The crowfoot wrench set offers mechanics and do-it-yourselfers another option in their tool chest. The crowfoot wrenches, commonly sold in a set, look similar to the head of an open-end wrench but without the shaft or handle. Instead, an opening is included just behind the wrench mouth to accommodate a socket set handle.
A crowfoot wrench fits onto the side of the nut or bolt rather than over the top like a standard socket set. This allows the crowfoot wrench to work in areas where there is insufficient space above the bolt to fit the standard socket. The ratcheting action of the socket handle is locked in the direction the wrench is turned to provide the leverage needed to turn the bolt or nut.
A torque wrench includes a calibrated gauge used to tighten the bolt or nut to a specific tension. This tension is commonly measured in foot-pounds. Using crowfoot wrenches with a torque wrench handle allows you to use the same tool to measure the tension on bolts and nuts of various sizes. This improves the efficiency of the operation.
The crowfoot attachment will fit in most spots that accommodate an open-end wrench. By including a set in the tool chest, along with the socket set, you can reduce the overall number of tools and the weight of what you carry.
The length of the crowfoot wrench is a factor in the torque calculation. Knowing the length of the crowfoot wrench and the proper formula used to calculate the torque is necessary. On a standard socket handle the crowfoot has limited applications only in tight quarters. Depending on the type of mechanical work done, the tools may not be necessary in every tool chest.