Clockwise
- Weight: 4 lbs
- Meets or exceeds ASME B107.28M standards and specifications
- Price: $237.70