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The importance of quality drivers.

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by JackTheKnifeGuy, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. JackTheKnifeGuy

    JackTheKnifeGuy Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 12, 2017
    Ive heard of breaking keys inside of locks...
    Ive heard of torx drivers stripping screws...
    Ive even heard of screws stripping the torx themselves...

    but never..NEVER have I heard of breaking off a tort bit inside a screw.. :eek:

    Ive never posted in GBU before so im not sure what to label this so im just going with mixed.
    Mainly because its partially the companies fault for making a crappy driver,
    and Partially my fault for going with a cheap chinese torx set to begin with..

    I had plans to swap my Cold steel Talwar scales, creating an all blacked out Talwar. Unfortunately my torx set had other plans and BROKE OFF inside the screw... Guess im screwed....or torxed?:confused:

    Just a public announcement to remind people sometimes its better to get quality over quantity. Yeah these are cheap and readily available at most home depots. But its all fun and games until something like this happens.

    Just be careful.

    Mo2 and Dadpool like this.
  2. H0kieengineer

    H0kieengineer Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 24, 2017
    I have a set of Wiha drivers, non changeable tips, and love them. I have used them for over 2 years and even the #6 hasn’t bent or stripped anything out. They are about $25 on Amazon.
    BTGuy, OilMan and JackTheKnifeGuy like this.
  3. TRfromMT

    TRfromMT Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 4, 2016
    I have the same Husky drivers, and did the same thing. Got about a year's worth of use from it. Not bad for a budget tool.

    On the bright side, the softer bit never once stripped the head of any screw.
  4. ponykid


    Sep 14, 2015
    Hmm. now how to get that sucker out of there.

    Think carefully drilling it out is the answer? best to have a drill press and small bit and take it slow . chances are the screw will be damaged
  5. braillediver

    braillediver Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Oct 6, 2007
    Put the knife in the freezer? Maybe with luck it'll free the torx driver?
  6. RayseM

    RayseM Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 18, 2010
    :( ^ and maybe try a strong magnet and/or tap the knife, broken bit down, on a block of wood.
    Good luck with the extraction :thumbsup:

  7. Diemaker

    Diemaker KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Apr 28, 2017
    I would try picking it out with a pin or utility knife/razor blade tip first. Hopefully it's not stuck in there too tight.
  8. tiguy7

    tiguy7 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    AFAA8785-977F-48CE-BC63-31752344EFCB.jpeg If it broke while you were tightening the screw, try a left hand drill to break it loose. Conversely, if you broke the bit while loosening the screw, use a right hand drill to loosen the piece.
    I like the Rain.Z drivers with Wiha bits.
    Khromo and Llasi like this.

    SOLEIL Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Mar 20, 2006
    Husky tools from Lowes used to have a lifetime warranty, not sure if they still do. Wiha is my favorite and all I have used for the past 8 years.
  10. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    It is a little out of context but when I worked on high end automobiles for a living I used to break Torx bits all the time on the screws that held the hood (bonnet) to the hinges on Mercedes cars.
    Turns out the paint acted like epoxy on the threads and locked the screws really well.
    Finally, finally I learned to heat the screws with a heat gun. No prob.
    These were excellent Torx by the way; SnapOn or Mac
    Personally I would rather have a Torx bit that snaps off than one that is too soft and mushes or spirals. That way it is up to me how much torque I put into the fastener rather than having the bit give up before I am done hoiking on it.
  11. tiguy7

    tiguy7 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    67EEF4A7-500C-4700-B105-E98B91EC2766.jpeg Do you mean like this (Chapman bit). I would rather have it spiral than mess up the recess.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018
    ChazzyP likes this.
  12. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    Yes that's what I mean.
    Torx bits and REAL Torx screws are tough enough that there will be no messing up of the recess. Some of this sorry stuff they put on pocket knives on the other hand is sub par.
    One of the keys I have found for these tiny knife screws is to be doubly sure to have the correct size bit. Have a full set of sizes and start large and work down until one fits.

    Some of the rounded out screws I see here (miss labeled "stripped") comes from people not having a full set of sizes and using a bit that is too small.

    . . . no . . . real Torx screws which tend to be hardened and Parkerized won't round out they will break the bit first. Trust me I have really got after them and broken top shelf tools.

    One "secret" to not rounding out a low quality Torx, once you have the correct size, is to apply a boat load of downward force to hold the bit in the bottom of the screw.
    One of the best ways I have found to do that is with a socket "speeder" handle.

    The hood screws that occasionally broke I was using a socket wrench like this one in the second photo and still had tons of purchase on the screws. There was never any problem of rounding out the good quality Mercedes screws.

    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
    Khromo and eKretz like this.
  13. RayseM

    RayseM Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 18, 2010
    ^ Yes, but you need to clamp down your knife in order to get that solid downward pressure. You can't imagine until
    you've encountered one or 2 such resistant screws how much pressure it can take to break their hold. They are sooo little, after all :(

  14. ChazzyP

    ChazzyP Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Dec 27, 2014
    I got away with cheap Torx drivers for a couple years, but went over to WiHa after breaking a couple bits and mucking up a screw. I've got a set of WiHa's Precision Drivers (fixed), their insert bit set, their insert bit Torx Plus set, their specialty/misc insert bit set, and insert bit sets of both fractional and metric Allen keys, plus a number of quality bit-holder drivers.

    I did manage to break a WiHa T6 Torx insert bit off in a Hinderer HalfTrack body screw that was galled down wicked hard. Turns out Hinderer has gone to Torx Plus for at least some of their fasteners, I had no idea that was even a thing, and I broke off the bit using a lot of downward pressure and torque. At first I didn't even realize what happened, thinking I'd mucked up the screw, but noticed the end of the driver was irregular and discovered a thin, skewed piece of the bit lodged in the bottom of the recess.

    I wrote to WiHa CS and got a quick response wondering if the screw was Torx Plus (that's how I found out). I ordered a Torx Plus set and the very-nice CS lady sent me a complimentary replacement T6 bit.

    Anyway, I used a T-shaped pin, sometimes referred to as a dissection pin, to carefully dig the offending piece from the recess.

    It's hard to see in your pic, @JackTheKnifeGuy , but your screw with the busted bit in it kinda looks like a Torx Plus. Did your driver feel a bit sloppy in the screw? Regular Torx bits will fit into Torx Plus recesses somewhat loosely, but Torx Plus bits will not fit into regular Torx screws. Here's the two styles side-by-side.

  15. RayseM

    RayseM Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 18, 2010
    Excellent to know - I did not :( Thanks ChazzyP.

  16. Sonnydaze

    Sonnydaze Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 6, 2009
    ...lots of good stuff here...
  17. drail


    Feb 23, 2008
    Cheap tools are a disaster waiting to happen. So are most of the Torx screws and drivers on the market today.
  18. Goose 7279

    Goose 7279 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 22, 2015

    I too have the wiha set and they did the same thing honestly after that as long as the torx bits aren't super soft and rounding out the screw I don't care what brand for those type of drivers. The problem is people including manufacturers use a gallon of thread locker on a tiny screw that needs bigger head or square drive IMO. Resized_20180921_161727.jpeg Resized_20180921_161622.jpeg
  19. drail


    Feb 23, 2008
    Yup. There are so many guys out there who believe that any kind of threaded fastener needs to be torqued as hard as they can lean into it. Even a tiny little screw. I've worked with a lot of them. The look on their face when they twist the head off is priceless.
  20. H0kieengineer

    H0kieengineer Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 24, 2017
    I think it is an issue with the sets with interchangeable bits. My set came with 6 drivers that are fixed like a regular screw driver and have held up great, and I am a big fan of blue locktight

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