We all (should) take plenty of care to use a torque wrench at home, but when a trail side repair becomes a necessity, that precaution often can’t be taken. Until now, anyway.

Or, rather, sometime soon. Birzman’s upcoming mini tool with integrated 5Nm torque gauge won’t be out till later this year, but it will provide the common tightness measurement for both 4 and 5 mm Allen keys. The measurement is built into a small thumb button that clicks when the desired torque is reached.

On the other end of the tool is a T25 and flathead screwdriver, giving you the basics, but only the two allen wrenches are tied to the torque button.

They’re shooting for August availability. I played with the prototype a bit and the click is easy to feel, but also easy to push beyond, so it’ll be important to slow down as things start getting tight if you’re very concerned with overtightening things. Basically, it looks like a good safeguard against massively overdoing things.

Two new mini pumps are on the way, currently code named Sheath (foreground) and Scope. The Sheath has a slide out hose with a removable Snap-It Apogee valve that doubles as a CO2 cartridge head. Just affix the head to your valve stem, then thread in the cartridge. Retail should be around $47.

The Scope has a fixed head that doesn’t remove, with no hose. Retail should be $29.

These will be ready around August, too.

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Cory Benson
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Cory Benson(@corybenson)
7 years ago

That tool is cool; a nice simple idea! I want one.

Ilya
Ilya
7 years ago

So this is how you are supposed to properly torque carbon seatpost on trail, but what people were using before?

Base
Base
7 years ago

@ Ilya,

I’ve always carried a http://ritcheylogic.com/frames/break-away-accessories/break-away-torque-key.html or http://www.bontrager.com/model/08370

Iff you headup the tube you can pull out the original bit, and use any stand sized bit in this tool.

Ritchey has now the http://ritcheylogic.com/6-bit-torque-key-4nm-or-5nm.html which does the same trick.

Clancy
Clancy
7 years ago

While in Tuscany two years ago, BMC happened to stay for three days in the small hotel I was in. They were doing a TTT camp prior to Worlds. I watched the team mech build up a frame, carbon everything, never used a torque wrench. When I asked him why no torque wrench, he just simply pointed to his hand.

You’ve either got to have little experience or be ham fisted to over torque. Usually the opposite is the issue. I took a cut off carbon steerer and an old stem and a digital read out torque wrench and wanted to see what it took to crack the steerer. I got to 14 Nm and the stem bolt stripped. Carbon steerer was fine. Certainly there are carbon parts that are more sensitive, but alloy stems/seatposts and aluminum frames, not so much.

John
John
7 years ago

@Clancy: So we just have to bring a BMC bike mechanic on every ride? 😉

James S
James S
7 years ago

Yeah, I think this is another one of those bike related wives’ tales that sounds sensible but doesn’t have much to back it up. Do carbon seatpost makers or carbon frame makers say not to use QR seatpost clamps? Because I have never seen a QR clamp with a torque reading on it. But don’t listen to me – I’m just a barbarian who builds wheels without measuring the spoke tension and rarely touch a torque wrench when assembling my fleet of bikes.

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

There are only three torque ratings you need. Gorilla, chimp, and monkey tight.

Clancy
Clancy
7 years ago

Don’t get me wrong, I use a torque wrench as well as a CDI clicker on every bike I build. With that said, I see 5 Nm stamped on every stem made these days, most coming from China. A 74 year old, very sage bike mechanic that I have tremendous respect for seldom uses a torque wrench. Another bike tech that I believe is an outstanding wrench uses a torque wrench on everything. I do believe the Birzman is very clever and will help a lot of people who may not be confident in their wrenching skills.

Andy
Andy
7 years ago

People who don’t believe in the use of a torque wrench are holding the industry back. But who needs a hammer when there are rocks, or a wrench when there are pliers…

CornerCanyonRider
CornerCanyonRider
7 years ago

@Base,

That Ritchey TorqueKey is great in theory, but mine broke after using it twice. No longer has the “breakaway” feature and can therefore be used to overtorque bolts. Not good. Maybe I just got a dud. Hopefully others had better luck.