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Unread 05-04-2013, 07:08 PM   #1
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Default terminal torque

I bought new batteries yesterday and installed them today. Perusing the forums here, I see the recommendation for 100 in. lbs. of torque and the comment that said number came from Trojan.

Just for the heckuvit, I got out my torque wrenches to check this. One wrench is an oversized screwdriver-looking thing with a dial just below the handle. It goes up to 80 in. lbs. Another is a brand-new Harbor Freight 1/4" drive job that I bought just a couple of weeks ago when it was on sale for 10 bucks. It goes up to a max of 200 in. lbs.

I've been using a home-made 'T' handle wrench that has a 4" long crossbar, snugging the nuts down until they felt about 'right'. I've been wrenching lots of different stuff for nearly 60 years, so my personal belief is that I have a pretty good feel for what is "tight".

It turns out that what I feel is "tight" is about 50 in. lbs., measured with 2 different torque wrenches.

Now, I'm wondering....

Comments anyone?
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Unread 05-04-2013, 07:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: terminal torque

Read the first post by johnnieB in this thread: Battery Question
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Unread 05-04-2013, 08:54 PM   #3
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Default Re: terminal torque

Kernal,
I had read that comment by JohnnyB, that's why I posted this thread. (didn't want to hijack that one)

I'm pretty sure that I've never tightened my terminal nuts to 100 in. lbs., and I've had very little trouble with them coming loose. Can't say "never", but not much.

The torque wrenches came out today because I wanted to KNOW, not guess. It was interesting to me to find that I could hardly reach 40 in. lbs. with the screwdriver-looking wrench if I used only one hand on the "screwdriver" handle. This is what I'm talking about: http://www.seekonk.com/torqstart.html, it's the Model SL-80 Right, 0-80 in. lb. wrench. Mine has a 2 3/4" knurled disk on the top of the handle so you can get right up on it, using both hands. Clamping the drive end in a vise, I found that's what it requires to reach 80 in. lbs.

FWIW: I see the thing lists for $132.60, I found it at a flea market for much less than that.

More experiments are called for. My home-made 'T' handle wrench has a 9/16" socket brazed on it, as my old batteries had that size hex nut, even though the terminals were 5/16". Will change nuts tomorrow, use the 'T' wrench to tighten them, then check with the torque wrench to see where I'm at.

Of course, it'd be nice to come up with a method of tightening those nuts to the correct torque w/o having expensive tools. Having worked around others, I know that different (very experienced) people have quite different "feels" for what is "tight".
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Unread 05-04-2013, 09:24 PM   #4
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Default Re: terminal torque

This is out of the EZGO Owner and Service manual, starting model year 2001.

I am sure each different battery manufacturer has there own specs. I use a torque wrench set to 50 in. lbs. and they seem plenty tight.

"Use care to connect the battery wires as shown (Ref Fig.
28 on page 22). Tighten the battery post hardware to 50 -
70 in. lbs. (6 - 8 Nm) torque. Protect the battery terminals
and battery wire terminals with a commercially available
protective coating".
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Unread 05-05-2013, 12:37 AM   #5
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Default Re: terminal torque

I don't think I would go anywhere near 100 in/lb that just seems like the chance of pulling a bolt out of the lead is to high, mine are about 55 to 60.
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Unread 05-05-2013, 07:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: terminal torque

Well, today I finished up the installation of my new batteries by making and installing new 4 ga. cables. Made my own terminal ends from 1.5" long pieces of 3/8" copper tubing. Crimped them onto the welding cable with my new Harbor Freight hydraulic crimper, bought on sale a couple of weeks ago. (It's still only $53.00 see: http://www.harborfreight.com/catalog...+Wire+Crimping) Someone here posted the tip, thanks!

Didn't have suitable shrink tubing, but happened to find some "rescue tape" in the cabinet. This is a thick, soft, tape that's sort of self-vulcanizing. It only really sticks to itself, but once stuck tends to bond. It does make the terminal ends look nice. Here's the link: http://www.rescuetape.com/ (I have no connection to this outfit, bought it on a whim at a flea market.)

Ended up tightening the nuts to about 40 in. lbs. That felt 'tight' to me, and I will continue to monitor them over time.

Thanks for the commiseration!
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