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Topeak Torq Stick

8
£79.99

VERDICT:

8
10
Neat, accurate and useful tool
Compact
Easy to use
Takes any 1/4in bit
Good quality
Expensive
Basic bits
Weight: 
172g

The Topeak Torq Stick is compact, very nicely made and easy to adapt to most fastener types with its magnetic 1/4in drive. Running from 2-10Nm, it's a great way to ensure important bolts are tight but not dangerously so – especially important if you run a carbon bar or seatpost. The five supplied bits are basic and disappointing, though, and if portability isn't important you can get much cheaper wrenches.

The Torq Stick adjusts from 2-10Nm in 0.25Nm steps, and is certainly accurate enough for bicycle use. It's also enough torque for most components, such as bars, stems, brake and shifter clamps, drivetrain parts and most bits of disc and rim brakes. It's not enough for cranks, bottom brackets or pedals, though.

> Find your nearest dealer here

The scale is etched clearly alongside a physical indicator, so it's easy to read and should stay that way. The aluminium casing has a slightly satin anodised finish that's pleasing – and comfy at maximum torque – while the adjuster is grippy and impossible to twist accidentally once set.

2020 Topeak Torq Stick - detail 1.jpg

While the extensive road.cc testing laboratory was unavailable due to its continued non-existence, I did check the Torq Stick against a bigger (and therefore better) torque wrench I use for motorcycles. Their values agreed, both while tightening and loosening.

The 'storage pen' that clips on the side is a bit of a disappointment, though. It's a fiddly and oversized design, and has windows for spying the bit sizes that are redundant – you have to open the case to get it anyway. It also doesn't hold the Torq Stick particularly firmly and can flop around, though at least it can't slide off completely as it does on the Ratchet Stick.

2020 Topeak Torq Stick - bits.jpg

Worse, however, are the meagre five bits inside – 3, 4 and 5mm hex, T20 and T25 Torx. They're just basic 25mm-long bits and, while made of the same S2 hardened steel, they lack the knurling, etching, colour coding and extra length of the standalone BitKits and the ones included with the Ratchet Stick.

The bits are held in the tool head magnetically, and are really secure, and they're easy to swap for better ones, too.

2020 Topeak Torq Stick - detail 2.jpg

At £80 the Topeak is quite a bit more than some decent budget options. The Pro Bike Tool 2-20Nm Torque Wrench set is £62.99, for instance, has twice the range, uses arguably better-supported square drive sockets and comes with 11 hex sizes and an extension bar.

Draper's 1/4in Torque Wrench is also square-drive and measures 5-25Nm for £37.20, though it doesn't come with any bits and is bigger and heavier than the Topeak.

If you're just doing bars, stems and seatposts, single-value wrenches work well. The Ritchey Torque Mini Tool Key Set comes in 4 or 5Nm versions for £21.99.

For cycle-specific stuff, however, the Feedback Sports Range Torque and Ratchet matches the Torq Stick at £80 – though it offers a ratchet and far more bits – and the frankly lovely (and certified accurate) Effetto Mariposa Giustaforza torque wrench 2-16Nm, which Shaun reviewed back in 2015, is £119.99.

> Buyer’s Guide: 8 of the best torque wrenches

The Torq Stick is well priced for its quality and ease of use, even with the disappointing bits. It's not the cheapest way to get simple jobs done, and it lacks the extreme accuracy of high-end tools that sticklers may demand, but it sits happily in the middle as a good quality, easy to use and genuinely useful tool at a reasonable price.

Verdict

Neat, accurate and useful tool

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Topeak Torq Stick

Size tested: 5 Tools

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Topeak says it's: "An incredibly compact torque wrench with adjustable torque value range of 2-10 Nm. A standard hex drive reversible ratcheting head with adjustable preset torque values allows you to tighten frame or component bolts safely and with confidence. Includes a five bit storage pen with visible window design letting you find the correct bit quickly and easily."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Topeak lists:

FUNCTIONS

7

SIZE

15 x 2.5 x 2.15 cm / 5.8' x 1' x 0.85' (Torque tool)

WEIGHT

174 g / 6.14 oz (Torque tool w/ storage pen)

TOOLS

3 / 4 / 5 Allen bits

T20 / T25 Torx® bits

TORQ RANGE

2 - 10 Nm

BITS MATERIAL

S2 hardened steel

RATCHET MATERIAL

Hardened steel

BODY MATERIAL

Aluminum / Engineering grade polymer

ADDED FEATURES

Ratchet tool, bit screwdriver, 5 bit storage pen

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Strong and stylish.

Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10

Easy to use and accurate.

Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10

Nothing to raise concerns.

Rate the product for value:
 
4/10

Offers useful compactness and bike-focused bits, but is still expensive compared with others.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Very well.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The ratchet clicks with a very short throw – great for working in restricted spaces.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The slightly high price.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

If you're just doing bars, stems and seatposts, then single-value wrenches are fine – the Ritchey Torque Mini Tool Key Set comes in 4Nm and 5Nm versions for £21.99. Also, the Feedback Sports Range Torque and Ratchet matches the Torq Stick at £80 but offers a ratchet and far more bits. That said, the frankly lovely (and certified accurate) Effetto Mariposa Giustaforza torque wrench 2-16Nm is £119.99, so the Topeak is far from the most expensive option.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

If you need a cycle-focused torque wrench that's pretty portable and rugged, the Torq Stick is very good and an eight. Its only real problem is the price relative to ordinary workshop offerings.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 48  Height: 183cm  Weight: 78kg

I usually ride: Vitus Zenium SL VR Disc  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: A few times a week  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: general fitness riding, mtb,

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