How to Make a Spanner Wrench


Spanner wrenches can be costly, especially if you need sets with more than one measurement system. Whether through loss or damage, there are times when you don't have the correct one handy. It is not difficult to manufacture a spanner wrench as long as you have basic metal shop experience.

Things You'll Need

  • 1/4-inch plate steel
  • Right-angle grinder with 24- and 80-grit bolt-on disks and cutoff wheel
  • Permanent fine-tip marker
  • Mill file
  • Draw the profile of the nut or collar you need to remove on 1/4-inch-thick plate steel. Design your wrench as in the diagram, using a permanent fine-tip marker. Decide how long your wrench needs to be to fit into the area where the nut or collar is used. Consider making more than one length for the nut or collar.

  • Use a cutoff blade on your right-angle grinder to shape the profile of the wrench.

  • Use a 24-grit wheel to rough-grind the profile and remove any burrs. Test the fit of the wrench on the nut or collar.

  • Use your 80-grit bolt-on abrasive disk on the right-angle grinder to finish-grind the wrench.

  • Use a mill file to finesse the fit of the wrench to the nut. This will require multiple passes, removing only a stroke or two of material at a time.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make your wrench more durable by using Super Quench.
  • Always wear wraparound eye protection when cutting, grinding or finishing metal.

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  • Photo Credit Gypsy Wilburn 2009
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