Top 5 tools for assembling

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Assembling a Flexpipe structure can be an easy process and can be made even quicker if you use the appropriate tools. All Flexpipe joint sets are assembled with the same nuts and bolts. As such, you’ll just need a 5-mm hex head tool to carry out your project.

Depending on the scope of the project, it’s essential to know which tool can save you the most time and money. Here’s a list of the 5 tools we recommend, with their respective pros and cons.

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

 

 

5 – The 5 MM Hex Key (Allen Key)

5 MM Hex Key

Pros

The hex key, or Allen key, is found in most toolboxes. This inexpensive tool, which is available in many stores, is perfectly adapted to carry out adjustments on existing structures or to build small projects. The hex key’s modest size enables you to work in those hard-to-reach places that other tools are unable to access.

TIP: Did you know that you can cut a long hex key into several pieces? These pieces can subsequently be used as a hex head on your drill. However, this tip does not work for impact drivers.

Cons

We don’t recommend using a hex key for assembling larger projects as this may be painful for your hands and wrists. While the hex key is convenient, it’s not intended to be a time-saver.

 

4 – The Hex Socket (Dynamometric) Wrench

Hex Socket Wrench

Pros

A hex socket wrench is a useful, light tool. One can choose a 5mm (1/4’’) unit with a preset cutting range of 2-100 inches per pound (9.8 Nm). This cutting range is the ideal strength to assemble Flexpipe structures. As such, your bolts will always be perfectly tightened.

TIP:You may find it challenging to locate this preset tool, so we’ve done the searching for you! The tool is available for purchase on seekonk.com (US-based, delivery to Canada is possible).

Cons

While this tool is faster than the hex key and the T-handle, you’ll find others listed in this article which are quicker to use. You should keep in mind that a preset torque wrench is not a common tool and it can be difficult to find; it can be expensive, too.

If the one you are using is not preset, you’ll need to pay close attention to the torque setting. If it’s too tight, the bolt heads may become stripped, and you won’t be able to use the bolts again in future projects.

 

3 – The Cordless Drill

Cordless Drill

Pros

A cordless drill is a highly useful tool for projects that only require short assembly time. Given that most people have already used a drill, little employee training is necessary. Furthermore, you probably have one on hand in your facility!

Cons

It’s essential to adjust a drill before using it. You must select the “V1” speed setting: that is, the drill speed will be moderate, but with a high level of power. Failure to adequately set the speed level can lead to a wrist injury.

Also, be ready to compose with the tool’s weight when assembling a large-scale project. Speed is critical here; make sure you have the right torque setting, so you don’t strip the bolt heads and render them unusable for future projects.

 

2 – The T-Handle Hex Key

T-Handle Hex Key

Pros

As a useful complement to the impact driver, the T-handle hex key is handy to tighten bolts which are hard to reach. Its rubber grip makes it more ergonomic and comfortable than the hex key, and it is also very affordable.

Cons

As is the case for the hex key, this tool is not suitable for large-scale projects. If you do choose to use it nonetheless it may be painful for your hands and wrists. While it won’t provide the quickest execution time, the T-Handle hex key can prove to be useful in certain situations.

 

1 – The Impact Driver (Impact Gun)

Impact Driver

Pros

The impact driver, also known as an impact gun, is the tool we recommend most. Why? Because it’s powerful, fast and quite affordable. It’s best to set it at medium power for top performance.

Cons

Be sure to have the proper torque setting to avoid stripping the bolt heads, or else they will be useless for other projects. We also recommend purchasing a replacement battery, so your assembly process is not interrupted by a dead battery.

 

Tip about Flexpipe nuts and bolts:

All Flexpipe joint sets are assembled with M6-N nuts and M6-25B bolts. The term M6 refers to the outer metric diameter of the head which is 6 mm.

 

Conclusion

Now that you know all the characteristics of these assembling tools, you should be able to determine which is the right tool to assemble your Flexpipe structures. Remember that it’s essential to evaluate the scope of your project correctly, so you purchase the tool that best suits your needs.

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Yves Provost - Production Supervisor

Yves is Flexpipe’s plant manager–and one of our first employees! He played a significant part in improving our production and delivery processes. He’s also a fan of running and desserts.