Cyclingnews Awards: Torque Wrenches
By Tom Wieckowski
Our Torque Wrench award winners after months of testing and use
Before joining the Cyclingnews tech team I ran a repair workshop for five years and had worked in bike shops prior to this. This means, all things considered, I've spent a decent chunk of time with a torque wrench in my hand. Working on bikes these days at home or in a shop, means you're going to need to use a torque wrench to torque the various bolts and fasteners on them to the manufacturer's specifications.
Having picked up a torque wrench most days for the last few years I was well placed to overhaul of our best bike torque wrenches buyers guide this year. The project also allowed me to explore the topic of torque a little more, and comparing best torque practices between mechanics from other industries threw up some interesting ideas and comparisons, as did getting some questions on torque answered by some of the industry's biggest manufacturers themselves.
Yes, as long as a torque wrench functions and adheres to the relevant accuracy standards etc. it will work just fine, but using the nicest or best quality tools you can on your own or your customers' bikes may just pay off in the long run. Plus, who doesn't like flash tools? I tested a range of torque wrenches on my own and friends' bikes, and carried out a range of different service jobs and checks as If I was servicing a bike or carrying a torque wrench to use on the road. During testing, I have considered factors like price, accuracy, design, ease of recalibration, useability and in-hand feel when testing to help me arrive at my conclusions. All of this work has hopefully left me in a decent position to tell you about our winners and explain my picks.
Best Overall: Effetto Mariposa Giustaforza 2-16 Pro
Best overall torque wrench winner
Torque Range : 2-16Nm
Length : 170mm
Head size: 1/4"
ISO Standard : UNI ISO 6789:2017
Weight : 200g
REASONS TO BUY
+Accurate and precise
+Length and weight feel perfect in use
+Loud torque 'click off'
REASONS TO AVOID
-Does carry a high retail price
Until the buyer's guide work I did this year I hadn't had the opportunity to use an Effetto Mariposa torque wrench, though they look to be a popular choice for mechanics worldwide. I was recently in a small bike shop in Italy, and one of the first things I spotted sitting there on the workbench was a Giustaforza.
There is a range of torque wrenches in the Effetto range, but the 2-16Nm rating the Giustaforza 2-16 Pro carries is geared toward smaller bolts and is perfect for things like handlebar and stem bolts etc. The Giustaforza 2-16 Pro gets the best overall award for me, the quality construction means everything just feels really quite nice and it has quickly become my go-to torque wrench to use.
The Giustaforza is accurate and is manufactured and calibrated in accordance with the most up-to-date UNI ISO 6789:2017 standard. Accuracy credentials out of the way, there are a few factors that make the tool a joy to use. The weight, length and diameter of the body contribute to a fantastic feel in use. I think this is the crux of why I like it so much; it just feels brilliant in your hand. The knurling on the aluminium body provides a solid amount of grip, and there's a reversible head, but my favourite is the loud 'click off' when the desired torque is reached which is more clear and audible than any other torque wrench I have used.