Many professional, industrial, and mechanics tool brands engineer their premium combination and open-end wrenches with anti-slip features.
Anti-slip wrenches are engineered with grooves or serrations on one or both flats of their open-end sides.
Snap-on’s Flank Drive Plus, Proto’s Anti-Slip Design (ASD), Matco’s Opti-Torque Pro, Mac Tools’ Knuckle Saver, and Wright’s WrightGrip wrench designs all feature anti-slipping elements.
Although different in style, all of these and other brands’ anti-slip open end wrenches are designed to reduce slipping and impede fastener corner rounding damage.
Do they work? Yes, wrenches with anti-slip designs are typically more effective in higher torque applications than those without such features.
Garage Journal member woodstockva with YouTube handle dmcguinn1 put together a video demonstrating the benefits of Wright WrightGrip wrenches compared to those that do not feature anti-slip grooves or serrations.
While the video is intended to highlight Wright’s WrightGrip wrenches, I feel it also does a great job at demonstrating the benefit of anti-slip open ended wrench designs in general.
Spoiler Alert: the WrightGrip wrench does not slip off the fastener and instead maintains contact with the bolt until excessively high torque shears the bolt head right off.
If your wrenches don’t feature anti-slip open ends, there’s no need to rush out to replace them with all new wrenches. But if you have a tendency to round off your fasteners or are upgrading to a new set of wrenches anyways, the above video might help you determine whether you need wrenches with such features.
I have a set, where the inside part of the open end has two flats, that help engage the bolt head, and I feel they slip less than my other wrenches. They don’t have serrations, but they are less polished than some, which may help, as well. If these Wright wrenches work as well as they make them out to, shearing the bolt before slipping, that would be a real step forward from ordinary wrenches.
I have a set of Williams combination wrenches with some sort of anti slip machining. They seem to fit the nut a little more snugly, and I have had older corroded nuts that have resisted the wrench to the point I grabbed an older style.
Being on a livestock farm the nuts sometimes, well, better leave it there.
have to admit that this video ticked me off ! just a classic showing of how to
misuse a tool. not its intended use. its why they make box wrenches. to me it seems to be an answer looking for a question.
You man a solution in search of a problem.
I disagree. There have been numerous occasions where I could not get a box wrench on a stuck bolt, and my only options were open end, ot cutting torch.
I’ve seen these, and think the idea has some merits and uses for sure, especially in more critical applications where an open-end wrench is the right tool for the job.
However, all of the wrenches I’ve seen with this feature are rather wimpy, the handles are thinner than a regular wrench, and I haven’t seen anything suggesting they are hardened or made stronger than a regular wrench, so this doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, unless this is only really intended for smaller fasteners, which would make sense, since there’s a point where a wrench just isn’t going to cut it for high torque no matter what the head design is, unless it’s longer.
I’d like to see this open-end design show up on wrenches like Gearwrench’s X-beam, where the longer length and larger hand area means you’d be able to take advantage of these features to really torque a fastener.
Dewalt’s anti-slip wrenches are long pattern wrenches and the handles are plenty sturdy. I know they’re forged in Taiwan but then again so are GearWrench. Dewalt makes a fantastic product at a great price point. I highly recommend them.
This made me think of the “gap” there is between an 9mm wrench, for example, to accommodate a 9mm head? The 9mm wrench has to be “wider” to pit on a 9mm head bolt.
This also made me think of the “metal stretching”..i have experience trying to unscrew a stubborn bolt where the yaw of the wrench flexes an opens- causing to deform the head bolt.
Lol…nice things to think about.
I can think of an innovation to prevent this issue but I’m scared that if I say this, someone will steal it from me. 🙂
Interesting post dude.
I wondered the same thing, about whether the wrench slipped because it spread a little, or because it rounded the fastener’s corners. In the video you can see rounded-corner damage, but there’s no real way to check for wrench spreading without doing “before and after” measurements.
Alan S. Blue
Sure there is.
Do -during- testing.
Person #1 wrenching …more …. more… hold!
Person #2 wielding a caliper.
That is: The wrench will open some -well- before it reaches the level of plastic deformation and a permanent widening. This will not be seen in and ‘before and after’ measuring. But it should be seen in a -during- measurement.
Hmm… I didn’t consider that.
I have seen widening and brittle failure, but didn’t think there would be measurable amounts of elastic deformation.
Calipers might not be the best way to test for this.
If the wrench is turned slowly enough, then video capture from directly above should be clear enough to measure the wrench opening.
Even so, whether the wrenches are slipping due to fastener rounding, or fastener rounding is occurring due to wrench spreading and slipping, the conclusion is still valid. Wrenches with anti-slip mechanisms, such as the Wright shown in the video, are more resistant to slipping at higher torque.
They may be more resistant to slipping – but that’s only to the point where slipping is the only problem. At the point where the wrench is no longer slipping but is being spread apart, the strength of the fastener being held in is exceeding the strength of the material and design of the wrench.
This is why you normally use a box end – it doesn’t spread apart because – it’s boxed in.
I still say it’s a factor of fastener size. The larger fasteners just aren’t made to be busted loose or fully torqued with an open end, no matter what the design.
Whether it’s the wrench spreading, corner round off, or a little bit of both. I really think this is more of an unintended feature 🙂
Usually if this happen this mean the bolt is over tighten. Personally I have never rounded off any of my bolt when I set them to the proper torque. Personally I haven’t come across a place where I think it would be sensible to torque my nut and bolt to the point of stripping. If stronger torque is required perhaps a boxed end should be used in the first place.
Again for stucked bolt in a hard to access place that’s a whole another issue, but for day to day used I would rather have a wrench that spread than to have a senseless mechanic over torque my bolt.
This is also why it is not really appropriate to compare wrenches made by different manufacturers in order to determine the usefulness of the anti-slip feature. Too many variables are introduced. It would be nice to have the exact same wrench manufactured the exact same way by Wright (with and without serrations) and compare the two. Also, the bolt should probably be anchored so that it cannot be tightened–only twisted. And, what the heck, might as well measure the torque at point of slippage or fastener failure and compare those numbers also. 🙂
No link but it’s already been done. Flank drive vs. flank drive plus. Practical machinists site perhaps ? Think of it like this. Take out your dentures and try eating some beef jerky. Insert teeth. Repeat. Maybe someone at a tea party will accept the challenge.From the exchanges on**them thar-these here* tool forums there will be many to choose from.
Love my Wright Grip wrenches.
What if the bolts are rusted
Very useful video to show clearly the potential of these wrenches.
Pity you don’t mention the proportional extra cost which I gather is generally about +25%.
If I was doing this I would attempt to show the loosening from an overtorqued fastener which is sometimes called for with an OE wrench.
Normally you would not even consider tightening to this level with any OE wrench.
I have been professional mechanic for 30 years i used to work in heavy mining equipment and cars. Professional use box end for torque. Amateurs use open box for torque. If you can not use the box end. You use a socket or a low profile socket or flare nut wrench. I have had ALL BRANDS . snap on, caterpillar, gedore and cheap as husky. In my opinion there are no difference between snap on or husky. I never broke a single ratchet . Because u use a drive handle BEFORE and then you use a ratchet!!!. If you need torque you use a 3/4 !!!!!. Expend 400 bucks in a snap on set of wrenches is a waste of money.