hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Discuss items to help maintain, repair, beautify, or use on your beloved Elan here

Moderators: theelanman, dapinky, Dave Eds, Nige, DaveT, Sy V, Elanlover, muley, Enright, algirdas, nitroman, clemo, Specky, GeoffSmith

hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Tuga2112 » Sun 22.12.2019, 13:38

I have been keeping an eye out for years to find a set of ratcheting ring spanners with 6 point or HEX at the ring end.
the reason is pretty simple. 12 point rings will round nuts and bolts all the time. and unfortunately, there are many spots in the car where the socket wrenches will not reach, and in those situations any alternative i found is likely to round the head.

problem with my search is that it seems impossible to find a kit for a reasonable price in the UK. the only thing i found was this one on ebay from britols for a "modest" 150 quid
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Britool-Hallmark-12-Piece-Metric-Ratcheting-Hex-Wrench-Set-8-19mm-CERMSET12/230740263707

im not sure if i have been using the wrong name to refer to these for 5 years now, or if they are really close to impossible to find so..

can anyone help me out finding a similar kit for a more reasonable price ?
maybe even one of our american friends may be able to help ? ;-)
1991 elan se
1991 elan se project
91 MR2 Turbo (import) project
94 Celica GT4 (Import)
94 4Runner
98 Celica SR

too many projects. not enough sunny days :(
User avatar
Tuga2112
God
 
Posts: 1256
Joined: Fri 12.09.2014, 22:54
Location: Walsall

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Brit-Car-Nut » Sun 22.12.2019, 15:26

A "good quality" 12-point wrench should not be able to damage a bolt head or nut "fitting". Most often, I break the ratchet part long before I damage the "fitting"

Look in Amazon.com for TEKTON WRN76164
https://www.amazon.com/TEKTON-WRN76164-Flex-Head-Ratcheting-Wrench/dp/B01F512CB8

(For those in the US, switch the .co.uk back to .com)

This is a set of 8mm to 19mm flex head 6 point ratchet wrenches. That is 12 different sizes.
They also sell individual wrenches.

If you can get a ratcheting wrench on a fitting and it is too tight to easily break it loose, switch to a normal 6 point wrench to break it loose and then switch back to the ratchet. It doesn't hurt to have a set of LONG wrenches to help improve the torque ability of the wrench, but you can also use two combination wrenches together to add length to the first wrench (the one over the fitting). If you don't understand that, I can send a picture of how that works. That way, you can carry a smaller wrench kit with you and still have the extra torque capability to easily break loose a tight fitting.

I also love 1/4" drive socket sets since once the fitting is broken loose, they are less cumbersome than 3/8" kits. Granted, they won't work on 1 inch bolts, but up to 9/16" (14mm) they fit better in tight areas and don't tire your arms over time.

12-point wrenches are more common because they are easier to get settled on the bolt/nut as there are 12 positions available instead of 6 and thus require less rotating room to get it into position.

If you understand that the 12-point wrenches are almost always better, then there are a lot of "cheap sets" available either individually, in small sets or large sets in the US for reasonable prices. Like these:

https://www.harborfreight.com/metric-flex-head-combination-ratcheting-wrench-set-5-pc-60592.html

I have been a Snap-On junkie for over 50 years and have several tool boxs with thousands of dollars of tools but those cheap wrenches work just as good as the expensive ones IF YOU LEARN TO BREAK THE FITTING LOOSE FIRST.
Please contact me via eMail, not by PM
Lotus Manuals
Brit-Car-Nut
God
 
Posts: 4595
Joined: Tue 03.07.2007, 17:07
Location: Charlotte, NC USA

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Fredjohn » Sun 22.12.2019, 17:00

I tend to agree with BCN here. Crack loose the nut/bolt with an ordinary spanner - or socket if possible - (6 or 12 point) then use a ratchet spanner to finish removing it. Putting a such large force through a ratchet spanner to crack the nut may well break the ratchet itself.

If you can get a 6/12 point ratchet on, you'll get an ordinary spanner on, an ordinary spanner needs less space as ratchets are quite fat.

Another thing not mentioned is that cheaper ratchet spanners have less clicks per revolution. Listen and count as you turn the spanner. Cheap ones have only 8 or 12 maybe 16 clicks, the better ones more, which means you don't need to turn the spanner so much to get it to the next "grip" of the nut and turn it a bit.

eg 12 clicks is 30 degs per click, 36 clicks 10 degs per click. So when you are in a small space with little movement, the less you need to turn the spanner to get the next "grip", the better.

Another alternative might be to buy a flexible drive shaft for your socket set, 1/4, 3/8, 1/2 inch such as this, although this is probably a cheap 'n' nasty one.

Treat yourself for Xmas!!
La vie passe vite: vivez la avec elan(s).

Elan S4 DHC 1969
Elan SE turbo 1992
Evora 2010
MB CLK 320CDi 2007
Boardman Endurance SLR 9.4 disc carbon road bike
Swift Sundance Lifestyle 500
User avatar
Fredjohn
God
 
Posts: 1818
Joined: Tue 21.08.2012, 00:30
Location: Malvern, Worcs

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Tuga2112 » Sun 22.12.2019, 17:13

I dont know what kind of nuts you guys come across.
ordinary spanners have rounded far too many nuts in my experience.

a hex socket is the only tool i have used that has never ever rounded a nut in my experience. but when a hex socket cannot reach. thats when i need a 6 point ring spanner. ideally the ratcheting type.

12 point sockets, 12 point ring spanners, ordinary spanners, pliers, plunbers pliers, vice grips and brake line spanners all have at some point in the past rounded or started to round nuts in my experience.
1991 elan se
1991 elan se project
91 MR2 Turbo (import) project
94 Celica GT4 (Import)
94 4Runner
98 Celica SR

too many projects. not enough sunny days :(
User avatar
Tuga2112
God
 
Posts: 1256
Joined: Fri 12.09.2014, 22:54
Location: Walsall

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby dapinky » Sun 22.12.2019, 18:38

Maybe something like this, in conjunction with a 'normal' ratchet spanner set????
Dave

Just the one now, but this one's mine! - and it will be finished eventually.....

go on - click this link - you know you want to!
User avatar
dapinky
LEC Administrator
 
Posts: 8625
Joined: Sun 15.10.2006, 12:54
Location: As far west as you can get in West Wales before you become Irish (Pembroke Dock).

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Brit-Car-Nut » Sun 22.12.2019, 18:46

I guess my question is "what kind of nuts do you come across"? If someone before you tried to DIY a repair and used low grade hardware, then I understand ruining nuts and bolts. If not, maybe your process might need some modification... I don't think I HAVE EVER stripped the head off anything that was grade 5 or higher using a 12 point ring wrench.

For my entire driving age life, I have been buying and rebuilding MGs, TRs, TVRs and just about every other UK built cars for over 50 years. I have worked at dealerships and have owned/operated my own shops with several employed mechanics for years.

I currently have two M100s, three MGBs and two Pontiac Fiero GTs in and around the shop waiting to be finished / reassembled / taken apart. I started with a 100E Anglia when I was 14, so have been through the ranks.

I use wrenches which are usually open ended on one end and a ring socket type on the other. I rarely use the open ended portion until I have already broke it loose.

Using the open ended portion will most likely destroy 90% of any hardware you are trying to remove (or tighten).

Using decent graded hardware is also necessary. Buying/using anything less than a grade 5 will result in failure most of the time. They are meant to be "snugged", not tightened.

If it doesn't have any marking, it is worthless for auto repair.

If it is TIGHT, use a 6 point ring socket wrench to break it loose and then use the ratchet wrench to finish the job.

I have many thousands of dollars invested in my tool sets and have most every "shop tool" needed in a repair shop. I have everything from hand tools to a 5ton forklift. Drill presses, band saws, lathe, welders, plasma and far more than I want to remember. I only need to outsource special machine shop work, fabrication (I am a terrible welder although I have MIG, TIG and Plasma in the shop), and plating.

Although most is high-end tooling due to running a repair center for a long time, I still had a reasonable collection of hand tools when I started working on my projects. Like anything in life, it is always "cheaper" in the long run if you buy the best when you get any tools. I hate to even consider having to buy a replacement tool because I tried to save money. In the US, most DIY stores will rent quality tools if you run into a project that you can't justify buying the right tools so good specialty tools are available when needed without having to buy. If in needed it more than once, I usually found a way to buy my own.

I use Harbor Freight wrenches as often as I use the Snap-On wrenches and I don't mind loaning them since they can be replaced cheaply if they never return to my shop.

If it wasn't so expensive to ship everything to the UK, I would offer to get the wrenches for you and post them on to you.

Happy Holidays!
Please contact me via eMail, not by PM
Lotus Manuals
Brit-Car-Nut
God
 
Posts: 4595
Joined: Tue 03.07.2007, 17:07
Location: Charlotte, NC USA

Re: hex (6point) ratchet spanners

Postby Tuga2112 » Sun 22.12.2019, 19:35

i have come across all kinds of problems. but usually the issue is a combination of a rusty nut/bolt head that is also extremely tight by the previous owner or most likely their "down the road" mechanic, my 12 point ring spanners are fine, the issue is always the bolts/nuts that end up rounding.
specially when it comes to areas near rubber or other non-metals where heat is not an option

none of my cars have a history of being looked after by specialists (the elans being the only exception, and even then, no history in the most recent years before i got them) so, its really a situation of having to deal with crap everytime i need to do something in an area where i havent worked before.

for example, on the alpha spider. i found out the rear brakes were leaking . when i removed the rubber hoses from the calipers they were extremely tight, event tho they were leaking from the connection. it turned out the previous owner used connecting hoses with imperial thread pitch and forced them into the alfa OEM calipers cross threading the calipers. this is one of the examples were using the brake hose spanners didnt work, neither did the 12 point or open ended spanners. after cutting the rubber part out, a deep 6 point socket did clear out the hose connector.

most recently the issue i had was to disassemble a turbo. i had access to the bolt using a spanner but not using a socket. as soon as i started applying force to the bolt i could feel it giving in but it wasnt moving.
the end result was that i ended up taking apart the wastegate from the turbo in order to clear up enough space for a 6 point socket to fit, its not the end of the world. but im prety councious the more you mess with something the bigger are the chances of breaking something that is working.

i already have a set similar to the one BCN mentioned from harbour freight. mine is from a company called bluepoint which offers lifetime warranty. i also have the same set with non-flex heads, both are super usefull, today the set was starting to round the previously mentioned bolt reason why i had another browse for the 6 point ring spanners kits, which just like in previous times took me a good hour of googling to find an extremely expensive kit.

the other kit BCN linked from TEKTON looks very promising, i have no need for more open ended spanners so this fits the bill very nicely, its not only cheaper as well as having the advantage of taking up half the space the britool kit i saw would
1991 elan se
1991 elan se project
91 MR2 Turbo (import) project
94 Celica GT4 (Import)
94 4Runner
98 Celica SR

too many projects. not enough sunny days :(
User avatar
Tuga2112
God
 
Posts: 1256
Joined: Fri 12.09.2014, 22:54
Location: Walsall


Return to Tools

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron