Feb 16, 2017

[2.70] Seek and Geek #2: Pipewrench

If you haven't noticed, I really like pipewrenches.

Me on the "About Me" tab
Time to geek out about pipewrenches!

Better than roses for Valentine's Day (speaking from experience)
 A pipe wrench is an adjustable wrenches designed to be used on soft round pipes and fittings. One jaw is fixed and the other is effectively pinned with plenty of slop, such that pushing forwards on the handle pulls the jaws together.

Sliding jaw (left) and tooth block screwed to stationary jaw (right) are both replaceable

The teeth on the two jaws point in opposing directions; they dig into the soft pipe when rotated. The steel teeth blocks are also replaceable (so are the jaws), so a cast-steel or more-modern-aluminum will last you a long time.


Fun fact: the pipewrench was invented in Cambridge, MA by Daniel Stillson. Pipe wrenches are also known as Stillson wrenches.
Adjustment comes from turning a thumb-nut against a rack. This rack acts as a leadscrew but is also flat (ease of manufacturing since you can start with flat stock)

artofmanliness's beautiful cartoon

 Another cool fact about pipe wrenches is that the sliding jaw not only moves axially relative to the stationary jaw, it also is designed to have limited angular movement. The slop in the rack allows the sliding jaw to angle forward when gripping a pipe, providing some flexibility in positioning and added compliance for grip.

1 comment:

  1. the slight angle of the jaws... self-help to tightens one direction and slips like a ratchet for reverse to then tighten more!!!!

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