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Performance & Hotrod Business - April '15

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April 2015 n Performance & Hotrod Business n 47 placing a dot on the bolt head and observ- ing how far the bolt head is rotated, (for example, by 45 degrees, 90 degrees, etc.). This is a crude method, since it relies on your estimation of degree travel. An inexpensive tool that aids in angle tightening is a small degree wheel that is attached to a wrench. The wheel fea- tures degree increments and an adjustable needle to establish your zero mark and is observed as the bolt is rotated. The down- side is that this requires using your torque wrench for initial tightening, setting the torque wrench aside, grabbing a wrench that's equipped with the degree wheel and continuing to tighten, while carefully observing the travel. Another approach involves the use of a digital combination torque/angle wrench. This eliminates the need to switch tools in midstream. By pressing a button, you choose your torque format (foot-pounds or Nm) and your torque value (let's say 35 foot-pounds, for example). Once the selected torque value is approached, the tool begins to beep and/or LED lights illu- minate to let you know that you're getting close. Once the selected value is reached, the tool provides an audible alert, as well as the illumination of a final red light and a vibra- tion in the tool handle. (The types of alerts may vary among tool brands and models.) Once the bolt has been torqued, you simply press another button to switch to the angle mode, select the degree and con- tinue to tighten. The same alerts will take place during the angle-tightening phase. Depending on the tool model, you can even ratchet the tool during angle tight- ening without losing the angle reference (Snap-On's TechAngle wrench is an exam- ple of this). A number of leading precision tool makers now offer these digital wrenches, including Snap-on, Mac, and others. Granted, they're a bit pricey, but they work great, and eliminate the need to use multiple tools. If you're using performance aftermarket connecting rods and high-performance rod bolts, a torque-plus-angle approach will not be required. Mike Mavrigian has written thousands of technical articles over the past 30 years for a va- riety of automotive publications, in addition to writing nine au- tomotive technical books for four different pub- lishers. Mike also owns and operates Birchwood Automotive in Creston, Ohio, where he builds cus- tom engines, street rods and performs vehicle res- torations. Mike can be reached at 330-435-6347 or birchwdag@frontier.com. Birchwood's website is www.birchwoodautomotive.com. Cart L i nk ® g iv es acces s t o a l l! Se ll C o v e r c ra ft Prod u cts o n line, S e a m l e s sl y ! ® WORLD'S BEST CUSTOM CAR COVERS ® Free Service CartLink ® , powered by Covercraft Industries, Inc., is a seamless way for you to allow your web customers to look up any of Covercraft's vehicle-specifi c products and add them to their shopping cart without leaving your website. • We maintain your data so you always have the most up-to-date application information. • Seamless so your customer can get their pattern information and then add it to their shopping cart. Visit www.cartlink.net for more information on this FREE service! email: sales@covercraft.com • www.covercraft.com • 1-800-4-COVERS (426-8377)

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