What is Torque? NTM’s Director of Engineering Explains

Torque is vital for the safe and optimal operation of your New Tech Machinery machine. However, there are dangers with improper torquing of your fasteners on your machine. Knowing what torque is could save you time on a job site. Learn what you need to know about torque.

New Tech Machinery’s Director of Engineering, Patrick Foley, explains the basics of torque, what tools to use, and practical uses for torque.


I’m Patrick Foley, Director of Engineering with New Tech Machinery. And we’re here to talk about all things to torque.

I appreciate you guys taking a moment to learn about torque today.

Torque is actually twisting forces.

So we’ve got a force that you’re applying over a specific distance resulting in in-lbs or ft-lbs.

And that rotational force is actually what tightens your nut or bolt to the proper specification because the purpose of a fastener is to hold things together and you want to make sure that you have proper tension on the fastener so that it holds everything in place without exceeding the strength of the fastener or the material that it’s screwed into.

It’s important to have proper torque for your fasteners, be it a small bolt or a large bolt.

There’s a lot of different torque wrenches, torque measuring devices, and torque limiting devices that help you achieve your goals for the fastener.

And remember, if you have a longer wrench, you apply less force to get the same amount of torque.

On a really stubby wrench to get 20 ft-lbs of torque. You’ve got three inches to do that. So that would be 80 lbs of force to try to rotate this small wrench.

Versus a 1′ wrench. You would rotate it with 20 ft-lbs of force over 1′ to get your 20 lbs of torque.

And, of course, you can go to a longer wrench. And it’s only 10 lbs of force to get 20 ft-lbs of torque.

There’s a lot of different options for measuring torque.

One of the options is a beam torque wrench. And what happens here is as you’re you have a twisting force on the wrench, it deflects the beam and you can read the torque that you’re you have at that second.

And you have a click type, which is really nice because you can just turn it to the desired torque setting and then apply it to the fastener, and you’ll hear an audible click when you reach that torque limit.

Another option is becoming more and more cost-effective digital torque measuring device.

So what this is doing is measuring the force between the nut and the wrench that’s applying the force and you get a readout here, you can even get an audible beep when you reach your desired torque limit.

Dangers of improper torque can be the bolt or nut comes apart, and this could happen while you’re towing portable rolled former down the road or it could happen during the operation of the machine.

Other things that can happen if you over-torque, breaking the fastener.

We’ve all had that feeling when you’re tightening it, and all of a sudden it starts to loosen up.

You’ve exceeded the yield strength for the material, and that’s not going to work at all.

It’s not going to hold what it’s supposed to, and it’s ultimately going to break.

Other problems can happen when we’re using aluminum against steel. The steel is going to win, and you’ll have the washer embed into the aluminum rail.

You lose the threads and the aluminum rail and render your machine inoperable.

And we don’t want that. At NTM, we want to instill confidence in what you’re doing.

Thanks for spending a moment today talking about torque. Check out our other videos on the newtechmachinery.com website as well as YouTube.

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