Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench

By Jeff Deitz on Tool Reviews, Weekend warrior

Gearwrench 3/8’ Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench Model 85078 Review

In recent years I’ve elected to DIY as much of my own car maintenance as possible.  With the addition of a small compact tractor to those responsibilities, the list of routine maintenance tasks is ever growing. One item in my toolbox that was sorely missing was a torque wrench.

I recently got my hands on a Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench, model 85078 digital torque wrench.   This particular model is equipped with a 3/8” flexible head and sepc’d for 10-100ft/lbs.  It boasts the following features.

Gearwrench Electronic Torque Wrench Features

  • Large digital LED backlit display
  • 5 torque measurement units including ft-lb, in-lb, Nm, Kg-m, and Kg-cm
  • 10 torque setting presets for frequent jobs
  • Oil and solvent resistant handle and housing
  • 72 tooth ratchet resulting in a 5°swing arc for tight spaces
  • “Target Torque Alert” gives a heads up warning as you approach the target torque value
  • Meets or exceeds ASME B107.28M standards

10-100 ft. lbs. Range

The Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench is a mid range value 10-100 ft lbs wrench and comes in at 16.75 inches in length and weighs 2.07 lbs.  This length is by design to give you enough fidelity over smaller settings and long enough to give you the lever required to apply the force required for 100 ft/lbs.

It has a nice heavy construction feel with a great rubber grip that is meant to endure the accidental bump and bruises of the workshop.  This model has a flex head that travels 15° to help with recessed access.

Easy To Read LCD Screen

The LCD screen is well lit, large and easy to read.  The interface is simple with only a few buttons to navigate a simple menu structure. This allows the user to select between the 5 different torque measurements, 3 different modes including peak torque and angle measurements (more on that later).

Ease of Use

Once a value is set in the menu, the application is straightforward.  Simply begin to tighten the fastener and the LCD screen will update the values in the units that you have selected.  As you get close to the value set, the adjustable “Target Torque Alert” system will notify you that the target value is approaching.  This is a great feature that can help the over excited hand from overshooting and overtorquing.

The Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench uses the senses of sight, touch and sounds to notify the user of the proper values.  The handle vibrates, the LCD screen illuminates green and red colors and a clear and loud audible beep will notify when the values are met.

Having all three methods is a great feature for those applications when the screen may be out of view or a noisy shop environment can make it tough to hear.

Torque with Angle

Perhaps the biggest feature of this wrench that sets itself apart from other torque wrenches is its ability to accurately and efficiently fasten torque to yield fasteners (TTY) also known as stretch bolts.  Automotive manufacturers are increasingly using TTY fasteners in the design of certain parts.  These bolts require a precise torque value that brings the bolt into plastic (permanent) deformation.  This process is achieved by torquing a bolt to prescribed value and then continuing the rotation a set number of degrees.  This usually requires a second torque-angle gauge or physically measuring and marking angles on your workspace.

After applying the appropriate torque using a traditional peak torque mode, the 85078 can quickly switch to angle mode for the final step in torque angle fastening.   Set the desired angle of rotation the same manner you would select a torque value and simply rotate the fastener to the set angle.  The three way warning system and target torque alert system work in the same manner for angle measurements.


If you are using a torque wrench to tighten a fastener, then you care about accuracy.  Each Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench 85078 comes with its own certificate of calibration and accuracy.  The manufacturer specs are +/-2% CW and +/-3% CCW between 20% and 100%.  The certificate for this particular wrench reviewed fell within those parameters.

Overall Thoughts

The Gearwrench Flex Head Electronic Torque Wrench 85078 is a solid, well crafted and well designed precision tool.  The addition of the angle measurement is sure to save time for the pro mechanic that uses that feature on a daily basis.  For the DIY mechanics among us, this wrench may not be needed frequently, but when it is called for you can rest assured it will get the job done well.

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About the author

Jeff Deitz

Jeff Deitz is a trained Mechanical and Systems Engineer but underwent a career change a decade ago to pursue a career in aviation. Jeff joined the Concord Carpenter team several years ago to assist with smart home automation and electronic integrations. After working with Rob on several projects, Jeff quickly gravitated to Tool Box Buzz’s Head 2 Head tests. Using his background as a systems test engineer he can frequently be found with a few other TBB crew members discussing the finer points of tool testing and designing the next Head 2 Head tool test.

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